Cardboard Aperture: V2





Introduction: Cardboard Aperture: V2

After a little more research, I have managed to improve my Cardboard Aperture greatly!

This Instructable is based off of a project of mine to design a working aperture out of around-the-house materials. I had just seen an awesome set of Steampunk goggles by Gogglerman that had a very nice brass aperture in one eye. I set about trying to figure out how it had been made, and my resulting project went through two design iterations before I had anything working. I then posted that as my first Instructable.

So, instead of just editing my first Instructable, there's enough different to create a new one, which I have done. This time I'll be posting some instructions sheet downloads (in *.psd and *.pdn format for compatibility with your checkbook) and more pictures. Perhaps even a video!

Step 1: Designing Your Parts

While not really the hardest part of this build, designing the parts is a crucial one. I've attached some files that should really help you out. I mainly used a compass and a protractor to design the parts.

The first part is the holding and hinging ring. Since my aperture was designed for six 'arms' I set the hinge holes 60 degrees apart. If you want more arms then you'll need to reposition the hinge holes. Use this widget to calculate this angle if you are lazy like I am don't want to do the math yourself ;)

The next part (looking like a rib) is one of the actual arms that swings in and closes the aperture. Each one should encompass about 100 degrees. You'll see how the hinging and swinging pegs are attached later.

The last part here, the one shaped like the hinging ring but with notches instead of holes, is the adjuster ring. The notches will 'grab' the pins on the upper face of the arms, pulling or pushing them around the ring.

Step 2: Choosing Your Materials and Tools

This step is pretty straightforward. For all of the flat parts, I used a thin cardboard/tag-board from the back of a school notebook. Cheap, fairly study, but not hard to cut or shape.

For the hinging pegs I used a thing wooden dowel (I think it was actually a round chopstick :D )
To hold the pegs to the arms I used Zap-a-Gap. Amazing stuff, that. :D Only takes about 30 seconds to dry, and holds on like no one's business.

Finally I used a combination of scissors and a craft knife to cut the parts out (after transferring my design to the cardboard.

Step 3: Attatching the Hinging Pegs

This is fairly straightforward. Cut the dowel into segments about a half-inch in length, and glue them into place on all six arms. (So, 12 pegs are needed altogether)

It doesn't matter really which direction the arm extends off to (left or right) it just determines whether the aperture will appear to swirl clockwise or counterclockwise. Just make sure all of the arms are glued in the same way!

Step 4: Attach the Arms to the Hinging Ring

Cut out the hinging ring and make the holes for the pegs to hinge through at the places marked. Make sure the pegs can turn almost effortlessly in the holes!

Then just slide the pegs through the holes and your arms are in place.

Step 5: And You're Done!

Just place the adjuster ring over the pegs and (carefully at first, until you're sure nothing's going to break) twist. This design is perfect, as far as I am concerned. It has resolved the problem of the arms getting caught up on each other, as well as turning much easier in either direction.

Step 6: Some More Pictures...

Just some more pictures for your reference... I hope you enjoyed my second Instructable! Happy building!



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69 Discussions

Not bad, actually! What material did you use? Try out my new design, it will work much better :) Also, you have to make sure that each 'arm' overlaps the next arm. So that bottom-right arm in your picture should be over the bottom arm.
Like I've said, though, my old design doesn't work very well. I'd love to see my new design in this material though!

Have a nice day,

Does this remind anyone of the James Bond opening

How do you make the arms? Can you post a plan for that? Or is there really no preference?

8 replies

I think it's really just a section of a circle spanning 3 holes, slightly thinner than the holding ring itself

More precisely, it spans about 100 degrees of the circle.

Have a nice day,

So how did you come up with 100 degrees? Just want to know the nitty gritty of how it was actually designed.

The notches were just there because I repurposed a part from an prototype that didn't work :)

As for 100 degrees, if I remember correctly it was so that when the arm arced around the center of the ring (closed position) it would reach the other side without being too long. Or it was because it needed to be over 90 degrees without being too long as to be unmanageable, I don't remember exactly lol. should have kept notes..

In my design plans there is a scale representation of the arms.

Have a nice day,

On the plans I never saw a scale for the arms; I only saw it for the rotating ring and nothing else.

If you're using the psd or pdn files, the different parts are on seperate layers. If you don't want to mess with that, then download the PDF.

Then the arms must be too short.. Are you sure they're 100 degrees long?

I'm not sure, I printed out the PDF and cut it out on the same material you used.