Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Building Block Can Die

Device to turn Aluminum soda cans into building blocks
  [vote for,

Device to turn Aluminum soda cans into building blocks. Choosing metal over plastic to avoid 6 year olds doing furnace work.

The ideal target shape would a lego block. Will have consult patents and do some design work to avoid patent problems.

And make a mechanism that like the easy bake oven is very unlikely to hurt the user. The final product should not have sharp edges. Or leave extra bits around to be swallowed.

So far all I see is a massive die block and punch and a ten foot lever action. And some missing toes.

As long as the kid can find another can and pull the lever he can have as many blocks as he/she likes.

No more feeling bad and jealous cause the kid down the street has a 500 piece set and yours is only 399.

Just bug mom to buy more soda. Wonder if coke would want to sponsor a joint venture?

popbottle, Dec 10 2013

Solid-phase welding http://www.meyersgr...ls/Meyers%20256.pdf
[bs0u0155, Dec 10 2013]

Flattened cans http://www.eco-artw...ewsletter_11_05.php
House with soda can shingles. [popbottle, Dec 11 2013]


       "And now, young Sodawalker... you will die."
RayfordSteele, Dec 10 2013

       I like it, I'm just not sure it's actually feasible. Square blocks of a given size, maybe, but you're going to have an extremely hard time forming complex geometry without leaving sharp edges. Aluminum doesn't fuse together just because it's pressed really hard.   

       There's also the requirement of making sure the cans are empty, clean, and dry before use.
MechE, Dec 10 2013

       //Aluminum doesn't fuse together just because it's pressed really hard//   

       It does if you press it REALLY hard <link>.
bs0u0155, Dec 10 2013

       Friction welding perhaps?
RayfordSteele, Dec 10 2013

              //Aluminum doesn't fuse together just because it's pressed really hard//      

       That's true, but an irregular-shaped aluminium blank forced into a die will crinkle layer upon layer and hold its shape quite well.
Alterother, Dec 10 2013

       //will crinkle layer upon layer and hold its shape quite well//   

       I don't doubt that, my concern is that in forming that shape, you'll end up with a lot of jagged edges, where the layers end.
MechE, Dec 11 2013

       Not if you push hard enough. A 5-ton hydraulic ram against a shoebox-sized block-and-die will press crinkled layers of aluminium into a shape with smooth sides, the layers formed into each other closely enough to leave only tiny seams and ridges. My best friend in college crushed several hundred cans into swirly-patterned polyhedral bricks for an art project, and they were quite smooth once the corners were braked off. The sculpture wasn't a masterpiece, but the individual bricks were pretty cool.
Alterother, Dec 11 2013

       The ram you can get out of a medium-sized floor jack; the die we made ourselves. Not exactly available from Harbor Freight.
Alterother, Dec 11 2013

       I just looked and Harbor Freight has a "Heavy duty" 8 ton hydraulic ram with built in hand pump for $60. I didn't realize it could be so cheap. So, with something like that, how do you know when you've reached the 8 ton limit? Does it get too hard to pump, or do you just known you've exceeded the limit when it explodes and decapitates you? Okay, maybe I'll upgrade to one NOT sold by Harbor Freight.
scad mientist, Dec 11 2013

       Try Northern Tool & Equipment. I rarely break anything I've purchased from them, whereas I usually shop Harbor Freight when I'm _expecting_ something to break.   

       The 'bottle' style of jacks typically just stop lifting when they hit their limit, or each pump of the handle will raise the piston a little but it will immediately sink back down. Whether this is by design or not I don't know, but I'd certainly build one to do that on purpose. Better than unexpected detonation for any tool I plan to sell or use myself.
Alterother, Dec 11 2013

       Surely an induction heater could melt the aluminium?
MaxwellBuchanan, Dec 15 2013

       Or you could get a bunch of 2x4 lumber, cut them down to desired sizes and sand them. Underage helper can paint desired colors.
bungston, Dec 15 2013

       // Surely an induction heater could melt the aluminium? //   

       Yes, it could, but unless you're melting down huge billets it's much easier to do it with a propane torch. Try to stand upwind.
Alterother, Dec 15 2013

       I didn't see [8th] here. So I wondered, "Is there no such thing as explosive welding?" To Google I went; was not disappointed.   

       Maybe the NSA has an alert category of "[Probable] false alarm - HalfBakery"
lurch, Dec 16 2013


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