Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Instrument storage boxes updated

While getting some equipment off a shelf I knocked some thing down and they landed on a nanoVNA, cracking the screen.

I think it is time to make some protetive cases for the equipment when not in use. Looking around on Thingiverse I found a small case that is similar to to a Pelian Case.  I printed one and fund it to be exatly what I wanted.  It is very strong with a nice latch system that closes very tightly.  It has a seal that can be made watertight if I run a small bead of silicon tub sealant in the grove in the bottom part of the box. Or there is a seal that can be printed using flexible filament.

Using this basic design and dimensins for the hinge and latch mounts, I designed several more boxes of the sizes I need for some of my other instruments. With this design I can  use the same lacth and hinge parts as the original design. 

I printed these up using some HIPS, PLA or PETG for the case top and bottom. These all worked quite well, with the PETG probably providing a little tighter seal.   I found that PETG worked best for the hinge and latch parts.  Since it is slightly flexible it holds the two parts of the case  tighger than ones I printed with of PLA.

I lined the inside of a case with some mediam density foam to hold the instruments in place and provide quite a bit of protection.

I am going to try to design some printed inserts for some of my other instruments instead of making them out of foam.

After I clean up some of the cad fies I will post all of then for anyone interested.

Original box design on thingiverse 
Use the latch and hinge components for all other designs


Designed and printed a new box bottom for a NanoVNA.  This has built in compartments to hold the VNA , cables, and cal standards. I use connector savers on my VNA, so had to make the compartment a little longer.  This gives me room to also store my printed torque wrench.  Will have to print one for my other nanoVNA.  With a piece of foam in the topccover, everything stays in place.

 Still need to play with some of the printer settings.  So far it looks like I need to use about 15% simple grid infill to keep the weight down.  And 3 perimiter layers and 5 top and bottom layers.

Still checking and cleaning up the CAD files.  Since I am using a fairly old commercial CAD program that does not use a standard file format for the raw file I will be exporting them to .stl format.  As I check the CAD files I will store the .stl to this dropbox folder.




  1. Nice looking cases DuWayne,
    I would be interested in the cad files Please.

    Regards Peter (GW4ZUA)

  2. The CAD files would be nice, or a link to your Thingaverse page, if you have them there.