Switch tv process

I always knew I wanted to create some type of frame for my TV.

I had seen other people make picture frames and other cool designs.


My initial idea was to create the frame to look like a Game Boy Color (my first game system).

I knew it would probably need to be free standing, and I thought it would be cool to have a shelf at the bottom under the screen. Unfortunately, I realized that a Game Boy Color would not work due to the shape of the screen. A Game Boy's screen is a square, where as most TVs (and the one I had) are very narrow rectangles. I thought it would look foolish to have such large black areas to fit the TV in a square screen.


Next I landed on a Nintendo 3DS. The shape of the screen was more of a rectangle and still had the ability to be free standing. I even considered putting an additional screen at the bottom. Unfortunately, I realized the design of the 3DS was going to be difficult. When open, the top of the 3DS screen comes out farther than the bottom to allow for it to swivel close. This was going to be difficult to support the TV, especially because the top would not be flush to the wall.

I decided it was too difficult of a design to create.


Finally, the idea of a Nintendo Switch hit me. The Switch was the perfect design because the center console looks like a miniature TV. Also, the Switch is the current console and has had some of my favorite games on it (Super Mario Odyssey & Breath of the Wild).

I began to design the plans to make it. Below is the process I used to create it. 





I printed out a picture of the Switch and made it into a transparency.

Using an overhead projector, I was able to project a picture of the Switch on the wall to see where I wanted to put it and how big I needed to make it. 


The first step was to calculate the size of each piece of the Switch cabinet. I didn't trust myself to make the calculations manually, so I projected the Switch on the wall to actually measure each piece. I started by knowing the size of my TV (65 inches). From there, I moved the overhead projector until the screen of the Switch picture reached 65 inches. From there, I measured everything (buttons, edges, curves, distances from the edges, etc.).

I recorded everything on this piece of paper and used it as my master blueprint. 


The Joy-Cons were the most difficult part of the cabinet to make. They were difficult due to the curved nature of the Joy-Con. I researched various ways to curve wood, and ultimately decided against it. Instead, I made the curved pieces by lining up pieces of wood on top of each other. I started with one piece, which looked like a large, very wide U shape. I then traced that 10 times on 10 different pieces of wood. I cut each piece out and then stacked them. From there, I glued and nailed them together. I used a belt sander along the sides to smooth out all of the pieces until they were even. Smoothing out the pieces made them look like one solid piece. I then added two more pieces, however this time they were not hollow. These two pieces served as the front cover and the back panel. Finally, on the front covers, I used an edge router to round the edges of the door to match the curvature of the Joy-Cons. In the picture below, you can see all of the pieces stacked on top of each other.

Here is the outline of the frame. The difficult part was making sure that the frame was sturdy while still ensuring there was enough room for the TV to fit inside. The front cover needed to sit right on top of the TV frame without touching the screen, which is tricky with the frames of new TVs being so thin these days. I also left holes on the top and bottom of the frame to allow for air flow and for cables to be able to dangle down.

I didn't have access to a 3D printer, so instead I went out in search of items that could work as the various buttons on the controllers. I spent many days combing through A.C. Moore, Lowes,  Michael's, and various others stores looking for just the right size or shape. The first picture below is of some wooden circles which I used to make the home button.


I found cheap containers with large wooded lids in the craft section of A.C. Moore that were the perfect size to be my buttons. I purchased some custom decals from eBay and used those on each button for the letters and triangles.


The joysticks were the hardest to make. The top is made from a thick wooden circle. I used an edge router to cut out the middle section and the 4 gaps on the edges. The bottom of the joystick is actually a plastic bowl that I found on Amazon. The bowl has a lip at the bottom which the top sits on. I needed to cut a perfectly matching hole in the panel and then place the bowl inside. The other pictures contain the pieces in place before I painted and glued them. You can see the bowl on the bottom right of the second picture.

The paint was also difficult to find. Both Joy-Cons are very bright, neon colors. The texture of the Joy-Cons also would not allow the color to be scanned, therefore I had to improvise. I found a website that gave the rough color output of each of the Joy-Cons. I brought those to a Sherwin Williams and made a color that worked. Unfortunately, it only worked for the blue color.

The pink was still too bright. I shopped around the Blick Store and found a neon pink paint.

I sampled it and it looked very close to the correct color. I think it turned out well!


I painted all three pieces (the 2 Joy-Cons and the frame). The last step was to mount the frame onto the wall. The TV was already mounted to the wall. I bought a wall mount that was adjustable so that I could easily position and move the TV. I used screws to drill the frame into the wall.

It was a little difficult to get the frame at just the right height. I also made a mistake and had to take everything down and mount it again. However, after much hassle, I finally got it up!


The final piece was to add the Joy-Con covers to the frame. I wanted them to be able to come off. I originally wanted to make them shelves, but I realized the weight would be too great. Instead, I just made them open airwaves to help relieve heat. I wanted to use hinges for the doors, but the angles wouldn't work due to the width of the edge. Instead, I found small rolling brackets for the back. I used 3 of them on each side.



And finally... the finished design!

I am super happy with the way it turned out!

It is definitely the biggest eye-catcher when people enter the room! 



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