Monday, 20 November 2017

Wooden money clip... (and a quick metal one)

If you live in the UK you'll know that we've started changing our notes (money, 5's and 10's so far) to the plastic ones, like a few countries already have, personally I think it's a good idea, but I've discovered a problem with the new notes, that being they're quite springy, unless you crease them, but they don't fold well and if you do crease them the crease doesn't come out easily.

I'm aware that just using a contactless payment card makes this post irrelevant, but for those of us who still like to have cash in our pockets so we know what we've spent and how much we've got left read on.

As I said the new notes are springy, on a couple of occasions I have dropped notes (and picked up very quickly) because they seem to spring out of my bag, I've also noticed that if they get a little damp they tend to stick together, that's something I've yet to solve, although keeping them dry helps.

So to combat this I made a wooden money clip so I can keep the new notes (and old ones) in better order, I tend not to keep money in my wallet, I know this defeats the object of actually having a wallet, but hey ho.

The finished money clips (I'll get to the metal one in a bit) -

All in good order.

This is a simple make, you can easily do it with hand tools if you don't have a bandsaw and bench sander.

I made mine from an offcut of walnut, but most any wood will do and who doesn't have scrap bits of wood in their shed/workshop ?

The walnut - 

Not much to say, it's a block of wood.

First I marked out the centre and where to drill a 7mm hole, make sure you go with the grain of the wood and not against it, otherwise it'll break very easily.

Wood marked out - 

Marked and ready for drilling and sawing.

I used my bandsaw to cut down the centre line and then my post drill to drill out a hole, this just makes things a bit quicker, you could easily do this with a hand saw and a drill.

Drilled and cut - 

On to sanding and shaping.

I clamped the block into my vice and using a broken sanding belt I started to sand where I'd cut and drilled, this is where the notes will slide into, It's best to go easy here, if you take too much out you'll have to carry a load of notes around with you, so I did several tests for fit as I went a long.

Clamped for sanding - 

This step took hardly any time.

Sanding done - 

All done, now to shape it a bit.

Once I was happy with the fit (it doesn't hold a load of notes, but enough for what I need) it was on to shaping it, this I did on my bench sander, but again an electric sander would do, just mind your fingers.

Shaping commences - 

Back end done.

Shaping continues - 

Bit less bulky now.

I decided to add a groove to the clip, this makes it easier to hold, I did this with a drum sander attached to my post drill but you can use drum sanders in a normal drill, you could even use a dremel type multitool as well.

Into the groove - 

Grooved for added grip.

And after a little more shaping with my bench sander the only other thing I did was to give it a wax and that was it.

All done, it works not sure Jane approves though - 

Simple solution to a problem.

Don't like wood ? what about copper ? this is by no means a refined make, I did it very quickly and had I spent more time on preparing the metal it would look a lot more, well polished but I made it to mainly prove that anyone can make something like this easily, with just a few tools.

Take one length of copper pipe (or you could use a strip of aluminium or steel) if you use pipe you'll need to cut it length ways.

Pipe in my vice and cut - 

I used a hacksaw to cut it.

You can use a hacksaw to cut the pipe, or maybe a dremel type multitool with a cutting disc, once cut I bent the pipe outwards to make it flatter and then using a hammer I beat the metal until it was flat (ish)

You now have a flat piece of metal to work with - 

Time to cut a strip off.

Using some tin snips (metal cutters) I cut the copper into two strips and then it was on to bending into a clip shape, or something near enough.

And then there were two - 

Two for one, can't be bad.

To bend the metal I made a very basic jig from a scrap bit of pine and a couple of dowels, I bent one end of the copper in my vice and then used the jig to do the rest.

Bending begins - 

You get the idea right?

Once I was happy with the shape and the way it was bent I set about cleaning the metal, I sanded the inside of the clip so it didn't tear the notes and then polished the outside of the clip and shaped the ends a little, considering it took all of 20 minutes to make from start to finish it's not bad, and it works well.

All done  - 

Shiny copper clip.

The finished money clips - 

All done, basic but they work so I'm happy.

And that's it really, the copper one would look a little less erm... rustic shall we say had I spent more time on it, but I quite like the way it turned out, I might make another and spend more time refining it just to see how it comes out, there's no reason you couldn't decorate the finished money clips, if you have some metal stamps you could personalise a metal one, if you're into pyrography you could burn a design onto a wooden one, so many possibilities and all from a scrap bit of wood and an old bit of copper tube.

Thanks for reading.