Pencil Cups

Now that I have a Glowforge and basically set up a small studio between it and my desk I realized that I needed something to put my tools (including the obligatory digital calipers and the founder ruler) in, so I went and made myself some pencil and pen cups.

These are both adapted from this thingiverse pencil cup pattern. The original pattern is 6 inches tall and I needed to make it shorter to fit my stuff… and may as well decorate them while I’m at it.

I decided to put my studio logo on the tool cup because when in doubt just slap a sheep on it I guess, and instead of painting it or even engraving it I just scored the logo and left the tape on to create a white on wood effect.

Originally I was going to just make a shorter one for pens, but then realized that I wanted something nicer for my fountain pens so I made a lid with holes in it (sized for Lamy Safaris of course). I saw how cool the patent drawings @jbmanning5 engraved on wood plaques (Soooooo Sharp) looked and so went and got some patent drawings on fountain pen nibs and feeds to slap on to the thing.

This is my first time working with living hinges and honestly I was like “is this even going to work?”. But the second I lifted the cut off the bed I was amazed at how flexible it was. Definitely going to try that again.



Geez! I feel like such a slob now with my pile-o-Glowforge-crap sitting next to my 'forge. :slight_smile:


This is the curse of a tool that makes stuff including boxes.
You make stuff.
You have too much stuff.
You make boxes to hold the stuff.
You make more stuff.
You have too much stuff.
You make more boxes to hold the stuff.
Crap you now have too many boxes.
Time to make a bigger box.
Ah now there’s room to make more stuff…
Repeat forever.


And that’s why we’re moving next year. More room for our stuff. :wink:


Nice job! Like those pen diagrams on the holder! :grinning:


To quote George Carlin, “Stuff expands to fill the space available.”


Very nice. I really like that pen holder. I think I need something like that for my various glues with precision applicator needles that need to be stored upside down.

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Made me feel like a slob because i just cut and glued a basic box from a box creator website to hold some of the small stuff. I really need to upgrade my setup and do some sorting.


Very nice! Thank you for the link!

Living hinges will be throughout our home!

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Hmmm…are living hinges soon to become the laser equivalent of the Papyrus font? :wink:


No, I think that will be finger joints. Already I go out of my way to avoid them.


What’s your favorite joint for a laser cut box? Asking because I don’t quite like how they look but I don’t know of better looking alternatives other than breaking out my miter saw…

Well, I’m still struggling to find a good one. My only foray in this area was the parametric box with wings that I did in OnShape for my learning project:

Not my favorite, but at least it’s different from finger joints.


Oh thank you! I never thought about having things sticking out of the rectangular shape. Hm this is giving me ideas…

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This is a hobbyhorse of mine: If you are willing to be careful and do some test scores, kerfing one side can give you the same result as a living hinge (albeit with bigger radius). Or you could wrap the thing.

Your sheep logo is a great touch. Great to see you experimenting with joints!