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Advice making Diy can opener powered mini washing machine.

Advice making Diy can opener powered mini washing machine.


Old 09-28-17, 12:45 PM
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Advice making Diy can opener powered mini washing machine.

I am making a mini washer like this, but powering it with an electric can opener. https://youtu.be/OKZ-ttnEM9o

I will remove the operating lever, and attach hardware near the power button to keep it in the on position while in use. I am going to use liquid nails to attach everything that needs glue. I plan to glue a bolt to the feed gear on the can opener, and glue a matching nut to the dowel that spins the washer basket, I will also glue the bolt to the nut so that it doesn't unscrew with use. I am considering gluing metal washers on the inside and outside of washing machine base to support the dowels and reduce wear on the plastic holes on the plastic base.

I am making the mini washer for lightweight delicates loads comparable to four pair of pantyhose. The basket will spin for one minute, then pause for one minute for 30 minutes.

Please comment if you have concerns about my plan, or better ideas of how to use the can opener to spin the wash basket.

Of course I could buy an electric mini washer, but they cost about $100 that l don't have, and the reviews aren't impressive! I spent $4 on a used can opener. The baskets and base are $3 at dollar tree. I have liquid nails and most of the hardware needed. I will spend less than $10 for parts I need, for a grand total of less than $20.
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Old 09-28-17, 06:26 PM
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Welcome to the forums.


A can opener doesn't have much torque and a bolt won't stay glued on. That drive wheel is stainless steel so it would be pretty hard to even solder or braze it on.
Old 09-28-17, 06:45 PM
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Just when you thought you had heard it all.
Do you wash in the sink and save all the trouble.
Old 09-28-17, 07:51 PM
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Not the sink because germs and ocd. I wash delicates in a bucket only used for delicates, stirring with a long handled spoon, but I want something more effective and less cave woman than beating my $100 bra on a rock in a creek. I use a salad spinner to mimic the spin cycle. My alternative idea is to use a baby swing and place a bucket with a lid filled with delicates, water and detergent.
Old 09-29-17, 12:16 AM
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Well, you'll never be able to fabricate something like that cheaply if you don't have a welder and lathe or mill and the skill sets required. Why not just a little manual washer like plenty of campers use? $40 or so online. Or at least try and look at one for ideas. They take about 2-3min of cranking.
Old 09-29-17, 05:50 AM
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I think you would be better off simply using a drill like shown in the video. They are designed to produce the kind of torque you need. But by the time you buy a large plastic bin for the basin, a couple buckets for the basket, rod and other hardware and put the labor into it a $100 mini washer isn't sounding too bad. The reviews I saw online are quite good especially when you consider the thing is less than $100.

Or, buy a used washing machine. There are several for sale in the classifieds in my town. One is free for the taking.
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