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3D printed piece to enable thicker phones in the dock

Discussion in 'Customizing & Modifications' started by PatrickM, Feb 17, 2018.

  1. PatrickM

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    My iPhone 6S didn't fit in the charging dock with it's Mophie Juice Pack battery case because the dock was too narrow to for my thick phone case so I got out a CAD program and designed a 3D printed replacement piece that allows much thicker phones or thicker phone cases to fit. I printed it out for $1.90 at my local library using their 3D printer service. Under $2 to 3D print something... my library is amazing.


    The object is here:
    https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:2797028

    You can print it out on your 3D printer, your friend's 3D printer, get your child to print it at their 3D printer at school or else use your local library and if none of these work then you can use an online service like Shapeways or Sculpteo to print it for you. These are listed in the order of expense - if you print it yourself it should be less than $0.50 worth of plastic, and if you use Shapeways, it likely be something like $12...I don't have an account and can't check but that's what I guess it will come out to.

    It slots in just like the version from Tesla by pulling up on the charging dock hinge and then sliding the current piece left to remove it and then put the new one in and slide right to add it.

    Once you get it printed, you will likely want to cover it in glossy black vinyl to match the console. I recommend the glossy black from VVivid XPO vinyl ($7 on Amazon) or else go to a hobby shop and buy a sheet of glossy black vinyl from them.

    I attached a photo of mine. I covered mine in matte vinyl to match the matte vinyl I put on the rest of the console (see other thread :) ). You can see some sort of distortion on the surface.. that's an artifact of the 3D printer from the way the library printed it. I might try again to see if I can get a smoother version, but if you use a better printer it should look perfectly smooth. Regardless, for me, it looks better than it did when I was using it without the cover at all to get my phone to fit.

    IMG_0176.JPG
     
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  2. MelindaV

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    Nice job!
    You could fill it in with bondo and sand down, then recover with the vinyl.
     
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  3. 3V Pilot

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    I was just thinking about this exact same thing and glad I found your thread. Any possibility of making the front a little more rounded like the OEM piece? If there are any 3D printing Jedi knights on here please make one! Looking at you @chojn1 or @PatrickM or anybody else who knows how to do this stuff.
     
  4. Chilman408

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    This is a great plug and play design. I printed one out before my printer crapped out.

    Tesla's original design must have beem done by an intern who owns an iphone 5; it isn't nearly deep enough or tall enough to safely store newer phones, let alone phones with cases.
     
  5. PatrickM

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    I can probably change the design to fix this, but the way it was designed was intentional. I was concerned that if you had a rounded edge on either of the two ends that it would make it hard to print because the front of the faceplate is "down" on the print and if you have the edges rounded then they will be floating in the air. The 3D printer nozzle lays down plastic a bit like toothpaste coming out of a tube of toothpaste and if there's nothing below then it tends to sag. You can add removable plastic - called "support" - but my experience with support is that it's annoying to remove. I decided that a straight edge would print without issues, even if it doesn't look as good.

    I'll see if I can't make a version with rounded edges in the next couple of nights and I'll post it here, but in my experience it will be hard to get it print well. I designed the part in OpenSCAD, which is among the hardest CAD tools to use, but if anyone else is good with OpenSCAD and wants to try they are welcome to hack away at it. I posted the source code on Thingiverse.
     
  6. 3V Pilot

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    If that is the case then leave the design the way it is. I didn't realize why it was done like that. How about this instead, do a second piece, flat on the bottom and rounded on top. Make it so it can be superglued on top of the current flat piece. That way we get the factory look or keep it flat, options are good!
     
  7. 3V Pilot

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    Oh, forgot to ask @PatrickM, how wide of a phone can fit in your design? I have a wallet case on my S8+ and I'm hoping it fits. My case is about 1/2 inch wide, will is work? Here is the case:

     
  8. PatrickM

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    That is an excellent idea. You think like a 3D printing designer. I'll do that.


