SBC Case Builder

hominoid
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Re: SBC Case Builder

Post by hominoid »

SBC Case Builder 2.0
Version 2.0 release of SBC Case Builder includes significant improvements including new cases and SBC, variable height standoffs, multi-associative parametric accessory positioning and a graphical user interface that allows for the dynamic adjustment of any of the case attributes. New base cases include snap, fitted, round and hex, and work with the 47 SBC represented by 43 models, from 8 manufactures, in the latest version of SBC Model Framework.

New cases can be created and saved, as well as existing cases modified using any case parameter, adjustable from the GUI. This makes the workflow quick and simple with virtually no learning curve and no need to know OpenSCAD. Simply turn on the Customizer located in the OpenSCAD view or window menu and arrange your windows as you see fit. With the new graphical interface, parametric positioning of accessory and the other improvements, SBC Case Builder has reached a new level of functionality, usability, and productivity. Check out the 60 second custom case in the updated op.

Files and docs updated to version 2.0.1 in op.
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Re: SBC Case Builder

Post by hominoid »

When my H3+ arrived the other day I knew it had a different heatsink, so I wasn’t surprised to see that the heatsink was slightly larger. For the lowboy and lowboy_router cases, the heatsink protrudes thru the top so they needed to be modified for the H3.
    h3-h2_heatsinks.jpg
    h3-h2_heatsinks.jpg (241.54 KiB) Viewed 7138 times
      A H3 model with it’s new heatsink was added to SBC Model Framework v1.0.9 and is included in this update with separate case entries. Also, the bottom height was increased by 3mm for all H2 and H3 cases that use the bottom accessory access port. There were other minor changes to the alignment of the access cover tab, opening and nut holder when used in landscape mode.

      Files updated to version 2.0.2 in op.
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      Re: SBC Case Builder

      Post by mctom »

      That's very fortunate you looked into this so soon, I already started playing with Case Builder, trusting the H2 model would be perfectly compatible. :)
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      Re: SBC Case Builder

      Post by hominoid »

      All the external facing I/O is the same but there are some other internal PCB components that are different or rearranged slightly, for example the fan connector. I need to check the eMMC as well, it may have been moved.

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      Re: SBC Case Builder

      Post by hominoid »

      Three new H3 cases have been added that support the HK 92mm x 25mm fan internally:
      h3_tallboy - internal fan, side wall mount battery holder
      h3_tallboy-ssd - internal fan, single vertical 2.5” SSD
      h3_shell_drivebox2.5v - internal fan, twin 15mm vertical 2.5” HD
        h3_tallboys.gif
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          h3_tallboy_open.jpg
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            These are available now on the main branch at https://github.com/hominoids/SBC_Case_Builder and will be included in the next release.

            This is my lowboy setup I’m running with a Noctua NF-A8. It’s the smallest H3 case available and can be run vertical too. The 80mm fan is a good fit for a direct heatsink mount and the new heatsink easily accepts the Noctua isolation mounts. I’m running a nvme drive so we’ll see how the bottom temperatures are over the long run. Plan B: Vents can be added to the access port cover if necessary. Plan C: raise bottom height and use a 40mm fan in the bottom. It will also be getting some rubber feet and maybe a vertical stand.
              h3_lowboy_front.jpg
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              Re: SBC Case Builder

              Post by L67GS »

              Damn you hominoid! Now I want a 3D printer! Beautiful work as always.....
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              hominoid (Sun Nov 06, 2022 5:35 am)

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              Re: SBC Case Builder

              Post by lcapriotti »

              M1 cases any? possibly housing a 3.5" disk? :)

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              Re: SBC Case Builder

              Post by hominoid »

              I see I forgot to update the case list for the M1 in the op but there are some M1 cases already(m1_panel, m1_tray, m1_tray_drive, m1_tray_sides, m1_tray_vu5, m1_tray_vu7, m1_snap, m1_fitted). There is not a predefined case for the M1 with a 3.5" drive bay yet, the m1_tray_drive is for a 2.5" drive. I'm finishing up on a release with the N2L so I'll take a look to see if a M1 case can be created with a 3.5" drive bay. I have an appointment today so check back in a day or two and it should be ready, It'll be in the coming 2.0.3 release.
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              Re: SBC Case Builder

              Post by hominoid »

              lcapriotti wrote:
              Thu Dec 08, 2022 5:58 pm
              M1 cases any? possibly housing a 3.5" disk? :)
              In case you didn't see them, outside of SBC Case Builder there also are vuScape8m and Cloudshell4 Unauthorized M1 Series cases that might interest you.
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              Re: SBC Case Builder

