Popsicle Stick Preparation

We'll need two popsicle sticks to make the mounting unit for the enclosure. One stick will be the base that holds the electronic components, the other will be to make two legs to offset the base enough so the DC jack from the solar panel can reach the solar charging unit in the enclosure correctly.

Base Stick Preparation

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Base stick dimensions for mounting holes.

Find the master dimension sheet for the base stick above. Each time you see M2.5 and M3, these represent different sized holes needed for specific mounting screws. The solar charger unit will use the M2.5 screws and the CPX and one side of the offset legs will use the M3 screws.

  • Take one of the popsicle sticks and draw a line though the center  length wise at 5/16" and width wise at 2 & 3/4".
     
  • Next draw an X 1.5625" or 1 & 9/16" to the left and right of the center of the stick. Label these with an M3. These will connect to the offset legs later.
     
  • Now draw an X 0.4375" or 7/16" to the left of the right side M3 X we just drew and 1/8" from the bottom edge of the stick. From this X draw another  1 & 3/4" to the left and 1/8" from the top edge of the stick. Label these M3 as well. They will be for the CPX. 
     
  • Lastly draw an X 0.4375" or 7/16" to the right of M3 X we drew on the left hand side. Now take the solar charger unit and hold it so that the capacitor is on the left side and with the left mounting hole over the X we just drew, mark the stick through the right side hole while making sure the unit is aligned parallel with the stick. edge. This will close to guarantee that the holes are the right distance to mount the unit. 

Drill Holes and Remove Excess

  • Use a clamp to hold the popsicle stick in place when drilling. Drill into stick on top of a table with some scrap wood or similar material underneath as to not damage the table.
     
  • Use a 3/32" drill bit to drill holes for all M3 labeled Xs.
     
  • Use a #46 drill bit (0.081") for all M2.5 labeled Xs.
     
  • To remove excess on ends, hold stick over table edge so the cut line is aligned with edge. Hold one hand on stick as close to edge as possible. Use the other to slowly apply more and more pressure on the stick end until the edge bends off. Pop off the excess.

Offset Stick (Legs) Preparation

Find the master dimension sheet for the offset mounting stick above. The M4 screws will be used to mount to the enclosure internal mounting holes. The M3 screws will be used to attach the offset legs to the base. The reason for the various spacing in between each of the leg cuts is to give the stick enough room so that the holes do not strip when the excess is removed.

  • Take the other popsicle stick and draw a line through the stick length wise at 5/16".
     
  • Draw a line 1" from the left side and 1" from the right. These will later be used to remove excess.
     
  • Draw another line 1/8" to the right and left of the lines you just drew.
     
  • Mark an X 1/4" to the right and left of these lines and label M3.
     
  • Mark an X 0.4375" or 7/16" to the right and left of the most recently drawn Xs and label M4.
     
  • Draw another line 7/8" inches from the right and left of the last lines we drew.
  • Draw a line 1/4" to the right and left of these lines.
     
  • Use a 1/8" drill bit to drill holes in the M4 Xs.
     
  • Use a 3/32" drill bit to drill holes in the M3 Xs.
     
  • Remove the excess along the cut lines.
This guide was first published on Aug 29, 2018. It was last updated on Aug 29, 2018. This page (Popsicle Stick Preparation) was last updated on Oct 21, 2019.