The Apocalypticup




One evening I was making soup and I looked at the can and thought. "You know, these cans really are useful and it would be a shame to waste it." I use tin cans to hold pens and pencils, notes and paper, and even one to hold bouncy balls. So thinking of what I could do with the can that once contained soup I came with an idea for a novelty akin to something you would see in a post apocalyptic world, and thus I named this strange creation the apocalypticup.

Step 1: Materials

IMPORTANT! :Always solder with a filtering fan or in a well ventilated area. Lung damage may not be gained as fast from soldering fumes as it is from smoking a cigarette but keeping your lungs healthy is good idea regardless. I can safely assume we all enjoy breathing.

So the tools and materials are pretty straight forward.
-a clean tin can
-Copper gas tubing. (or a thick guage copper wire)
-Soldering Iron, solder flux, and solder wire, (preferably lead free)
-hack saw
-Bench vise (Not shown)

-You may want a heat resistant glove for the soldering

Step 2: (Build the Handle) Bend the Tubing and Flattening the Ends.

Clamp one end of the tubing in the vise tighten it so the end is squished shut. This will leave you with a tab to solder the tin can to. Carefully bend the tab 90 degrees (carefully, if you're too reckless then the tab could break off.)

After this is done clamp the rest of the tube in the vise and make two more 90 degree bends to creat a mug like handle. Keep in consideration how far the handle must come out to accomodate your fingers and how far it must go down to accomodate your fingers. My cup's handle lengths were around 2 inches and even that fits my fingers like a tea cup.

once your done the last two bends measure out the length of the tab that you flattened earlier and make another 90 degree bend. mark the measure length after this new bend, cut at the mark, and flatten that end so you have another tab. (I'm better with visuals I'll point out what I mean in the picture below.

Step 3: Soldering

Hold your can in the vise by placing the jaws inside the can and opening the vise. This holds the can from the inside and makes the soldering a fair bit easier.

Take your handle and coat the bottoms of the tabs in flux. Now for the tricky part.

I started by touching the tabs to where I wanted them to be soldered so a bit of flux rubbed off on the area. I tinned those areas with plenty of solder then by holding the handle in place I pressed the soldering iron on the top of the tabs so the heat conducted through the copper tab into the solder and the can. After holding it in place for long enough the solder underneath melted and lightly joined the handle which allowed me to work on each tab and add some more solder (albeit sloppy) to make sure the handle stayed in place.

After this is through wipe off any excess flux and thoroughly wash, and dry the inside and outside of the can.

Step 4: The Cup Is Finished

The cup is finished!

Now fill it up with your favourite beverage and enjoy.

I wouldn't use a dishwasher on it though I don't think the solder would hold up.



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    8 Discussions

    ice monster

    6 years ago on Introduction

    Forget drinking and cooking with it. I use them for scooping bird seed, potting soil, laundry detergent, or whatever. Use big coffee cans or little mushroom cans, or any size in between. I make the handles out of a strip of flattened can a couple inches wide. Fold the edges over a couple of times to eliminate sharp edges and solder it on like the copper tubing.


    6 years ago on Introduction

    2 Questions:
    When you are boiling water or cooking something in it, wouldn't the copper handle heat up? and if it heats up wouldn't it melt off the solder?


    6 years ago on Introduction

    I don't think it should be "preferably lead free". Lead free solder is a must if you're going to be eating out of it.

    2 replies

    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    the lead is on the outside... sure, there's a chance you'll get some one your hands(and then ingest it, if you eat with your bare hands before washing). Personally, I'd be more worried about the BPAs that line most cans (not that I worry about it too much)

    Since  I can hear the rebukes coming in already, I whipped up a quick NO-solder version here.  As a bonus, since the coffee tin has a plastic lid, it can keep your beverage bug-free when needed. When not in-use, the lid can act as a coaster to keep your wood table ring free :-)

    Yeah, the plastic liner had me worried a bit too, especially for hot beverages. But I get the feeling a metal cup is a bit ineffective for hot drinks.

    Nice! It's always interesting to see how an idea evolves, I like seeing people's spin on things :) Good work.


    6 years ago on Introduction

    I love it!

    why not bend the handle tabs in instead of out. then you can have the handle big enough to get your whole fist in there to grip it.

    1 reply

    that's a great idea. :) I'd like to see how well that works actually, if you get around to building one and do that instead send me a picture, I love seeing designs evolve. :D