I was tired of having my pen drawer turn into a drawer of mess. So I decided to try making some acrylic boxes to organize a bit. I made it at Techshop! http://www.techshop.ws
Step 1: Sort, Purge, and Measure
I first sorted the pens and things I wanted to keep, then purged the rest away. I then grouped together the stuff to keep and measured. 4-1/2" x 6"x 1" seemed to work good for my pens and markers 7-1/2" x 10"x1" for the big stuff. 1" or less in height made it possible to stack some boxes on top of each other.
Step 2: Design Laser Cut and Post Processing
I drew up the files in Corel Draw. Next, laser cut the acrylic to the dimensions I needed, leaving the protective sheet on. Once they are all cut, I peeled off both sides of the protective sheets.
Step 3: Put It Together! Glueing and Waiting
Fix you parts together. I used bits of masking tape to hold them together temporarily.
Stick it! This is probably the trickiest part. I used Acrylic Cement from Tap Plastics and also bought an applicator bottle. At first I didn't think I needed the applicator bottle, but this stuff runs like water and you definitely need it to control how much you use.
You don't want the cement anywhere besides the edges that join together. This "welds" on the material instead of a traditional glue, so your surfaces need to be flat, smooth, and touch. If the cement touches a surface that's not on the joint, it will mar the surface.
Fill the applicator bottle with the acrylic cement. I used a syringe (I thought I could just use the syringe to apply directly to the material but it spurts out way too much).
Before applying, squeeze the bottle to let air out. Then turn upside down and hold the bottle lightly. You will hear the bottle sucking air in and won't drip on your other surfaces. When you have positioned the tip to the joints, squeeze the bottle gently into the joints. It's tricky to see, but when the two surfaces look wet the cement will join between the two surfaces.
In the video, you can see the cement join 1/4 of the way in (you want it all throughout your joint).
Once that is done, let it cure. You can handle it lightly after only a few minutes, but it takes about 24-74 hours to fully cure.
In the video, I joined two materials at a time. I found it best to tape all the pieces together first as a jig and then apply the cement.
Once it is cured, your ready to go!