Glass bottles, a thing that we often find stacking up at home. Well what if we could do something with them? Bingo!
In this instructables I will be making some fun and easy glass bottle chimes with LED lights in them which finally had a beautiful outcome. The amazing part about this project is that almost everything is made with recycled material, all you need is a bit of time and energy, maybe on a Sunday afternoon, to make one of these chimes.
Follow on to see how these bottles transforms from trash into treasure, giving you a pleasant sound and an ambient lighting.
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Step 1: Gathering Your Materials
Go down to your trash and start rummaging for bottles. It depends on what you want as ''design''. I chose a long bottle (a wine bottle) with a green tint better suited for my lights but you can choose any shape or tint you like.
MATERIALS NEEDED :
- Wine Bottle (from the trash)
- Colourful Yarn
- Glass Beads
- Acetone (Kerosene would do)
- Super Glue (Fevibond)
- Safety Gloves
Let's get started!
Step 2: Cleaning the Bottles
Now as you have your bottles, you need to give them a thorough wash.
Start by peeling off the labels and then scrub the bottle with soap to take out all the residual glue. Once the glue is out, wipe the bottle.
TIP : if the labels are not coming out easily soaking the bottle in hot water helps.
Step 3: CUTTING THE BOTTLES : Scoring
This part needs some skills and several attempts to master. I would advice you to practice it few times on waste bottles. As for the diamond cutter, I borrowed it from a friend but any local shop would have one.
You need to cut your bottle according to the length you wish. I used a diamond glass cutter to make a score on the bottle. I wanted a slanted cut and therefore made a jig out of an empty scotch tape roll (which was a waste material again!).
Start by dipping the tip of your diamond cutter in acetone to protect the tip and also provide better results. Make a score on the bottle with the cutter while pressing it against the jig. This has to be done with utmost care as you need the score to end where it began, so be patient. Once the first round is complete, you will realise that the cutter tends to follow the same path as a groove is formed and therefore the first round is very important. Once that's done, you could remove the jig and make several more scores following the same groove. This is a tedious process so take your time.
Please note that the cutter just scores and does not cut. Once your bottle looks the same as the one in the last picture, you're ready for the next step.
Step 4: CUTTING THE BOTTLE : Heating
Your bottle now has a score, this makes that region a weak point. Glass gets very brittle and breaks easily if there is a sudden change of temperature. Using this property we will crack it where the score is by lighting that section on fire then cooling it suddenly in ice cold water.
Take your ball of thread and tightly start rolling it around the groove. After you have made a number of turns tie a knot so that the thread stays tight. Then fill a cap full of acetone, take out your looped thread and soak it in the alcohol for a good amount of time. After a minute the thread should be properly soaked, slowly slide it back on to the bottle but this time place it a millimeter under the score. This will permit the bottle to crack easily.
Please wear safety gloves to protect yourself from the heat, then light the thread on fire. The flame always stays upright, so you will need to keep rotating the bottle to heat it up evenly.
Step 5: CUTTING THE BOTTLE : Cracking / Cooling
You will see that the flames slowly die out. Once they are completely out quickly plunge your bottle into your ice cold bucket of water. Wait for a while and you should start hearing a cracking sound, shake the bottle lightly in the water and before you know it, it would have snapped right on the score!
Congratulations, you have successfully managed to break a bottle in half : )
Step 6: Sanding the Cut
Most of the times the cut comes out pretty well but sometimes due to bad scoring the rim is slightly uneven. Don't worry this can be easily rectified. With patience sand the rim moving from rougher to finer grids. I went to a workshop as they had a glass bottle sanding machine and got my bottle sanded. They also had a tinting facility so I got mine done green. This was just because i felt having a tint would have a greater effect with lights, you could do otherwise.
You have completed the body of your wind chime, let's move on to the chimes!
Step 7: MAKING THE CHIMES : Picking the Shards
Now comes the most interesting part of the project. Once the bottle is snapped into half, collect the other half that remained in the bucket. This piece will be recycled to make your shards.
Go out on your terrace and make some noise. Take the remaining half of the bottle and smash it on the floor. Be very careful to throw the bottle far enough from you so that the pieces don’t come flying on to you.
For a better design you could choose different coloured glass shards by breaking waste glasses of any other colour. For my project I used the remaining piece of the green bottle and another transparent bottle which I had used as a trial piece and was therefore a waste material too.
You might have to break the glass pieces over and over again until you are satisfied with the size of the shards that you have.
Once I got my shards, I paired them up in different colours in a manner that together, they were equal in length compared to the other pairs of shards.
Step 8: MAKING THE CHIMES : Attaching Thread & Beads
I bought some glass beads to make the chimes look prettier. I decided to make the chimes in shades of blue and went on to creatively make them, alternating with thread, beads and glass. This step I leave to your creativity although you could replicate what I did.
Just keep in mind to not have too many chimes as the longer they are the more likely for them to get entangled, I chose 8 and it worked out perfectly...
Step 9: Putting in the LED Lights!
Take your strip of LED's and put them though the mouth of the bottle, then through the ring which will hold the bottle. I wanted a natural look so I didn't neaten them up too much, I just taped them to the bottle where they overhung. Test the lights and you will already see how the whole thing suddenly comes to life!
Step 10: Attaching Everything Together
With dabs of super glue attach the eight chimes to the rim of the bottle, making sure to put the right chime in the right place so that they finally more or less come to the same length. Also keep in mind that they should be equidistant to each other. All you need to do is tie the chimes now!
Step 11: Hang and Admire!
Now just find a nice windy spot, maybe your balcony and simply attach your new Wind Chime! This chime in fact turned out even better than I expected and I hope to see you people give it a shot. A feature which i find unique is that at night I can even use this as a lamp.
I hope you guys enjoyed the instructables. I ensure you its a worth making one if you're interested. Feel free to drop your opinion in the comment section and support us by kindly voting.
That's it for today, stay tuned for my next instructables.
Runner Up in the
Glass Challenge 2017