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Portable electronic instrument enclosures


Electronic instrumentation is – by definition – a high value, prestige product. These devices are often at the cutting edge of research and development. They provide the essential data needed for precision control. So the enclosures housing the technology must reflect that.

It’s not simply a question of vanity, though enclosure aesthetics play an important part in showcasing the technology. It’s also about safeguarding the electronics to ensure the precision accuracy, reliability and longevity of the device. There is also the important matter of ergonomics – the device must always be comfortable to view and operate.

So what makes a good plastic instrument enclosure? Generally, they’re designed to house a display and controls on the front panel – rather than on the top – with a rear panel for interfaces. But there are exceptions, two of which feature towards the end of this blog post.

SHELL-TYPE-CASE instrument enclosures


There’s one sure sign that an enclosure model has been popular for a very long time – when it’s available with a huge number of sizes and permutations as standard. And our bestselling SHELL-TYPE CASES are no exception: the range now offers 51 different choices based on three standard variants:

  • Type V – with an open front for an aluminum or infrared-transparent PMMA panel (accessory).
  • Type O – with open front and rear for panels (accessories).
  • Type G (IP 65 optional, if there is no battery compartment) – with closed front and rear.

Types V and G of these ABS enclosures are available with or without a battery compartment (2 x AA, 4 x AA, 1 x 9 V). Tongue and groove construction adds strength, and the front is deeply recessed to provide further protection. Inside, there is a choice of mounting options; PCBs can either slide into vertical guide ridges or be fitted to screw pillars.

Many instrument enclosures tend to be limited to desktop duties but SHELL-TYPE CASES are much more versatile. Accessories include wall mounting brackets, wall suspension elements, a belt/pocket clip and ring eyelets.

SHELL-TYPE CASES also offer excellent protection against EMI and RFI. Contact strips (accessory) provide extra electrical continuity between the top and base. OKW also offers shielding as a customization service.

View the SHELL-TYPE CASES range >>

MEDITEC instrument enclosures


MEDITEC is another classic that’s also hugely popular – and not just for healthcare and wellness electronics. These timeless desktop, wall-mount and portable enclosures are also to be found housing test and measurement electronics, control peripherals, modems, interfaces, communications/networking technology and data collection devices.

Granted, the lagoon green used for the clip-in side trims is a very ‘medical’ color – and it was chosen specifically for that purpose – but the trims are also available in the standard case color of off-white (RAL 9002). They can be specified either vented or unvented, and in custom colors too.

Again, like the SHELL-TYPE CASES, MEDITEC excels by offering a wide range of choices as standard – reducing the amount of customization required. The enclosures are offered either with or without a bail arm that also acts as a desk stand. This can be adjusted quickly and easily to create the perfect angle for ergonomic viewing and operation.

Both versions come with the option of a sloping front. There are four plan sizes in accordance with Eurocard-sized PCBs (double and extended) and two standard heights, increased by adding side panels. Inside, there are strengthening ribs for added resilience, and screw pillars for PCBs.

View the MEDITEC range >>

MOTEC instrument enclosures


Like MEDITEC, MOTEC can also be specified with a bail arm and either a flat or sloping front panel. This ergonomically inclined front panel has a large recess for a display, membrane keypad or other controls.

Clip-together construction makes MOTEC fast and easy to assemble. It can be reopened with a flat screwdriver. And like SHELL-TYPE CASES, these ABS enclosures also feature internal guide grooves for PCBs and partitions.

MOTEC is available in three plan sizes and a wide choice of heights. This makes it simple to specify a smart-looking, dependable enclosure that offers the optimum capacity for your PCBs and other components.

View the MOTEC range >>

EURO-CASE instrument enclosures


With sizes up to 14.45" x 9.84" x 10.89", EURO CASE offers plenty of space for larger instrumentation, while remaining strong thanks to reinforcing ribs for enhanced torsional rigidity. Despite their size, these housings are quick to assemble. They simply clip together: OKW’s special snap-lock mechanism offers added strength.

Many sizes of EURO CASE are available with a bail arm for portability or desktop use. The enclosures come in standard widths of 42 HP and 63 HP and heights of 1U, 2U, 3U and 6U. Side panels are available in three sizes: 0.5U, 1U and 2U. Some side panels offer optional ventilation slots for extra cooling.

View the EURO CASE range >>

CARRYTEC instrument enclosures


CARRYTEC (IP 54 optional) is one of the two exceptions to the ‘display and controls on the front’ rule of thumb that we mentioned earlier. These enclosures look more like an attaché case with a recessed top for a membrane keypad or display.

Unlike all the other enclosures we’ve discussed so far, CARRYTEC can be specified in UV-stable and V-0 ASA+PC as standard. Yes, it’s available in tried and trusted ABS as standard too – but for outdoor use and added strength, the ASA+PC blend is the one to choose.

But CARRYTEC’s robustness is not merely a result of the plastic. The enclosure handle is integrated – rather than added separately – so you can be sure it’ll withstand the hard knocks meted out by challenging working environments.

It’s also well worth checking out CARRYTEC’S large number of accessories. They include battery compartment kits (5 x AA), docking stations for desktops or wall mounting, and holding clamps for rails (notably those on hospital beds).

There are also extra side bags that significantly increase the carrying capacity of these already capacious enclosures. The side pouches are ideal for carrying probes to be used in conjunction with the main unit. These probes can stay connected at all times for swift deployment.

View the CARRYTEC range >>

EVOTEC instrument enclosures


Like CARRYTEC, EVOTEC (IP 65 optional) is designed for a top-mounted – rather than front-mounted – membrane keypad. These soft-contoured desktop and wall-mount enclosures are available with either a flat or sloping top. The latter is inclined at a comfortable 12° and can be specified either with or without a recess.

Elegant EVOTEC is tough with a high degree of stability. All the enclosures are molded from UV-stable ASA+PC as standard. Assembly is with tamperproof Torx screws, a key requirement for medical electronics.

View the EVOTEC range >>

Customized enclosures


All our enclosures can be supplied fully customized ready for your electronics. Services include:

  • CNC machining of apertures for interfaces, controls, LEDs or a display
  • digital printing of photo-quality graphics, legends and logos
  • lacquering – including new transparent soft-touch lacquer that creates a huge choice of colours
  • laser marking for small machine-readable QR codes, barcodes, DataMatrix codes, and consecutive numbering
  • photo-quality decor foils with cutouts for displays
  • special materials – such as V-0 plastic, or bespoke colors directly from the mould
  • Shielding – in-house aluminum plating of plastic parts to prevent RFI/EMI
  • installation/assembly of accessories.

View our full range of customisation services >>



Contact OKW for expert advice on specifying the best standard or customised enclosures for your electronic instrumentation. And don’t forget to request a sample.