So one of my hobbies is exploring old and abandoned places. Occasionally I collect trinkets on these visits, this pressure gauge being one of them. It very conveniently screws on and off any threaded pipe of the correct size. Once I got it home, I decided that I was particularly fond of the metered gauge face, and I decided to convert it into a clock. The front clear cover easily popped off, and the metal face comes off with the removal of some tiny screws. The heavy construction, or should I say deconstruction, came with taking out the insides of the pressure gauge. This is to make room for the clock parts that would be added later. This part of the process is dependent on sheer brute strength. Once you pull, twist, and bend the metal insides enough, they just sort of break off. I bought hands of the clock from Michaels. They run about $5, depending on the size. Make sure you purchase hands that will fit the diameter of your pressure gauge. There’s already a hole in the pressure gauge face, and by following simple directions on the packaging, you can attach the clock parts. The face simply reattached with the screws, securing it and the new clock in place, and finally you can reapply the front cover. The design of the base is completely flexible. I just bought a few different metal pipe pieces from Lowe’s, and played around until I got a look that I liked. These pieces aren’t too expensive, but obviously the more pipe, the higher the cost. Drill two holes in an old wooden board, add some stain I had lying around, and you have yourself a base.
The only part of this project that proves cumbersome is changing the clock battery. The cover has to be removed, screws unscrewed, and face plate removed to change the batteries.
I made this lighted side table over the summer. Some neighbors of ours threw out some old folding closet doors that resembled shutters (they looked like this but were obviously in a lot worse shape). They were laying on the side of the road and were a bit dirty but I decided to re-purpose them into a table. I started by taking off the hardware (hinges and any door knobs). I then used my dad’s table saw to cut the doors. I made the table about 40″ high I think. This is a little tall but still works. After you have the four sides of the table cut, screw them together one side at a time (using a power drill). IMPORTANT: you need to make sure all of your shutter slats are facing downward. This way you won’t see the lamp inside when you’re done.
For the top I used some extra lumber to make slats across the top. You could also use a solid square piece of wood if you want. We had a 2″x4″ lying around in the garage so I just used this. I cut the board into 4 equal lengths (I cut the pieces a little longer than the width of the table so I had a little overhang). These pieces are also screwed into the top of the table. The screws have to line up with sides of the table so you have something to drill into.
Once this is done, give your table a layer of paint. I just used one can of white gloss spray paint to touch up any scratched paint. The doors were white to start with so this saved money. You could obviously spray paint the table any color, but I think spray painting the shutter slats might be difficult.
I took an ugly old lamp (with the shade off) and placed it on the inside of the table. It is just sitting on the floor, not suspended or anything. You can run the cord out the back side of the table that would be facing the wall. There is painters tape on the cord in this picture because of the spray painting.
You could also easily run the cord up the inside of one of the corners and suspend it from the inside top of the table. That would work too!