              Post by hominoid »

              After much to do with my printer, software bugs and other uninteresting things, I have finally finished adding the odroid-n2l and odroid-n2lq into SBC Case Builder with the following cases predefined:

              Odorid-N2L - 9 :n2l_shell, n2l_panel, n2l_stacked, n2l_tray, n2l_tray_sides, n2l_tray_vu5, n2l_tray_vu7, n2l_snap, n2l_fitted

              Odorid-N2LQ cases - 9 :n2lq_shell, n2lq_panel, n2lq_stacked, n2lq_tray, n2lq_tray_sides, n2lq_tray_vu5, n2lq_tray_vu7, n2lq_snap, n2lq_fitted

              Test prints were conducted for the n2l_shell, n2l_panel and n2l_tray predefined cases.
                n2l-n2lq.png
                n2l-n2lq.png (38.87 KiB) Viewed 7225 times
                  Small compact boards can pose some clearance challenges and such was the case. Some component locations currently don’t allow the use of sidewall supports for the N2l so they have been turned off for the predefined cases. They can be used if 2 of them are manually trimmed to allow for component clearance. For the tray cases, one of the nut holder interferes with the eMMC opening but is still usable. Possible solutions are to make the case slightly wider, glue a nut to the side wall or just use 3 screws for the top. The n2l_shell case works well with no known issues.

                  Four additional Odroid-M1 cases have also been added that incorporate drives in a fitted case: m1_fitted_drivebox2.5, m1_fitted_drivebox3.5, m1_fitted_pizzabox, m1_fitted_drivebox3.5v
                    new_m1_cases.gif
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                      There is now a new view mode called Part which allows for Individual part generation of the active case. An additional pickbox allows for specific part selection. This release has the H3 tall boy cases included as well. Due to a past update in the standoff() module all case standoffs have been reduced in diameter to accommodate the change.

                      There appears to be a software bug for OpenSCAD releases greater then 2019.5 which is exhibited in preview for all Tray design cases with a fan opening. It does not happen when the Tray cases are rendered, only previewed so it doesn’t interfere with producing stl’s. The problem is with the bottom case piece even though it looks like it effects the top piece. If the fan feature is turn off or changed to one of the other selections there is no issue. The strange thing is that there are no issues with any other case design, even though they all use the same fan mask.
                        Tray Preview Problem.gif
                        Tray Preview Problem.gif (470.19 KiB) Viewed 7225 times
                          Since it’s only in preview it shouldn’t be a problem but if you want to change to a different version there are appimages of all the OpenSCAD releases at their website to supplement what ever version your package manager is providing. I had been running Ubuntu which provides OpenSCAD version 2019.05, but recently switched to Manjaro which packages OpenSCAD 2021.1.

                          Like I said, 2019.5 works flawlessly and the newer versions only exhibit this problem for tray cases with a fan opening and then, only in preview. I’ll spend some more time checking my code before submitting a bug report but right now I don’t see any problems so there is no reason to holdup this release any longer.

                          Files and documentation updated to version 2.0.3 in op.
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                          Re: SBC Case Builder

                          Post by L67GS »

                          My N2L at work.
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                          Re: SBC Case Builder

                          Post by rooted »

                          Good looking case :)

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                          Re: SBC Case Builder

                          Post by mctom »

                          And here's mine. I wanted N2L case with GPIO opening to play with FPGAs and whatnot.
                          Unfortunately the screw holes on N2L are so close to the GPIO header they block the way for the 40-pin IDC connector. This may be turned into advantage, however, as IDC40 cable can be screwed in place with these screws. :)
                          The 40-pin sockets with no extra plastic around them do fit even with screws on.
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                          Re: SBC Case Builder

                          Post by hominoid »

                          Hey @L67GS, nice case and thanks for sharing the photo. I usually don't get to see other peoples completed cases and it is helpful to know how folks implemented and deployed the case.
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                          Re: SBC Case Builder

                          Post by L67GS »

                          hominoid wrote:
                          Thu Mar 09, 2023 12:23 am
                          Hey @L67GS, nice case and thanks for sharing the photo. I usually don't get to see other peoples completed cases and it is helpful to know how folks implemented and deployed the case.
                          Thank you for all your hard work.

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                          Re: SBC Case Builder

                          Post by teus »

                          how do I export the model of the PCB, without the enclosure?

