Introduction: C:/TOTE

A tote bag made of 5.25" floppy disks. It can carry bulky objects and at least 15 pounds for extended periods of time. Great for shopping or any of your general toting needs.

Step 1: What You Will Need:

These are what you will need, how much they cost me and how little it could cost you
18 5.25" floppy disks: $20.00 for 100 on eBay or free, salvaged
2X15.75"X16.25" canvas: $3.00 scrap canvas at art store or free, salvaged
Tape: $1.00 for two rolls PVC tape (any kind will do) or free, salvaged
Sewing machine: Free, I'm sure a friend of yours has one.
2X1.5' Cotton or nylon webbing: $0.50 army surplus store or free, salvaged
8 nuts and 8 bolts: $5.36 (acorn nuts are expensive) or free, salvaged
Drill, Bore, awl, knife or other hole punching device: Free, I'm sure you have one

I spent money on this project because I'm turning it in for an art project and because it's a prototype. However now that I know How to make them they will cost me next to nothing to produce. I'm passing the instructions for a free tote bag on to you

Step 2: Line Up the Disks

Align the disks in a three by three square with the seams facing up.

Step 3: Begin Taping

Tape the disks together. Don't worry about looks because there will be a layer of canvas covering it (You may need more tape than shown in the picture.)

Step 4: Align the Fabric

Carefully flip your square of disks over and line it up with one of your rectangles of fabric leaving a half inch of excess on the side you plan to be the top. Then begin sewing the floppy disks to the fabric.

Step 5: Sewing

You should set the sewing machine to be making some kind of wide stitch which will cover the seams between the disks, this saves time, energy and thread compared to sewing on each disk individually.I have compiled a few possible stitches. When you are finished with the disks fold over that extra half inch to make a hem.

Step 6: Congratulations, Now Do It Again

You have completed one half of the tote body, now create the other half. The reason I didn't do it all on one long piece of fabric is because floppy disks are not flexible enough to fold up in the sewing machine

Step 7: Sew Them Together

Now that you have both sides, neat and trim. line them up and sew them together along the three unhemmed edges . Remember to use the backstitch on areas of high stress such as the opening and on the corners.

Step 8: The Finished Body

Here is what the body of the tote bag should look when finished

Step 9: The Handles

See my instructable for a MacPack for tips on salvaging straps from backpacks. Align where your handles will be (I suggest just outside the middle disk), and mark their positions or stick them there with pins or tape.

Step 10: Affix and Enjoy

Drill or poke your holes. I suggest using a knife to cut a small X in the webbing where you want the holes rather than drilling through the straps which won't work. Then simply attach the straps with your nuts and bolts. Do this for all four strap ends and you are ready to enjoy your bag.

Step 11: Hang Ups and Thank Yous

Initially I started this project using only floppy disks and no canvas backing, then I realized that the bag would be much stronger with it. I had to go slow during the end when I really wanted to be finished with the project; However, I needed to stitch slowly so as not to damage the needle due to so many layers of plastic and canvas. Also as you can see, the holes make perfect places for buttons. I took the bag on a test run, carrying roughly 15 bulky pounds for a day with no complaint.

I made this bag out of a combination of a want to create and a want to eliminate plastic bags because our dogs do not defecate enough to necessitate so many. I see people with these canvas or mesh shopping bags and decided to make a derivation of my first instructable using only materials that could be free or cheap for others to obtain. I did this so as to reduce the amount of products in the landfills and to entice other people into creating their own.

I would like to thank instuctables for hosting an outlet for me and so many others, and I would like to thank kiln_brick for letting me use his camera and sewing machine.



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    30 Discussions

    No, no, you're all young whippersnappers. This instructable should be called "TOTE",8 or perhaps BRUN TOTE.

    Anyway, the ACTUAL suggestion I was going to make is use dark canvas - it will make it look more like a disks-only bag.

    Also though it will be substantially more expensive to make (since they are rarer), you can do the same project with eight 8" floppy disks. And if you get really creative, use white webbing for the handles and use a Magic Marker to decorate each handle as a piece of 7-bit paper tape. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Punched_tape for an example.

    3 replies

    ha ha, I have a box of 10, 8" floppies, they are too few and far between for me to use them in such a manner.

    I have hundreds with my collection of TRS-80 Model II computers. Also mixed in the boxes are various weirdo hard-sectored disks from Lord alone knows what strange Jurassic-era systems (probably some DEC stuff in there, and other minicomputer goodies). And at least some density/sectoring configurations are still actually in current production. But expensive, like I said. VERY expensive.

    I've found that when working with webbing straps like the ones for your handles, using an icepick or fork prong to 'poke' through the webbing works best. Once through, gyrate the icepick in circles to widen the opening and voila! Holes in webbing without cutting. And without cutting, the webbing won't weaken or tear over time.

    I think you are showing your youth. It should be titled, "A:\TOTE". I've been around this game for a while. I bought my 1st PC in Feb. 1984 It was the original 32-pound Compaq Portable and cost me $3000. At that time, 5.25" DSDD diskettes cost $5 each. I still have that Compaq....

    7 replies

    Could also be B:\TOTE, too. And I'm a lot younger than you. Thing is, I know my old tech as well as my new.

    Yep, B:\TOTE is also possible.

    You could only boot off of A:\ though. Typically, A: had DOS and whatever program you wanted to run; B: was the floppy you stored your files.

    One of those things I never knew. The most I remember from DOS was trying to get back into Windows 98 after friends locked the system down by restarting in MS-DOS mode and realizing it won't boot to Windows unless you key in the right term. I no longer remember the terms, but that was always fun.

    The only dos I ever ran was an emulator *blush*, I told you I was reared on the Macintosh SE

    im only 14 and i had two dos laptops that one had a broken screen while the other one the motherboard was fried and was an easy switcheroo, that was my first dos computer, i did that when i was 10.....i think thats pretty good lol

    I remember the time dad brought home an 8 inch floppy disk. It became my mouse pad. No longer have it (the case fractured on me), but it got looks from friends.

    Oh my God (of DOS) please forgive the sinner dude who made this project!!!
    Since the winXX appeared the world came upside down.
    Nice project and very well done 4/5 (the one missing for respect to old good f@#$%king days of the dark screen with the white chars)
    I have around two big boxes of these 5-3/4 Floppies. (many of them still working fine- when i boughed my new PC I ask to leave enough space for a 53/4 floppy player.....the guy was very young and he replied "never existed that kind of stuff......still laughing

    That is awesome. I wish I could find those. I can't remember how floppy they are, but if they were bendy enough, they'd make an awesome raincoat, mehbe. You were mentioned on Threadbanger. And I was like "ZOMG! I've even quite possibly commented on that one!"

    4 replies

    I'm making a vest for prom, the only problem is that humans have joints, and unlike fabric, these floppies cannot bend in two dimensions at once

    I could imagine that being an issue. Recently I found some records that were the size of CDs at the local St Vinnies. You just inspired me to start thinking about making vinyl scale mail.

    *sigh* It's probably too late, but please consider googling the bands on those 45's before you turn them into scale mail. I don't know too many people collecting and listening to them, but as a favor to those folks, make sure you're not destroying anything good.