book collections email follower instructable user
Picture of Discoballify Anything!
intro-picture.jpg
thumbnail3.jpg

With this Instructable I’ll teach you the techniques for turning any shape you’d like into a disco ball. I will show you how you can make one, which can be hung at the ceiling. And I will show you, how you can make one which you can put on a cabinet or something. Both versions will be spinning (duh) and make every party (obviously) better.
When you have all the tools and materials at hand, this project will - depending on the size of your ball - a few hours to complete. The most time consuming part is the cutting of the glass and the glueing of the pieces. So take that in account when you think of turning something really big into a disco ball.

This Instructable is divided in the following sections.

  • Required tools
  • Required materials
  • Making the disco ball
  • Gutting the microwave oven
  • Make a real (ceiling) disco ball
  • Make a fake (desk) disco ball
  • Finishing

So lets get started!

Step 1: Tools

Picture of Tools

The best part of making your own disco ball, is that you do not need to have a lot of special tools. Besides the laser cutter (which is not really required anyway), all tools can be bought fairly cheap and are universally handy to have anyways. The items you most probably do not have at your workspace are the glass cutter and the associated running pliers. But all other tools you most surely have laying around already.

Ruler

The ruler is required to measure the sizes of the mirrored rectangles we are going to cut. The length of this is not really important. Cause it is only meant to mark the side edges of the mirror. While the minimal length should be the width of the square you'd like to cut. The longer the ruler, the faster you can mark your pieces.

Marker

The marker is used to mark the sides of the mirror so you know where to put the square when you are going to cut it. It is important that it stays on the glass and is not swiped away easily. A permanent marker or acrylic marker would be perfect for this. Note that you are marking dots which are 1 cm apart from each other. So the sharper the tip, the more useful it will be.

Glass cutter

This tool is used to scratch the mirror. So you can break it with a pair of running pliers. Since it is my first project, working with glass. I have no expertise related to this tool. I used a slightly more expensive glass cutter which has oil in it. But I am pretty sure any glass cutter which is meant to cut straight lines will suit the job for this project. I have no idea why this thing has oil in it anyway.

Square

The square is used to help you cut straight lines. I say "help to cut straight lines". Do not underestimate the value of this tool. Trying to cut straight lines on glass without any guidance tool is nearly impossible. Even with a square it quite often goes wrong.

Running pliers

This tool is meant to help you break the glass mirror across the scratched line. While it is theoretically possible to break it on the edge of your table or something. Do yourself a favor, and get one of these. It goes way faster, is more secure and you can break smaller pieces of glass.

Glue gun

Pretty straight forward. Used to glue the glass mirror tiles to the object you want to turn in a disco ball.

Hobby knife

Use this to get rid of the accidents you make when you are glueing the mirrored pieces of glass on your object. If you are working really clean you won't need to use it a lot. But you are going to need it for sure.

Screwdriver

Used for gutting the microwave. You probably need to have multiple ones of this. Depending on the construction of you microwave oven and for extending the electrical wires.

Laser cutter (optional)

I used the laser cutter together with the Makercase website to make a box where I fit the motor in. It is optional - cause there are plenty of alternative ways to make a box for this purpose - but very useful if you have one. Also if you want to make the plateau for a standing disco ball.

Wood glue (optional)

Only required if you need to put the laser cut wooden case together. But even then it is not even mandatory. Cause you can also just use hot glue. If you are also going to use it for the wooden plateau. It will be better to use this rather than hot glue.

ohoilett3 months ago
This is so cool. Do you have a video with some lights?
JeffreyArts (author)  ohoilett3 months ago
Unfortunately I have not. I gave this discoball as a gift to my sister. So can't make a video neither.
bpark10003 months ago
If you want your creation to last, do the following: first, don't scrounge a mirror. Mirrors age and the coating falls off. Instead, buy new mirror tiles. They are inexpensive, and are easier to handle and cut (aged glass is harder to cut). Get one of the more expensive diamond point glass cutters. They work so well that the glass typically starts cracking before you can finish the cross-cuts! (Put masking tape on the back along the edges if this happens). Third, use silicone RTV (the type that smells of vinegar) instead of hot glue, which becomes brittle as it ages). Cut the tiniest amount from the tip, apply small bead to the object (that you can apply mirrors to in 5 minutes) and then put on mirrors.
For hanging items, use lightweight material for the core (polystyrene packing rigid foam, you can hot-wire to shape). Silicone metal rod through shape for hanging first (let set overnight before proceeding). To pick up mirrors, make a vacuum pick-up tool (vacuum cleaner running real slow on dimmer control, tape 1/4" tube to hose end.) put the mirrors in a shallow box, shake so they are in single layer. Use vacuum pick-up tool to grab mirrors that are face-up and apply to your shape (that has bead of silicone applied). After face-up mirrors are gone, shake box again to get more.
In the intro, it says, “...and make every party (obviously), a better. ...” As a grammar freak, I think you should either add another noun after “better” to finish the sentence, or remove the article “a” so as not to make a gap in the sentence. You can ignore this tip, if you want. :)
JeffreyArts (author)  winneremerald123 months ago
Thanks for mentioning. Must have slipped through, between the revisions.
No prob. Because other than that, this ‘Ible is great! I’d love to discoballify a diaper. Lol jk
thumpik3 months ago
From similar project experiences, i've found E6000 glue to work the best. It really holds glass to glass glue ups. I doubt hot melt glue would hold up for long.
attosa3 months ago
Fun! I'd love my whole house to have millions of discoballified items!
you can purchase mirror mosaic tiles online.
Gadisha3 months ago
Nice idea to repurpose a glass bottle as a disco 'bal' :)