altoids tins a nerd’s best friend

Altoids tin red LEDEmpty Altoids tins have been used as project boxes for years. Crystal radios, DIY survial kits come to mind. Over time Altoids tins have acquired a certain nerd cache.

I’m not a wires&rsqo;n&rsqo;pliers kinda guy so my focus has been on using Altoids boxes to hold personal shrines and digital cameras.

My first Altoids project was a flashing red LED from a Microsoft mouse promo. I punched out the red flower at the top of the plant on the left (old style tin), letting the LED stick out. This kicked around for years before it finally died.

I’ve made a series of Buddhist pocket shrines in Altoids tins. These devotional objects made with respect and reverance.

I’ve also made several prayer wheels out of an Altoids tins. One style uses the fan from a CPU as the turntable, another style uses a grage door roller. Both are filled with the mantra Om mani padme hum on rolls of paper. Altoids mani.

Candles     Smudge     Incense

Dalai Lama Small Mints     Chenrezig     Kalachakra

For a couple of years I ran a web cam showing the Seattle Space Needle. I started taking old webcams apart and putting them into, yes, Altoids tins. Add cell phone camera lens and you’ve got a one-of-a-kind Altoids hack.

At a certain point I found myself with more Altoids tins than I needed coupled with a lack of appetite for the little buggers. Oh well...