|How to Make A Tire Planter
||[Jun. 23rd, 2007|01:11 pm]
Funky Midatlantic Rowhouse
I've been making tire planters for years. For these, you need a tire on its rim in order to create a graceful urn. First, pull out the valve stem or otherwise release any pressure left inside the tire. You will be cutting in the sidewall area, not in the tread portion of the tire. Make an initial hole on the valve-stem side, using an awl or electric drill. I cut free-hand, in a zig-zag pattern, using a serrated Ginsu-type kitchen knife. If you prefer, mark out the pattern first with a China marking pencil. Another design option is to use a soup can as a template, to mark scallops rather than pointy zig-zags. Once you have cut all the way around, the fun begins. The tire now must be turned inside out, and it is what I imagine wrestling with an anaconda must be like. The tire wants to stay in its original orientation, and you want to get it inside out.
Stand the tire up on the tread. Get both hands into the cut at the top of the tire, and, while pulling towards yourself, bash your knee into the sidewall hard enough to dent it. Pull along the cut, as hard as you can. Pulling the side wall is not too hard. It is reversing the curve on the tread portion that is difficult. Once you get it started, it will try and flip back. Have a friend help you, by holding the successfully reversed portion while you further work along the cut. The last little bit seems the hardest, since the tire will still, at this point, spring back into its original shape. Persevere. The moment will come when the tire conceeds defeat and accepts its new configuration. You now have a lovely urn with a gracefully curved rim, the metal wheel rim as a pedestal, and a narrow ground-level skirt from the piece of sidewall left attached to the rim.