SOLIDWORKS Time-Lapse Tutorial: Useless Box

Looking for the perfect gift but don’t want to buy anything new? In this guide we will show you how we took an old useless box and use SOLIDWORKS and 3D printing and turned it into something new.

Now this box isn’t all that useless, it serves a purpose. That purpose is to do nothing so, in turn, it is a useless box. Confusing right? We will give you a minute to process. So this is an old kit we got a little while back, but the acrylic and metal look got a little dull after some time so we decided to use SOLIDWORKS and 3D printing to bring it back to life.

Useless Box
The design process for this was simple; first replicate, then create. We started by reproducing a simple version of the PCB by just highlighting the important element. This saves time rather than recreating every element. Then, the original body was generated around the PCB which created a perfect skeleton to work from.

We then began create the new box around the old one. We used the old box as a reference for the scale and for the placement of splits, which are needed for the lids. We gave it a more shapely body with rounded edges, making it softer. Now, you could go ahead and add more details and extravagant markings but, we chose this shape to serve not as a final product but as an inspiration for your own projects.

Once all three parts were complete, we separated them and prepared them to print. We were lucky for this project as we didn’t run into any troubles with the printing process. With the design, we kept each overhang above 45 degrees to the bed. This allowed all parts printed with no support so they came off the bed clean and ready. This is the ideal scenario for any 3D printing project.

For assembly, we disassembled the old useless box, then put the battery box and PCB in place. We then glued the static lid in place and clipped on the moving lid. The hinge was a little stiff, so it was trimmed with a scalpel and used a lubricant to loosen it up. This made the hand press the switch and the lid went down went with it.

This project is great if you are bored with something and wish to change it up, or if you need a quick gift for someone and don’t have the time to go out and buy something. 3D printing is excellent for these any little project like this, and is an easy way to start your journey in the wonderful world of 3D printing. We hope you learned a lot from this tutorial and use this knowledge to brighten up your own home or someone’s day.

Check out our YouTube playlist for more SOLIDWORKS Time-Lapse tutorials!

Dassault Systèmes SolidWorks Corp. offers complete 3D software tools that let you create, simulate, publish, and manage your data. SolidWorks products are easy to learn and use, and work together to help you design products better, faster, and more cost-effectively. The SolidWorks focus on ease-of-use allows more engineers, designers and other technology professionals than ever before to take advantage of 3D in bringing their designs to life.