Tool Rolls, The Fabric Design Challenge That Can Tidy Up Any Workshop

You’ve designed PCBs. You’ve cut, drilled, Dremeled, and blow-torched various objects into project enclosurehood. You’ve dreamed up some object in three dimensions and marveled as the machine stacked up strings of hot plastic, making that object come to life one line of g-code at a time. But have you ever felt the near-limitless freedom of designing in fabric?

I don’t have to tell you how satisfying it is to make something with your hands, especially something that will get a lot of use. When it comes to that sweet cross between satisfaction and utility, fabric is as rewarding as any other medium. You might think that designing in fabric is difficult, but let’s just say that it is not intuitive. Fabric is just like anything else — mysterious until you start learning about it. The ability to design and implement in fabric won’t solve all your problems, but it sure is a useful tool for the box.

WoF? Fat quarter? How much is a yard of fabric, anyway?

To prove it, I’m going to take you through the process of designing something in fabric. More specifically, a tool roll. These two words may conjure images of worn, oily leather or canvas, rolled out under the open hood of a car. But the tool roll is a broad, useful concept that easily and efficiently bundles up anything from socket wrenches to BBQ utensils and from soldering irons to knitting needles. Tool rolls are the best in flexible, space-saving storage — especially when custom-designed for your need.

In this case, the tools will be pens, notebooks, and index cards. You know, writer stuff. But the same can just as easily organize your oscilloscope probes. It’s usefully and a great first foray into building things with fabric if this is your first time.

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World’s Smallest Cordless Power Tools, 3D Printed Of Course

What is this?  A circular saw for ants?!

There isn’t much information we could find on this one (sorry, no source files that we know of), but this little hack is so playful and fun, we just had to share it with you. [Lance Abernethy] has built both a working cordless drill, and circular saw using nothing more than a 3D printer, what seems to be a pager-type vibration motor, a tactile switch and a coin cell battery – you can see them both working in the video after the break.


[Lance] used an Ultimaker 2, running a 0.25mm nozzle, and printing at a 0.04mm layer height in PLA. As you would expect, the 0.25mm nozzle is needed for such small parts – it’s also close to the limit of what extruder can still squeeze plastic through. it greatly increases the chance of blocked or clogged nozzles.

[Lance] admits that the saw can’t quite cut anything just yet, but he does say that he has plans to make more miniature cordless tools.  We can’t wait to see how he might manage the mechanism for a jig-saw.

[VIA newsletter]

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