1. Remove all the raised edges from 1 half of the
CD case, to get a flat piece of plastic (Figure A). It’s
easy to cut the plastic, if you’re careful. Score along
the inside edges of the CD case with an X-Acto
knife, running it along each edge about 6– 8 times.
This will weaken the plastic. Then snap the ends
off with your fingers.
Clear CD case Try to find one that isn’t scratched.
Pencil with eraser
Pushpin or thumbtack
Strong tape such as electrical, cloth, or foam tape
Clear plastic lid like from a yogurt container
Beads, stickers, confetti, and assorted
Rubber bands ( 2)
Black paper or black neoprene/foam rubber
Ruler preferably metal
Small saw (optional)
58 Make: Volume 14
2. Cut 3 strips of case plastic that are exactly the
same width. My easy method was to use the width
of my ruler as the mirror width, scoring along each
edge and then measuring the next strip from the
previous edge (Figure B). Score the plastic over and
over; it will become so soft that if you keep scoring
you could cut through it completely. Instead, align
the score lines with the edge of a table, and snap
the strips apart cleanly.
3. Form an equilateral triangle shape (technically
a prism) with the 3 strips of plastic. Use the rubber
bands to hold the prism tube together, then wrap
around it tightly with tape to secure it (Figure C).
You can remove the rubber bands after it’s taped.
Photography by Carolyn Bennett
4. Cut a piece of black paper or foam that’s the
length of the triangular prism tube and wide
enough to wrap around it completely, with a little
overlap. Glue or tape this black backing around
the tube to create the mirrors.
5. Measure and cut the pencil to the length of the
prism tube plus enough to let the eraser hang over