DIY monome compatible grid w/ Adafruit NeoTrellis

Used Razorlab, 150euro with shipping to Italy.

A couple things to consider if you’re ordering a case from Ponoko or other laser service:

  1. Github has a recent design optimized for less material use (version 12 I believe)

  2. The EVA layer I used is optional - you can use regular acrylic or whatever. I just wanted a 5mm layer there. You just need to be able to match the internal spacer height to the thickness of the final stack.

  3. If getting matte or special finish material - don’t order all of the layers with that matte material. Get just the top or top/bottom in matte, then the other layers in plain gloss black - which is cheaper.

Note - I don’t have laser access due to virus restrictions so I can’t cut cases right now :frowning:


Thanks again and I really appreciate your help once again :slight_smile:

Currently looking into this so really helpful.

Just confirming re stands off: your design uses 11mm 2.5 female/female standoffs and then 2.5 screws for both sides, top and bottom, correct?

This is correct.

When I did a few from bamboo, that material ended up being more like 3.5mm+ so the internal stack worked out ok (at 10.5mm)

I think Ponoko has some 3.2mm material but I’m not sure if that’s totally accurate or just “advertised”. I’ve found some cast acrylic can vary up to like 0.5mm on the same sheet, so I usually have to see what I end up with.

1 Like

Dumb questions, as someone who’s never used Ponoko or Illustrator. Assuming I want to order just the top in matte, I would need to edit the the design file so as to order one project w/matte material, and one with the rest in glossy? Is there an open source program that’s good to edit the .ai file? I tried with Inkscape, but couldn’t make heads or tails of what was going on.

I suppose I can slice it up into individual parts?

Also FWIW (if you don’t want to go thru that hassle) - I hope to have laser cutter access again in about a week and will be making neotrellis cases then.


Would you be selling any in in matte white?

Not right away as I don’t have any of that material right now. DM me and we could figure something out.

You’ll need to be able to reprogram the chip to change the manufacturer and product strings.

(FWIW - I’m not sure I see the point unless you’re wanting to use the grid w/ ansible.)

I mean… those all aren’t exactly “simple” but yeah maybe? No idea what issues you might run into.

Personally I’m not a fan of adding hardware (and extra chip cost) when this can be addressed in software.

But hey…, do what works for you! :grin:

BTW - what color/brand filament did you use for the fates case? (I like the color)

1 Like

Put the parts order in to Digi-Key (went with the 3.2 to keep things simple), but the backorder has it shipping out sometime in August. When do y’all suggest putting an order to Ponoko to get parts arriving at around the same time?

FWIW - Adafruit has the driver boards in stock, but I’m very unclear on if they are shipping regular products right now or not.

word on the street is:

they’re out of stock of a lot of stuff because no new manufacturing yet I think
but they are shipping normal things.

Also - I’ve finally got laser cutter access again and I expect to be making cases (or case parts like the EVA layer if needed) available next week.

Ponoko was estimating about 3 weeks to cut/ship some parts when I checked last week.


As of the time that I was placing their order, Adafruit has 4 boards in stock. As of right now, they only have 1.

It’s a bummer, as their office is blocks away from mine, but it’s moot as I’ve already placed the Digi-Key order as a workaround (plus I needed some bumpons and m2.5 hardware)

1 Like

digikey shows back ordered on the driver boards now. i did it, i waited too long.

(10 left) UK:

See also: (13 available - ships from US)


I have built a Grid, but I need some help or advice.
I can flash the sirmware, My Mac sees is as a MIDI device, my Fates sees it both as MIDI device and under GRID…but it doesn’t seem to do anything in any app, nothing lights up…buttons do nothing…

-I have soldered all boards together, like in the supplied video (should I solder the pads on the leds side as well?)

-a blob of solder on each address pad as in the picture (

-tessny is connected DIRECTLY ON THE BOARDS as in the picture (

Maybe you flashed as MIDI + serial?

Should be just Serial.

here How to flash the firmware on a Teensy micro-controller
“a) Tools->USB Type= Serial, MIDI or Serial+MIDI”
Flashed as “Serial” only, now it’s not seen anymore by Fates

please don’t ask me how but I made it :wink:
I believe I did assign 2 boards on the same Address by soldering A0
Desoldered, tested the “Multitrellis_test” and finally saw a rainbow of colors. Then uploaded the correct firmware and it’s woking now :wink: