Some People in Japan Are Polishing Ordinary Aluminum Foil Balls Into Shiny Orbs

Some People in Japan Are Polishing Ordinary Aluminum Foil Balls Into Shiny Orbs

Aluminum foil is one of those things that rarely gets a second thought. It’s useful for cooking and insulation, but as we’ve seen recently, that’s just a couple of things that you can do with the extremely thin metal sheet. A Japanese trend has people wadding up a roll of aluminum foil into a ball and transforming it into a shiny metal orb that looks like it’s anything but an everyday kitchen material.

A current Japanese trend is polishing tin foil balls into perfection...

A current Japanese trend is polishing tin foil balls into perfection...

So, how do they do it? Although it looks like magic, this peculiar DIY is something that anyone can recreate with a lot of aluminum foil, a couple of tools, and a whole lot of time. In a video by a YouTuber named SKYtomo, the craftsman shares his process for producing the orb. Starting with an entire box of foil, he rolls and forms it roughly into a spherical shape. Then, using a ball-peen hammer (or something similar), he meticulously flattens and compresses the orb until it’s a fraction of its original size. At this point, it’s the right shape, but it still doesn’t have the lustrous sheen. To do this, the surface of the ball is sanded—at one point, under running water (similar to the Japanese mud ball making process of dorodango)—using a fine sandpaper. The reflective exterior is finally achieved with a polishing cream and chamois cloth. The video by SKYtomo is oddly satisfying to watch and presents a challenge for patient DIYers—can you turn this ordinary material into something special? Many people in Japan have tried and hours (upon hours) later, succeeded. And with this viral Reddit post, we have a feeling that people all over the world will soon be sharing their own aluminum foil orbs.

A jewelry artist named Atelier puchuco helped start the trend after they shared their polished sphere on Twitter. The peculiar project has caught on in Japan. People are eager to take this…

A jewelry artist named Atelier puchuco helped start the trend after they shared their polished sphere on Twitter. The peculiar project has caught on in Japan. People are eager to take this…

In Japan, bored teens have taken on a new hobby to pass the time. No, they’re not eating Tide pods. They’re creating oddly mesmerising aluminum balls. The trend involves rolling entire aluminum foil rolls into metal balls, then spending many hours pounding and polishing the item. The final result is a shiny ball that appears to have been cast from steel rather than aluminum. Twitter user ‘puchuco709’ started the trend after he tweeted a photo of the aluminum ball he made. Soon after, others started making their own versions

Compress it…

Compress it…

When you think of aluminum foil there’s probably not much going on in your head – packaging, insulation, cooking. But that is going to change forever as you’re about to see a new trend that is happening in Japan. It’s not only extremely satisfying to watch, it also shows an incredible craftsmanship that these people have.

But the results is amazing:

But the results is amazing:

Once you have formed the ball, you need to remove all the air from it. You can smash it with your hands and squeeze it to flatten it, and then roll it back into a ball shape. You also want to make the ball smooth on the outside. You can use a hammer to flatten out the wrinkles in the foil. This can take a considerable amount of time. As soon as you get one wrinkle out, it seems like another one forms. Still, if you stick with it, you can make the ball smooth.

People were instantly amused by this low-budget DIY project

People were instantly amused by this low-budget DIY project

According to Twitter user @puchuco709, they took a whole 16-meter (52-feet) long roll of the federal government brainwashing-blocking material and started abusing it – hammering, polishing it. After spending a lot of time perfecting the ball, it was finished. Scroll down to see this incredible project that you can easily do yourself!

Because this project requires repeating the same tedious task…

Because this project requires repeating the same tedious task…

Aluminum foil looks pretty boring. It is used for packaging, insulation, cooking… and making really shiny balls that appear to have no real purpose, apparently. That’s right, thanks to a Japanese jeweler, the whole country became obsessed with refining these metal leaves, and we aren’t sure how to react.

Hours of polishing to perfections

Hours of polishing to perfections

You could use it for décor or just display it proudly and show it off to everyone who visits. It’s just one of those things where it’s not the destination, but the journey. The achievement isn’t the actual results, but the ability to obtain them.

Flooding Japanese social media with their very own versions

Flooding Japanese social media with their very own versions

This also takes a long time. You should polish it with a soft cloth. Be careful not to change its shape while polishing and attempting to clean up the ball. Once the ball has been completely polished, it should look like a silver ball instead of a ball of foil. It should be reflective, round, and shiny. Looking at the finished product, you might expect it to be heavy, but it is actually very light, no heavier than the sheets of foil before you formed them into a ball.

This is actually pretty amazing:

This is actually pretty amazing:

It’s not an easy project, and it can be very time-consuming. It’s also not something you get right the first time you try it. That means you could be putting hours into the creation of the foil ball, and it might not turn out right. Even if it does turn out right, what are you going to do with it?

Great Perfections:

Great Perfections:

Got some extra aluminum foil lying around the house? Why not make an aluminum foil ball? No, don’t just wad it up and throw it at the cat; you have to take your time and really work on this ball. If you do it right, you can make it look like a solid, shiny ball that isn’t made of foil. People in Japan have been doing this for years, but it has recently gotten a lot of attention when someone made one and shared the process on social media.

And end up with this!

And end up with this!

You might surprise yourself and end up with something amazing. Be sure to share your results online for everyone else to see, too.