Raspberry Pi Enclosure Assembly Instructions

Raspberry Pi Enclosure

Assembling your Raspberry Pi enclosure is relatively straight forward if you've ever built any t-slot based laser cut stuff before, but here's a full guide with lots of pictures to help you assemble the whole thing that'll have you housing your Raspberry Pi in no time.

Step 1: Prep the Parts

Removing mask from laser cut parts

The laser cut acrylic parts of the kit have a protective mask that keeps the parts from getting scratched up or marred during cutting. You'll need to peel this mask off all the parts before assembly.

Step 2: Insert the Nuts

Tape the 4 M3 nuts in place on the spanning piece with some scotch or masking tape. This step is optional, but can really make your life easier later on. Make sure not to cover up the light pipe holes (the 5 small, tightly spaced holes) in the process.

Step 3: Insert the Bolts and Install the Light Pipes

Now comes the time to bolt on the power/SD side and the USB/Ethernet side to the spanning piece. Don't tighten the bolts all the way in just yet, we'll need some wiggle room to install the rest of the parts. Pay attention to the tabs on the spanning piece and make sure they line up with the two sides with the labeled sides facing out.

Slide the light pipe pieces in at this time as well as shown above.

Step 4: Install the Composite Out/Audio Out Side

Now it's time to install the composite video out/audio out side. Carefully line up the the light pipe parts with the holes and slide the side on. Again, don't tighten the bolts down just yet. If you plan on using a ribbon cable extension (like this one) to access the expansion port externally, now is the time to get it slid through the expansion slot.

Step 5: Install the Raspberry Pi Board

Now carefully insert the Raspberry Pi main board without the SD card in place. It should stay in place from this point on without much effort, but you might want to insert the SD card after getting the board in the enclosure to help keep in in place anyways. Again, if you want to install a ribbon cable to access the GPIO port, make sure to have it in place and installed before continuing on.

Step 6: Install the HDMI Side

Now slide the HDMI side into place.

Step 7: Install the Bottom

Next, place the PCB standoff part and insert it into the bottom piece. Slide it into place with the PCB standoff towards the SD card side.

Step 8: Install Top

Install the top just as you did the bottom piece, tighten the bolts down, and you're done!

Your enclosure should now look something like this:

Raspberry Pi EnclosureRaspberry Pi EnclosureRaspberry Pi EnclosureRaspberry Pi EnclosureRaspberry Pi EnclosureRaspberry Pi Enclosure

Black acrylic kits are available here, and a limited number of translucent purple acrylic kits are available here. Oh, and you can grab the design files on Thingiverse if you need them!

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88 Responses to “Raspberry Pi Enclosure Assembly Instructions”

  1. […] you’re still waiting for your Raspberry Pi to be delivered, why not build an enclosure for it? This build comes from the fruitful workshop of [builttospec], and gives the Raspi a very nice […]

  2. mitselec says:

    that is one sleek looking enclosure. kudos to you , man 🙂

  3. uw says:

    wow what a great looking case! Probably the most professional I’ve seen. I’m going to order one as soon as i get my vapor ware raspberry PI.

  4. Ross Bell says:

    I just received my my case went to together well , but be careful with light pipes they have a tendency to break when removing the blue covering, this is really a great looking case, kudos to you…. Ross

  5. Emil Dahlberg says:

    I received my enclosure kit today. You have made a very great looking and functional case for my Raspberry Pi! Easy to assemble(especially if one reads the instructions!).

    Thanks for your quick service and quality product.

    I have one more Raspberry Pi to put into an enclosure to mount by VESA mounting screws to the back of my monitor. I have a larger project case, which I want to include a powered USB hub in. I probably will need to add some ventilation because of the added hardware and location(back of monitor).

    Let me know if you come out with a similar design. I am sure my quality will not match yours, and it would be less stress to purchase from you!

    Thanks again.

    Emil

  6. Craig says:

    I like the idea of a VESA mount. I’ll get on that after the initial rush of orders dies down!

  7. Patrick J says:

    Received the black case and had it together in no time at all. I really like the quality and precision. One question: Would it be possible to “paint” the engraved letterings, etc. with a silver sharpie before the protective film is removed? It would make it a lot easier to see the labels on the black case. Of course I thought of this AFTER I peeled off the film – duh!

  8. Craig says:

    I’ll be posting some pics in the next day or two and describing my experience with filling the labeling with corrective fluid after removing the mask. It seems like it’s fairly easy to get good results even with the cheap stuff.

  9. Fabryz says:

    I like it very much. The only thing that could concern me is about heating/air ventilation: what can you tell us?

