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Project Information

My wife and I got the idea for these pen/pencil holders while waiting at the tax office for new license plates. They used 2 plates folded in half to form a countertop waste container. I typically try to get plates that were used in the year someone was born to make birthday presents but have made them for other occasions. The plates are 12" long so they can be bent into a 3" square. The wooden bases are 3 1/2" X 3 1/2" made out of 3/4" X 3 1/2" stock easily gotten from a big box store. The black inner block is 3" X 3" white pine trimmed down from 3/4" 3 1/2" stock. The hardest part of this project is bending the plate. I made a template and am able to consistantly bend them to the 3" square. I use two 1 1/4" drywall screws to attach the wood together, #4 pan head screws to attach the plate to the wood base, 3/8" felt circles on the bottom (recessed) and a little wire to secure the loose ends of the plate.
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Nice use of a recycled item. I recently saw some dustpans made out of old license plates. I like this idea and the concept of the dating it for years.

CtL
 

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Very cool…..like them….
 

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Neat idea. You can also use them to make bird houses. You can see a couple in this pic

 

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Interesting…nice idea. I'll have to try that. Now to find a flee market or antique store with old plates.
 

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DouginVa-- I have tried going online for plates and have found some websites where you can buy in bulk. The problem is alot of car rebuilders use the plates to put on their "rebuilt cars" and the price for a good matching set can range from $35 - $70. I was fortunate that my neighbor had 8 sets from 1970 - 1973 (her dads) in perfect shape. I got 3 plates for the years my kids were born and the rest I made pen/pencil holders for her to give out to her relatives. The 2 rusty, old plates in the pictures are from 1966/67 (more kids), I got those off Craigslist. The rest of the plates that I have I acquired by asking friends and relatives for them or taking them off my own cars.
 

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Cool pencil holders! Great thinking and use of scraps.

-www.sawblade.com
 

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Those are great! How the heck do you get them exactly even on all sides? How did you make your template?
 

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Frustrating! I get the first two 'bends' perfect but the last one won't bend along my mark. I've tried it several times on different plates and always have trouble with the last, third, bend.
 

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I'll take some pictures of my process and post them as soon as I can. Sorry for the delay.
Sonny
 

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I just love this idea and i am trying to create it but i am stuck as to how I can tighten the corners smooth and how I can attach the ends together. Is there a certain tool that i need? Go easy on me, I'm a first timer at this stuff lol. My diy projects are mostly working with wood.
 
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