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How to Make Your Own Aluminum Can Crusher

Updated February 21, 2017

If the state you live in does not require a deposit on aluminium cans, you may want to crush them before recycling them. (States that require a deposit will refund your money only if the cans remain whole when you recycle them.) While stomping on cans is good exercise, there is an easier and quicker way to crush them: Make your own aluminium can crusher. An easy project, it will save time and also encourage your family to crush and recycle cans.

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  1. Cut the 2 by 4 into two equal pieces. You can use any size 2 by 4, but a 32-inch one works well. You could also check in a scrap pile for two equal pieces approximately 16 inches long.

  2. Place the boards end-to-end, and attach the hinge with two screws to the ends so that the boards fold together lengthwise (see the image above).

  3. Attach the jar lids to the inside of the boards so that they are directly opposite each other. Your cans will be placed between these lids. The lips of the lids will hold the cans in place. Use a strong adhesive to attach the lids.

  4. Screw in the cabinet handle to the board that is the top of the can crusher. Attach it directly above the jar lid.

  5. Place the can crusher on a table or other hard surface. Place a can in the bottom jar lid. Grasp the handle and bring the top of the can crusher firmly down to crush the can.

  6. Tip

    Attach the can crusher permanently to a surface in your garage for easy access, and place a large garbage bin next to it for depositing the crushed cans.

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Things You'll Need

  • One 32-inch 2 by 4
  • One heavy-duty strap hinge
  • Two jar lids
  • Two to four screws (any short size)
  • One cabinet handle
  • Screwdriver
  • Adhesive

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