Tealight Box




About: ... using laser cutter, PCBs, 3D-Printer and whatever i get into my hands to build things

Made in the fablab of the RWTH Aachen (http://hci.rwth-aachen.de/fablab) and for testing a program made in a project course (http://hci.rwth-aachen.de/cutcad - the program itself is not fully functional yet, but at least for this thing it works).

Made out of 2mm wood (birch plywood is more stable, but looks not as well as lime wood). Lasercutted, stained and glued together.

So you need a DinA4 sheet of 2mm material and a lasercutter (or a fretsaw and much time :-), staining agent (optional, here i used Aqua Clue 2522 - cherry) and of course glue.


Step 1:

Design a shape (5-corner) in inkscape (here i reused the form of a paper snowflake - http://www.cncofficesystems.com/blog/diy-paper-snowflakes/) and modifiy the outline with a tenon structure to make a 3D structure. With the CutCAD program, that was just copying the shape and  connecting the edges...sort of.

If you want to build it yourself, a pdf file of the shapes is attached.

Step 2:

Next step: Let the laser cutter do all the work...

If you like, apply stain agent with a cotton sheet on both sides of each piece before assembling for a better look.

Step 3:

Then glue all pieces together.
There are four different kinds: One with all corners intruded (bottom), one with all corners extrudered (top, do not glue that tenons to have this piece removable to insert the light) and two rings of 5 pieces (one corner extruded bottom ring, two corners extruded top ring).

The exakt location can be viewed in the cutCAD 3D view or in the screenshot one step before (Hint: it is kind of symmetric, and the left side on the grid is the bottom :-)

Step 4:

Sandpaper the corners to remove the overhanging tenons, and finish with a last staining of the wood.

Insert lights and enjoy.



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    15 Discussions


    3 years ago on Introduction

    looking wonderful but am wondering how much is cost that machine " laser cutter " ?? as same as in picture


    4 years ago

    Was looking for a cool Christmas present for the parents. Saw this and made the modifications to adapt it for our laser. Thank you for this cool design like how it turned out.

    1 reply

    5 years ago

    good job . I have a question, I have a 3mm wood. Can I cut it from the plan you uploaded?

    1 reply

    Reply 5 years ago on Introduction

    Thanks. Sadly, the tenon structure of the edges won't work for other thicknesses than the 2mm for the original plan. But here is a modified plan for 3mm material - at short notice and not tested. Not as filigree as the 2mm version (slightly bigger bridges at the edges).

    Screenshot 3mm.tiff

    This looks like it's taken straight from the Zelda franchise. (It's a compliment, believe me). Incredibly beautiful!

    2 replies

    Reply 5 years ago on Introduction

    Thanks - and i believe you :-)

    Especially when i look at their wonderful art (princess costume, of course), i feel totally honoured.


    Reply 5 years ago on Introduction

    Yes, there is so much beautiful artwork in there. No wonder people insist on drawing all kinds of characters and environments :)


    5 years ago on Introduction

    Thanks, especially for voting :-)

    The laser cutter of the fab lab is an epilog zing 24 30W (do not have my own).