Expandable Printed Vault

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About: Professional work in various electrical and mechanical fields, obscure sense of humour and typically willing to help... Currently under contract designing environmental monitoring equipment.

I was working on an unrelated puzzle when the idea for this came to mind.

Why not a vault that could be tailored for any theoretical length of opening phrase. Parts of this were inspired from seeing other vaults and from ones that I have previously made.

In this example I have used an 11 letter name.

I played with it at 2 rings for a while, somehow it was oddly satisfying

Step 1: The Parts

The body consists of 4 individual components.

The 2 part locking rings, which have an alphabet ring and selector ring that friction fit together.

The spacer which houses the individual puzzle rings

The base which acts as a foundation for the puzzle

The inner vault has two components, the end cap and the vault spacer.

Step 2: Printing the Parts.

Using the supplied files you will need to print one base and end cap

The length of your selected solve word or phrase will dictate the number of alphabet rings that you will need to make.

The spacers and vault rings are reduced by 1 from the amount needed for the solve word or phrase.

Step 3: Body Assembly

The alphabet rings are simply friction fit together with opening if the inner ring just inside of the desired letter.

This version will require the use of an alignment plug for proper positioning. I have corrected this in future releases.

Depending upon how the alphabet rings were assembled and your reading preference, Right to Left or Left to right. Begin the assembly with the appropriate letter.

You will also need a viscous solvent type adhesive. Since I print exclusively in ABS I use a solvent cement for abs from a hobby store.

DO NOT APPLY solvent cement too close or directly onto the place occupied by the alignment plug.

The body assembly starts with the base ring flat on a table.the assembled alphabet ring is set over this then the spacer is inserted into the alphabet ring.

The alignment plug is positioned that the inner seem of the spacer ring to the base is where the adhesive is applied.Wait about 15 to 30 seconds depending upon the cement that you use for proper adhesion.

When you are satisfied that the part is properly fixed then move on with placing the next letter ring then spacer.


The whole stack should terminate with the final part being a spacer.

Step 4: Vault Assembly

The inner vault has been made to expand as the size of the solution expands.

The end cap of the vault is keyed so it should be easy to align. For each letter in the combination you will require one vault spacer. These are aligned using the key nubs and cemented in place.

You are now done. Be sure to let the cement dry appropriately.

Should you wish to change the combination you will have to break the spacers apart and prepare new ones. The alphabet rings can be disassembled and changed.

Step 5: Notes on Filament

I use eSun ABS filament in a Dimension machine., Normally I have great success however there are two variations that I have tried with poor results.

The first is gold. It appears to have some sort of pigment that boils and caused the filament to extrude funny then burn and clog the nozzle

The second is white. While i used it here the surface texture is chalky and grainy. The prints usually work but the strength between layers is poor and on thinner walls the strands tend to wander away from where they are placed on the support material.

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    5 Discussions

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    Random_Canadianschockmade

    Reply 4 months ago

    Thank you. I have come to realize that there is very liuttle that could be considered truly original...

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    schockmadeRandom_Canadian

    Reply 4 months ago

    Great design and very clean. I designed my first one four years ago and it was no where near as complex. I got some new ideas from your design and appreciate the work you put into this.

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    PeterNLewis

    4 months ago

    I actually made one of these (scarily almost identical, although a bit smaller and only five rings) for my Dad for his 80th birthday present about a year ago. He still hasn't gotten in to it ;-). You were clearly inspired by some of the same images I found of Cryptex on the net - your alphabet ring is almost identical to mine. I meant to write it up as an Instructable, but now I guess I don't have to (although perhaps the OpenSCAD files would be useful since they are all parameterised so the settings (like size and number of rings) can all be adjusted. Nice job.

    1 reply
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    Random_CanadianPeterNLewis

    Reply 4 months ago

    Thank you. It is always a good idea to get your projects out there, I find that most are able to contribute to the whole in some way... If you do get around to it, let me know, I would like to see your take..