  10. Craig says:

    I haven’t used the board to do any real heavy lifting, but it seems to be fine in the enclosure. I might add some ventilation features just to be safe on the next iteration since people seem to be fairly concerned about it. My experience with embedded systems leads me to believe it should be fine so long as you keep the whole thing in a nice environment, so don’t try and run it with the CPU pegged in your car in direct sunlight in the summer or anything and you should be good.

  11. Tom says:

    Got my enclosures today (still waiting on the second RasPi). The fit and finish are nice, but my old arthritic fingers took a while to get it assembled. I recommend a nice bright light for assembly, especially with the black color. One bit broke off – the side of a screw slot, but it doesn’t seem to cause any problems; the case is plenty rigid. I’d like to know about the results with white correction fluid in highlighting the engraved lettering. The online instruction sheet was absolutely essential. Overall, it is a great product and I’m glad I bought two!

  12. Craig says:

    I’ve already posted it up here.

  13. two_sheds says:

    Hi Craig,
    That’s a really nice case.

    I like the fact that it is a proper case, not just a top & bottom and some spacer panels, and I like the fact that you’ve considered the camera and lcd pcb connectors, but I can’t see how these are accessible when the top panel is in place? Perhaps the top panel is optional? Is the case sturdy without it fitted?

    I’ve also seen the YouTube video of the clear case you made as a custom order:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZY2Z1FR3Ptw

    Do you have any plans to manufacture more clear cases?

    Final question: do you ship to the UK, or have a UK reseller?

  14. Craig says:

    The top doesn’t hold the case together so it’s entirely optional. I’m probably going to be throwing a clear variant up in the store starting next week since I’ve gotten a reasonable number of requests for them.

    I do ship to the UK, but international shipping is a little pricey, so international shipping starts at $16US through the store.

  15. […] like a filing cabinet or a mini rack-mounted server, this Built to Spec laser-cut acrylic case looks like serious […]

  16. Chuck says:

    Received my enclosures at 4pm had one assembled by 4:25 with a lot of the time spent peeling the protective tape off.

    Take the advice about using a bit of tape for the nuts. The box looks as good in real life as the pics. The light pipes really add something.

    Excellent job, I’ll buy more assuming I ever see another Rpi board in the mail.

  17. Jason says:

    I just received my case today and set it up without any problems. This is a very functional case and looks great. Thanks for making a great product and the fast service!

  18. […] like a filing cabinet or a mini rack-mounted server, this? Built to Spec? laser-cut acrylic case looks like serious […]

  19. Michael says:

    Just received my purple case today and had it put together in an hour! This is an amazing design … my hat’s off to you!!!! It’s a thing of beauty that will now occupy a prominent spot on my ham radio bench!!

  20. Geoff says:

    It took me 1 hour 45 mins to assemble because I ignored the sticky tape on the nuts – you need it, take my advice, it is easy to peel off the sticky tape at the end before you do Step 8 Install Top.

    I also made an initial mistake with Step 3. The Power/SD side goes on RHS if you are looking at the Step 3 photo and the USB/Ethernet on the LHS. That is not obvious from looking at the Step 3 photo but it is from the Step 5 photo.

    I’m very pleased with the assembled product, a highly professional appearance in black and the light pipes are great, too. Thanks.

  21. Dave says:

    After getting the kit amazingly fast after ordering, I spent a good 20 minutes attempting to assemble this using little more than my wits. I finally gave up, came here, and had it together in about a minute.

    Perfect case. Snug and well made. Love it! I will order more once I can get another Pi.

  22. Rich M. says:

    Awesome Case!! Thanks!

  23. Adam says:

    This case is by far the best made and best looking. It was shipped quickly after ordering. The case is extremely well made. I followed the assembly instructions and the case fits the pi perfrectly! Great job! Thanks!

  24. Dave R says:

    what a super case the fit is snug and they look fantastic easy assembly and the light pipes are to die for thanks for a great design hope to see more from your site for the APC Card just released 🙂

  25. KG Thompson says:

    Use a white, yellow or other colored crayon to fill the etchings. Slightly heat the crayon and rub it over the etchings to fill them, then use a damp paper towel to clear the piece (set the towel down flat and rub the piece over it).

    Super case, great work!

  26. Brad says:

    Any word on the clear top? It’d be awesome if you’d sell just the top piece, or offer a kit with both black and clear tops for a bit extra. One for “show and tell” and the other for the stealth look… Thanks!

  27. Miah says:

    Built mine today!! Used the specs/drawings and was lucky enough to find a laser machine. I edited it a little (I know I didn’t need to) but I put some air vents on the top and bottom. Next version will have a graphic etched in the top. *TIP* if you are fortunate enough to have access to a laser machine, DO NOT use lexan as the laser will melt and/or warp the material. You want acrylic for the best results.

    http://www.mediafire.com/view/?9zqvrgujvzitv#zne55408e2c38u5
    http://www.mediafire.com/view/?9zqvrgujvzitv#s8qmx2343w90179
    http://www.mediafire.com/view/?9zqvrgujvzitv#2q220cverqy2jfw

    The other photos in the album are from the first “home” I made for my Pi.