                          edit: sbc_test.scad in SBC_Model_Framework

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                          Re: SBC Case Builder

                          Post by hominoid »

                          teus wrote:
                          Sun Apr 16, 2023 6:45 am
                          how do I export the model of the PCB, without the enclosure?

                          edit: sbc_test.scad in SBC_Model_Framework
                          That will work. FYI, In SBC Model Framework there are Odroid-M1 and other SBC models with and without the heatsink too. The file sbc_models.cfg holds all the different SBC configurations. I would also recommend using the git repository's main branch for the latest SBC and corrections.

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                          Re: SBC Case Builder

                          Post by L67GS »

                          I'm making my second case from the project later this week, this time I'm doing H3 Ultimate, and I'm excited because that case looks totally worthy if it's name! Thank you again for doing such an awesome project and service...
                          Forgive me for this, but OpenSCAD is not my preferred CAD platform, so I struggle to remember how to use SBC Case Builder each time. This time I wrote stupid easy instructions and I'm going to post them here so others who might not be versed in OpenSCAD might benefit from my frantic bumbling through the program. I am certain my instructions don't use the appropriate OpenSCAD terminology, but another user who doesn't know the terminology either will be able to follow just fine I think.

                          *******
                          Tom's Stupid Easy instructions V1:
                          Open: sbc_case_builder.scad (This will start OpenSCAD)
                          ** Select model to be made from the menu on the right **
                          Under "View" Dropdown:
                          Go to "View", Select "Part"
                          Under "Design":
                          "Render"
                          Under "File"
                          "Export"

                          Follow Steps for all parts
                          *******

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                          Re: SBC Case Builder

                          Post by mctom »

                          I dare to say ultimate2 is the best H3 case design! ;)

                          Your instructions are fine. There is an option to export all parts as a single model, laid out for printing. That is available in "Platter" View.
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                          Re: SBC Case Builder

                          Post by hominoid »

                          Your instructions are good and as @mctom indicted, the whole case can be laid out using the 'platter' selection if that makes sense for the design and your printer. Make sure to pull the most recent version from my github to get the latest corrections. The "h3_ultimate2" entry in the file sbc_case_builder_accessories.cfg can be edited with a text editor to disable any additional features you may not want e.g. front port extender mount. If you run into any issues make a post or send a pm.

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                          Re: SBC Case Builder

                          Post by L67GS »

                          I was aware of the platter export but chose to post the instructions without. Some of the models would not fit on the average bed if exported in their entirety.

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                          Re: SBC Case Builder

                          Post by hominoid »

                          Release 2.04 has been posted in the op and contains many fixes as well as support for approximately 61 SBC.
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                          Re: SBC Case Builder

                          Post by hominoid »

                          The Odroid-M1S has been added to SBC Case Builder with 9 pre-defined cases(shell, panel, stacked, fitted, snap, tray, tray_vu5, tray_vu7 and tray_sides).
                            Odroid-M1S_Shell_Case.gif
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                              The HK STEP model was used for component registration but the case bottom may need to increase for adequate M.2 support. I also believe the case top height can be decreased by at least 2mm. I’ll know after I can do a test print and fit. A new Hex vent pattern was also added that is available to all SBC cases through the fan cooling options pick box.

                              Version 2.05 has been posted in the op which includes the Odroid-M1S.
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                              Re: SBC Case Builder

                              Post by mad_ady »

                              That was fast!

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                              Re: SBC Case Builder

                              Post by mctom »

                              And my favorite vent pattern! :)

                              Will SCB support case tops for various add-on boards?
                              I think most are Kicad projects, so perhaps STEP files can be requested as well.
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                              Re: SBC Case Builder

                              Post by L67GS »

                              Dude, what took you so long?

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                              Re: SBC Case Builder

                              Post by hominoid »

                              mctom wrote:
                              Thu Nov 16, 2023 4:17 pm
                              Will SCB support case tops for various add-on boards?
                              I think most are Kicad projects, so perhaps STEP files can be requested as well.
                              Yes, after I get SBC Model Framework version 2 rolled into SBC Case Builder, I have some ideas for SBC Case Builder library model improvements. I don't think any of the peripherals are that complicated that a STEP model is mandatory so model availability shouldn't matter.

