Designing a Parametric Parametric "Print in Place" Hinged Container

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Introduction: Designing a Parametric Parametric "Print in Place" Hinged Container

About: Our grandkids keep me busy!

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Step 1: Dimensioning.

The model design starts with dimensioning, and I recommend starting with the values shown in the video.

Step 2: Base.

In this step, the outside perimeter of the base is defined as a series of lines using the dimensions Width and Depth (note that a rectangle was not used in this step since when the outside 4mm corner fillets are added, the rectangle constraints are removed causing the model to fail). The base wall thickness is defined towards the base interior using the Thickness dimension. Finally, the base is extruded.

Step 3: Base Hinge.

In this step, the sketch and extrusion for the base hinge are created. Note the hinge center line is (Height / 2) above the X axis.

Step 4: Base Hinge Ball.

In this step, the sketch and revolve for the base hinge ball joints are created.

Step 5: Lid.

In this step, the inside perimeter of the lid is defined as a series of lines using the dimensions Width, Depth and Tolerance (note that a rectangle was not used in this step since when the outside 4mm corner fillets are added, the rectangle constraints are removed causing the model to fail). The lid wall thickness is defined towards the lid exterior using the Thickness dimension. Finally, the lid is extruded.

Step 6: Lid Hinge Sockets.

In this step, the sketch and revolve for the lid hinge sockets are created.

Step 7: Lid to Lid Hinge Sockets Connection.

In this step, the sketch and extrusions for the lid to lid hinge sockets are created.

Step 8: Final Touches.

In this final step, color, joint, joint limits and animation of the lid are created.

And that is how I created Designing a Parametric "Print in Place" Hinged Container Using Autodesk Fusion 360.

Hope you enjoyed it!

UPDATE:

I forgot to include the ball latch that holds the lid in place when the container is closed in the first .f3d upload, so I've uploaded a new file "Print In Place Parametric Hinged Container v1.f3d" that includes this feature, as well as labels for the sketches for easier editing.

Also, if you wish to print the small hinged box as modeled, I've added the files "Base.stl" and "Lid.stl", and a photograph of a print in place result, with breakaway supports, on an Ultimaker 3 Extended.

END OF UPDATE.

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25 Comments

0
lamorak
lamorak

6 months ago

I'm hoping the original author of this is still taking a look at these comments. I'd love to use your design for a bigger case, but curious if there is a way to print the base and lid separately and assemble? My printer isn't large enough to print both at the same time.

0
gzumwalt
gzumwalt

Reply 6 months ago

Hi Iamorak,

Yes, prior to sending the file out as an STL, simply turn off one body, then repeat for the remaining body.

Greg

0
Penolopy Bulnick
Penolopy Bulnick

2 years ago

This is great! I'm going to try to print one :)

So if I want I can just scale them up or down for different sizes and they'll still snap together?

0
gzumwalt
gzumwalt

Reply 2 years ago

Hi Penolopy,

Thank you very much, I’m glad you enjoyed it!

Yes, you may specify the length, width and / or height to be any “reasonable” (see the Instructable introduction regarding limitations of the model) value. I use Cura for slicing, so after specifying the container dimensions and saving both the base and lid to a file, I load both pieces into Cura, “Merge” them, then send the merged model to the printer. When the printer is finished, the container is complete, no need to snap them together.

Best wishes and thanks again!

Greg

0
ElishevaW
ElishevaW

Reply 1 year ago

Enjoyed your videos and plan to print one.
Why didn't you export an STL file of both parts together from Fusion?

Thanks, Elisheva

0
gzumwalt
gzumwalt

Reply 1 year ago

Hi ElishevaW,

Oops, probably because I'm old and forgot! Sorry...

Greg

0
JonS176
JonS176

2 years ago

I finally finished my first project. I really like this
little container! Is there a video tutorial that explains how to add the
ball latch that snaps the lid in place?

0
gzumwalt
gzumwalt

Reply 2 years ago

Hi JonS176,

I'm glad you liked it, I use them all the time!

I'm very sorry but I forgot that step in the video and did not make another.

Thanks again!

Greg

0
efoster6
efoster6

2 years ago

Is this on Thingiverse

0
gzumwalt
gzumwalt

Reply 2 years ago

Hi efoster6,

No, I'm sorry, but I no longer publish on Thingiverse.

Greg

0
Build_it_Bob
Build_it_Bob

2 years ago

Hi Greg,
Just curious:
How long have you been working with Fusion 360?
Did you do CAD design previously?
How long did it take to create the design for this parametric enclosure?
I am very impressed, as I have never seen Fusion 360 in action like this.

0
gzumwalt
gzumwalt

Reply 2 years ago

Hi Build_it_Bob,

I've been working with Fusion 360 for a little over 2 years and my wife will testify how frustrated I was during the first few weeks. Because of its numerous features it does have a steeper learning curve than other cad programs.

Previous to Fusion 360, I used a cad program called Sketchup. It was easier to learn, but much more difficult to model with since, at the time at least, Sketchup was not a true solid modeling tool thus after minor edits, much clean up work had to be performed.

And previous to Sketchup, many years ago, I worked with a cad program called Autocad, primarily for electrical schematic generation.

The parametric enclosure took me about 15 minutes to design, and about 4 hours to record since I kept making mistakes!

Thanks very much, I'm glad you enjoyed it and hope it helped!

Greg

P.S. I think I still have a box for you.

0
JonS176
JonS176

Question 2 years ago

I really enjoy this instructable. Thank you for sharing it! I'm learning a lot about Fusion 360. How do I group the object once I have everything extruded? It seems like the parts are not grouped as shown in the picture.

Base.PNG
0
gzumwalt
gzumwalt

Answer 2 years ago

Hi JonS176,

I'm glad you enjoyed this Instructable, and you are very welcome!

I export both the base and lid to separate files, then load both into Cura 3.5.0 (the slicer I use) and select "Select All Models" then "Merge". Cura then places the two pieces together, ready for printing.

You can, however, accomplish the same from within Fusion 360 by selecting the "Modify, Combine" feature. When selected, the "COMBINE" pop up menu will appear. On this pop up menu, simply select the lid for the"Target Body", the base for the "Tool Bodies", "Join" for the operation, then check both "New Component" and "Keep Tools", and finally select "Ok". Fusion 360 will then create a new component with both lid and base bodies.

Hope this helps!

Greg

Screen Shot 2019-03-15 at 8.40.48 AM.png
0
Lorddrake
Lorddrake

2 years ago

Thanks so much for an awesome explanation of modifying a 3D model. I am very new to 3D modeling and printing so I am still on steep learning curve. That bit about how scaling using cura will change the tolerances as well as the size. I never would have thought of that (at least not until I had wasted alot of filament and said some inappropriate words LOL)

0
gzumwalt
gzumwalt

Reply 2 years ago

Hi Lorddrake,

You are very welcome!

I've been using Autodesk Fusion 360 for almost two years, and I'm still learning!

Greg

0
Rouverius
Rouverius

2 years ago on Step 8

The wife loves the first print. I think it's hers now.

20190214_224206.jpg
0
gzumwalt
gzumwalt

Reply 2 years ago

Hi Rouverius,

Congratulations, great work!

Greg

0
ChiefInstructor
ChiefInstructor

2 years ago

Great instructable. The design walkthrough is a great learning tool for those new to Fusion 360. Voted Favorite. Well done. Would love see some videos of the boxes in action. How well did they "tolerate" the 3d printing?