  28. Pat Kozak says:

    Very nice design. Nice that an extra bolt, nut and light pipe were included. Moded the top to accept an on/off switch routed the wires to power hole, added a diode and solid state fuse and hard wired power to board, added green power on LED indicator on top next to switch. Very nice design, material and instuctions. Highly recomend.

  29. Dennis Troyer says:

    Wonderful enclosure. Hardest part of the whole procedure was removing the protective paper! Great instruction\photos on site.

  30. Miles Baskett IV says:

    Just received my case in the mail today. Everything is awesome! Now my raspi feels like a computer. The laser cutting is top notch as well, and it went together in under 10 minutes. Great piece and design.

  31. […] terms of the enclosure you’ll see below in the photo section, it is laser-etched acrylic purchased from this site, and I can’t recommend it highly enough.  For a very cheap price, you get a sleek-looking […]

  32. Russ says:

    Great enclosure design , Top marks for the share as well .
    Very happy how its turned out 🙂

  33. Adrian says:

    Ok, I love the case now that I’ve got it assembled. I am please with the results. The case is beautiful and the etched labels make it so professional looking. It took me about 45 minutes and two tries to get everything together. I would highly recommend using the scotch tape method. At one point in the first attempt, I almost decided to glue the nuts in place, but the tape works well and can be removed once the Raspberry Pi is in place. I did leave one piece of tape inside to hold the standoff in place for the final install. I don’t think it’ll bother anything. This has really got me thinking about getting a laser cutting station for myself. I starting to think about other cases I could build using the same concept. Does anyone know if there are services where I can submit my design for cutting?

  34. Rob F says:

    Went together like a charm. Looks great!
    Now I’ve just got to figure out this “Linux” thing… 🙂
    And yeah, the blinky light pipes are elegantly brilliant.

  35. John says:

    Thanks Craig! Excellent product and the custom engraving looks great! Will definitely order another one if I decide to get another RPi!

  36. Kevin says:

    Got the case today… black.

    It is is nice it comes with extra parts, Extra screw, nut and light pipe. Taking the protective tape off the parts took a while.

    Even using the tape tip, this was one of the more involved assemblies I’ve done in a while. At one point, while trying to see why the box was not fitting, I turned it over and the light pipes all found out… found 4 of the 5 so the extra one was helpful. Still haven’t found the missing one.

    At the end, I was to the point of putting the cover one and one of the screws nut apparently had come out of the slot and I could not tighten it. Ending up removing it, nut fell out… At that point I taped the whole unit together, removed the end that the screw came out of, the top, then sitting up, I put in one nut carefully and got the screw started and then the second. After I got that, I was able to squeeze the top back on and it was finished.

    Will be easier the next time I think.

  37. Rich says:

    My purple Pi cases just arrived. I’ve tested the fit, and everything is cut perfectly!

    Any tips someone can share about removing the masking? I don’t want to risk scratching the plastic by doing anything wrong.

  38. Rich says:

    A great kit, I’m blown away by the quality. But please, can you share any tips on removing the paper masking? I don’t want to risk using any type of solvent that may damage the plastic.

  39. Craig says:

    Don’t use any solvents, acrylic does not like them! It’s kinda annoying to have to remove the paper after cutting but it preserves the nice mirror finish on the acrylic through the handling and cutting processes. I haven’t found a good way to mechanically peel the paper mask off just yet other than finding a person with fingernails to get the things started. If anyone has some good tips, I’m all ears!

  40. Craig says:

    I haven’t found any good tips as of yet…

  41. Rich says:

    I’ve found a natural citrus oil product called “Goo Gone” that many of the people who work with acrylic are raving about for removing the paper backing without damaging the surface. Most hardware stores, plus Wal-Mart, sell it in the paint section for about $5.

  42. Craig says:

    I found this:
    http://www.delviesplastics.com/mm5/merchant.mvc?Screen=CTGY&Store_Code=DPI&Category_Code=Goo_Gone

    It seems like that might be an option for some hard to remove stuff but I’m not sure if it’ll help you get the paper started.

  43. Patrick says:

    I just assembled it, it’s a great case 🙂

    Well worth the $16 shipping cost to the UK.

  44. Patrick says:

    by the way, you should delete those “[…]” spambot comments…

  45. Craig says:

    The ones listed here should be legit trackbacks. The ones that come from random aggregators have been deleted for the most part I believe.

  46. A Murder of Crows says:

    I should have read the comments before asking. This is my #1 case want. I just want to see it in clear, like the YouTube video had.

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