Making a homemade beer-can crusher is a low-cost woodworking project that will provide years of benefit. Recycling beer cans is a way to accumulate a few dollars and keep the landfills free of aluminum that can be melted down and reused. But in locations where there is no aluminum-can recycling and deposit program, you have to accumulate a considerable volume of cans before making a trip to the recycling facility a money making venture. A homemade beer-can crusher will reduce the space needed to hold the cans while you are gathering them for recycling.
Cut the 31-inch length board into two 15-1/2-inch by 4-3/4-inch lengths of 2-inch thick board with a table saw.
Round the top edges of the boards with a router.
Sand the boards with 120-grit sandpaper. Wipe the sanding dust off of the boards with a tack cloth.
Stain the boards by applying a light coat of wood stain, with a paint brush, to all board surfaces and waiting five minutes before wiping the excess stain off the boards with a cloth. Allow the stain to dry for 30 minutes.
Wipe the rounded top of one of the boards and the bottom of the other board with a damp cloth.
Place a light coat of fast-drying household project glue along the top outer rim of two narrow-mouth canning jar lids. Press one into position centered on the top rounded edge 15-1/2-inch board and one centered on the non-rounded bottom of the other board. Allow the glue to dry for 30 minutes. One lid will be on a rounded edge top, and one will be on the flat-edge bottom.
Place the board with the canning lid mounted on the rounded face down on your workbench, position the hinge centered and 1-inch from the 4-3/4-inch edge on the right side of the 15-1/2-inch length and screw one of the hinge screws through the screw opening on the hinge into the board.
Position the other board with the canning lid mounted to the flat edge under the left-hand side of the hinge, with the canning lid facing down, and screw the other hinge screw through the pre-drilled screw hole into the board, 1 inch from the 4-3/4-inch length edge. When the assembled boards are flipped over, the two rounded edges are up and the canning lids touch.
Attach a cabinet door handle, horizontally, to the face of the 4 3/4-inch length of the top board with a screw driver. It will aide in pulling the top board onto the bottom board to crush the beer cans.