PVC YOU LATER: Cheap/Easy DIY Kids Time Capsule Project

I recently stumbled upon an ad for a time capsule being sold as a product for kids by the Smithsonian.  Though pricey, I liked the idea because it reminded me of the time capsule project that my dad spearheaded with me when I was a kid.  Our time capsule did not look as futuristic as the one sold by the Smithsonian, but I am certain that it offered the same amount of excitement and entertainment.  Though I liked it, I did not order the Smithsonian’s time capsule kit, what I did was run to the hardware store and buy the components needed for me and my little ones to make our own.

The PVC time capsule project will typically cost around $20 depending on the components that you already have that are not uncommon to have around the house.  The materials needed for this project are as follows:

1- 2ft x 4″ piece of PVC pipe (2″ or 3″ could be used) (about $9)

1- 4″ PVC drain cap (about $2)

1- 4″ PVC cleanout plug (about $4)

1- 4″ PVC hub x female adapter (about $6)

PVC cement and primer or all in one (price varies)

If you decide to use a smaller diameter pipe, the price of the build will decrease.  All named components are pictured below.

Assembly

I do not actually glue/cement the pipe together in my pictures and video but the glue/cement process is critical to the finished water-tight product.  For instructions on how to glue/cement PVC pipe together click here.

The material list says to get a 2ft long piece of 4 inch pipe but the length of your capsule is totally your preference.  I would suggest cutting the pipe down to 14 or 16 inches, but that is just my preference.

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Black arrow-Drain (end) cap Red arrow- Threaded Hub x Female Adapter Green arrow- Cleanout plug

Step 1

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Apply primer to the inside of the end cap and one end of your pipe, then apply glue to both in the same manner and press and hold the end cap onto the pipe firmly for about 5 seconds.

Step 2

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Using the same primer and cement application process as step one, apply both to the non-threaded female adapter end and the opposite end of the pipe from the end cap. Insert pipe into female adapter end and hold firmly for about 5 seconds.

Step 3

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Lastly, thread the cleanout plug into the threaded hub and voila! You are now the proud owner of a homemade time capsule. It is not a bad idea to wrap the clean out plug threads in Teflon tape for added protection against water intrusion.

Finished Product

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I really like this project for a variety of reasons.  It is cheap, fun, and customizable.  Your kids will not only enjoy the build and burying of the time capsule, but they can also have fun painting and drawing on it as well.

Another reason I like this build is that the time capsule can serve as a water-tight vessel for other applications as well.  In the past I have used this same design to serve as dry storage for my welding rods and it works great.

My absolute favorite use for this water-tight container in the past outside of a time capsule is easily its function as dry storage when boating, fishing, or canoeing.  The 14″ long by 4″ diameter tube is great for storing wallets, money, cell phones, and keys while on the water.  Even better is should it be accidentally knocked out of a boat or fall out of an overturned canoe it will float, so the recovery of valuables or personal belongings is only a matter of paddling to it and hoisting it back in your vessel.

Regardless of how you and your family use this little contraption I am certain that you will have a great time completing this project together as my dad and I did, and as my daughters and I will do.  With that being said, I have linked to a few time capsules and dry storage products below that do not require as much effort for those not as motivated to DIY.

Smithsonian Time Capsule

$12 Time Capsule

Welding Rod Dry Container

Dry Box for Boating/Water Activities

Thank you very much for reading.  If you found this post to be informative, useful, or entertaining please be sure to like, comment, share, and follow tool-school.com.  Good luck with your projects!

Jake

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How to Glue/Cement PVC Pipe

I apologize for my posts being somewhat PVC-centric lately, the stuff is just so cheap and versatile so it is hard to stay away from sometimes.  I am not attempting to insult anyone’s intelligence, but I wanted to post a quick video of how to properly join PVC pipe and fittings together using PVC primer and cement.

Step 1 – Check the fit of the components to be joined.

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Step 2 – Prime/Prep/Clean areas to be joined.

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Step 3 – Apply cement to the inside of both components being joined.

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Step 4 – Insert pipe into fitting and hold in place for about 5 seconds so that the cement/glue does not force pipe out of fitting.

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Step 5 – Allow 15 minutes cure time for handling and about 2 hours before putting the pipe into service.

Here is a video of the same process pictured above.

PVC cement/primer combo packs can be purchased on amazon for under $10 as shown in the following link.  Oatey PVC cement and primer pack.

Thank you for reading.  Please be sure to like, comment, share, and follow tool-school.com!  Have a great day.

Jake

DIY Cheap Football Goal Post Anyone Can Assemble

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A few years ago I had quite a few soccer players in one of my middle school Health and Physical Education classes that were pretty good athletes.  Being an American football and basketball guy, and having never played nor really even watched soccer before, I did not relate very well to their athletic goals and interest.  I encouraged the kids, who would soon be high school freshman, to try their hand at football for the upcoming year because I believed their athleticism would benefit the freshman team.  They appreciated the encouragement but I could tell their interests were not growing in the least bit.  I searched for a way to bridge the interest gap between the two sports and the solution that I came up with was buying a field goal post for the kids to hone their kicking skills on.

