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Weekend Project: 3D Print Your Own Customizable Soda Can Lamp

Reading Time: 3 minutes

An engineer named Arnd (also known as AHNT) recently shared a fun 3D printing project, showing us how to create an customizable soda can lamp that can you light up with LEDs or a candle. 

Here at All3DP, we go through a lot of 3D printing filament and thirst-quenching carbonated drinks, so we always try to encourage our readers to recycle as often as possible. But that doesn’t always have to equate to throwing your filament strands and soda cans into the recycling bin. It turns out you can also reuse your discarded aluminum trash to make a 3D printed soda can lamp.

A young engineer named Arnd–who also goes by the name AHNT— recently shared his unique Individualized Soda Can Lamp project on MyMiniFactory. He designed a 3D printable sleeve that fits snugly around most 250mL soda cans. You can poke tiny pixel-like holes into the can through the sleeve, enabling you to add a customized design to your lamp.


AHNT created two different types of bases to illuminate the lamp. There’s one designed to hold a votive candle, while the other is made for use with a LED strip circuit and 12 VDC barrel jack. Let’s take a look at this innovative 3D printing project and figure out how to make our own Soda Can Lamp.

3D Printed Soda Can Lamp: What Do You Need?

Aside from your 3D printer and 3D printing filament, here’s what else you need to complete this project:


3D Printed Soda Can Lamp: Putting it Together

There are five essential steps to creating a customized soda can lamp, and AHNT takes us through each part in his YouTube video detailing the project. The first thing you’ll do is open the can by getting ride of the top lid. You can either use sandpaper or a filer to grind away at the top of the can until the metal sheets divide, creating a gap in the can. This will make it easy to remove the cap.

Next, you’ll stuff the can with some paper towels to stabilize it, which will prevent it from buckling when you begin piercing it with the needle. The 3D printed sleeve acts as a template for the design you will put into the can through the perforation process. The designer uses a size 18 medical needle, which you can find at your local pharmacy. After you put the can inside of the 3D printed sleeve, you’ll use the needle to poke holes through the tiny gaps in the sleeve.

To create your own design, you can use Powerpoint or Adobe Illustrator (or a number of other programs). First, create a rectangle and place the design inside of the rectangle, which you will then print out. Cut out the design and glue it to the can, and push the 3D printed sleeve over it. The design will act as a stencil for you to poke out your custom design.

To obtain a clean surface on the can, AHNT suggests spray painting the can to get rid of the branding design and any colors. Finally, you can use the 3D printed base for either the LED stripe or candle, which the engineer goes into more detail about in the YouTube video.

If you want to create your own Soda Can Lamp, check out the comprehensive instructions in the video below!

License: The text of “Weekend Project: 3D Print Your Own Customizable Soda Can Lamp” by All3DP is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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