The FAA recently asked me to come up with a solution for mounting one of my Wake Turbulence Timers at a location with a metal console panel; they didn't want to cut a hole through the panel but preferred a surface-mount solution instead. One hard requirement was that it use a standard timer with no modifications in case the timer had to be replaced at some time in the future.
T-Slots and Tabs
I have used t-slots in laser-cut acrylic before to make a stand-alone enclosure for use in a training center but I'm not sure that approach will stand up to day-to-day use and abuse past the point where I no longer care. The technique is handy for some applications but perhaps not a heavy-duty industrial application.
Apparently I haven't posted about the t-slot method here before, so I'll touch on it lightly. In a t-slot joint, one panel has tabs that fit into slots on the mating panel, and a t-slot that's (typically) sized to fit a 3mm nut across the flats. A screw goes through the mating panel into the nut and is tightened to hold the joint secure.
Outstanding! I absolutely love your articles Jon! Nice work and the finished enclosure is amazing! Not only that, I put this whole article in my OneNote because you touched on something I want to learn a LOT more about! Simple machining using aluminum.
Thank you Jon for another amazing contribution and the time it took to create it! Digital DIY and myself and its other members are lucky to have you here!!
I am blown away by this article Jon, and thank you for writing it! I have a 1000 uses in mind for aluminum parts and extrusions, and it is articles like this that make the impossible - possible. THANK YOU SIR!