Not long into my search I came across this pretty cool soccer goal/field goal post combo sold by Net World Sports but since the acquisition of an upright was coming out of my own pocket I decided to keep searching for a solution.  As it turned out the soccer/field goal post combo ended up being the most affordable of the practical field goal posts that I found for sale so I then shifted into DIY mode.  Not long into my internet search I discovered a few videos that demonstrated how to make a goal post from 3″ pvc pipe and tee fittings, so off to the hardware store I went.

I no longer work at the same school that I built the field goal post at and I left the post there when I transferred to a different school so for cost sake I have recreated the build in the pictures and video below using smaller pipe and fittings.

Pictured below is a 1/10 scale replica of the original goal post build.  The build in the post uses 1/2″ ID pvc pipe with 1/2″ tee fittings.  (“=inch and ID=Inside diameter) The 1/2″ pipe is cut into 12″ and 6″ sections which is 1/10 the length of the 120″(10ft) and 60″(5ft) 3” pvc pipe sections.

The materials and tools list is as follows:

Hacksaw

PVC PRIMER/GLUE (optional)

6 – 10ft long 3″ runs of PVC pipe ($11 per pipe)

4 – 3″ PVC tee fittings ($4.50 per fitting)

Before the assembly begins you will need to take 3 of the 10′ long pieces of pipe and cut them in half (5ft or 60in).  This will leave you with 3-10ft runs of pipe and 6-5ft runs of pipe.

Though the pipe size and length in the video and pictures below differ from that of the actual size and length of the pipe in the build, the assembly process is the exact same.

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You will start the build with (3)-10′ pieces of pipe, (6)-5′ pieces of pipe, and (4) tee fittings.
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Insert (1) of the 5′ sections of pipe into one of the tee fittings as shown above.
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Now insert another 5′ section of pipe into the other end of the tee fitting that you inserted the first 5′ section into as shown in the picture.
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Complete the same process a second time using two more 5′ sections of pipe and another tee fitting so that you have two configurations that look like the two in the picture above.
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Next place a 5′ section of pipe into the middle opening of the tee fitting so that you have a 5′ section in each of the three openings of the fitting.
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Repeat the previous step with the other tee fitting you previously inserted two 5′ pieces of pipe into. You should now only have three 10′ pieces of pipe, 2 tee fittings, and two configurations that look like the ones pictured here.
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Next insert the last two tee fittings onto the two T-shaped configurations that you have assembled. Each tee should be positioned on the one piece of 5′ pipe that intersects the other two installed. The horizontal opening of the second tee fitting installed should be oriented so that it is in an intersecting direction to the bottom two pieces of 5′ pipe.
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Now you will insert one of the 10′ pieces of pipe into each of the horizontal openings of the two configurations that you have made forming a bridge and connecting the two configurations.
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Now that you are left with only two 10′ sections of pipe that have not been assembled, install one of them into the vertical opening of either tee fitting.
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Install the last 10′ piece of pipe into the other vertical opening on the opposite tee and now your field goal post is complete! This miniature version looks pretty good, but the full sized goal post looks even cooler.

If desired the field goal post could be cemented together where all pipes and fittings join to make to post stronger.  When I built my full sized field goal I did use pvc cement, but I did not bond every single joint.  I cemented the post in a way that made it pretty portable without losing much strength.  Below is a picture of the sections that I joined together with pvc cement and those that I left independent of the others.

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This is how my goal post was able to be broken down into 5 pieces in order to be moved more easily than if it were completely bonded together or not bonded with pvc cement at all. Cementing it this way only requires four quick connections to be made each time it is reassembled and reassembly can easily be done by one person.

 

How To Assemble Goal Post Video

So after I introduced the field goal post to my classes and my students fell in love with kicking footballs through our new uprights guess how many of my soccer players ended up joining the football team.  None……..  Not a single kid that played soccer ended up playing high school football.  No sweat because all of the kids (and a few coaches and teachers) that used the field goal had a great time and learned a good bit on the art of field goal kicking.  We had numerous contests and challenges that involved this piece of equipment that were all lots of fun.  I would use the goal post as a “reward” activity for my lower elementary students by allowing them to kick a large inflatable ball through it and it was a great incentive for them to maintain good grades and behavior.  I will have to build another soon.

Below are a few links to tools that will make the build a little easier as well as a few pieces of equipment that will allow the goal post to be used even if no one is available to hold a football.  There is also a link to the soccer goal/field goal post combo mentioned above for those of us that are not very DIY-inclined.

Fusion PVC Primer/Cement One Step

Klein Hacksaw

Soccer/Field Goal Combo

Wilson Pro Kick

Kicking Tee

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