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                              Re: SBC Case Builder

                              Post by hominoid »

                              The Odroid-M1S cases have been updated in SBC Case Builder. The overall initial M1s model was good but some cases needed top standoffs trimmed for extra clearance and some I/O openings enlarged. Additional cases were also defined to accommodate use of the the M1s UPS and a full NVME access port (m1s_shell_nvme, m1s_shell_ups, m1s_tray_ups).
                                m1s_shell_and_nvme.jpg
                                m1s_shell_and_nvme.jpg (92.1 KiB) Viewed 3065 times
                                  The m1s_shell case on the left is as small of a case as reasonably possible for the M1s and is 99mm x 74mm x 20mm with room for a NVME. The case on the right is the m1s_shell_nvme that increases the size to 110mm x 74mm x 23mm to allow for a full size NVME access port on the bottom.
                                    m1s_snap_and_ups_cases.jpg
                                    m1s_snap_and_ups_cases.jpg (85.89 KiB) Viewed 3065 times
                                      A test print of the m1s_snap case was also made to make sure the M1s could be inserted into the case without any issues using a 2.5mm gap. Both the Snap and Fitted cases should be covered in this successful trial. One note regarding assembling the M1S cases, the SBC cannot be just dropped in vertically like most cases. Because of the large overhang, the I/O must be inserted first to get enough clearance for the opposite side of the PCB to clear the far wall. There is also the side USB connector to squeeze in place at the same time. It might initially look like the case is to small until the I/O is inserted the proper amount. I’ll have more to say about the I/O offsets in a moment.

                                      The case on the right is the m1s_shell_ups and provides for a project area behind the GPIO. Extended Standoffs at the four corners allow for a secure top with uniform closure. At 141mm x 139mm x 37mm the top is taller then I would like due to the vertical GPIO connector on the M1s, but If one were to order an M1s without soldered headers, then a 90 degree header could be used and the top height reduced by about 8mm. For certain use cases, I really like that there is a GPIO header choice for the M1s!
                                        m1s_shell_ups.png
                                        m1s_shell_ups.png (26.73 KiB) Viewed 3065 times
                                          There were some other fixes and tweaks, including another attempt to fix the lid of the snap case. One side of the snap protrusions was not being placed properly on some SBC. I tested across several SBC so we’ll see this time. Having only one hex vent top cooling selection seemed insufficient so there are now two sizes, 5mm and 8mm, available to all SBC cases through the fan cooling options pick box.

                                          Anyone doing an enclosure should also be aware that the HDMI component’s support foot extends over the PCB edge by a significant amount. For some wall thicknesses and gaps, the component foot may contact or need to protrude into or through the wall.
                                            m1s_io_s.jpg
                                            m1s_io_s.jpg (48.04 KiB) Viewed 3065 times
                                              Regarding I/O connectors, the last three out of four major SBC releases from three different manufactures have included variable I/O offsets, meaning the connectors protrude from the rear of the PCB at varying amounts up to 4mm. It’s not clear to me why this is starting to be a trend or what advantages it brings. One would think for general system integration that a uniform distance would be preferred.

                                              Version 2.06 has been posted in the op.
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                                              Re: SBC Case Builder

                                              Post by hominoid »

                                              In moving to examine the M1s accessory encasement needs closer, I noticed that the bottom of the m1s_snap case works well for housing and protecting the SBC and full size Sombrero, it’s height is ideal for them.
                                                m1s_hat_snap_case_bottom.jpg
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                                                  I forgot to mention in the prior post that an additional GPIO 'Block' opening was also added to version 2.06, available to all SBC.
                                                    gpio_block_opening.png
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                                                      An issue opened on github notified me of a config file typo in SBC Model Framework for a recently released non Odroid SBC so an update,Version 2.06a has been posted in the op to make sure it doesn't cause an issue for other SBC in the library.
                                                      Last edited by hominoid on Fri Dec 15, 2023 6:21 am, edited 1 time in total.
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                                                      Re: SBC Case Builder

                                                      Post by mctom »

                                                      That's a SOMBRERO, not a HAT! ;)

                                                      Seriously though, HAT refers to accessories that fit to RasPis.
                                                      https://github.com/raspberrypi/hats/tree/master

                                                      The bottom of m1s_snap would work very nicely with my FPGA add-on. Comparing to my real life M1S I see there should be plenty of room for M3 screw heads underneath SBC, so standoffs can be mounted to SBC as well. Perfect!
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                                                      Re: SBC Case Builder

                                                      Post by hominoid »

                                                      mctom wrote:
                                                      Fri Dec 15, 2023 5:51 am
                                                      That's a SOMBRERO, not a HAT! ;)

