Introduction: How to Make Google Cardboard | Turn Your Boring Smartphone Into Cool VR Headset

In this tutorial, you will learn how to make Google Cardboard out of just a piece of cardboard. With this you can play virtual reality or 3d games, take a virtual tour, and much more. For this to work, you will just need an Android phone, cardboard and a pair of lenses.

Note that if you have any doubts, please ask me on comment.


Here's what you need to get started:

  1. Cardboard: Corrugated cardboard sheet, preferably E Flute (corrugated cardboard comes in a variety of thicknesses called "flutes"), available at many art supply stores and online. For best results, you should look for strong, thin cardboard (sturdy shoebox rather than moving box). Minimum size: 8.75in (22 cm) by 22in (56 cm), and 0.06in (1.5 mm) thickness.
  2. Lenses: This is the trickiest component. Lenses that have a 45 mm focal distance might work. Biconvex lenses work best because they prevent distortion around the edges. We used the Durovis OpenDive Lens Kit available on
  3. Magnets: One neodymium ring magnet and one ceramic disk magnet - like this or this. Approximate size: 0.75in (19 mm) diameter and 0.12in (3 mm) thickness.
  4. Velcro: Two strips of regular strength adhesive-backed velcro. Approximate size: 0.75in (20 mm) by 1.25in (30 mm).
  5. Rubber Band: One rubber band, to prevent the phone from sliding out. Minimum length of 3.2in (8 cm).
  6. NFC Tag (Optional): One sticker NFC tag. Program it with the URL cardboard://v1.0.0
  7. You'll also need a ruler, glue, and scissors, an X-acto knife, or access to a laser cutter (not included in the picture above).

Step 1: Download the Template

Actually, you don't need to design it. The design files are already available here -

Google Drive link: Download design file

Step 2: Making the VR Viewer

Print the template (cardboard.pdf) with the following settings:

  1. Ink = color
  2. Page size = A4
  3. Orientation = landscape

After that, glue the template onto a piece of cardboard and after drying, glue the light numbers on above of the dark ones. Then, cut out the cardboard along the black lines. Do not cut the 'RED' lines. Also cut the boxes with black line using an X-acto knife.

Step 3: Assembly-I

To assemble it, you've two choices :-

  1. Assemble it as on (Recommended)
  2. Just follow me in the next step.

Step 4: Assembly-II

For the assembly,

  1. First, fold along the red lines and also fold the lens part such that there will be 3 layers of cardboard to make the lens holder. But before folding, affix two biconvex lenses in it and then fold.
  2. Second, attach the flaps of the cardboard into the boxes of the other cut earlier. It should look as shown in the picture.
  3. Third, firmly assemble it by following the folds. The picture is shown.
  4. Fourth, affix the disk magnet using glue on the dotted circle with mirror image of ''Magnet'' written. After that, stick the ring magnet with the other on the reverse side. Do not use glue to fix it.

Step 5: Use It!

Now, your own Cardboard VR viewer is ready to use. To use it, you'll need to download Cardboard app from Google Play Store.

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