Aperture Science Business Card




I am a huge fan of Portal. I still remember the first time I looked through the very first portal in the game, and the way it bent my mind. I've been hooked ever since. In the second game, you get to "meet" Cave Johnson, CEO of Aperture Science, and I thought to myself, "what kind of crazy business card would he have?" After seeing Thingiverse user clide's Iris Business Card , I knew I had to make a version based on Portal. I decided to incorporate the iris in the device into the actual logo for Aperture Science. Ok! Let's start thinking with portals!

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Step 1: Materials/Tools

 * Heavy paper, such as card stock.
 * Thin cardboard, the kind that's not corrugated.
 * Double-sided tape. You might be able to use glue, but I haven't tried it.

 * Scissors.
 * X-Acto knife or box cutter. The sharper, the better.
 * Tweezers.
 * Printer

Step 2: Print and Cut Out Pieces

First, print out the attached template (card2.pdf). Cut out each piece. For the eight aperture pieces, I found that cutting the fine details first, and then the long edges makes it a little easier going. Also, make sure to cut out all the holes before cutting out the pieces themselves. Next, take your scrap cardboard, and trace the shape of the bottom right cutout from the page. Cut this shape out from the cardboard. This is the piece that gives the business card its rigidity, and also keeps the handle piece in place.

Note: If you're a fancy pants and have access to a laser cutter, this step is essentially moot. I'm pretty sure you could easily modify the .pdf to use on a laser cutter.

Step 3: Assemble the Back and Aperture

Phew, that was tedious! Let's start putting it together now. First, put a bunch of double sided tape on the back of cardboard piece. The picture describes which side the back is. Make sure to get the tape all the way to the edges, even if it overlaps. Flip the cardboard piece over, but don't press down on it: you don't want it to get stuck to your cutting board. Trim off the excess double sided tape with the box cutter.

Next, stick the back paper piece (the one with the sun-shaped cut-out) onto the cardboard piece. Make sure that they line up nicely.

Now make all the little flaps on the eight skinny pieces stick up. Your fingers will probably be too big to do this themselves, so use either tweezers or the box cutter to fold them up.

Ok, here's the tricky part. Take the one flap with the "A" on it, and put its tabs into the bottom right hole on the back piece of paper. Look at the picture if you're confused. It's very important that this piece is placed correctly, otherwise the logo won't look right. Now, take one of the other skinny pieces, and put its tab into the hole to the left of the previous one. This skinny piece should lay on top of the previous skinny piece. Continue this pattern all the way around the circle, using all eight skinny pieces. The last couple might be a little tricky, since you'll have to get them underneath the "A" piece as well.

Step 4: Close It Up, You're Done!

Ok, I lied in the last step. THIS is the trickiest part. Take the handle piece and place it on top of the eight skinny pieces. Try to get the flaps mostly lined up with the holes. This is where you're going to want to use tweezers. The goal is to get each of the flaps through the holes and folded down to fasten each skinny piece to the handle. The easiest way I've found to do this is one hole at a time. Once one hole is done, press down the flaps with your finger, and use the tweezers to line up the flaps with the next hole. Repeat this process until you've got  all the flaps through.

We're basically out of the woods now. Congratulations! There will be cake and grief counseling at the conclusion of this Instructable.

Put double sided tape on the cardboard piece. You have to be more careful here, because you don't want to get it on the handle piece. What I did was have it hang waaaay off the edge, and cut off the excess. Be careful not to disturb the handle though: it's very irritable.

Now all you need to do is stick the front piece of paper onto the cardboard, making sure they're lined up nicely. You're done! You've been a very good test subject. Please proceed to the next test chamber.

Thanks for reading, hope you enjoy. If you have any ideas on how to make this better/more efficiently, please let me know. Oh, and if anyone is interested in seeing a version that opens the aperture, instead of closing it, let me know in the comments.

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68 Discussions


4 years ago on Introduction

With card4.svg, why did you separate the center (the part with the 8 holes) from the lever? Also, in your pictures, the aperture image that's between the front and back parts of the card, what happens with that? I don't even see you cutting it out. Can I just remove it from the SVG file?

1 reply

Reply 4 years ago on Introduction

I made this awhile ago now, so I'm not actually sure why I made the lever separate from the center in the .svg file. You can either merge them together in the .svg file, or cut them out separately and glue them together.

I think the aperture image is a holdover from my design process when I was making sure everything was aligned correctly. You can savely remove it from the files.

EDIT: Oh now I remember! I modified the design so that you could make the lever out of the same cardboard as the interior. It seemed to make the whole thing a bit more stable. So, you cut out the lever from the cardboard, and the center (the part with the 8 holes) out of paper, and then glue it onto the lever. Hope that helps!


6 years ago on Step 2

These could also be cut using a silhouette cameo... WELL worth the investment if you are looking to do any significant volume of paper craft... my wife got me one as an anniversary gift, and it has been outstanding!

1 reply

Reply 5 years ago on Introduction

I used the .svg file to import into Illustrator and then exported as .dxf, then imported the .dxf into Silhouette Studio 3 where I you can print and cut. For assembly instead of cardboard I cut out 2 copies of the middle section, and to bind everything together I used photo mount spray adhesive. Here is the .studio3 file for Silhouette Cameo. Great Instructable!


7 years ago on Introduction

could you please post/email me the instructions for the one that opens? I could maybe figure it out but I was hoping that you could help me with this. Want to make a couple for some kind of thing or such. my email is r167@me.com

Thanks :)

1 reply

Reply 5 years ago on Introduction

If you haven't got a response by not I found out by messing up a few times. you can open it from the left side. Switch sides and shorten the lever. Fill in the inside right with paper as well as moving the back holes down keeping the same shape but rotating it a bit. The easiest way to do this is the print out the back piece a guide cut out the holes on your guide and rotate them and trace the outcome on your good leaver. Make sure you don't throw the A out of wack. I hope this helped out some I'm sorry for not having pictures but I have no camera at the moment.


5 years ago

I want to see one that opens!


6 years ago

That is so cool


7 years ago on Step 4

To make it open instead of close, simply put the tab on the left side, putting the hinge on the top part. When you turn it, the iris should open from its closed neutral position.


8 years ago on Step 4

In Step 4, you wrote, "Congratulations! There will be cake and grief counseling at the conclusion of this Instructable."

So where's the cake? Oh, wait....

3 replies