                                                      Seriously though, HAT refers to accessories that fit to RasPis.
                                                      https://github.com/raspberrypi/hats/tree/master
                                                      I knew that it originated as a RPi thing but I have heard it used as a generic term too. Regardless, I have correct my oversight. :)
                                                      mctom wrote:
                                                      Fri Dec 15, 2023 5:51 am
                                                      The bottom of m1s_snap would work very nicely with my FPGA add-on. Comparing to my real life M1S I see there should be plenty of room for M3 screw heads underneath SBC, so standoffs can be mounted to SBC as well. Perfect!
                                                      There are standoffs for the SBC already in the Snap Case so using double ended female standoffs between the SBC and sombrero should work for most applications allowing one to remove the sombrero while not disturbing the M1s. The OEM ones that came with the sombrero should work fine in most cases one would think.
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                                                      Re: SBC Case Builder

                                                      Post by mctom »

                                                      Hmmm.. I think I'd prefer double-ended female standoffs, but bolted on both ends, to M1S and a sombrero. This may be done before the whole thing is placed into a case.
                                                      My reasoning is that every sombrero will use the same standoff lengths, so it makes sense to have them attached to M1S permanently, rather than having standoffs mounted on every sombrero separately.

                                                      I would have to examine your design in greater detail to make more educated suggestions, but in general I suppose the snap case standoffs could be moved somewhere else, and make room for (optional) screws on the bottom side of M1S?
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                                                      Re: SBC Case Builder

                                                      Post by hominoid »

                                                      I believe we are talking about the same thing and are in agreement. The standoffs in the bottom of the snap case are to provide clearance room for a NVME and will still allow things to work as you describe.

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                                                      Re: SBC Case Builder

                                                      Post by hominoid »

                                                      There is a new release of SBC Case Builder that incorporates version 2.0 of SBC Model Framework. This release completes the removal of all SBC based openings from SBC Case Builder and moves them to SBC Model Framework, including heatsink, GPIO and UART masks.

                                                      The code base has been reorganized for easier development and maintenance. There have been no new features or cases added other then those features directly associated with the SBCMF v2 upgrade. Backward compatibility has been maintained from the previous release so any user custom cases should still work or possibly need only minor adjustments.

                                                      That said, with the expanded heatsink mask openings comes different choices and the bottom case height calculation was also changed slightly. Many parts of this application have been newly created, modified or deleted so more time has been taken to test as much as possible. With 84 devices and 11 basic case styles, that is hundreds of possible cases not counting the custom cases, so it is just not possible to look closely at everyone of them. Every predefined case was examined and the necessary adjustments made but as always, a heads up on any issues will be appreciated.

                                                      There are new devices in this release that do not have predefined case entries. Nearing a 1,000 possible cases has forced me to reexamine what predefined cases are stored in the JSON file. Up to this point every SBC case design had an entry even if there was no customization. One possible solution is to remove all cases that have no customization and can be completely autonomously created. With many of the prior issues solved that required an accessory entry to rectify, the number of cases would be significantly reduced. All Cases would still be available through selecting the design and SBC in the UI. In the meantime, it was decided not to add anymore new cases until a decision is made on the best way to manage thousands of possible cases.

                                                      Source files updated in op.

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                                                      Re: SBC Case Builder

                                                      Post by mad_ady »

                                                      Great job! Thank you for releasing it!
                                                      In the other thread you mentioned the ability to generate a 2D slide of the design. I think that (printed at 1:1 scale) might be useful in both prototyping (testing a 2D print to see how well it fits), as well as building a paper case if needed.
                                                      So, how does this 2D slicing work? Care to share an example?

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                                                      Re: SBC Case Builder

                                                      Post by hominoid »

