Case for Wrenches With Custom Cut Foam Insert





Introduction: Case for Wrenches With Custom Cut Foam Insert

I received two sets of ratcheting wrenches for Christmas, one SAE, the other Metric. I was looking for a good case to store them in, but couldn't find a good off-the-shelf model. I decided to use the various tools and materials I have available to me at work and create a box with a custom foam insert for the different sizes of wrenches.

The basic stack-up is like this:
Bottom layer:
A thin craft foam on the bottom, a stiffener (thin plastic) in the middle, and another thin layer of craft foam on top.
Top layer:
A thicker (~20mm) foam with cutouts for various wrench sizes

Step 1: Obtain All Supplies and Tools

laser cutter
band saw
hot glue gun

wrenches to put into case
craft foam
thick foam
plastic stiffener (to put in-between craft foam, for backing)
Small pieces of plastic which labels can be engraved onto
hot glue stick

One of the most important tools in this project is the laser cutter, it is used to create the custom foam cutouts. I spent a long time choosing a case, and eventually I bought a case on amazon for ~$20 ( The inner dimensions of the case are approximately: 395mm wide by 290mm tall by 40mm deep on the bottom, and 25mm deep on the top. I already had 1.5mm craft foam in several colors available, along with 40mm charcoal colored foam. I used some two-layer engravable plastic for the label under each wrench.

Step 2: Cut Various Materials

I only had 40mm thick foam on hand, so I had to cut it down to the correct thickness on the band saw. I put the now 20mm thick foam into the laser cutter, and made the cutouts for the wrenches (top layer). I then used the laser cutter to cut several pieces of craft foam and plastic stiffener material to act as a bottom layer. I also used the laser to etch and cut labels out of some "laserable" material I had on hand. I have included the files which I generate to cut the foam an labels in .dxf format.

Step 3: Glue Everything Together and Assemble

I glued the black layer of craft foam to the stiffener. I then glued the red layer of craft foam to the opposite side of the stiffener. This created a bottom which was black on one side, red on the other, and was plenty stiff. I did the same for the blue material. I then glued the 20mm foam cutout pattern to the backing, one for SAE, the other for Metric. Here is the final product, with all the labels beneath each wrench.



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    this is very useful , good job

    hi, Please tell me which laser you are using. I build a 3 Axis CNC Router and now I would like to fit a fiber optic laser head, similar to the one in your photos. Thank you Libbit

    Nice instructable!  FWIW using red for SAE and blue for metric seems to be common (perhaps it's a standard?  I dunno).

    For those who do not have access to a laser cutter, I'd suggest using thinner foam, say 10 mm or.  A very sharp knife, a metal ruler, and a set of punches rounds out the tool set.  I bought a set of cheap round punches up to 1" from Horrible Freight a long time ago, can't find 'em on the site tho).  Genuine #11 X-acto brand hobby blades are far superior to almost any other knives for this purpose.

    Nice-looking adhesive labels can be prepared from one'a them newfangled electronic labelers ;-).

    Thanks for the comment!

    I realized after I had already started gluing that I mixed up my backings (red for SAE, blue for Metric), but these things happen haha.

    Using thinner foam and a punch set to create the tool cutouts is a great idea, and would make this instructable much more accessible to others on this site.

    Thank you for your valuable input!, I'll just run down to my local Target and pick up a laser cutter.

    Larger cities commonly have a tech shop or maker/hacker-space where people can go and rent time on machines such as laser cutters and 3D printers. I do not own a laser cutter either.

    Thanks for the info! Let me be clear: I think your project is fantastic! Unfortunately, I live in a city where I don't have access to this type equipment. I'll keep my ear to the ground, though...

    That is definitely unfortunate, I'm sorry to hear that. Thanks for looking and commenting! =)

    Looks very professional. Want to share the exact case dimensions and include the digital file you used to laser cut your case so others case use it?