Very Cool Project: Build a Grolsch Bottle Salt and Pepper Shaker for Yourself or as a Gift

After building your Grolsch bottle Salt and Pepper shakers, find a fun spot to display them such as either side of the Jose Cuervo Tequila bottle as shown in Photograph 1; or build a bunch of them and give them as gifts to family and friends.

The author built the salt and pepper shakers shown herein (filled with salt and pepper) at a total cost of a $8.98 plus sales tax – two bottles of Grolsch beer, one container of salt and one container of pepper. It took longer to drive to the store and buy the beer and the salt and pepper than it did to build the salt and pepper shakers. Once familiar with this process, it takes about 20 minutes to build your salt and pepper shakers. Once you acquire the tools needed for this project, the materials’ cost is very low. It would be very inexpensive to mass produce numerous salt and pepper shakers as gifts – all fun, original, unique, and very cool.

If you use or modify this process to build unique salt and pepper shakers and would like to share them with the author, feel free to e-mail a picture and text description of the salt and pepper shakers that you built. When the author updates this article, your permission may be requested to use your photograph and description.

If you have any questions regarding this process, the tools or materials that are required, feel free to e-mail the author. The author will strive to respond promptly.

The author will be publishing other Very Cool Projects. They can be found by simply conducting the following advanced Internet search, verbatim: Very Cool Project and Michael Murphy.

Here is How to Build your Grolsch bottle, Salt and Pepper shakers:

Please read this entire article completely before beginning and pay close attention to the Options, Considerations and Cautions at the end of this article.

Gather the tools and materials you will need as shown in Photograph 2. Many of these items are common and it is assumed you either have, or can borrow most items. The unique items that you may not have, or be able to borrow, have their retail price associated with them.

The Tools You will Need:

The tools you will need include: variable speed electric drill, beach or bathroom towel, 1/8 inch drill bit and ¼ inch drill bit ($5.88), one straight edge razor-blade, needle-nose pliers ($8.66), and a small funnel ($2.29).

The Materials You will Need:

The materials you will need include: two Grolsch “flip-top” beer bottles ($4.38), one 26 ounce container of salt ($0.62), one 8 ounce container of pepper ($3.98).

Please note further that once you acquire all the tools that are required, you can mass produce numerous Grolsch bottle Salt and Pepper shakers for only materials’ cost. Your total cost per set of Grolsch bottle Salt and Pepper shakers would be two beer bottles, salt and pepper for a grand total $8.98 plus sales tax.

The Process for Building your Grolsch bottle Salt and Pepper shakers:

Open the flip-tops lids of each bottle and remove the flip-top lids by spreading the steel brackets away from the glass bottle. Rinse the inside of both bottles. Set bottles aside and place both flip-top lids, on a towel, with the flip-top lids upside down – bottom pointing up.

Conduct the below three paragraphs of procedure for both of the flip-top lids, simultaneously. This will save you time in changing bits.

Using very light downward pressure and very low rpm (revolutions per minute) drill a 1/8 inch hole in the exact center of the bottom of the flip-top lid. Drill the hole only about 1/8 inch deep so as to not intersect the horizontal manufactured hole that dissects the flip-top lid. Now change bits and re-drill the 1/8 inch hole with a ¼ inch drill bit (Photograph 3). Do not drill any deeper, just make the hole bigger.

Hint: It can be a challenge to drill plastic as the drill bit will sometimes “catch on, or grab onto” the plastic. If this happens, the drill bit will try to pull itself through the material you are drilling – do not let this happen. You should drill the flip-top lids very slowly using very light downward pressure and very low rpm. Keep a firm grip on the flip-top lid with your hand. It sometimes helps to hold the flip-top lid, off the ground and in your hand, while you are drilling. Sometimes, even reversing the electric drill can help clear out the hole that you just drilled. It can also help to re-ream out (or probe) the holes with your drill bit as you drill – back and forth, nice and slow. If necessary, use a needle-nose pliers to remove plastic from the holes you drill. When finished drilling, reaming and probing holes, use a straight edge razor blade to trim any plastic left over from drill holes.

Return to the 1/8 inch drill bit. Place the 1/8 inch bit inside the ¼ inch hole and tilt the drill toward you so that you can drill a new hole all the way through the flip-top lid. The goal is to tilt the drill enough so that the hole you are going to drill does not intersect the horizontal manufactured hole that dissects the flip-top lid. Additionally, don’t tilt the drill too much because you need to drill all the way through the flip-top lid and exit the top of the flip-top lid – not the side of the flip-top lid. The result of this process is shown in Photograph 4.

Return the steel brackets on each flip top lid to the Grolsch bottle.

Using the funnel, add salt to one bottle and pepper to the other (Photograph 5). Note that when filling the salt and pepper bottles, only fill the bottle about 80 to 90 percent full. The salt and pepper shakers will work much better if they are not 100 percent full.

You’re done! Find a cool spot on your wet-bar to display your Grolsch bottle Salt and Pepper shakers, or give them as a gift.

Options, Considerations and Cautions:

Consider buying a four-pack of Grolsch beer. Build both Salt and Pepper shakers and then build two more shakers, one filled with Tobasco and one filled with Worcestershire. All four products are often times used in the operation of a wet-bar and sometimes the barbeque.

If you do make additional bottles, consider placing each back into the cardboard case in which you bought them. This is a very cool way to keep everything organized and looking nice – not to mention it makes it easy to carry all your bottles around the house, or out to the barbeque grill. Further, a four-pack would make a nice package for a gift.

Consider making an additional shaker and fill it with Celery Salt – another common spice used in the operation of a wet-bar.

Consider making a full set of shakers for your kitchen or barbeque area. Place any spices or sauces in the bottles you wish: Garlic Salt, Cayenne Pepper, Chile Pepper, Meat Seasoning, et cetera.

If you do decide to use spices and sauces other than simple salt and pepper, you may need to experiment with either a larger or smaller bit than the 1/8 inch drill bit used herein. For liquid, I expect only one hole in the flip-top lid of the Grolsch bottle would work best.

Use safety equipment and common sense in everything you do.

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