                                                      mad_ady wrote:
                                                      Mon Feb 12, 2024 3:08 pm
                                                      Great job! Thank you for releasing it!
                                                      In the other thread you mentioned the ability to generate a 2D slide of the design. I think that (printed at 1:1 scale) might be useful in both prototyping (testing a 2D print to see how well it fits), as well as building a paper case if needed.
                                                      So, how does this 2D slicing work? Care to share an example?
                                                      The 5-way 2D section from SBC Model Framework is easy to generate. Simply start the application sbc_models_viewer.scad and use the GUI to select the SBC from the 'sbc_model' pickbox. The sections are then generated by selecting '2D Sections' from the 'view' pickbox. It will take several minutes to generate the sections. Afterwards, complete by rendering the section pressing F6 or selecting render from the menu or toolbar. The completed sections can then be exported as a 2D DXF file from the menu by selecting File->Export->DXF.
                                                        create_sections.gif
                                                        create_sections.gif (1.56 MiB) Viewed 1569 times
                                                          I had originally had a menu to select the section but they take so long to generate I decided to do all of them at once. It takes the same mount of time to generate and render one as it does to produce all 5 sections. The unwanted sections can be easily deleted in LibreCad or any DXF editor. The section openings are created from the SBC's mask set.
                                                            Screenshot_2024-02-12_10-06-25.jpg
                                                            Screenshot_2024-02-12_10-06-25.jpg (104.13 KiB) Viewed 1569 times
                                                              Print to scale in LibreCAD
                                                              - Open the DXF with LibreCAD
                                                              - From the menu select Options→Current Drawing Preference→Paper→Letter/ANSI A
                                                              - From the menu select Options→Current Drawing Preference→Units→Millimeter
                                                              - Select Print Preview from the ToolBar or the menu File→Print Preview
                                                              - In the Print Preview View
                                                              - Select 1:1 scale in the upper left corner pick-box
                                                              - Select Center to Page on tool bar(third icon from left).
                                                              - Spool to your printer by pressing the print button on the toolbar.

                                                              Folded Case
                                                              What is missing to produce folded cases is the bend allowance which can be calculated by the formula.

                                                              Bend Allowance = (pi/180 x Inside Radius) + (((pi/180) x k-factor) x Material Thickness)
                                                              or
                                                              Bend Allowance = (0.017453 x Inside Radius) + (0.0078 x Material Thickness)

                                                              The K-factor is the ratio of the neutral axis to the material thickness usually taken from a Machinest Handbook for a given materila type. A generally used value is 0.446 inch and works for many materials. Multiply the material thickness by the K-factor (0.446), you get the location of the relocated neutral axis: for example, 0.062 × 0.446 = 0.027 in. This means that the neutral axis moves from the center of the material to a location 0.027 in. from the inside bend radius’s surface

                                                              Development of a Flat-Blank
                                                              Flat Blank = first leg + bend allowance + second leg
                                                              The bend allowance needs to be added to each bend in the flat blank. For something as thin a 20lb paper you might get away with ignoring it. As the thickness increases it will definitely be needed otherwise the openings will not align properly and the material will not be the right size. This will likely be the approach I'll use when I get to adding folding cases to SBC Case Builder, whether they be made from paper or sheet metal.
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                                                              Re: SBC Case Builder

                                                              Post by mad_ady »

                                                              Love the detailed explanation, thanks!

                                                              Haven't tried it yet, but it's going on my todo list! Wouldn't have thought to account for paper thickness, although, adding it is still over my head :D
                                                              I also hadn't thought of machined (metal) cases... That would be more durable than my paper ideas, but you'd need a laser cutter.

                                                              Two (extra) questions though:
                                                              - your example is around a sbc, and it looks like you are projecting the sbc sides and bottom, but would it work for a case?
                                                              - if you were to project a "box"-like case, would it also project the top? Currently, it looks like it's only projecting the bottom.

                                                              I remember having headaches trying to print to scale (and failing). I'm going to retry based on your advice!

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                                                              Re: SBC Case Builder

                                                              Post by hominoid »

                                                              mad_ady wrote:
                                                              Tue Feb 13, 2024 4:38 am
                                                              Love the detailed explanation, thanks!

                                                              Haven't tried it yet, but it's going on my todo list! Wouldn't have thought to account for paper thickness, although, adding it is still over my head :D
                                                              Don't sweat it, the reality of it is this, I and many others have been making folded paper things and simple origami since 5 years old in Kindergarten and I never recall anyone saying anything about bend allowances, K-factors or relocated neutral axis. :)
                                                              mad_ady wrote:
                                                              Tue Feb 13, 2024 4:38 am
                                                              I also hadn't thought of machined (metal) cases... That would be more durable than my paper ideas, but you'd need a laser cutter.
                                                              Just to be clear and use the right terminology for Manufacturing Engineering,
                                                              Machining refers to a 3D subtractive process were one starts with a piece of material and removes piece from it to form the final object. Mills, lathes and other machines are used in this process. An example of 3D additive manufacturing process, one that starts with nothing and adds material to it in forming the object, is 3D printing. What we are talking about here is Folded Part or Sheet Metal Folding, which is a separate 2D manufacturing process. Large dies are used to stamp out flat blanks and folding machines finish the process.

