How to Make a Real World Mine Craft Cube!




In this instructable you will learn the process for creating a real world mine craft cube.

Tools Needed:
Color Printer
Table Saw
Compound Sliding Miter Saw
Spray Adhesive
Scissors or Laser Cutter
Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop

I made it at TechShop. Check out TechShop here.

Please check out my other instructable (Coming Soon) for information about how to make the tools picture here.

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Step 1: Collect Materials

First, you need to create the texture that you are going to used to cover the blocks.

My blocks are 2.5" cubed. Therefore, each face needs to be 2.5" squared, and a cube has 6 faces. I used roughly a 1/4" bleed when designing my texture. I also included tabs so that all of the edges would be sealed.

Depending on how many blocks you are planning on making, buy wood that is bigger then your final size. I used 4"x4"x12 solid lumber. Any variety of wood will work, so buy whatever you prefer. I used douglas fir.

Build a texture that looks like the one in the picture. The example here is a grass block, you can see that the top of the texture is oriented to that all of the edges wrap. This will give you a nice clean edge on the top of your blocks.

Step 2: Form Your Blocks

To make the block perfectly square, I used a planer/joiner. Join a face, then join an edge, then plain the opposite face to the first face you joined. lastly, you can join the final edge, or you can cut it the last edge with the table saw. Make sure your piece is now 2.5"x2.5"x length.

Now, take your piece of wood and cut it into 2.5" pieces using the compound sliding miter saw.

Note: Wood holds a lot of moisture, and will change shape/size once cut. Depending on your climate, you may want to make your piece slightly larger, let it sit overnight, and then finish forming it the next day, so it can leech some moisture.

Step 3: Cutting Your Paper

I used TechShop's epilogue laser cutter to cut my paper. I was making 2000 blocks. If you are only making one, or a few, using scissor may work for you.

To cut with scissors, simply follow the outline of the piece.

To cut with a laser cutter, make an outline path in illustrator. Stack the paper in the bed of the laser cutter. I did stacks of 10 to move quickly, but prevent fire. Too many pieces of paper will make it very easy for the stack to catch on fire, because it will contain many pockets of air.

Step 4: Attach the Paper

Using spray adhesive, cover the backside of the paper. Lay one face of the block onto the backside of the top face of your paper. Wrap the paper around the block, making sure to tuck the tabs in first.

Let the glue dry overnight.

Viola! You have a minecraft block!

For more info about this project, check out

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    29 Discussions

    Actually, it was laser cut plywood so it would have some durability

    I then also laser cut paper with the graphics printed on it, and then glued them together


    7 years ago on Step 4

    Nice! I can see these being used to model before building them in-game.

    One thing I have to point out: that would be "Voila!", not "Viola!". A "viola" is a musical instrument, "voila" is a french word meaning "there it is" (the expression you're probably trying to use).

    ...Sorry, but I get all OCD over spelling and grammar...

    1 reply

    7 years ago on Introduction

    I have a suggestion for attaching the paper to the cubes. Instead of using spray adhesive, perhaps mod podge or white glue might work better by deco-pauging the paper to the cube.

    3 replies

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    Thanks for the suggestion!
    I actually did this on the generation 1 cube. (the generation 1 cubes were made of styrofoam instead of wood). The issue with white glue is that is got the paper all soggy. The modge podge also got it soggy. We had the best results with a product called Yes paste. It had the consistency of what would go in a glue stick but it was in a jar. The reason we changed to spray adhesive was time. It would take about 90 seconds to use any non spray adhesive. It would take about 10 seconds with the spray adhesive and you could spray multiple paper pattern at ounce. When you are making over 1000 cubes, anything that saves time is the best choice!


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    I see. I was mainly thinking of using modge podge or such to add a bit of protection to the paper on the cube. Perhaps they could be varnished to make them more durable?


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    A very sound idea. I tested it and found that i offered a bit of protection, but not enough for the amount of time it took to apply it to the cube. maybe dipping the cubes perhaps?


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    the tools were laser cut printed paper affixed to laser cut wood. They were about 3" long.


    7 years ago on Introduction

    i've noticed that the minecraft cubes u made r tiny (small enough to fit on ur laptop) hav u ever made a giant one?

    2 replies

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    The first iteration was to make giant minecraft (1-meter, actual size) minecraft cubes but we found that they were giant and unwieldy. We wanted an experience of mining, and if we scaled down the cubes to 1/16th the size of a meter cube (1/16th = 1 pixel on a 1 meter minecraft cube) we could have a much more fun and interactive experience. That being said, Discussions are happening about making an iteration of this project with approximately 1ft cubes...


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    yea i guess after u made a bunch of them u would wonder where to put them and stuff, but it still would be cool