Instrument Case!



Posting this here since it is a project that I’ve been inspired to do, and will hope to begin work on the first steps very soon.

So this is a project that is in my personal hopper once I get my GF. In my Pirate Folk band there is a concertina player who is also the Chest Wench (NOT a derogatory term, Wench - working woman, Chest Wench - Working woman who handles our merchandise, in our case an actual chest). Her case is still the original cloth case that came with the Concertina.

We perform mainly outdoors and in places that are not the most friendly or gentle on unprotected, or under-protected instruments. So I’ve been planning on making her a wooden carrying box that can hold some of our CDs in such a way that when it is propped open on the side of the stage, it will display at least one CD.

The Process to go about making something like this would be SO much faster with a Laser, but we do what we can with what we have.

Step one: Paper, Pencil (with a good eraser), and ideas
Step two: Design it digitally (I REALLY wish I could do this in F360, but I can’t even do simple stuff yet, so Sketchup it is)
Step three: Cardboard and Masking Tape (CRAFT TIME! This will be SERIOUSLY faster with a laser)
Step four: Create a mockup of the case in Pine (cheap and you can work out all the kinks/mistakes)
Step five: Create in final wood of choice

By the time this case is finished, I’m really hoping I can have my GF to help cut and embellish the final piece. I think this is going to be done in Curly Maple (very white wood with “ribbon” shimmer effect) and that will show the engravings extremely well.


One thought, That is a fairly simple case to make since it seems to be a geometrically shaped item (lots of us are here to give you help with either F360, Rhino or OnShape), but if making the internal geometry of the case is beyond your CAD foo at the moment, consider making the frame not using CAD (just get it close as a box frame) and then skin it with panels cut on the GF. That way you can make the frame of pine or oak or whatever from Home Depot and use the expensive woods for the outer case and use the laser for the precision cuts of the outer case and the inserts for the instrument.


My largest hangup with F360 is that I just don’t “get it”. I can draw a box, I can connect panels via rigid joints. But make an inclined plane? Adjust things slightly? forget it. You can’t close a face by adding a line. Heck, you can’t even just simply delete a line to “heal” a plane.

I’m hoping that once I mock up what I want in Sketchup, I would love to work with someone to do the same thing in F360. Or if someone is willing now, I have a cajon project that I’ve already completed in Sketchup and have not been able to figure out in F360. (This is a box with a 15 degree slanted front face and a hole in the back)


In fairness I struggle with F360, and I teach CAD here at the medical center, and I do 3D animation. The problem for me is that it has aspect of both of those techniques. I prefer a pure sketch based parametric cad like OnShape, but I do use F360 sometimes when I need T-spline objects in my model (3D printing)