                                                              Another material besides paper that is worth considering is thin sheet plastic. There is a lot of flat plastic in packaging, whether it is food or other goods, that would work well. It provides a large selection of practice material and a wide variety of thickness and material color, while still being able to use scissors and a knife to cut it and a straight edge to bend it cleanly. It is also much more durable then a paper case which will need replacement overtime.
                                                              mad_ady wrote:
                                                              Tue Feb 13, 2024 4:38 am
                                                              Two (extra) questions though:
                                                              - your example is around a sbc, and it looks like you are projecting the sbc sides and bottom, but would it work for a case?
                                                              What is being projected are the SBC mask openings which are used to make openings for all the cases in SBCCB. The sections created are the four sides and what your calling the bottom, is actually a section of the PCB which is why it has other hole openings. To answer your question, it is a start for making a folding case in 2D but requires extra work in LibreCad.
                                                                How_Sections_are_Created.gif
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                                                                  mad_ady wrote:
                                                                  Tue Feb 13, 2024 4:38 am
                                                                  - if you were to project a "box"-like case, would it also project the top? Currently, it looks like it's only projecting the bottom.
                                                                  Projections are a section of 3D geometry, meaning a 2D representation of bisected geometry. Projecting the top is simply setting up another projection. There really wasn’t a need to provide a section of the top or bottom because their representative of the PCB shape. Remember these are meant to be used in other designs as a means to get registered openings for a given SBC, not as a ends to themselves. Whats important is that there is a standard reference between all the pieces so they can be aligned in other planes e.g. flip them all up and you have most of a 3D case.

                                                                  So a flat blank for a paper case can be made using these sections with additional geometry for flaps and other changes, depending on the style of folding case.
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                                                                  Re: SBC Case Builder

                                                                  Post by mctom »

                                                                  I've been thinking about laser cut aluminum or steel as a SBC case material a few years ago, perhaps I even mentioned it on this forum. I never got around it because I'm yet to find a *reliable* company that can laser cut metal for me, not to mention tight bends.

                                                                  Mixed designs are still in scope of my interests, with flat metal sheets and more sophisticated parts 3D printed. Especially designs where metal sheets also function as heat sinks, in SBCs with easily accessible SoC, such as M1 or N2.

                                                                  I agree with @mad_ady adding the top side projection for completeness might be a good idea. It may be helpful for some to build a complete, crude thin plastic box, and removing unwanted parts in CAD software sounds easier than drawing a missing part.
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                                                                  Re: SBC Case Builder

                                                                  Post by hominoid »

                                                                  Paper folded cases have been added to SBC Case Builder. This is the first case design that does not use additive manufacturing but is a folded part made from a 2D flat blank. The first two cases are specifically designed with paper in mind but sheet metal cases will be visited in the future. The case design name is Paper and there are two styles, Full-Top and Split-Top. These are designed to the PCB size with no gap between the case wall and SBC on any side. This forms a custom fit that keeps the SBC secure without lateral movement in any axis and feels solid...for a paper case.
                                                                    paper_cases.jpg
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                                                                      The Odroid-N2L and Odroid-C4 are using the Full-Top style and the Odroid-M1S is using the Split-Top style. Some SBC may be more suited to one style then the other depending on their port layout, but in general both can usually work. All Heatsink, GPIO and UART mask openings are available to folded cases but they do share a different workflow from the 3D cases so a separate UI tab has been created that holds the variables specific to folded cases.

                                                                      The white paper used above is 110 lbs card stock and is approximately .25mm in thickness with the colored poster paper being heavier, so a larger material thickness of .5mm was used. A Bend Allowance of 1mm was used with both paper thicknesses. The most important variable to get correct is the bottom clearance. The measured bottom clearance used above were C4 3.5mm, N2L 4mm and M1S 6.5mm. They generally still work if your off by a little on the measurements or cutting.
                                                                        making_paper_cases.gif
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                                                                          The slits in the design are there to not only define the folds, but also to provide stress relief so the overall case fit and finish is better. It’s important they are cut straight so use a straight edge for both cutting and folding, making sure to create sharp creases for the best results. Note that the openings for the flaps are cut to the same dimension as the thickness of the material being used. The designs can be exported to DXF or SVG to feed 2D CNC cutters or for printing to scale using LibreCAD or Inkscape for hand cutting.

                                                                          SBC Case Builder version 2.1.1 files updated in the OP.
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                                                                            Post by mctom »

                                                                            I love it! Did you really cut that out by hand?

                                                                            I may have missed it before, but the new fan opening style is also nice. :)
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                                                                            Re: SBC Case Builder

                                                                            Post by mad_ady »

                                                                            Christmas came early! Woohoo! I love it!
                                                                            My N2L is going to finally get a case now!

