Mobile Electronics Workstation Has It All In A Small Package

Home is absolutely everything these days. Plenty of spaces around the abode have had to do double and triple duty as we navigate work, play, and everything in between. Although it’s been a great time to engage in hobbies and even find new ones, where exactly are we supposed put all the stuff that accumulates?

[Fabse89] needed a portable, usable solution for doing electronics work that could be easily packed away. They happened upon a tool case being thrown out, and repurposed it into a great one-stop solution for whenever the urge to play with pixies strikes.

[Fabse89] started by stripping the box out to the bare walls and modeling the inside in Fusion360. Then they built and cut an acrylic insert that holds two power supplies and a soldering station. There are fixed 5 V and 12 V outputs on one power supply, plus a variable supply that maxes out at 48 V.

When it came to tool storage options, [Fabse89] got lucky with a small, seldom-used set of plastic drawers that fits perfectly next to the power station. These hold all the small tools like flush cutters, pliers, and a de-soldering pump. The top section of the case folds back and is the perfect place for component storage boxes. We think this is a tidy solution and especially like that you don’t have to dismantle it to use it — can be used with everything in place and packed up quickly. We also like that the front lid pulls down into a makeshift table, so this really could go anywhere with mains power.

Acrylic not rugged enough for your tastes? Here’s a DIY supply that doubles as a melee weapon.

Spare SMD Storage, With Stacking SMT Tape Reels

[Kadah]’s solution for storing short tapes of SMT parts is as attractive as it is clever. The small 3D-printed “tape reels” can double as dispensers, and stack nicely onto each other thanks to the sockets for magnets. The units come in a few different sizes, but are designed to stack in a consistent way.

We love the little touches such as recessed areas for labels, and the fact that the parts can print without supports (there are a couple of unsupported bridges, but they should work out fine.) Also, the outer dimensions of the units are not an accident. They have been specifically chosen to nestle snugly into the kind of part drawers that are a nearly ubiquitous feature of every hardware hacker’s work bench.

STLs are provided for handy download but [Kadah] also provides the original Fusion 360 design file, with all sizes defined as easily-customized parameters. In addition, [Kadah] thoughtfully provided each model in STEP format as well, making it easy to import and modify in almost any 3D CAD program.

Providing 3D models in STEP format alongside STLs is nice to see, because it gives more options to people if things need some tweaking, because editing the STL file can be done if needed, but isn’t optimal.┬áThankfully the ability to export STEP files is still open to hobbyists using Fusion 360, since Autodesk decided to leave that feature available to personal use licenses.