Off Topic: Booster Box to Deck Box

Last weekend, I was rehashing some of my old decks. Many of my old favorites had been cannibalized for spare parts to put the finishing touches on my pet decks. A better part of a Saturday had been spent filling in the gaps and updating a few of the older decks. When I awoke to a beautiful Sunday morning, I discovered my cats had been up to mischief and thrashed apart my decks. Cards were strewn everywhere. I didn't just leave them carelessly on the floor. My completed decks get placed up on a shelf. A shelf very high up and thought to be unreachable for a mere friendly feline. Resisting the urge to go fill up the old Super Soaker, I came to the conclusion I needed to suck it up and get some deck boxes. I have quite a few deck boxes, but not for all of my numerous sleeved decks. Being the cheap bastard that I am, I started scrounging around the house for things I could substitute for deck boxes. The closest thing I thought would work were some Girl Scout cookie boxes. After contemplating for only a second, I decided making deck boxes out of cookie boxes might not help my social standing.

Then I thought of the numerous booster boxes I had laying around. I'm also a pack rat. Trial and error eventually lead me to turning the booster box above into a deck box. If you are interested, follow the steps below for turning your favorite booster box into a deck box.

Remove the top flap ("display," I suppose one can call it) from the rest of the booster box. Don't mangle it. It may come in handy later on as an additional option. Place it to the side for later.

Next, dislocate the glued flaps. Take your time otherwise there will be a lot of tearing. It isn't too difficult. Just take your time.

The sides of the booster box are approximately 2 and 5/8 inches. The base is about 8 inches across. In order to match the sides, we will have to mark the box. From the crease of the base of the box, mark 2 and 5/8 inches from each side. Draw a straight-edged line all the way across. The lines are very important. Use a ruler otherwise your box will be a little lopsided once completed. In other words, don't just eyeball it.

Since this a PG-13 game, I will assume everyone here can use scissors without parental supervision. Cut along the straight-edged lines to the edge of the booster box up to the crease. If done properly, it should look as above.

Fold the box over along the straight-edged lines. Flatten the crease. I simply used the scissors I used to cut the booster box. Be gentle otherwise the artwork will get scraped off.

Repeat the process for the other side.

Fold the box up. It doesn't matter which side you pick. I do prefer to have the best side showing. Here, I have the Zendikar image showing. Tape the sides down with clear Scotch tape. You can use glue, but I wouldn't recommend it. It gets horribly messy and tape works just fine.

The final product looks as thus. Now flip the box directly up into an upright position.

See that flap in the back? It has extra cardboard. If not removed, it will stick out. Cut along the crease.

If cut along the crease, the edge should look as above.

The final product should look like the above picture. The next part entails removing one of the side flaps. It doesn't matter really. I usually remove the one with the barcode or whatever one is less aesthetically pleasing.

The deck box is almost completed. All the folding of the deck box has slightly decreased the diameter of the box.

The top edge of the side flap (the majority of the time – depending on the style of the booster box, this may change) will not tuck into the deck box. We need to do some trimming.

Trim the edges above the crease of the side flap. Cut just enough so it can be tucked into the side. Remember, you can trim it more than once. The less you cut, the more secure the flap will be in the end. Therefore, cut just a little. If need be, cut more.

We now have a completed deck box.

If you flip the box around, we have the some what unsightly bottom of the booster box showing. If this is okay because you only care about functionality, stop here. Otherwise, we have the option of adding some bling.

Remember that top part of the booster box we removed in the first step? Lay it face-side down. Place the newly made deck box on top of it. Every booster box will be different so this is important. Mark off the necessary length needed to cover the sides of the newly made deck box. Another option: just cut along the display crease of newer booster boxes. Most of the time, it is equally as effective. Less of the sides of the deck box will be covered, but it is a personal preference. Decide on which option before cutting.

If the first option was chosen, use the marked edge to draw a straight-edged line.

Cutting along the straight-edged line will give the following result.

Next, place the deck box on top with the artwork facing upward. Center the deck box on top. Measure if need be, but I didn't really find it necessary. Gently pull up the sides for centering and adjust as necessary. Once centered, make a gentle crease along the edge. Don't get carried away, we will permanently fix the crease in a second.

Place the deck box off to the side. As we did with the original creases of the booster box, use the scissors to flatten the creases.

Repeat for the other crease. Tape the display part of the booster box onto the deck box. If you want, use a little bit of glue along with the tape to more securely affix the display to the deck box. Don't get carried away. A little goes a long way.

The final product.

As an example, sixty sleeved cards were placed in the box. The nice thing I like about the final product is it will hold a 100-card EDH deck just fine. It always annoyed me I could never fit my EDH decks into a normal store-bought deck box. With the extra room for a normal constructed deck, it leaves space for a sideboard and any necessary token cards.

Just another photo from a different angle. Only an Island is showing, but the deck is my old Pickles deck if anyone was interested. In hindsight, I guess something better than an Island could have been facing up. Maybe something better like a Forest.

As you can see, an inch of space is left on top. Originally, I thought I would have to rethink my process. After some thought, I found the extra space to be nice addition. It leaves room for things like dice and such to be placed right on top. Everything a person needs for a game of Magic could be placed in one single deck box. As I acclimate to my makeshift deck boxes, the more I appreciate the little bit of extra space.

More than anything, I hate having to crack open deck boxes to see which of my decks are inside. As a solution, I taped a extra sleeve onto the side.

Next, I found a common card to represent the deck. For my Pickles deck, I just used an extra Momentary Blink to represent the deck inside. The sleeve has an advantage. If I steal the deck box for another deck, I can simply take out the card of the sleeve for another. I find this better than writing all over a deck box.

Here is a snapshot of a few of the deck boxes I made. With the cards represented, I am sure most of you can guess to contents of each box.

I hope you enjoyed my piece on Magic arts and crafts. I'm taking off for awhile again. I merely couldn't resist the urge to share my artistic/cheap creations for this Show and Tell.


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