There are some common challenges with electronics (such as Arduino) projects, and we set out to help you solve those.
Electronics projects are fun and challenging. And there are always new things to learn! There is a certain joy of creating a useful or fun gadget, because it combines hardware, sometimes code, and imagination in a very satisfying way. But there are challenges, which you can often see when enthusiasts post pictures of their latest projects.
It’s a mechanical challenge. Essentially, the aesthetic finish is not ideal because it’s not easy to get that neat, tidy, professional look.
Unless your project is hidden away and remotely operated, it will probably have a display, some buttons and cable entries (at least for a power connection).
Holes and the challenge they pose
Basically, your project box has holes. Holes for buttons, a display, power connection etc. And unless you have a well-equipped workshop those holes are not going to be neat. Over-cuts in the corners, wobbly edges, non-square edges, etc. You get the picture…
Bezels to the rescue!
How about these three neat solutions to neatly finish your project:
Naturally they are the most visible part of the project, the hole for the display is where you really notice an untidy cut-out. Not to mention exposed screws! These display bezels overlap the edges of the untidy cut out so they are hidden. And there are no visible screws to see. These bezels make your projects look much more professional. And they are available for most of the commonly used hobbyist displays. This wide choice of bezels is available here.
There are many chassis-mounted buttons available. Drill a hole and job done! Except projects are getting physically smaller over time. And buttons take a lot of area on the front panel, and usually a lot of space behind the panel too.
But you’ve probably used those tiny, low-cost, PCB mounted tactile (‘clicky’) button switches? They are terrific , but they are not designed for panel-mounting.
These bezels offer a flexible and simply way to panel-mount those terrific 6mm tactile switch buttons. You can mix and match the button heights to achieve the desired selection of recessed, flush or protruding buttons. This solution is simple and flexible and occupies very little space on the front or behind the panel. There is also an option without a visible Bezel if you prefer to drill small round holes for the buttons.
These kits are available here.
Many projects use those widely-available and neat 5V USB power supplies (i.e. mobile phones chargers). But adding a neat looking USB socket to your project isn’t straightforward. As with buttons, there are USB gland-type fittings but they usually need a big hole with a nut and ample rear spacing. They look a bit utilitarian!
These bezels solve that problem. They comes as a kit so you can adapt it as you need. And although they were originally intended to connect power, all five of the USB pins are available so you can use this for USB connectivity too. They are also designed to use a minimum of space behind the panel to save valuable room in the box.
It is available here.
These bezels solve three common challenges when building an electronics project:
- Neatly mounting a display
- Neatly mounting small low-cost buttons
- Neatly providing a USB socket
They are also sold individually, as they are intended for the hobbyist market.
Where to buy?
You can buy these bezels from here (or from the eBay shop link listed for each Bezel).