Soda Can Doorstop




About: I'm a teenager that appreciates the finer things in life, such as disassembling an old radio with a hammer and lighting WD-40 on fire out of the can, which is why I fit right in here at Instructables.

In this Instructable, you will create a doorstop out of a soda can.

Note: A soda can full of sand will not hold all doors open.

Let’s get started.

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Step 1: Materials and Tools

You will need a minimal amount of materials for this project:
-empty soda can
   • can must have the mouth hole cover attached
-enough sand to fill the can
-hot glue to seal the can
-spray paint to paint the can

And a few tools:
-needle nose pliers to help seal the can
-funnel to put the sand in the can
-glue gun to use the hot glue

Step 2: Prepare the Can

In this step, you will remove the pull tab of the can and bend the mouth hole cover out of the can.

Start by bending off your pull tab. I don't have pictures of this because it's so easy to do. Don't forget to pull off the piece of the pull tab that remains after bending it off; you can see in the picture that there is just a little circle left where the pull tab is.

Next, find your mouth hole cover inside your can. Get your pliers in there and try to grab the edge of it closest to where it is attached to the can. It might take a bit of wiggling, but you should be able to bend the mouth hole cover so it is entirely outside of the can without breaking it.

Step 3: Fill the Can

In this step, you will fill your soda can with sand.

Set up your can on a stable surface with the funnel stuck in its mouth hole. Start pouring sand in a little bit at a time with your hands, a trowel, or a spoon. Anything works, really. No matter how slowly you go, sand will get stuck in your funnel, so you should take it out of the mouth hole and shake that sand into the can every once in a while.

Fill the can to a little bit below the mouth hole. Now you have to compress the sand inside the can so you can fit more in. Fitting more sand in makes the can heavier and makes it harder to dent, because the sand will reinforce the sides. Using one of your glue sticks or some other object, push the sand down into your can. One strategy I used was to fold up a little piece of a paper towel and push that down on top of the sand with the glue stick, then just leave it in there.

Repeat this process until you can't compress the sand any more, and the sand is right up to the mouth hole.

Step 4: Seal the Can

In this step, you will seal the top of the can with hot glue.

First, carefully push the mouth hole cover down into its place and blow extraneous sand off the top of the can. Make sure you don't blow any sand out of the can! Pull the mouth hole cover back up after you do this.

Next, coat the top of the sand with hot glue. Sand and hot glue don't mix well, so be prepared to break resistant strands of hot glue with your hands.

Quickly push the cover down on top of the sand, holding it firmly in place until the glue dries. While still holding the cover down, put some more glue on the seam between cover and can. Don't worry too much about being tidy with your glue, you can always fix it later.

Let the glue dry, then make it look a little better. Pull off the little strands that aren't holding anything together, etc. until it looks decent. However, keep in mind that you won't be able to see the glue much when the doorstop is on the floor and you're standing up.

Step 5: Paint the Can

In this step, you will paint your soda can doorstop.

I taped off the top and bottom of my can so it would retain its nice shiny aluminum parts, but wouldn't have a label showing on it. See my pictures for how I taped the can off.

Be careful when you paint. You don't want any drips, so do even, light coats and then let the paint dry for at least a few hours before you do another coat.

I did three coats, but I was being extra careful. Two coats of paint will be fine for covering up the label.

Sorry I don't have any pictures of the painting process.

Step 6: Final Touches and Conclusion

In this step, you will remove the date on the bottom of the can and read my lame wrap-up.

To remove the printed date on the bottom of the can, pour some rubbing alcohol on a tissue and rub it off.

Congratulations, you've just transformed an ordinary soda can into a doorstop.

Usage: Since I'm lazy, I'll usually just kick the can over onto its side when I want to close the door, and then I'll grab it by its rim with my big toe to put it upright again.

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    10 Discussions


    8 years ago on Introduction

    Good idea, and I think I'll make one. We have a door in the office that continually, slowly, swings closed.

    Two suggestions that I'll have to implement because the office door has a spring closer on it. If a heavier doorstop is desired and lots of lead isn't available, fill the can with scrap steel---nuts, bolts, whatever. Steel is significantly denser than sand. Then top off the can with sand.

    Also, for wood and vinyl floors, a circle of anti-slip drawer liner glued to the bottom of the can may help a lot.



    6 years ago on Introduction

    nice idea i might make one for my bedroom door as it never closes properly and just swings open randomly O_O (its quite creepy sometimes) i agree with people saying to leave it unpainted as that leaves a familiar iconic look to it and means its abit more could stencil various shapes onto the painted can though your design is quite inconspicuous which is good sometimes. maybe soldering the lid shut in one place would be more subtle than the glue or what you can do it cut of the glue afterwards then heating the remainder gently to give it a better finish. also scraping the glue off or flattening while molten will achieve the same effect. :D


    8 years ago on Introduction

    I like it! Only suggestion would be to load it up with bird shot or lead fishing line weights and then sand. Would make your door stop more effective, no?

    1 reply

    I agree that putting alternate types of weights in the can could be more effective than just using sand, but most people don't need the extra weight. A can full of sand will hold open most wooden doors.
    If you need more weight, feel free to use denser materials such as lead weights.


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    Interesting. I think that would just make it look like you propped a door open with an unopened soda can. Which might make you look strange.