DIY Magnetic Soap Holder

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About: Mostly harmless

I remember these magnetic soap holders from my childhood, and since I don't use liquid soap anymore (avoiding plastic wherever I can ) I wanted to buy this great invention to get rid of that gross soap dish *shivers* I got second hand from grandmas old bathroom...

- but everything one could buy, was either ugly to look at or quite expensive.

So I made one myself - HA!

The Up-sides of this magnetic soap holder are:

  • dry, clean soap
  • your sink is easier to clean - no need to lift anything up for cleaning
  • looks way more elegant than that soap dish from grandma

I decided to go with brass, which looks good and is easy to work with (plus I had it already )

- but you could make for example a wooden one as well.

Let's get to work!

Step 1: Materials and Tools

Materials:

brass sheet 2mm

1 strong magnet

1 decorative beer cap

2 brass skrews (+ wall plugs if needed )

1 soap bar

Tools:

something to measure

metal saw

metal drill bit 3mm

a center punch

files

2 part epoxy adhesive

1000 grit sanding paper

hammer and a small nail

Not absolutely necessary for function, but helpful:

countersink bit (makes the skrew holes so much nicer )

a bench vise - you can do it without, but will be much easier with :)

a dremel with router bit for brass

Step 2: Measure and Design

lay the soap bar on you bathroom sink - on the spot you want to hang it over later.

measure the distance to the wall to the middle of the soap bar and add around 1 cm.

draw your raw design onto the brass sheet.

I decided to make an easy 90 degree angle with rounded corners.

for the magnets position, make sure your beer cap (that'll sit on your soap bar) will be fully covered.

my brass strip is going to be 4cm wide, you can go wider if you want.

draw the hole design inkludiing the skrew holes at once.

Step 3: Cutting the Strip

use a metal handsaw to cut along your drawn lines - the better you cut, the less you have to file away later

- I'm quite a lousy cutter but pretty handy with the file ;)

for the rounded corners i used a jewellers saw but you'll be fine with the normal saw as well - just more filing action later :)

Step 4: Shaping With the File

cheat with a belt sander if you want, I prefer files :)

file down to your drawn lines - that will be done pretty fast due brass is quite soft.

sand the egdes in one direction for a nice finish.

Step 5: Skrew Holes

use a center punch to mark the middle of the skrew holes - this gives the tip of your drill bit a place to ride in as you begin to drill.

carefully drill the holes - use safety goggles if you like your eyes :o)

use the countersink bit to make the skrew heads flush.

Step 6: Magnet Fitting

due I only had quite a thick magnet I decided to make a depression for it.

also I figuered that the glue might have a better grip in there, but thats only my theory ;)

I used the dremel with a router bit for it - unfortunatly I wasn't paying enough attention and the router bit broke out a little - but no one will ever see this but me, so I swallowed my anger about it and went on :)

Be carefull while working with the dremel - It's a small tool, but you can hurt yourself and your eyes, use goggels and common sense.

Step 7: Sanding

I wanted to go for a satin finish

i used a sheet of 1000 grit sandpaper, and slided my brass strip carefully on it - be sure to keep the same direction and pressure.

It's like meditation :)

Step 8: Bending

now it's time for the 90 degree angle.

mark the position of the angle once again - you sanded it away in the last step ;)

protect the strip with a towel from scratches while clamping it into the bench vise ( if you don't have a bench vise use the strong edge of a table - clamp it if you can)

clamp it a little lower (about 1mm ) than your position mark.

now use hand power to bend it down until you reach the 90 degrees - you have to bend it slightly over 90 - it will move back.

I'm not a muscle strong woman but it was easy to bend for me.

Step 9: The Bottle Cap

the beer cap will be the magnetic part on your soap bar.

to prevent air pockets while pressing it into the soap, you need a small hole in it.

use nail and hammer to make that hole in the middle of the cap.

get rid of the plasic sheet in the cap

make sure the cap is still flat on the surface - you may have to press the nail once more from the other side, or using the countersink bit

Step 10: Glueing

mix the 2 part epoxy adhesive with a toothpick

add a small amount on both sides around the hole in the bottle cap - don't fill the hole. Why that glue you might wonder? - to prevent rust on the cap -it's coated against rust already, but you damaged that coat by making the hole.

use a more generous amount to glue on the magnet - make sure to use the right side of the magnet it would be a shame if it didn't work :)

wait for the glue to cure - be patient!

