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Coming into Focus: Upcycling Competition Awards Innovative Clock Design Made from a Pallet
An Australian pallet company sponsors a contest for designing art, furniture and other pieces out of old pallets. The winner was an innovative clock design that you have to see to believe.

By Staff
Date Posted: 8/1/2014

                Pallets are more than just pallets these days. Artisans, do-it-yourselfers, woodworkers and others around the globe are turning old wooden pallets into everything from art to furniture to household items to unique, one-of a kind sculptures. A group in Australia holds an annual event dedicated to celebrating the latest designs made from old crates and pallets. Called the “Create from Crate” competition, the event recently awarded its People’s Choice Award top design prize to Will Matthysen of Warrandyte, Victoria in Australia for creating a functional clock from old pallet parts.

                This intricate clock has been made completely from reclaimed shipping pallet timber. The only non-pallet elements are the small bearings, and a glass front to protect the clock. It has an estimated value of $16,500 dollars.

                Sponsored by Waste Converters Recycling, the event included a competition and an exhibit  in Melbourne held earlier this year which drew 28 pieces on display with a combined value in excess of $50,000. And everything was made from scrap timber pallets that could have merely ended up as mulch. The term for this process is upcycling where you convert a waste product into a desirable item using sweat equity and human ingenuity.

                The aim of the competition is to highlight the inherent beauty of wood while actively promoting recycling and waste reduction. Waste Converters Recycling is a pallet and crate recycling business that processes about 300,0000 pallets per year. This company first started its competition in 2003 and ran until 2006. It restarted the competition this year and was a hit.

                Ward Petherbridge, managing director of Waste Converters, said “We have always used hardwood pallets from the United States for our competition. This is partly because the species you guys use over there are considered exotic here in Australia. We often find species such as oak, elm, sycamore, cherry, maple and the like. These are all species that are not indigenous to Australia and woodworkers love utilizing these timbers. Also, pallets from the USA that have been used to import heavy items into Australia often have a lot of timber to utilize. You guys don’t skimp on lumber!”

                For more information on the competition or the other designs visit http://www.facebook.com/createfromacrate. To find out more about how the clock development process worked view the video at http://youtu.be/xZCTfbY_Pow

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Upcycling: Pallet Clock