How can I reuse or recycle little tin cans?

Mini tin cansWe’ve covered the standard food size ones, but what can be done with little tin cans?

John gave a talk at the Manchester Free Software group last month and afterwards we all adjourned to a nearby pub where we found these little nuts cans on our table.

As I’d just been talking about this website to a couple of people, we decided to do a group-think on how we could re-use them but the best we could come up with was a mobile equivalent of a tin-can ‘telephone’ (because they’re more portable).

With a couple of holes punched in the bottom, they’d make cute little plant pots – but only for very little plants – so any other suggestions?

(The cans are about 4cm in diameter and 5cm in height, quite a solid metal and I think they originally had a paper lid so the rim at the top is quite dull, unlike most opened cans.)

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42 Responses to “How can I reuse or recycle little tin cans?”


  1. Jenny says:

    Punch some holes in the sides and make tealight candle holders!

  2. melissa says:

    dittoing the tin can lights – I did a tutorial for craftster on how to make these a few years ago – http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=34189.0

    The key is the ice!!

  3. christine says:

    Make a tiny little city.

  4. Cadan says:

    Umm.. you could glue them together somehow and make a desk tidy, or keep pennies in them?
    This is my first comment for around 1/2 a year now!

  5. Hyla Waldron says:

    You can make them into wind chimes using the can as the main piece and then drilling or punching holes in the bottom or sides to hang other recycled items from, such as silverware or baby food jars, pieces of glass or tile

  6. Terry says:

    Look for a kid’s program to donate them. Many kid’s programs look for simple projects (they could cover these in paper, torn bits of masking tape, etc.) One community college has a great kid’s program that would likely use these for starting plants for kids to take home and plant. The imagination of some of the instructors in limitless and they could likely think of many more ways to use these.

  7. Jerry says:

    They make great nut, bolt and screw organizers. I use cans like these in my shop for small parts.

  8. Ralph says:

    Build A Tin Can Waveguide WiFi Antenna
    for 802.11(b or g) Wireless Networks
    or other 2.4GHz Applications.

    I stumbled upon some interesting info usinf Stumble Upon.

    They claim you could do it for $5 and a can.

    Here is the website url for all to checkout. Copy and paste in your URL address bar then clcik the find button. http://www.turnpoint.net/wireless/cantennahowto.html

  9. Dave says:

    Tin Can Banjo-Take old guitar strings…punch little hole in tops of 2 cans…insert strings and tie knots in the ends.

    Play by pulling cans taut and increasing and decreasing tension as you strum.

  10. diana says:

    We do flower sales at our elem. school to raise money for the garden club and use cans as vases. I think the little salsa cans would be great for individual bouquets at a mexican dinner party.

    • Emanla Eraton says:

      Not only vases, but you can use them as pots. They are reusable and last much longer than plastic pots (they are stronger, and they won’t rust.)

  11. scrapmetal says:

    Scrap Cans are now more valuable as scrap metal due to increases in all metals. For pricing you can try http://www.scrapmetalpricesandauctions.com

  12. Jane says:

    I had a similar tin several years ago. I covered it in plain paper and used a weak PVA glue solution to paste it on as a sort of base coat. I then used some pretty handmade paper and glued it on the same way. I took a small piece of paper and wrote ‘Sugar’ on it with an edged pen, then covered the whole thing in PVA glue to make it more or less waterproof. It became our sugar packet holder at work!

  13. shafrinah says:

    can make it as a pen holder

  14. lynn washington says:

    line with grease proof paper and then fill with xmas cake mixture ….great gifts

  15. Liz says:

    I use them in desk drawers to organize all those little things I think I am going to use ‘one day.’

  16. Alena says:

    Connect two cans with a pipe. Then fill the cans with cement mixture and let dry. Use to exercise your biceps.

  17. 中国显得富得流油,钱多的直接支援给了国外好多国家,还差这点科研费用?只要每年挖几个现成的贪官,钱就够了,再挖几座祖坟,钱就更多了!

  18. 中国应该打一仗,而且无论挨揍者后台是谁!

  19. 医生说我们工资低,如果想买别墅开豪车那就只能吃患者。所谓红包不到手,包你命没有。

  20. 昨天饭店没卖一毛钱,看到这个消息,一个月不开壶也值了。

  21. 只有在政治、经济、军事等方面不断强大,民族团结,我们的生存安全才不会轻易被外敌势力的威胁。今天的中国不在是外国昨天的中国了,希望全国人民站起来,共同维护国家的安全,人民的稳定,努力共创美好的china。

  22. 争回来的海岛建不了商品房,换不了钱,这届领导不会考虑,留给后人们。。。。。。

  23. 看这个,我只能呵呵了!最想不到但最可能发生的是小日本在美国老还没明白过来就把核弹扔在了美国佬的脑门上了!

  24. 中国的城管在哪???该拆了菲律宾了!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  25. 还用岛屿战吗,一开打,每天50发地对地导弹,直接炸本土,打一个月,看谁能撑得住。省心省力。

  26. 你能打医生,医生就不能还手啊,难道等到着你打,不可能

  27. sf123 says:

    看到过日本人的变态吗?看到过日本政客丑恶的嘴脸吗!

  28. 其实只求国内的东西不假安全物有所值就行了

  29. 我们家就用公筷很多年了,这种习惯很好,值得推广

  30. 不管是去没去过日本的,都接受的是日本的表面形象,好比日本的礼仪礼节世界闻名,日本的战争暴行也世界闻名。日本就是这样一个民族,施行西方模式的民主制度,保留了中国古代部分礼节,但思维和人性就是一个矛盾体,强烈建议大家看《菊与刀》,美国人写的,日本人真的没大家表面上看到的那么简单!

  31. 好啊,只要有俄帮中国什么都不怕,真的希望中俄打日本哦?

  32. 你说对了,所有这种新闻都是同样的一种论调

  33. 我儿子这么说我的话,我抽他大嘴巴,刚出生那会,我刚把饭碗端起来,他就拉便便了,放下筷子赶紧处理,搞好洗洗手又拿起筷子吃饭,我嫌弃过他么?这些当儿女的,装什么装!

  34. 美国在背后支持菲律宾,它才这嬷嚣张!中国应该以牙还牙,以各种手段,还击它!

  35. 奴才一大堆!到底是谁侵占了我们的领土,是俄国佬还是美国佬?搞清楚先,

  36. 你伤心难过不是你做错事的理由!说自己伤心,难过。。等等情绪的人其实很自私。

  37. 只有斩杀菲律宾,才能争取到持久的和平,才能博得世界的尊重!!这世界永远是强者的世界!!!杀无赦!!!

  38. duidaidirenyaoxianghandongyiyang



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