Finding time to get to this little (well at least I thought it would be little!) project to build the Google Cardboard Virtual Reality (VR) headset has been a struggle over the Xmas and New Year period. I originally found inspiration after playing with the Oculus Rift at a VR meeting (click here to read my original post).
My big mistake has been in using a very thick, solid cardboard (often called ‘boxboard’ used for architectural models) since it’s what I had lying around. It’s an absolute nightmare to cut all the details through about 3mm of card! The only upside is that the pieces I have completed are very rigid, so I don’t feel worried about putting my phone in there. The photos above show the process of printing the templates from Google (image 1), cutting them out (image 2), and then tracing and cutting these from cardboard (image 3). I really only have the eye holes left to go, and think I might try using a dremel to get these right. With a knife I fear they will just end up severely hacked!
Since I’ve been asked to give a talk about the opportunities and limitations of 3D printing and virtual reality, I might also try some of the freely available 3D printable headsets for comparison. I bought 2 sets of 25x45mm lenses from Ebay, so can try a few different things. Stay tuned for the completed Google Cardboard and 3D printed headsets over the coming days. If I can find time, I’d love to design and print my own, there’s not much out there at the moment.
– Posted by James Novak