Some of you may remember a blog post I put up earlier this year in January about ALDToolkit reader, Nik Robalino, and his fantastic assistant's kit! See the original post here.
Well today we have a treat! Nik has sent along some information of his creation process and some process photos. Here's what he had to say:
I had originally thought I'd be learning how to make a roadcase thinking it would be the size of a mini-fridge with the ability to open up like a lighting workbox might. The sheer weight of the materials alone would have made it ridiculously overweight and pricey to ship if needed for travel. I also considered compartmentalizing a Pelican case, but again, the price would have been rather unpleasant. Instead, I looked for used/cheap suitcases that were close to 62 linear inches (height+width+length). Any larger and I'd be paying significant oversize fees to the airports. I found the perfect case at a Ross for $95 and it came in at ~5lbs. Next step was to compartmentalize the interior. I realized I'd be best off creating pockets for different sized containers that would hold the supplies. My hands-down favorite container to this day remains the Sterilite flip-top containers:
The next step was designing the layout of the dividers which I found best to do in any CAD software of your choice. Because the containers had accurate dimensions, I could play "virtual Tetris" in finding the most efficient way to pack as many storage containers as possible. Some items, like the iPad and portable printer did not have their own containers but their dimensions were still available and could be calculated into the design.
The dividing material ended up as a 1/2" and 1/4" thick high density foamboard. I got the materials for pennies on the dollar by going to a used materials store. It is the type of foamboard that gets used to create display boards at conventions or other signage purposes. The 1/2" foamboard created the outer walls and the 1/4" was used for the dividing walls. Attaching the walls together was done by cutting up some drywall corner bead strips (http://www.homedepot.com/p/ClarkDietrich-Building-1-1-4-in-x-1-1-4-in-x-8-ft-Corner-Bead-741339/204700931?N=5yc1vZc7qn) into ~4-6" lengths to create lightweight brackets. These brackets are conveniently pre-drilled and able to provide stability as they are riveted into the foamboard. I learned halfway through the process that I needed to provide washers on the the foamcore side of the rivet.
Once the frame was built, I used the cheapest, least-shaggy black carpeting to cover the frame for increased cushioning and overall sexiness. I did not need anything fancier than hot glue to attach the carpet to the frame. It is worth noting that the carpet does have a certain thickness and should be taken into account when designing the frame layout.
Thanks for sharing, Nik! I hope this helps out others that may want to emulate this amazing kit!
If you've created a kit that you want to share too, please send it on!