It is a shame that styrofoam chips, cups and other products are considered to be trash. There are so many recyclable uses for them! This was demonstrated in an earlier post “Cheap and useful styrofoam” where objects were made from styrofoam, but since this material is also sensitive to other chemicals, there are even more potential uses! In this video from GREENPOWERSCIENCE you can learn how to make thin spider webs and even wood sealant by dissolving styrofoam in natural chemicals such as citrus peel juice. Yes, the styrofoam still goes out into nature, but since it’s in a so much smaller size, the ultraviolet rays from our sun will be able to break it down much more quickly than any styrofoam cup or chip!
We all know styrofoam. It’s that white light-weight material that protects your goods while it is shipped. It may come as chips, molded pieces or even raw blocks and sheets. It’s used as insulation, shock absorber, modelling material and much more. But most of all, it is cheap! You can buy big blocks of it for a few dollars or find big pieces in your nearest dumpster for free! This is probably why most people see it as trash and not a building material. Well Make: magazine is here to show you how useful it can be! In this particular tutorial they make Halloween tombstone props but if you watch the video, you should easily see how these techniques can be used to make almost any form out of cheap and feather light styrofoam! And by the way, you don’t need special tools like soldering iron or a hot wire foam cutter. Tools like scissors, files, knifes and sandpaper can just as easily be used, although the surface might become a bit rougher. But since acetone (nail polish remover) can melt styrofoam, perhaps you can use a acetone damp paper towel to polish those surfaces? Now that would be a neat experiment!
Do you, like most of us, have an ever-increasing pile of small transparent plastic bags? Too small and flimsy to be of practical use right? Wrong! Those bags can be used as an excellent DIY material! In this video from Barrett Sanders we get to see how easy it is to make cool jelly fishes out of them, but we bet you could find many other uses for those tiny bags if you just put your mind to it. What could you make?
Do you have drawers full of plastic shopping bags and don’t know what to do with them? Well, why not make plastic material out of them and use them instead of fabric? Its easier than you think! Back before Bre Pettis co-founded the 3D printer company “Makerbot Industries” he was a DIY blogger for Make: In this particular video blog, he and Anda from Etsy walks us through the few simple steps necessary to turn bags into heavy duty plastic, good enough to replace any fabric. So grab your iron and start crafting!
In a previously added video (Inflatable Bag Monsters!) you can see that ordinary plastic bags and garbage bags can be used to make balloon like art that moves around, but how can you weld all those pieces of plastics together? Well its extremely simple, as this video from ThreadBanger (Man Vs. Pin) shows. Here, plastic tarp is used to make a big water mattress like object, but the basic process of welding can be used for almost any soft plastic sheets and many different purposes. And best of all, if you use old shopping/garbage bags, you’ll get to recycle in the most gratifying way possible!