Living Hinge Swatches

In my obsession with the living hinge, I found this list of resources. Follow the links to find living hinge swatch libraries - some of .dxf files that are pretty nifty.


Thanks for this. Would you believe that nine months in (PRU) and I still have not tried a living hinge? I try to try a new material or technique every week but people (including myself) keep coming up with stuff at a rate quicker than that.


Samples of different kinds of living hinges! That is exactly what I’ve been looking for. Thank you!

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The thing that keeps me from trying living hinges is the living part. They will definitely fail at some point, does anyone have any data on how long they tend to survive?

It’s probably not a simple answer, materials and hinge design and how tight the radius is will all matter… I just wondered if anyone had any empirical evidence yet.

I have seen several at MFNY fail after all day being played with.
I’d say they are great for things that will be fixed but need a radius, okay for things that will be exercised occasionally, and no good for things that are opened and closed all the time. And yes, I know that is a very wide answer to a very wide question. :confused:


I have done a box with the hinge. I did it with mdf/draftboard. While I wouldn’t recommend it as a material, it is holding up fairly well. Granted the box I made isn’t a daily driver.

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It would be an interesting experiment to laser a living hinge out of draftboard and a couple more out of a more resilient, thin material to sandwich the draftboard in. Like some handmade oilcloth or something that wouldn’t be as likely to catch on fire when you lase it :joy:

I have made several nice living hing things from the files from this site:

You have to buy them but they work very well on GF


If your worried about durability I was thinking of lining a box or book cover with a thin cloth to give it strength, you know like a roll top desk. The one I had as a kid was lined with cloth. Just a thought.


if you fastened a sheet of very thin polycarbonate (Lexan) on the inside perhaps even before cutting, it should hold up very well as long as the radius is not too small. I was thinking more about permanent curves that got you away from the very 2d nature of the medium. Lampshades or round boxes being the most obvious examples

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This is awesome! Thanks for taking it down.