View Full Version : Numbering cubes

12-11-2012, 10:19 AM
I wanted to use small cubes to number objects in a case, but found that they are difficult to come by or are very expensive, so I looked into making some in-house. I found that McMaster-Carr sells clear acrylic cubes, and I have a vinyl cutter, so I didn't think it would be too difficult.

First, I created an illustrator file to place the numbers as a batch, rather than doing individual cubes. I needed 30, so I made a file with two rows of fifteen numbers, as shown. these were then cut in black vinyl.


Then, I made a simple jig to hold the cubes together. The sizes were not quite exact, so it took a little rearranging and shimming to get reasonably even rows:

Then, I premasked the numbers...

And then taped the numbers to align with the rows of blocks. Due to variations in size, I only placed a few columns at a time, to help keep things centered:

The finished product. A little off-centered toward the right end, but fixable, and way less money than buying pre-made. ($50 materials/30 minutes labor)

These are large (1" cubes) due to our audience demographic, but the same principle could be used for 1/2" cubes. Let me know how you have solved this.



T. Ashley McGrew
12-11-2012, 11:49 AM

Very cool solution! I especially like the illustrated step-by-step you provide. The way the demographics are going in general bigger cubes are probably the way to go for most institutions. Thanks for the contribution!


Jamie Hascall
12-13-2012, 09:36 AM
We just used a similar cube numbering in our latest show and had a situation where the white numbers were vanishing in the background case color being transmitted through the cube. Our graphic designer Monica Meehan designed an inverted T form and had them cut out of black vinyl. By applying the vinyl to the bottom, back, and sides (think wrapping the arms of the T up each face) she now had beautiful black cubes and the numbering stood out.