Picture of Hard shell case for cheap
Simple and cheap way to protect my camera.
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Step 1: Old blow molded case I had sitting around.

Picture of Old blow molded case I had sitting around.
I finally made the complete step from film to digital. For reasons unknown to me I decided it would be a good idea to store everything in a hard shell. Not feeling like forking over a few hundred $$ for a custom case and wanting a project to do, I remembered I had this old case that a drill came in. It was sitting in a junk room collecting dust, and looked to be a prefit start for this project.

Step 2: The insides... not very camera friendly yet

Picture of The insides... not very camera friendly yet
These kinds of cases that power tools come in have "custom trays" that do a great job of holding the (X) tool in place. But I was needing an empty shell. Using a tool a lot like a Dremel with a bit a lot like the Dremel #561 Multipurpose Cutter I was able to gut the case out....

Step 3: Empty shell

Picture of Empty shell
Now I have an empty shell to work with. 2 things to point out... this makes a bit of a mess, and try to leave the lips that overlap when the case is closed. Cutting out around the handle was a bit tricky... but I had no clue what I was doing when I first started doing this and 10 minutes later was happy with my results.

Oh yeah, safety glasses (or a complete face shield in my case) since tiny bits of plastic go flying everywhere when you least expect it.

Step 4: The protection...

Picture of The protection...
I purchased some foam rubber from a local store. I don't know what kind this stuff is, I just told the clerk what I was doing and he felt (unknown type) would be best. One problem, they only sold (X) thicknesses of this stuff, which was to thick for my needs.... more on that later.

I got 2 squares of the stuff that were a bit larger than the case. With a sharpie marker I outlined the case onto the foam and cut with a bread knife, results shown.
deadsystem10 months ago

nice. good reuse of that blow mold case

hmm I definetly will make one of these with my old power drill case But i will make a bit for my small Dslr camera Then For A Mini tripod and A battery case
dijital1018 years ago
Wal-mart sells a case in the sporting goods department (supposed to be a pistol case) for $7.96. It has 3 separate layers of foam and the middel is scored in a grid so you can just cut out the shape of your camera and it looks really professional. I've got one and it holds 2 canon dslr bodies (with battery pack/grips) pro flash and 2 lenses.
jawoo8 years ago
hey pencilneck, this is an awsome instructable! As a growing DSLR lover (nikon D200) it is becoming quite important to protect your gear and this is the thing I have been looking for! I love it and plan on making it... when i find a case that is big enough to store my camera (that is also not being used)
kiteship9 years ago
The electric carving knife is definitely the trick for cutting foam. I've been using it to tailor upholstry foam for years. Watch out for your fingers on the OTHER side of the foam!