We’ve been working on a line of official compact plastic enclosures for Pixelblaze. While the design will undoubtedly evolve, we have our first variant ready for some feedback.
The first variant can hold a Pixelblaze and can also optionally house a sensor board (as long as the sensor board is soldered in a compact stack right below the Pixelblaze).
I’d like to send a free prototype to the first five people who DM me here. Send me your shipping address in a private message. If you have a 3D printer, I can send you the .stl files to try printing it yourself.
If you can commit to putting it through some testing and sending us your thoughts, we’ll send you a prototype. We’ll cover the first $10 of shipping, which should make shipping free for most US-based destinations. Eventually, we’ll sell this and additional versions in the shop.
Other variants we’re considering might accommodate an output expander, a sensor board that’s been connected using the removable female pin header, a waterproof/outdoor version, or other physical arrangements.
To get a sense of what to prioritize next, please answer the following polls ONLY if you’re fairly certain you’d want to buy one (we’ll likely provide files for people who want to print their own). Assume each variant costs somewhere in the $9-$19 range (depending on materials and complexity).
Do you need one that could contain a sensor board that’s connected using the taller removable female header?
- Yes - and my sensor board is typically mounted above the Pixelblaze
- Yes - and my sensor board is typically mounted below the Pixelblaze
Do you need a version that also encloses an output expander? It would be bigger of course, which might not be desirable for wearables or tighter spaces.
What’s your ideal color for the plastic case?
- Clear or at least hazy/translucent - see some electronics
- Matte black - good for open mounting in dark environments. Can cover the onboard status LED.
- Something with character, like the purple/green/copper one in the video
- White or other solid color
Do you need one that’s outdoor/waterproof?
For most of your projects, would you prefer:
- Easy access. Larger is fine, in fact, it’s a feature to be able to get in there easily with my fingers, solder stuff to the pads and pins, decide to add expansion boards later, and be able to see all the connections when I open the case.
- Keep it as compact as possible, as long as it’s workable. I want to put it a pocket or mount it in a tight space.
I like the thinking of different versions based on what is needed. For my current project I have my own boxes but the mounting of the board is not great. I would LOVE to have a small adapter that would A. hold the board and B allow me to secure it to some other container or surface. so for my purposes I don’t need a cover so it can be fairly minimal, but it would be great to have separate mounting cases for each of the board types PB3, Expander, and the Sensor Board. Material doesn’t really mater solid colors are ok. For my sensor board I have it outside in a waterproof clear case so I can sense the light and other things. It would be great to have a smaller unit for this with external waterproof connectors of some kind. Some pictures below of what I am working with currently for reference.
Thanks for the input! We’re definitely considering this the most robust route to a waterproof enclosure, and already have our eyes on exactly the kind of boxes you use!
Our first production version has landed, and we’re making it available for free for anyone to print!
Thank you SO MUCH to all the beta testers for your feedback. We implemented all your suggestions.
What you need to know:
- You’ll need at least 2 M2 screws
- Please feel free to cut off any mounting tabs you’re not using. Flush cutters work well.
- This version is only meant to be used with either:
a) A lone Pixelblaze standard (all versions to present including V2 and V3) - but note that you’ll have an open line-in hole and plenty of space under the board.
b) A Pixelblaze standard with a sensor expansion board soldered close below the Pixelblaze
Based on your poll feedback above, our next priority will be an ultra-slim Pixelblaze-only version, and one that accommodates a sensor board mounted above the Pixelblaze using the removable pin header.
Improvements over the prototype shared above:
- Slim tabs on top and bottom are perfect for affixing to a pole, such as a bike tube
- Improved overhang strain relief shelf prints well on most 3D printers
- Printed-in-place button
- Optional insertable USB power hole cover. There is no cover for the line-in jack hole because we assume you’ll either cover it with heavy-duty tape or be using the slim PB-only version.
- Much easier board insertion with positioning guides
- A third screw hole in the top right corner
- Knockouts (use a hobby knife) that give you easy access to all pins and solder pads
- The design accommodates an upcoming solderless Pixelblaze version with JST-XH connector as well as the existing ones with the green output screw terminal.
we’ll soon be we are selling this in the Electromage Shop. The version we sell has:
- Printed in carbon fiber black, with a dark purple logo inlay and translucent status LED light pipe
- A subtle output pins label
- Perfect fit screws + spares (M2 x 8 black self-tapping flat Phillips head)
- A mini screwdriver
- Zip ties for the strain relief shelf
- Heavy-duty high-tack sticker to cover the status LED hole from the inside for installation in pitch-black environments where you don’t want to see the onboard LED.
- Instructions card
You can also print or remix the model yourself. See on GitHub for:
- .f3D Fusion 360 model
- .STEP version (enhanced precision)
- .stl files per body
- Bambu Labs .3mf file with our suggested print settings (a mostly-stock Arachne slice with 0.2mm layer height)
We’re excited to make this available for everyone and welcome your ongoing feedback!
I love it! I’ve printed “a few” of the revisions along the way. There’s been a ton of iteration and improvement here!
hey all – just a “feature request”, having just set up three “power cases” for a big install, with three PixelBlazes + Output Expander (the cheap one).
I like the new cases – after digging through so many project box options and not liking any of them, this looks great.
No burn on this, just wanted to offer feedback.
- a case version for the PB + OE soldered together in a “stack” with the screw mount connector
- accommodation for the 12v-5v buck convertor – maybe a slot it can sit in? (or some clever way of attaching it to the PB itself?)
- mounting tabs/screw-holes on the PB itself – be nice to secure this in a way that I can undo – I’ve thought of using VHB tape to keep the wires from moving around, but don’t want the commitment.
anyway – nice work! def. consider this for my next build.
Thanks! We’re on it and definitely going to incorporate many of the features you mention.