I’m a music junkie. I built my CD rack with my own two hands because I thought it was insane that someone should charge me $150 for something I could make on a table saw for $32. Call it handy, call it cheap, but this Yankee mentality drove me when I sought to divide my growing collection into sections, so that Slayer wouldn’t inappropriately touch the Christmas music and the Hip Hop wouldn’t be getting their big pants all up in the jazz section’s grill. I needed CD section dividers that would stick out just the right amount, hold together well, and slide easily between the jewel cases in the rack.
Because my sister works at Scrap in Oregon, she always comes home with ultra-creative things made from materials that would normally be thrown away. Using her as inspiration, I thought that I could make the dividers out of something that I had laying around, thus proving to her that I’m cool. Or creative. Or that Mom loves my geeky corporate ass just as much as her bike-riding, hard-core recycling ass.
So, like a good geek, I broke out my trusty Dremel and tried to create the dividers out of everything from old jewel cases to hacked up CDs tied together with baker’s twine. After two hours, all I ended up creating was a big pile of melted plastic that didn’t impress anyone and stunk to high heaven.
Because #1GF! was due home 15 minutes from what I was considering the midpoint of my project, I swept all the smelly bits (that I could find) into the trash and devised these simple CD dividers that stick out just the right amount from between the CDs and are simple to put together using only a sheet of paper and some tape.
And as an added benefit, they can be quickly dismantled in party situations where coasters are in short supply.
Step 1: Gather Materials
(1) sheet of 8 1/2 x 11″ paper (hopefully used)
(2) CDs that you messed up burning or got for free
(1) piece of packing or regular tape
Tear the sheet of paper into 4 even pieces (Don’t sweat it if they’re not exactly even). Put 3 into your “I’ll use these for scrap paper or alternative fuel” pile.
Fold the remaining piece in half 3 times the long way (For some reason, I show each fold in the picture below. Looking back, it seems a little confusing, but might be valuable if you happen to be drunk or confused by the number 3 or the word “fold”.)
Take your 2 old CDs and slip the piece of paper through them as shown. It should just fit through the holes without bending.
Pick your tape. I have a habit of overbuilding, so I chose packing tape, but I’ve tested this with a single piece of regular tape and it holds fine. (This is #1GF!’s favorite step as it merely pictures two tape dispensers positioned as if they were squaring off to battle. It also makes the assumption that you are still drunk or unfamiliar with the word “tape.”)
Pull the ends of the paper so that the CDs are tight together.
Rip off a piece of tape that is a little more than twice the width of the folded piece of paper.
Place it sticky side UP in the middle of the CDs.
Fold down one side of the paper, sticking it to the tape. Pull the paper tight, and fold down the other side on top of it.
Fold the tape over the paper to seal the deal.
Your divider should look like this when done, and should spin if coaxed.
If you have some old driver CDs or some old AOL CDs, you may get some nice colors in there. If you saved all those clear spacer CDs that come with CD packs, those have a very unobtrusive look.
The Dividers are thin, so they’re barely noticeable and don’t block the view of any CD spines from the front (the 5 dividers from Step 12 are also pictured here).
Comment on what a big nerd I am. Go on. It’s free.