Laser Cut Game Card Box With Internal Hinges




About: I'm a social-worker, working with 12 - 23 year-olds. I used to be a printer. In 2018 I opened a small makerspace ( in my house, where I have lasercutters, 3d-printers, Arduino's, Mindstorms and ...

15 years ago I designed a box to hold CD's and makes it easy to flip through them. Now someones project to make a game card box inspired me to use that mechanism on a laser cut box for game cards.

We are kind of addicted to playing "werewolf" and created our own deck for it. This would be a great box to hold that deck. (that explains the wolf theme)

Step 1: You Will Need


  • 4 mm plywood (25 x 50 cm)


  • lasercutter
  • sand paper
  • glue
  • brush or cloth
  • clamps
  • optional: paint, wax or oil

Step 2: The Design

The most work was designing the box. I was amazed that the hinge mechanism actually works.

I used 'Gravit Designer' to draw the box, so I added both the original Gravit file and a PDF.

The red-lines are cutting lines and everything black is for engraving.

Step 3: Lasercutting

  • Lasercut the parts.
  • Sand smooth the sides of the moving parts.
  • The four curved parts also need to be sanded slightly thinner for easy sliding.

Step 4: The Inner Parts

  • Start with the bottom.
  • Glue the two inner sides in.
  • Add the inner back.
  • Glue on the outer back.
  • Clamp everything together.
  • Use a wet brush or cloth to remove excessive glue.

Step 5: The Mechanism

  • Glue the 3 non moving parts on the side.
  • Put the 2 moving parts in between for accurate spacing.
  • Clamp the not moving glued parts.
  • Repeat for the other side.
  • Glue in the outer sides. (make sure that the moving parts are in before glueing the outer sides)
  • Clamp.

Step 6: The Front Door

  • Glue the inner front door in the nick on the hinges.
  • Make sure that it is all the way down.
  • Glue the outer front door on top.
  • Clamp together.
  • Remove excess glue.
  • Close the front door while drying for correct alignment.

Step 7: The Top Lid

  • Glue the two inner pieces of the lid to the hinges.
  • Glue the four outer sides around the inner part. (the front and back are the same, but the sides can be put on backwards.)
  • Glue the top on.
  • Clamp everything together.

Step 8: Finish the Box

I had to sand a bevel to the inner lip on the front door to make it easier to close the lid. I also sanded the laser marks from all sides.

If you want you can wax, oil, paint or lacquer the box.

Step 9: Just Add Cards

Now just add the cards.

(there is a notch for a coin in the back, because we sometimes flip a coin while playing werewolf)

I think it came out great.



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10 Discussions


Question 8 months ago on Introduction

Hi, I am very interested in the way you have done the hinges. Would it be possible to provide the design in ai or dxf format please?

3 answers

Answer 8 months ago

You can open de PDF in AI without problems. (AI also saves in PDF, but just calls it AI)


Reply 8 months ago

Thank you for your prompt response, appreciated. Regrettably, I am using light burn and each time I try to import the pdf or having renamed it .ai, it crashes. I will try converting it using Corel. Great innovation on the hinges. Thanks again


Reply 8 months ago

I use Gravit-designer and that program doesn't have many export options. I'm not sure if it can export in dxf. It is a free program that works on all platforms, so you might give that a try.


11 months ago

What type of Laser cutter are you using? How thick of wood can you cut?

Your project looks Great, I like the hing design.

1 reply

Reply 11 months ago

Hi cburg,

Thank you.

I use a Trotec speedy 300 with a 60 watt laser, but this works also great on any other laser like a 40 watt Glowforge. The max that I managed to cut is 15 mm soft wood.


Question 11 months ago on Step 9

I love this design. How easy would it be to scale up to fit 12" vinyl records?

1 answer

Answer 11 months ago

Hi JKotecki,

My original design (15 years ago) was for cd's, so records would bring it closer to it's original purpose. I just changed one for 3 mm wood instead of 4 mm and that was more work than I expected, but it is absolutely doable.


1 year ago

Love the hinges! Will definitely use that mechanism design in the future.

1 reply

Reply 1 year ago

Thank you. Please post a picture when you do.