Tools of the Trade – Thermoforming

Chances are good that you’ve already lost some blood to thermoforming, the plastics manufacturing process that turns a flat sheet of material into an unopenable clamshell package, tray inside a box, plastic cup, or leftover food container. ┬áBesides being a source of unboxing danger, it’s actually a useful technique to have in your fabrication toolchest. In this issue of Tools of the Trade, we look at how thermoforming is used in products, and how you can hack it yourself.

The process is simple; take a sheet of plastic material, usually really thin stuff, but it can get as thick as 1/8″, heat it up so that it is soft and pliable, put it over a mold, convince it to take all the contours of the mold, let it cool, remove it from the mold, and then cut it out of the sheet. Needless to say, there will be details.

https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Thermoforming_animation.gif
https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Thermoforming_animation.gif

Continue reading “Tools of the Trade – Thermoforming”

Nimbus, portable N64

We love a beautiful and successful N64 portable mod, (In case that fact wasn’t already obvious). And today we would like to add [cndowning’s] Nimbus N64 to our list of favorites.

The base is made from vacuum formed plastic while the buttons come from a modified superpad and the screen is a Zenith 5inch. We couldn’t find word on battery life or weight, but for those that like a hunt, or have other questions, the build logs are available. Follow the jump for a video of the Nimbus in action.

[Thanks Fernando, and GaryC for our silly typo] Continue reading “Nimbus, portable N64”