Toilet paper printer made from scrap parts

toilet_paper_printer

Some of our favorite hacks are those made with scrap materials, so we were delighted to see a contest being held by the German technology magazine c’t which focuses on using salvaged components. “Mach flott den Schrott” is the name of the competition, which loosely translates to “Make fast the scrap”.

German builder [Mario Lukas’] entry into the contest (Google Translation) is definitely unique, and certainly fits within the theme. He built a toilet paper printer that uses a bunch of recycled components to write anything he desires on a roll of the soft white stuff. His blog walks through the build details, including a bill of materials for all of the scrap bits he used to put it together. Several CD-ROM drives, printers, and even inline skates donated some components to the printer, while an Arduino controls the entire printing process.

Though [Mario] is using RSS and Twitter feeds as a data source for his toilet-side scribe, we imagine it will only be a matter of time before advertising companies seize upon this sort of technology to create personalized advertisements geared towards a decidedly captive audience.

Continue reading to see a quick video of his toilet paper printer in action.

[via Make]

17 thoughts on “Toilet paper printer made from scrap parts

  1. Great idea and build!

    I’m not from Germany but I think your translation is wrong. A loose translation would be “make something fancy of the scrap” or perhaps “make something working of the scrap”.

    1. You cannot translate it correctly, not even loose .. At least no idea comes to my mind how to translate this … “mach flott” is a kind of speech for “repair it”, “make it work again”, but also “be fast”, “do something faster” .. “den Schrott” is clear translated with “junk”.

      This is a hard one .. hehe .. :)

      Great work! Here are also some nice gadgets: http://www.heise.de/mach-flott/projekte/

  2. to make s.th. flott
    1 Schiff in tiefes Wasser bringen, so dass man wieder damit fahren kann –
    Bringing a ship / boat into deeper water to drive it
    2 Fahrzeug so herrichten, dass man wieder damit fahren kann – Fixing / preparing a vehicle to drive it (again)

  3. I remember back in the late 70’s or early 80’s they had Iran’s president, Ayatollah Khomeini on rolls…it was called the Ayatoilet Paper. Like Chris mentioned, print up some rolls with your least desirable politicians, perfect!
    Nice hack.

  4. Reminds me of those thermal printers that you could buy in the 1980’s to go with a ZX Spectrum and similar ones for other systems. In our house we used to refer to those as ‘toilet roll printers’ (actually it might have been ‘bog roll printers’). And I’m sure we weren’t alone in that!

  5. Holy Crap, this is the shiz-nit! Ok, enough poop jokes. This thing is great, amazing what you can do with some scrap, now all you have to do is hook it up to a twitter feed, and considering the paper it uses may I sugest Justin Beiber’s?

  6. ROFL re. twitter.

    Actually I can see that being handy for um, “secure” messages,
    the idea being that you could not only receive a text while in the smallest room but also destroy it in a way that even the CIA wouldn’t want to read it afterwards :-P

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