Picture of Build A Cardboard Box
Picture 306.jpg
Making a custom box can be used for a few good reasons that I have found, as well as- I'm sure it could be used for various other and different reasons. Maybe it is a holiday season and you are wrapping a gift that needs a box for shape or structure; or would benefit from a layer of protecting cardboard; or need to fit an item of an odd shape/size into a box for storing/mailing.

I make boxes for the items that I sell on eBay. Making an item's own box minimizes the size, the weight, the need for more packaging material, and thus making the postage/shipping fees less.

All you need is second hand cardboard, a box cutter (razor blade), and packing tape (in a dispenser works best).

Step 1: Break Down

Picture of Break Down
Picture 309.jpg
Break the box down starting with opening the tabs on top and bottom of the box. Just unfold the tabs, or cut through the tape with the box cutter and then unfold the tabs. Lay the box down on its side and cut one of the corners from top to bottom so that you can unfold the cardboard once more to end up with a long, straight piece of cardboard.
aggrav8d7 months ago

If step 1 explained the difference between a cut (through) and a score (not through) then all the directions after that could be clearer. Thanks for the great instructable!

aggrav8d7 months ago

I made it, but I don't have a photo. Works well and saves a lot of material. Thanks!

MarcioWilges8 months ago

I think cutting up the edges of the cardboard boxes is not really a good idea because you will then need to tape them back up in order to store your things in and you know that duct tapes are not that entirely secure. I think you could make the edges soft by rubbing them with a hard solid object then bending them according to your requirements. This way, there are no loose ends that need to be taped back up and you can proceed with your moving out with ease and no worries of broken boxes.

hey can you show me how to make a hallow box to use it as a speaker enclosure?
hollasch7 years ago
Another approach to cardboard folds is to use a screen "spline roller" tool (available at any hardware store) to create a crushed line which is then easily folded. This is a tool that has narrow steel rollers at each end. This leaves the paper uncut and that much stronger.
Thank you for this tip. I've always had trouble making good straight folds and this will certainly help with that.
aquadave (author)  hollasch7 years ago
Ah cool, this would be even better, thanks for the info.
mjkessel4 years ago
ugg - can you make a video of this?
archerj5 years ago
Re: shareware for boxmaking google "free software for making boxes" there are lots of them.
this looks awesome! I need some help...I'm shipping a longboard and it has sort of an irregular shape...how should I go about doing making a box for this? It's 8.5 inches wide and 38 inches long if that helps...like a quarter-half an inch thick... great instructable :)
 well, first off by a big tv, then go after this ible.

(insert sarcasm here)
curlypube5 years ago
curlypube5 years ago
sweet tutorial...thx mate!
To be eco-friendly I like to recycle my boxes for eBay use. I found a software that takes the items measurements and adds room for different kinds of packing you choose, then produces a diagram to follow when making a recycled box. It is very pricey at $90. Have you seen any shareware that would do the same task?
Shane11636 years ago
me thinks it easier just to look in mixed paper recycling roll-off and find size needed.. lol
tmangi6 years ago
J_SCAP7 years ago
sweet im going to ship this box to my grand parents in another box so they can see the box i made lol
dombeef J_SCAP7 years ago
Derin dombeef7 years ago
ahh i hate you say ha

sumbody pls stop dombeef
dombeef Derin7 years ago
Derin dombeef7 years ago
Derin Derin7 years ago
dombeef Derin7 years ago
panks7 years ago
This is great! the Packaging Store wanted $25 for a custom cardboard box..now I'll just make my own..thank you
this is really well put together! i love how you were so detailed and took the time to make it perfect. if all instructables were this good and so well put together! i've seen some that the steps are out of order! good job, seriously. and btw, i'm having serious trouble uploading images or setting an avatar. could i have some help?
I bet you're using Internet Explorer. I had the same problem until I went to Mozilla Firefox. It went from a >30 second load to <2 seconds. Maybe worth a try if you're using Explorer. As far as adding an avatar, you first need to create a library to choose from. Under Settings, go to "library" from menu above or "Manage Library" on left side menu. After you have an image in your library, go to "persona" and change image.
but the thing is... i uploaded the picture of the avatar i want, but i dont know how to set that
Seems others are having the same problem:
Instructables Bug Report
ty SO much
mabye its your internet conection
grue7 years ago
this insturctable only tells u how to make your carbord box smaller
trebuchet037 years ago
Nice work - I think many people overlook how much they depend on pre-made boxes for situations like moving house, shipping, etc. Some of the pictures are a little blurry, but given how well it's documented - this is feature worthy :)
theRIAA7 years ago
I wish all instructables were this well made
tomonto7 years ago
ohhhhh.... At first, I read the title and I was all..ok crazy man... but good instructable after that
Awesome job! I bet you must be really proud to make an amazing Instructable such as this.