Step 11: Prepare the Soap Bar

your glue cured and now its time to get that beer cap in place!

just press it into the middle of the soap bar

- afterwards I figured that it would be a good idea to straighten the caps edges - you can still do that ;)

Step 12: Skrew It On

attach the soap to the magnet and hold everything to the wall until you figuered out the right height and position for your soap holder.

mark the holes and skrew it in - you might need wall plugs as well.

I didnt I have wooden walls.

admire and use it for the first time :)

Step 13: Wash Your Hands

after all this metal work the time to wash your hands has finally come!

grab the soap

wash your hand throughly

hang the soap back

enjoy dry - not filthy- soap the next time you use the bathroom!

Yes, of course : due to gravity your soap will drip a little onto your sink - but that is easy cleaned and you don't have to lift anything up to take care of it.

Step 14: Additional Tip

you wonder what to do with the soap when it gets to small to use?

AwajiMans instructable is simple and yet brilliant - use a onions net and keep it in the shower.

- exactly what I needed and you add a subtle peeling effect - perfect skin :)

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    18 Discussions

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    MimikryMihsin

    Reply 8 weeks ago

    there are a lot of pictures - you may have to reload the page.

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    I saw this hack somewhere else and honestly I REALLY like it! I mean, I don't like the way that there's always this gross puddle of soapy and gunky water underneath soap bars that are left on the sink counter top. This is a really ingenious solution to keep the bar of soap dry and probably a lot more hygienic since it's been suspended out to dry!

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    MimikryNathanDavidson

    Reply 8 weeks ago

    thanks for your comment - i agree in all points!
    the soap dries superquick, so the next person in the bathroom gets a dry and firm soap bar and not a soggy, slippery one.
    you get some drips on the sink but they are easy removed - i just wipe it off with my hand when im in the bathroom anyway.
    also the soap bar seem to last longer - I still got the original one from this instructable and it's only half way gone.

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    terrefirma

    2 months ago

    I always wondered how it was a 'magnetic' soap holder back when these were advertised. I mean I knew soap wasn't magnetic, so how...? They left that critical part out. (did they include the beer cap?)

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    Mimikryterrefirma

    Reply 2 months ago

    there is a "beer cap like thingy" that comes with the store bought magnetic holders - but it is pretty much the same - only a little flatter.

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    PaulChau

    2 months ago on Introduction

    Okay, this is actually really, really cool! I And it accounts for dripping and all that, and you don't even have to pick it up to get your hands all soapy if you don't want to! It's genius!

    1 reply
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    MimikryPaulChau

    Reply 2 months ago

    I agree - kudos to the unknown (?) inventer!
    Why this great bathroom gadget got forgotten? - I blame the unknown (?) inventer of liquid soap for that ;)

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    attosa

    2 months ago

    I like this way more than the one I bought $$$ Nice work!

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    DDMGT

    2 months ago

    Nice, but, what? What is going to keep that bottle cap in place? Friction with disolvong soap? It seems like you’re just trading a messing sink edge for a messy magnet - but it’s an interesting idea!

    3 replies
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    MimikryDDMGT

    Reply 2 months ago

    seems to me you never saw this type of soap holder before - like I mentioned it's not a new idea, in fact this was very common in the 80's or 90's they work fantastically well - but I guess liquid soap became more popular and the magnetic soap holders pretty much went out of fashion.

    there is no messy magnet - the soap bar dries very quickly and doesn't dissolve - and magically the bottle cap holds onto the soap :)
    in my opinion it works much better than a soap dish.

    maybe someone else remembers this old school bathroom gadget?

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    lturpenMimikry

    Reply 2 months ago

    I remember this very well. Actually had to buy one not too long ago and now it sits in my shower. Instead of using the bottle cap, I used a thumb tack on one end. Seems less intrusive that way and gives me more soap to wash with.

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    Mimikrylturpen

    Reply 2 months ago

    I'd never thought that a thumb tack would be a strong enough connection to hold the soap bar.
    have to try it with the next one.

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    Penolopy Bulnick

    3 months ago

    This is a really great idea! I hate when soap makes the sink area all gunky from sitting around :)

    1 reply
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    MimikryPenolopy Bulnick

    Reply 3 months ago

    Thank you for your comment :)
    The idea isn't new, but way better than ordinairy soap dishes.
    the soap bar dries up quickly and it certainly looks more tidy in general.