Picture of Keyboard Circuitry Wallet, Version 2
Make a durable wallet out of the flexible printed circuits of an old keyboard! This is a variation on the original wallet by zieak. For instructions on how to extract these circuit sheets from a keyboard and for patterns, check out his instructable.

I made my first keyboard wallet back in 2007 when he first published his instructable, and it's served me reliably since then. I used packing tape back then, however, and every six months or so I'd need to patch it up a bit. The tape would come undone and all kinds of grime would collect in its folds.

So, I've retired it and created a brand-new keyboard wallet. This one has a glossier, more durable finish and lining material that looks fantastic in the light. Read on to see how it was made.

Step 1: What's New: Materials

Picture of What's New: Materials
The two major changes to my original design were 1) using laminating sheets instead of packing tape and 2) using a retroreflective sheet for a liner material.

The laminating sheets are slightly thicker and much, much more tear-proof than packing tape. They're also much larger, which meant that I could connect big pieces together with glossy, unbroken surfaces.

The retroreflective sheet is something I've used in other instructables. What is it? I wrote it up in this instructable (which also has some good tips on where to find it on other steps and in the comments).

Why did I use it on my wallet? First of all, it looks awesome. Because of the way it interacts with the light, there's a subtle shifting to its highlights. The photos don't really capture this. I used a black tape, which glows white in a camera flash or headlights. I faced the backing out, which produced a much more subtle contrast with the circuits on the keyboard sheets. I could have also faced the black side out, which looked even more awesome in some ways, but the contrast in that case was a bit too flashy for me.

The other reason to use this retroreflective sheeting is that it's foil-backed, which means that it will provide some protection for any cards in my wallet with RFID chips. Other good options here might include plain foil or antistatic bag material, both of which could look pretty cool, too.

See the photos below to see what the materials I used look like.
joserinu2 years ago
I would like to make this for my fiance. Where do i get retro reflective sheeting and laminate sheets? I tried ebay for retro reflective and they did not look like yours.
nagutron (author)  joserinu2 years ago
Hey, sorry for the late reply but I did find stuff that looked similar, here: http://www.amazon.com/s/?ie=UTF8&keywords=3m+reflective+tape+black
kylezo2 years ago
I'm a little worried about how secure this is. Wouldn't it be easy for a Drivers license to fall out of a side flap if it's only secured along the edge and bottom?
nagutron (author)  kylezo2 years ago
I guess YMMV, but I've been using this wallet for almost 3yrs, and I haven't had an issue. A big part of this is probably that though there are only two sides taped, the third is the inside of the wallet's spine. So whenever the wallet is closed, that edge is pinched shut.
Sabinbp3 years ago
How do you do it laminate then cut then tape or something else sorry didnt quite get it
tigr874 years ago
awesome wallet.ive been wanting to make one of these wallets since the first one
shm13665 years ago
fantastic.you shoud be very proud bout this invention.i will be really gratefull if you send more details for me shm1366@yahoo.com
kcls5 years ago
This is definitely a great improvement! T would imagine the tape would get pretty junky after a while, and this is great! My current wallet is starting to fall apart, so I may just be trying this soon!
zieak5 years ago
zascecs zieak5 years ago
You should be so proud!
nagutron (author)  zieak5 years ago
Thank, Zieak. Awesome to get props from the original creator :)
Tommyhzy5 years ago
The third picture in the intro gave me a brainblast! I will discard my angled paper macro photography rig and immediately start fiddling with the lights in my bathroom. My bathtub is a perfect place to have a continuous plain background! Thanks for the inspiration! And of course, I did read the Instructable, and it looks great! Now all I need is to probe around my closet for an old keyboard :)
nagutron (author)  Tommyhzy5 years ago
Great idea! The background in my photo was just a roll of paper, but I'm glad it inspired you.
mcguinty5 years ago
Can you have the black side on the outside of the wallet?
nagutron (author)  mcguinty5 years ago
Yup. And I think it would look great, as I mentioned in Step 1. All you'd do is do the flat layout in step 2 with the retroreflective sheet upside-down from the orientation that I have it there in. It would be a little trickier, since the adhesive sides would be faced in less-convenient directions, but it would work if you were careful.
canida5 years ago
Ooh, shiny!
nagutron (author)  canida5 years ago
Everyone loves the shiny, right?

I made this while making laser-cut paper chandeliers. Those won't be assembled until Burning Man, so we'll have an instructable for it in a month or two.
or1gb1u35 years ago
almost to the point I want to do this and replace my current wallet
nagutron (author)  or1gb1u35 years ago
That's high praise. Thanks!
SinAmos5 years ago
I knew there was a reason I held on to that circuitry for so long. Good looking out.
imonsei5 years ago
nice to see an improvement on the old classic :) ill try and remember your tips for when mine gets too bashed. thanks.
SeaLion5 years ago
This looks so cool!!...and it's SHINY!!! :D
Ausm5 years ago
Pretty damn cool! Maybe I'll take a look at this after my current wallet fails
cgg1233215 years ago
Look great! Good job
1up5 years ago
Awesome! I also made that wallet in 2007 and had the same problems you described. I'll probably have to follow this Instructable. ;) Very nice job, good idea.