Introduction: Forever Snowflake Decor
Holiday Decor should last a long time. This is why our closets, crawl spaces, and attics are full of timeless treasures for every part of the year.
So a snowflake that never melts in the attic? Yeah, when it's made of (EMT) Electrical Metallic Tubing.
I have a bunch of 1/2 inch EMT with no wires to run, it is in the Island of Misfit Toys I call my shed.
Here I will show you how to make your own Forever Snowflake, so grab some misfit scraps and unleash your humble bumble.
- 1/2 inch Electrical Metallic Tubing (EMT)
- Bandsaw or Tubing cutter
- Drill and 1/4 inch drill bit
- Angle grinder with metal cutting and sanding disk
- 1/4 inch rivet and riveter
- Marking pen
- Glitter Spray paint
(Safety Gear: Goggles, Ear Protection, Gloves)
Step 1: Mark and Cut Your Materials
Most EMT comes in 10 foot lengths, so let us cut these down to size.
My new favorite tool is a portable bandsaw cutter. Unlike a grinder with a cut off wheel, this generates no sparks and is clearly faster.
Cut 3 sections to 18 inches, then make a line on each one at 9 inches.
Step 2: Flatten and Fit Check.
Next we want to flatten the middle of each tubing section. This will create the center connection point of our snowflake.
A rock hammer works great for this due to its flat face and squared off edges.
Hammer out one inch on each side of the line to give a 2 inch flat surface.
Now try a fit check by stacking the middle sections together. Perfect fit, nice work!
Step 3: Drill and Dress
Using the existing centerline drill a 1/4 hole in the middle of the line to prepare it for the rivet fastener.
Dress up each tube by pounding each end piece to a 1 inch flat section. You will want this flat end to line up on the same plane as the middle flat section. This will make it uniform and not perpendicular, or at an opposite angle when laying flat.
Step 4: Mark and Cut Accents
The next step is to mark your accent points down each length of tubing between each flat section. Mark the sections at one inch intervals with an approximate 45 degree angle for the cuts.
(Safety gear! Time to get our grind on!)
Using the vise, place the tube in so the middle flat section is parallel to the ground and on the outside of the vise jaws. (See photo).
Using a metal cutting disk on the angle grinder cut 45 degree sections just short of reaching the middle at each one inch mark. You will do this on each side of tube. Careful not to cut all the way through this will make for a stubby snowflake.
Repeat this step for each end of the tube between all of the sections. Then grind and angle the tips of each tube to add accent to the end pieces.
Using a 40 grit sanding flap disk, grind off all the burrs around the tube.
Step 5: Fit and Rivet and Paint
Stack all the tubes so the middle holes line up and place the rivet through the center holes.
Use a flat rivet washer at the tip of the rivet for a solid fastening point.
Using your rivet gun, hold the washer on the back and slowly squeeze 'till the end mushrooms and holds it.
At this point set the desired equal angles of your snowflake and snap the rivet the rest of the way firmly.
I like the industrial look of raw steel, but glitter paint gives it a winter sparkle that will last FOREVER.
Step 6: Display
Hang your Forever Snowflake with a thin wire and have it float and sparkle in the December breeze. HO,HO, HO and pray for snow.
Merry Christmas and a Happy Holidays
Participated in the
Holiday Decorations Speed Challenge