Creating a wooden locking mechanism is not hard in case you can make use of a laser cutter. This instructable describes my approach for locking a compartment

Step 1: Laser Cut

Using online tools for constructing the rack and pinion is very handy. I've used one for calculating the number of teeth and all parameters, and another one to export DXF files in order to import into my CAD system for the laser cutter.

These are my favorites:

  1. Gear builder: Woodgears
  2. Geargenerator: this one can export directly into SVG format
  3. another one with DXF Export InvoluteSpurGearBuilder allow regular, rack and pinion or planetary gear design

Finally you should end up with something like this plan

Let the cutter do it's job

<p>Hello, nice gears! Im currently designing something to laser-cut on wood and Im making use of lots of gears, did you do some kind of adjustment to the blueprints to adjust for the laser thickness?</p>
<p>there was no special precaution for placing the gears; I've simply kept a bit of gap so they're running smoothly. For sure it's getting more critical as more gears you're using.<br>You have to take a bit more attention on the diameter for the axle as wood might change a bit the &quot;thickness&quot; so simply drill 0.5mm more than needed. (had to rework ..)</p>
<p>This is really slick. Very nicely done!</p>

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