Introduction: Laser Cut Remote Caddy
In this tutorial, I will show you how to make your very own DIY remote control caddy/desktop organizer. I originally made this to hold my tv remote and Wii remotes, but found it also works well as a pen/pencil/scissors holder to organize your desk. So now I have two, one on my desk and another on the tv table.
This model has some parts made out of acrylic and some out of wood. I think this look is asthetically pleasing, but if you don't like it, the entire thing can be made out of wood.
Download the following files: If you are using Adobe Illustrator, download the two .ai files. Otherwise, download the two pdfs.
Step 1: Tools and Materials
This tutorial assumes you have access to and operator's knowledge of a CNC lasercutter. As each machine's software and interface are drastically different, I'll have to assume that you know how to operate the laser cutter you will be using. The laser I used accepts illustrator files, which is why I uploaded the design as an .ai file. However, I also uploaded the .pdf for people who use a different software. Open the .pdf file in your laser's software, as pdf's are very standard file types and should be accepted by your laser's software.
In addition to a cnc laser cutter, you will need a few quick release clamps or rubber bands.
As for materials, you will need a sheet of 1/8" plywood. A sheet about 12" by 18" will be surely sufficient. You can get one for just a couple bucks at a local hardware store.
You'll also need an 8"x8" piece of 1/8" acrylic. This can be bought from the scrap bin for just a few dollars at a plastics dealer.
You will also need some wood glue. Any wood glue will do, but I used Elmers wood glue. You can also use hot glue or super glue, but wood glue will give you the best results.
To join the acrylic and wooden pieces, we will need a different glue. You can use two part epoxy for this, but I try to avoid expoy as it is smelly and messy. I used super glue for this part.
Step 2: Laser Cutting the Pieces Out
I used a Universal Systems Laser Cutter. It has a materials data base in which you select materials and the machine then knows what power/speed/ppi settings to use. I used the material 'general medium woods' and set the thickness to .120 (using my calipers). I will have to assume for this part that you know how to use your own laser cutter, because they vary significantly from model to model.
Leave the acrylic's paper backing on during the cutting. This protects the surface of the acrylic from getting scorched.
Go ahead and cut out the file 'remote control caddy wooden parts' on your 1/8" sheet of plywood. Next, cut out the file 'remote control caddy acrylic parts' on some 1/8" acrylic. If you are making the entire model out of wood, then cut out the acrylic file on the wood as well. Afterwards, collect all the pieces and grab your wood glue and clamps. Bring them all over to your work table and get situated.
Step 3: Assembly
First, peel off the paper backing on the acrylic. You won't need it anymore.
Next, we are going to begin by assembling the wooden parts. They slot together pretty tight, but nonetheless we are going to add a dab of wood glue to cement it in place. To do this, apply a line of wood glue down the wooden piece (with the instructables robot) underneath the slot. See the 4th image to see exactly where I put the wood glue. Next, slide two opposite wood pieces together. Two of them have upward facing slots, and two have downward facing slots. You''l want to slide a downward facing one onto an upward facing one. Repeat this step 3 times until all the wooden side pieces are slide together.
Next, I super glued the acrylic on. If extra super glue drips onto the acrylic, it will ruin the surface finish, so be careful. I think the best way to avoid this is to apply a tiny bit of super glue to each of the fingers on the wooden part, wait about 30 seconds for the super glue to kind of seep into the wood, and then put the acrylic piece on. My super glue takes a few minutes to dry, but if you have 15 second super glue, obviously don't wait 30 seconds before putting the acrylic piece on.
After all four acrylic pieces have been put on, flip the model over. Apply a dab of wood glue to the four intersections of the side wooden pieces, and slide the base on. After all the pieces are on, I put two clamps across the model to hold it together while it dries, but this isn't really neceassary as the model holds itself together pretty well while it dries. Give it an hour or so to dry before handling. The wood glue will need about 24 hours for a full cure.
I hope you enjoyed the tutorial. If you had any trouble following along or have any questions about it, I'd love to hear your feedback. Also, if you like DIY projects like this, check out my profile for more.