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  • Category: Miscellaneous

    Learn the art of improvisation with waste material to save money

    Waste material do help us in a great way. We can improvise many things by using the waste materials at home. Here I would like to narrate a thing that I have improvised very recently.

    Last week, I applied for a separate electric power supply service for my deity's temple. Till date I was using the service line available to the nearby temple. I got it sanctioned and power supply was provided on last Sunday. The switch and meter was provided outside the temple which is not protected for weather. I wanted to buy a meter box that can withstand any weather and save the meter and the main switch and fuse. When I enquired about the meter box available in the market, an ordinary meter box of ordinary tin material costs Rs. 1500/-. When I asked someone to manufacture a solid meter box, they quoted Rs. 3000 to 5000/-. And I was not satisfied with the model box shown to me. It was of poor workmanship.

    While lying on bed, something came in my mind. I had a condemned washing machine Whirlpool's white magic that was lying on my backyard. It is a top load machine. The top's design is damn good. It has a glass door of 18 x 10 inches. I thought why not use the w/m top cover to make a meter box. I measured its size. It measured 22.5 x 22.5 inches with a depth of 5 inches. My meter box required to cover 22 x 18 inches only. I had some waterproof plywood of 3/4 inches thickness of 8 feet length. I removed the top cover, cut all the electric wires and cut the plastic portion inside to make the items visible through the glass door. I called a carpenter to make a square box of 22.25 x 22.25 inches with a depth of inches. I went to the hardware shop and bought 8 L angles, sufficient screws, I fitted the box with the L angles around the meter board and then placed the w/m top cover over it and screwed it up. Also I provided a locking facility. I covered all the switch holes and the writings on the cover with a wrapping paper.

    I have spent only Rs. 1200/- (Rs. 500 for the L angles, screws, padlock, small nuts and bolts. And paid the carpenter Rs. 700/-)

    OMG!. The meter box looks great. There is no such meter box available anywhere. All those who had a look at the meter box wondered and asked me from where I could get such an excellent meter box. I am sure , our members also would wonder about the box.

    Have you done such improvisation in your life? If yes, narrate it.

    I will be uploading the image of the meter box later as I could not take a snap of it.
  • Meterbox (175971-1-Meterbox.docx)
  • #728769
    After reading the good suggestion given by the author my thoughts went to the fevicol ad in which the daughter has the tendency to through the things away even for the the just repairs which was picked up by a women and that old women becomes more fashionable in looks and going. That proves we are wasting lots of money on new things without giving credence to improvise the old things having with us. Some may think that it is rubbish idea to keep old things when it gets into repair mode and immediately go for the new ones. This way we are escalating the buying spree and the expenses can be drastically avoided. By going for small repairs and the adjustments, many of the products can be put to reuse and used for some more days and thus we can postpone the buying for now. This kind of good trait not present in all.
    K Mohan @ Moga
    'Idhuvum Kadandhu Pogum "
    Even this challenging situation would ease

  • #728773
    Using the old junk items lying in the backyard and converting them in some useful items is a great hobby and those who have some proficiency in DIY things can definitely do that. It requires some aptitude also for such things. As a housewife, I have also used many old things especially clothes etc to make some laundry bags or covers etc but nothing like the big project as mentioned in the post.
    Thoughts exchanged is knowledge gained.

  • #728778
    This is one excellent post by the author inspiring all of us for doing things ourselves and making value out of useless old items. The author must be having some experience in these types of things otherwise for a newbie it does not look so simple to design and fabricate a box of that type. I also have some interest in these things and whenever opportunity comes I try to do the things myself sometimes in the traditional ways and sometimes, though rarely, in innovative ways. Recently the main door of the house did not lock properly and I thought that the automatic lock might had gone bad but on closer inspection I found that the door was loose on the upper hinges and slightly came down and the alignment of the lock was not proper and hence it did not close. So, I thought to call a carpenter but due to the corona threat I considered other options. One was to fix the screws on the upper hinge but it was quite hard to do that and I could not tighten them with a screw driver and hammering did not help either. Then I got one idea to lift the door up slightly and I had a small flat wrench which I inserted forcefully below the door and I could move it up by about 1/4 inch. Once I did that, I could hammer the screws easily and tightened them with a screw driver. Then I removed the wrench which came out easily. The lock worked perfectly.
    Knowledge is power.

  • #728780
    Very good advice has been given by the author, I have often seen elders doing the same at my house. Elder people of the house never separate things without thinking, but some of them are modified a little and use them. Nowadays there are many such videos available on YouTube, in which the use of old items is told in a new way, although not all the methods are as easy as are told in videos, still we can try many of them. Apart from this, if we come to our mind many times, then we should make them necessary.

  • #728784
    My appreciations to the author for his innovative idea. Once in a while we will be doing certain things like this, My wife planted 4 plants just outside our compound wall. As they are growing big chances of animals eating them will be a problem. So we have to provide a iron mesh around. When we thought about it,I got another idea. In our house we have many old plastic drums. If we cut them into two halves we can use for protecting two trees. So I took two drums and I cut them each into two halves and covered all the four trees. That way I could make use of two drums which are lying waste in the house.
    always confident

  • #728789
    Dear Members,
    I have attached the image in my thread summary and in this response. Kindly open it and have a good look at it and post your comments.

    No life without Sun


    Delete Attachment

  • #728795
    Appreciating the author's thought-provoking post. This epidemic season has seen children do a lot of these kinds of activities. The bottles, which had been removed from the house, were taken out, washed, cleaned, and made of various shapes and paintings using fabric paint, white cement, jute threads, and colored threads. That bottle art placed on the tabletops and corner stands. An art form called Bottle Art has now been formed by using bottles.

    My older sister makes double-layer and three-layer face masks by cutting out torn shirts at home. (Used but unturned shirts are usually given to the needy. It still continues.) No one in their family usually buys a mask by cash from the market.

    I used to plant small plants in pottery cups that have been discarded. Indoor plants are also placed in bottles filled with water. Used plastic bottles are cut lengthwise and filled with soil and hung on the hooks around the sun shades with hanging plants.

    "Cheruthulli Peruvellam"
    small drops make a mighty ocean

  • #728811
    The side view of the Meter box is attached in this response. It looks great.
    No life without Sun

    Delete Attachment

  • #728840
    Dear Members,
    Today evening two local village guys came to my home and wanted to know where such meter box is available and what is the cost. I told them that it is a special item that is not easily available to anyone, and the cost of the meter box is Rs. 5000/- . Then they asked me whether I can manage to procure one meter box for them. I said, "Sorry, Due to Covid-19, I cannot move outside to get a similar type of meter box, and it is very difficult to get it." The guys returned with great disappointment.

    Today another guy approached me to know the details and the availability of the meter box. I said ,"Sorry, such boxes are not being produced."

    I think I can start a business of manufacturing meter boxes by getting the old junk top load washing machines.

    No life without Sun

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