Since I discovered puzzle boxes I wanted one. I still want to, one day, own a high quality decorative box that require more than 50 steps to open. Because I have access to a laser cutter and some thin wood I decided to make my own (I made a few and will give some away comment on the video to stand a chance to win one).
I call this box the ibhokisi. It is the Zulu word for box. I made several prototypes until I had one that I could sell as a kit. This kit is small enough to fit into a postcard sized envelope and makes a lovely gift “card”. I also personalize the the box by engraving a message or name on one of the sides: get yours here!
The whole kit.
Plans to construct the box is included and also show how to open and close the box. Download it here:
All the bits and pieces.
I am not sure exactly how to count the number of steps but if each separate move is a step it takes 13 moves to open the box. The majority of these steps is navigating through the maze on the one side of the inner drawer of the box.
I am also not exactly sure where I saw this type of mechanism and cannot find it online at this stage. I have however seen it somewhere and any comments/links to the origin of this mechanism would be appreciated.
Lastly, in a shameless attempt to grow my YouTube channel I am going to give away several of these box kits:
- I will give one to the first subscriber of my channel that comment on the box video (to be uploaded soon).
- I will give a kit to one of the first 10 commenters on the box video (chosen at random – must be a subscriber).
- I will give a kit to one of the first 100 commenters on the box video (chosen at random – must be a subscriber).
- I will continue to give a box away for every 10 fold increase in comments, as long as I live (assuming YouTube is still around and this video is still available through them).
- Full instructions will be posted online.
Subscribe to my channel now to get an update of when the video is uploaded and comment first (or soon to increase your chances of getting a box kit) – IF you want a puzzle box of your own.
I will make more puzzle boxes in the future. I will make them larger and more intricate with novel mechanisms (some of these are already rolling around in my head). I am very happy with the final version of this first mini puzzle box and are looking forward to designing more.
See more Induku wooden models here:
Windup Car (envelope sized kit)
Or buy them here: Shop at Induku Design.
For a long time I wanted to make automata with some kind of self driven mechanism. This car is the first step in this direction. It has a working engine, driven by 2 rubber bands and comes in a kit that is only 105 x 210 x 1 cm in size. This is the standard size of a postcard. I sell these and ship them in an envelope and they make awesome Birthday cards (who would not want a rubber band driven, wind up, laser cut plywood car kit as a gift). If you are interested in one get it here:
Buy It Here!
All the bits and pieces.
As with many of the things that I have been making recently, it is a laser cut model. Most of the parts are pressed out from 3 mm plywood sheets. The axles are 4 mm dowels and everything assembles quite easily. Download the instructions* here:
*Note the hard part of developing a kit is, for me, the instruction manual. Again writing the manual took more time than developing rest of the whole kit.
1 of 2 postcard sized part sheets.
All the parts removed and sorted.
A small bit of CA-glue (supper glue) is needed to ensure there is no slippage of the gears on the axles. This is in different to many models that can be assembled without glue – but to tame the 2 band power of the engine it is necessary in this model. A bit of wax on the gear teeth allows for smooth running of the mechanism.
CA-glue needed mostly on the drive gear.
The best part of the car is the gear system. In contrast to the gears in the Strandbeest model, there is an increase in the number of rotations from the drive gear to the final gear, rather than a reduction. The reason for this is two fold:
- First it is to allow the car to run farther than just 2 turns of the wheels. Two turns is close to the maximum that the rubber bands can be wound. With the gear ratio of 1:3 and 2 sets of gears the large wheels turn approximately 18 times making the car go 3 – 4 meters on only 2 turns of the key.
- The second reason is to slow down the mechanism. The gear train ends with a flywheel and total gear ratio of 1:27. The moment of inertia of this small flywheel is enough to slow down the mechanism sufficiently (although the car still moves reasonably fast).
Mechanism in action. Drive to fly wheel ratio = 1:27
I am very happy with how this model has turned out. Let me know what you think about it, or feel free to get your own (here) if you think it is awesome.
I am already busy designing a new model and are currently very exited about it. Follow me on any of the social media channels to see what it is.
I bought Lauan plywood a while ago to use as cheap material for constructing things in the workshop (e.g. work area in spray-paint booth). Using a cut off piece to test some of the settings on the laser soon changed my view of this material. The Lauan hardwood panels engrave very well – it is uniform and it allow for a very good scale of shades from light to dark. The wood itself is also nice when sanded and treated with some lacquer or oil. I thus started to use it to make engraved posters. The size of these are 30 cm x 40 cm (11.8 in x 15.7 in) but I am thinking of making large multi-panel maps.
Some of them are for sale here: BUY A WOODEN POSTER
See more MORE IMAGES HERE.
I also made some book covers using this wood that can be seen here.
I am currently almost out of this wood but will probably get some more in the future.