After a few years of using them, my flash drives usually end up with broken cases and even though they technically would still work, of course they become much more fragile in the process. I've tried to find them new cases before, as can be seen in this Instructable about paracord flash drive cases, but a while ago while bouncing ideas back and forth with my father and brother, I came up with the idea of making flash drive cases in the shape of chess pieces - chess being the go-to game all three of us like to play when we get to spend time all together in southern France.
I had never had the time to sit down and go past sketches, nor the money or skill to have these made from a laser-cutter or cut by hand using a Dremel. And then, Ponoko and Damengo happened, putting the power of lasers at the tip of a mouse click. After I started making my way through 2012, I knew it was finally time to make this idea happen for good ! There's still a lot of improvements to do, but as far as versions 1.0 are concerned I'm very happy with it : the thickness and weight of it "feels" like a real chess piece and of course, the flash drive still works. Want to make one of your own ? Then click on !
Step 1: What You'll Need
- A USB flash drive without a case, or one whose case you're willing to sacrifice
- A computer with Inkscape to design your chess piece silhouette parts (or you can build from the file attached to this Instructable)
- Your chess piece silhouette parts, of course
- A small bottle of loctite glue and small clamps/paper clips to hold the pieces together
- A Dremel-like tool to make the final fittings for your flash drive
- Optional : sandpaper and wood varnish for finishing touches
Ready ? Then let's move on to the next step !
Step 2: Making and Cutting Your Design
Got your parts ready ? Then let's move on to the next step !
Step 3: Preparing the Central Part and Attaching the Drive
Step 4: Gluing on the Sides
When the glue on both sides has dried, remove the clamps and move on to the next step !
Step 5: Finishing Touches
And after that...Well, enjoy you chess piece flash drive and thanks for reading through this Instructable !
P.S. : A big thank you to Kristen Turner and Josh Judkins from Ponoko for all the interesting discussions on laser-cutting and hacking, and the same to Benjamin from Damengo for bringing affordable laser-cutting to France !