Wheels from Waste

Your little NASCAR fans will enjoy making these specially designed race cars from dish-detergent bottles. You might want to try making more than one and racing them to see whose car is the fastest.

Level: Easy

Time involved: One to two hours


  • Newspaper or plastic
  • Empty dish-detergent bottle
  • Scissors
  • Thin wooden dowel or wooden meat skewer
  • Exacto knife
  • Sandpaper
  • Four wooden wheels (You can find these in craft stores in the wood section.)
  • Heavy jewelry wire
  • Craft paints
  • Paintbrushes
  1. Place a layer of newspaper or plastic on your work area to protect it. Rinse the detergent bottle in water to remove any soap from the inside. If there is a paper label on the bottle, soak and remove it. Allow to dry.

  2. Lay the bottle on its side and cut away the top of the bottom end of the bottle with scissors to form the car's interior. Parents should help younger children with this step.

  3. Poke a hole in the front and back of the bottle on either side to insert the wooden dowel for the wheels.

  4. Cut the wooden dowel in half using an Exacto knife. If necessary, sand off any sharp edges. Insert the wooden dowel through the holes and place a wooden wheel on each end. Wrap a piece of jewelry wire around each end (about eight loops) to hold the wheels in place.

  5. Paint the car with craft paint and add numbers and stripes to represent a racing car. Allow the car to dry.

More on: Crafts for Kids


Excerpted from The Complete Idiot's Guide to Holiday Crafts © 2002 by Marilee LeBon. All rights reserved including the right of reproduction in whole or in part in any form. Used by arrangement with Alpha Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.

To order this book visit Amazon's web site or call 1-800-253-6476.


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