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                                                                            Re: SBC Case Builder

                                                                            Post by rooted »

                                                                            Awesome, makes a case accessible for anyone.

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                                                                            Re: SBC Case Builder

                                                                            Post by hominoid »

                                                                            mctom wrote:
                                                                            Mon Feb 19, 2024 12:47 pm
                                                                            I love it! Did you really cut that out by hand?
                                                                            These cases aren’t that complicated to cut since they are mostly straight lines but one does need to take their time. Having cut many complicated etch masks and other templates by hand, I know it helps to use the right tools if they are available. Cutting curves with a fixed blade knife is a painful experience even for an experienced cutter. A swivel knife is what is needed to get good results. They can rotate 360 degrees as one cuts and makes complex shapes and curves much easier and cleaner to make. The other thing that can help significantly is using a repositionable adhesive on your cutting mat, such as Easy Tack. This is especially import for small detail cuts where material can easily get pulled and torn by the friction of cutting. But to answer your question, No. SVG output from SBC Case Builder was fed to a 2 axis CNC cutter. :)
                                                                              paper_cutting_tools.jpg
                                                                              paper_cutting_tools.jpg (81.29 KiB) Viewed 176 times
                                                                                mad_ady wrote:
                                                                                Mon Feb 19, 2024 2:45 pm
                                                                                Christmas came early! Woohoo! I love it!
                                                                                My N2L is going to finally get a case now!
                                                                                Merry Christmas mad_ady!
                                                                                rooted wrote:
                                                                                Tue Feb 20, 2024 4:02 am
                                                                                Awesome, makes a case accessible for anyone.
                                                                                Bingoooo! I think OEM's should be mandated to ship all SBC in such a case. :)

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                                                                                Re: SBC Case Builder

                                                                                Post by mctom »

                                                                                I've never seen a swivel knife like that. I own one for leather crafting but I don't think it would make clean cuts in paper. :)
                                                                                hominoid wrote:
                                                                                Tue Feb 20, 2024 4:30 am
                                                                                Bingoooo! I think OEM's should be mandated to ship all SBC in such a case. :)
                                                                                I was thinking about making a similar comment, but I think many consumers would find that cheap, and not cute and practical.
                                                                                If the SBC box could be reused as a well tailored case, now that would be cool, but designing it would be a completely different challenge.

                                                                                Some of the supplies I buy for my cat have boxes designed to be repurposed as cat toys.
                                                                                Needlessly though, the box itself is enjoyable with no modifications. ;)
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                                                                                Re: SBC Case Builder

                                                                                Post by hominoid »

                                                                                Mask and stencil cutting is the only place I have seen swivel knifes used and why I thought to include it, as some might not be familiar with the technology. My CNC cutter uses a similar type of swivel blade so it can make sharp turns and change direction without tearing things up. The same thing applies to manual hand cutting. FYI, different blade angles are available too for different material and thicknesses.

                                                                                I thought the same thing about the SBC box case, it would have to be done very well or might be seen as a cheap marketing gimmick by some. I think the repurposed cat product box toy might be targeted towards the humans and not the cat. :)

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                                                                                Re: SBC Case Builder

                                                                                Post by mad_ady »

                                                                                The "Christmas" holidays and kid's school holiday kept me busy, as always, but I managed to sneak an hour for myself, and behold, the result!
                                                                                Once printed it took about 10 minutes to cut out and fold, with primitive tools (a pair of scissors and a cutter). Used a glue stick to glue the back side folds, but for now, kept the front and top unglued. I'll check if it comes apart easily, and maybe glue the front and keep the top accessible. The paper is regular thickness, but it's ok for something that will sit on a desk or shelf.

                                                                                Anyway, I'm very happy with the result, and wish @hominoid all the best for his efforts!
                                                                                These users thanked the author mad_ady for the post (total 2):
                                                                                mctom (Sat Feb 24, 2024 3:40 pm) • hominoid (Sat Feb 24, 2024 10:52 pm)

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                                                                                Re: SBC Case Builder

                                                                                Post by hominoid »

                                                                                I hadn't tried one with regular weight paper but it appears to work. Covering all or part of the case with some packing tape or similar tape might provide more rigidity to support the folds better and increase overall durability of the case for the long run.

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                                                                                Re: SBC Case Builder

                                                                                Post by L67GS »

                                                                                I assume the template gets printed on the paper? If so, I wonder if thin acrylic such as those cheap colored binder separators would hold ink?

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