At some point last year, Nate decided to start collecting bottles & cans to help pay for our honeymoon. His plan was to collect as many as he could and then cash out at the local recycling place before we left for Hawaii.
Family and friends were very generous to donate their own recycling to the fund. Many evenings I would find a paper bag of cans on our doorstep from a neighbor. We also found that parties at our house were a great way to fill out the collection. We just set up special recycling buckets so people disposed of their empty containers correctly.
For months, we accumulated bags along the side of our shed. The bags were well protected here, but the pile grew a little out of hand before Nate took them in.
It’s amazing how many cans you can collect. When Nate finally cashed out, he had about 50 lbs in aluminum alone and made about $130 bucks. Not bad at all and certainly enough to pay for a dinner on our trip.
It’s pretty cool to see the small changes you can make at home that can potentially make you money. Can recycling isn’t a huge deal, but Nate and I agree that it makes sense to make money on it instead of just recycling them through the city.
After our trip, we’ve decided to keep collecting cans but this time make some improvements to the process. Instead of bags of cans, Nate is dumping crushed cans into a plastic garbage container with lid.
To consolidate the cans, we installed The Crusher on the back shed wall. Our good friend Dean donated The Crusher to our cause. Dean’s dad had this guy up in his workshop and we are super pleased to continue to put it to good use.
Last Saturday, Nate attached The Crusher to the back of the shed and tried it out. I recorded the first crush with my hyperlapse app to show you The Crusher in action.
The plan is to fill the garbage container with cans and then take it to the recycling center. We want to figure out how long it will take to fill and how much we can can make per container. We have a few bags ready to crush so I bet we are already half way there. I’ll report back when we take the can in and give you an idea of how much we think we can make a year projecting out.