I am really stoked with how this project turned out! I saw something similar in a shop that I loved but it was almost $300 and I thought, pffft I could make that! And I did. Admittedly it was a little more complicated than I anticipated and it’s certainly not perfect but for the first time I’d even used a drill I am pretty chuffed with myself! Here are the completed photos, below is a little step by step if you’re interested.
The original one I saw in a shop wasn’t quite the same but similar and was around $270 and held 12 tubes. I spent less than $40 to make this and mine holds 22 tubes :) And I used larger test tubes than the “standard” size because these will mostly fit an entire 35g spice bottle, like the ones you can buy from most supermarkets. Also I love that they have a flat bottom rather than a domed one, it means I can pull one out while cooking and stand it on the bench with no worries. Perfect!
What I used:
Test tubes + corks
Piece of wood
Drill + spade drill bit
Wood stain + brush
Pencil + ruler
Bonding tape for mounting
And of course the spices!
I mentioned that I had never used a drill before. Well, wasn’t that a quick learning curve!? I owned a drill, one that I bought as a just-in-case purchase as there were a few times when I wished I had one, but hadn’t ever gotten the chance to use it. What wasn’t included in that purchase was a clue on how to properly use the thing and what kind of drill bits you need to do what job. I just assumed I could use a normal drill bit and make a hole by hollowing out the wood in a circular motion….. Yes. I’m an idiot. My first attempt looked something like this:
After a lot of laughter and self-deprecation I sought the advice of friends who informed me that there is a magical contraption that you can attach to your drill that actually MAKES HOLES FOR YOU!!! Who would have thought! My new best friend, the spade bit: (there is also something called a holesaw drill bit, but the spade was by far the most inexpensive option at just $11, compared to $40+ for the other stuff)
The wood before, which I bought precut from Bunnings for $1.15:
I measured out the space needed to include a gap between each hole and used a test tube to trace the holes along the slat. I then drilled a pilot hole in the middle of each circle with a 0.6mm drill bit (the one that had failed and embarrassed me earlier in the day). I actually wanted to do this project with some reclaimed wood but I just couldn’t find a piece from a couple of different junk yards that was the right dimensions or type of wood. So instead I bashed this one up a bit with a hammer and burned a few spots and it already had some great knots and disfigurement. Once the holes were drilled I did A LOT of sanding to smooth the holes but also just make them a little less snug for the tubes to fall into them easily. I then stained it, chucked some rubber bands on the tubes to act as a stopper, mounted it to the wall and voila!
I still have test tubes left over so if I can build up the strength to do it again I might look at making a terrarium version!