    I'm looking at the code that I wrote and it looks like it's 10mm total height, which is 0.39". It's easy to make it taller... can you measure it to what you want? I'll made a custom version just for you - with rounded corners - and will post it here.
     
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  9. 3V Pilot

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    Oh man, that is awesome, THANKS! So excited if I can get this to work, would love to have my phone and case fit right where it should! If you do the rounded part I'll just use some vinyl wrap to match my console and it should look like a stock part at that point.

    So, my case is right at 1/2 inch thick, if the slot was 5/8th I think it would give the perfect amount of room. Now I just have to figure out the charging. The stock cable setup doesn't work with my case and even if someone made a USB C that was a bit longer I don't think the phone would fit at that point. It's a Samsung S8+. I ordered the wireless pad and if that works with the case on it'll be perfect. I think it's my best hope.
     
  10. Dogwhistle

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    Why not just use one of these? Seems simpler.

     
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  11. 3V Pilot

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    I wish these would work but the S8+ is so tall it barely fits as is. Any extension to the charging cable won't work.

    I'm hoping the wireless pad will be the answer but just having the tray hold the phone with the car on will be great.
     
  12. 3V Pilot

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    I downloaded the file and since I know nothing about 3D printing I'm not sure how to get this made. The UPS store said they could do it but I need a .STL file. This is a .SCAD file and I can't figure out how to convert it. Any help on how to get this done would be great @PatrickM or @chojn1 or anyone else that knows this stuff, if you guys could chime in please......
     
  13. stuff

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    If you Upload your .SCAD file to LIBRE3D.COM, you can then download a converted .STL file. Works well.
     
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  14. 3V Pilot

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    That worked perfectly, Thanks!
     
  15. PatrickM

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    There should be both versions there. The SCAD file is in the drawing format and then the .stl is the easy to print version. I normally don't include the .scad version because it is confusing (I remember being confused when I was getting started) but I included the.scad after someone on thingiverse requested it.

    In any case I'm glad you got it working.
     
  16. 3V Pilot

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    #16 3V Pilot, Jun 23, 2018
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2018
    I didn't see the .STL file in the folder that I downloaded, but then again I really had no idea what I was looking for so I could of easily missed it.

    EDIT: Okay, I see where I went wrong now. For anyone not familiar with 3D printing and you want to get this made, the file you need is the .STL file but the file type shows up as "Certificate Trust List". I had no idea what that was and thought it was some type of security certificate. Thanks @PatrickM for making this! I hope it fits my phone once the Jedda pad comes in.
     
  17. 3V Pilot

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    Thanks to this thread and the great ideas from people here I now have the ability to charge my phone with a VERY thick case on! So happy! I have a wallet case that is about 1/2 inch thick but it carries everything I need. I used Shapeways.com to print the above piece and was a bit bummed when I first discovered my phone was too thick to work properly. However, after looking at the problem and some quick work with a dremel tool I was able to make it work. As shown below the phone with the case sits on the charging cable fine without the front piece attached. I just needed to lower and widen the shelf from the 3D printed piece a bit to make it all work. It's not pretty from the backside but the front looks great.

    Here are some pics.... 1.jpg 2.jpg 3.jpg 4.jpg 5.jpg
     
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  18. chojn1

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  19. 3V Pilot

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    That looks perfect! Any chance it will fit a phone with a case that is over 1/2 inch thick? I have a wallet case on my phone which is very thick but it allows me to carry everything I need. This would be the perfect solution if it's wide enough, or possibly have a few different widths to choose from??

    From the best I can measure (don't have calipers) my case is 5/8th at the base, maybe even a hair wider.....guess I really need some calipers...lol.
     
  20. chojn1

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    You can 3D print the ledge any thickness you want as long as it will fit under the lid. There is plenty of room there. Do you prefer synthetic leather or synthetic suede?
     
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