Recently one of my friends got an awesome game called Kingdom Death: Monster! If you don't know, KDM is a cooperative board game that's really fun to play. There are some really cool figures in this game, and I wanted to try and make a better gear tray (where you keep all of your armor and weapons before you go out and "hunt"). The gear trays that they supply are easily damaged, and I recently bought really cool glow in the dark filament. So I set out to design and print my own glow in the dark gear tray!
Step 1: Design Time
I went into this project knowing that I wanted to incorporate lanterns into the gear tray. Lanterns are a big theme of this game (they are even on the dice!), so I wanted to put them in the middle of the gear tray. Plus our settlement is lantern - themed as well! I got inspiration for this project through user toconnell on Thingiverse who made this gear tray for KDM. I thought it was cool, and wanted to make a personalized one! Using this design as inspiration, I drew out what I wanted my gear tray to look like.
Here are the constraints to work with:
- I wanted all of the gear to be contained with small nubs on each side of it such that it doesn't move around
- The gear must be arranged in a 3x3 matrix
- the whole tray must be under 8" x 8" (so that it can fit on my printer)
This seemed like a doable task, so I got to it!
Step 2: Model Like There Is No Tomorrow!
Now go ahead and open up your modeling software! I happened to use solidworks, but would also recommend you try out Fusion 360. I'm not going to tell you how to model your gear tray (but will make mine available for download on thingiverse if you want to skip this step). Here is a general outline, however.
- Start by making your outline for the tray. This helped me in the long run because I knew exactly what my constraints were, instead of just free styling it. My printer's bed is about 8"x8" so I made sure that my gear tray would fit.
- Draw your lantern/main design. This took up the most space, so I started by making a large rectangle and adding the detail around it (try doing only one side, and then mirroring any features to the other half!). For this, I like to make a general rough outline using the line tool, and then going over everything with the spline tool to make it look a bit cleaner. Then just trim away any unwanted lines.
- Extrude both of these sketches to about 0.1" tall
- Once your main design is done, I added smaller, more intricate details, like all of the small lines that are in my design. All I can say was: the arc tool and I became very close.
- While adding these details be sure that all of your lines are clean and closed. This way you can easily extrude these sketches.
- When you are happy with your extra designs, extrude them to about 0.9" tall. I like to make these a little bit shorter than the main design so that it can stand out without making any of the gear really shift around too much.
- Now add the nubs to your design. I made these .15" taller than the rest of the tray so that the cards have something to keep them in place, rather than just sliding overtop. I also added 2 per card side, with them being .05" wide by .25" long.
- That's all! Good work!
Remember while you are modeling to SAVE YOUR WORK PERIODICALLY. I made this mistake and lost nearly 5 hours of work. This meant starting over which is never a fun process.
Save your work as a .stl file, and get ready to send it to your printer!
If you want to download my design, see it here!
Step 3: Print Away!
Now that you have your board tray design all finished up and modeled, you can send it to the printer! If you ended up getting really cool Glow-in-the-Dark filament like I did (or something that isn't completely opaque, then you're going to want to print it at 90-100% infill. I made the mistake of doing only 20% and you can see the honeycomb on the inside. If you have less cool but more opaque filament, then you' can definitely get away with less infill.
Be extra sure that your printer is going to be able to fit your design, and then click print! Mine took a while, and ended up a little stringy, but overall worth it. Plus it was pretty easy to clean up with a handy pair of cutters.
Step 4: That's All!
And that's all there is to it! Now print out a few more and go fight some white lions and screaming antelopes! Just beware of the overwhelming darkness! Thanks to your new handy dandy gear tray, you can play late into the night and your "lantern" will light the way.
Thanks for reading!
Another quick link to the download on Thingiverse: http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:1653796/#files