New and Old Electronics Case

So I saved this old Milwaukee Metal Tool box from the scrap pile at work. Not sure how old it is but not many tools come in a metal tool case anymore. When I grabbed it I thought of how perfect it might fit my X-Carve electronics. I’ve been holding onto it for almost 6 months and finally got a Dremel for Christmas allowing me to cut the appropriate holes for cables.


You might want to insulate that sucker if it’s made of steel. Said another way, you should insulate that if it is conductive or find a non-conductive electronics case.

Good to know! Will get on this asap… if I lined it with thin plywood would that be sufficient?

Any electrical people out there that have advice for @TravisLucia? Maybe @LarryM?

I would use rubber grommets on all openings you cut in the sides to protect wires and fingers. Heat will also be a concern, be sure to have an adequately sized fan blowing air in and a enough holes to allow the hot air to escape. You should also ground the box just to be sure you do not pick up a charge on it and fry the electronics inside it.

1 Like

Can anyone be more specific as to why???

I just finished my enclosure using an old fire control box. It is a metal enclosure as well. Should I be concerned and consider changing this?

Metal cases can be used effectively with electronics. In fact, until recent times all electronics enclosures were metal.

You just have to be aware of some things to make sure that they are safe and used properly.

First make sure that you use a three wire connection to the power grid. The ground wire from the plug should be connected to the metal case. No other wire or electrical component should come into contact with the metal case.

The other two wires are neutral and hot. Make sure that these wires do not touch the metal case and also are completely covered so that if the case is open you cannot make contact with either wire.

All holes in the case for wires to pass through should be protected so that the wires that pass through them are not subject to any abrasion or sharp edges (as mentioned above use quality grommets or appropriate trim).

Adequate air flow must be provided to cool the electronics. This usually means at least one fan and ports for the air to move through the box if the box is going to be operated as a closed unit.

One of the advantages of a metal enclosure is that they provide a level of protection from external electrical interference. You can still get interference on the wires entering and leaving the box, but radio frequency transmissions will be severely attenuated. This is a fancy way to say that your wireless network won’t interfere with your X-carve electronics if they are in a metal box.

Probably a few other things I’m not thinking about right now, but that covers the basics.


Thanks Larry, I should be covered then.