A simple and cheap way to make a classy gift for your geeky (or not) friend.
Step 1: Needed Materials and Tools
For this simple project you will need..
An empty wine bottle (or any other good looking see-through container)
A keyboard (preferably old and no longer used)
A cork from the bottle (or lid for any other container)
Water (or any other liquid of your choice)
- or + screwdriver
Additional (not necessary) tools:
A small towel or a piece of cloth
A small container for the keys
A larger container for the bottle to soak in
Step 2: Preparation
1) Remove any plastic wrappers from your bottle and place it into your container filled with warm water for easy sticker removal afterwards. Just leave it there for now, we'll return to it soon.
2) Now we're gonna prepare the keys from your keyboard. There are two easy ways to do that and they depend on the type of screwdriver you have (- or +):
a) Stick the end of your flat screwdriver under the key from the side and apply pressure, just pop the button out. You might want to place your finger on the key in case it jumps up high and you don't want to search for it all over the room.
b) Using your cross screwdriver unscrew the keyboard from behind, remove the unnecessary parts and apply pressure to pop out the keys from behind, don't be shy and give them a good old fashioned push. By the way, you may want to do this in the bathtub with the drain plugged, while using this method you also remove a part of crumbs, fingernails, cat hair, dust from your keyboard and it's way easier to clean that in a bathtub.
By now you should have a bunch of dirty buttons (look at the picture below). Remove any metal parts from them - you don't want rust in your bottle. As for cleaning them - it's a two part process (you can do it in one part of course, but i think this way is easier):
a) Put all the buttons in a small container, preferably a jar which can be closed with a lid. Fill the jar with hot water, screw on the lid and shake that bad boy with all your might. This part gets rid of the large debris and also makes the dirt on your buttons softer, easier to clean.
b) Clean each key INDIVIDUALLY. This is very important, you don't want them dirty in your bottle. I suggest you use a rough towel or some cloth and scrub of all the disgusting stuff from them.
3) By this time your bottles' stickers should have gone soft and easy to remove. Scrub them off without damaging the bottle. Simply use your fingers and nails.
At the end of this step you should have a clean bottle and clean keys.
TIP:While individually cleaning the keys you may want to pick out some letters for your other projects, no one will ever notice them missing if you only take a few and you can make some small nice presents from them (f.e. look at the last picture in this step).
Step 3: Finishing Up
In this step we'll pop the keys into the bottle, pop in the cork and hopefully won't need to go to the hospital.
WARNING: Do NOT under any circumstances stick your finger into the bottle when pushing in the keys! You might get it stuck there and when working with glass tubes it's never a good thing to have your finger stuck in one of them. If your keys get stuck, just push them in with the handle of your screwdriver or any other object.
If you DO get your finger stuck you might want to call the local health department straightaway for a consultation. Luckily i've never been in this situation, but god knows what might happen.
1) This part is as simple as it gets - just drop the keys into your bottle (make sure you stuff them in the most efficient way, meaning, don't shub them sideways). If they get stuck just encourage them with a friendly poke using your screwdrivers handle.
2) After all the buttons are in fill the bottle with water (i prefer cold water). Leave a few centimeters or an inch of the neck unfilled.
3) Adding the cork is really simple. Just place the cork in the neck (if one of the sides is still not damaged by the corkscrew when opening make sure it faces up) and slowly but surely slide it downwards with force. If half of the cork is still not in and you can't force it in more CAREFULLY and gently tap it with a mallet or your hand until it's in as much as you want it to be. It's natural for the cork to "bleed" water at this time, that happens because of pressure.
Step 4: Epilogue
If everything went OK you should by now have made a simple decoration/gift which will surely look classy, modern and perhaps even impress your friends.
Sure there's room for improvement in this project.. perhaps you want to add a LED to light it up from the bottom, some sort of fancy heater to keep the keys circulating or even make a heavy chandelier from a bunch of these babies. All i can say - be my guest and invent your own variations.
Any comments, questions, ideas or pictures of your works are highly appreciated and wanted. Thanks for viewing my instructable.