I recently bought myself a copy of the card game Fluxx. While it has its critics (it is a bit too dependent on luck), I remain a fan.
The cards come in a cardboard box, which has got a bit battered in my bike panniers. Time to make another (better) one!
Fluxx has four card types: Keepers, Rules, Goals and Actions. Each has a simple and distinctive symbol and colour, which I wanted to display on the box, one per side. Also, I wanted to keep the box closed using the method of embedding rare earth magnets in it somewhere.
The basic concept I settled on was an open box and enclosing lid, both lasercut using designs adapted from the wonderful BoxMaker tool. It would have magnets in two sides, concealed with veneer cutouts in the shape of the Fluxx symbols. The top would have FLUXX lettering in the same style and colours as the game.
I started with the basic box design, and converted the Fluxx bitmaps I needed into paths in Inkscape. Once the basic design was laid out, I decided that each symbol would be in black veneer inside a circle of veneer of the appropriate colour. The magnets I chose were about 4mm wide and 2mm deep, just right for fitting in circular cutouts in the middle of the “Goal” and “Action” symbols (a square and an arrow).
I also added finger cutouts to make opening the box easier.
The veneer symbols were cut next. The picture shows the waste cutouts, and how very, very, delicate they are.
The veneer was very carefully glued into place and clamped to dry.
The inside of the box was much easier. The same method of magnets-under-veneer was used, but I could just do simple circles of plain veneer.
Finally, the two halves were glued, sanded and oiled. I also sanded off the edges of the outside to round them off a bit.
It remains to be seen how will this box will stand up to a battering in my panniers, but I’m very happy with how it looks.