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Interested in a solid billet aluminum case for your D2/D2G? Know Solidworks?

Discussion in 'Droid 2 Accessories' started by NiceGuysFinishLast, Jan 15, 2011.

  1. NiceGuysFinishLast
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    NiceGuysFinishLast New Member

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    HELP ME HELP YOU. I have access to a full set of CNC machines that can make just about anything I can give them a design for. I know we have plenty of nerds on here (no offense, I'm a nerd too), anyone know solidworks? Can you get me a solidworks file, or g-code for a case for the front and back? The D2 and D2G have the same dimensions, give or take (close enough that I can't tell a difference with my D2 Innocase on my D2G)... If someone can get me a file for one with the extended battery with battery door, I can probably make a separate one that fits those, too. Due to the cost of the material, this would have to be a bulk thing (i.e., I'd have to get $$ up front from all interested parties, buy enough material for that run, and then ship them). But that's way in the future, I have to make a prototype first. So, who can help?
  2. Joseph61189
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    Joseph61189 New Member

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    What about MasterCAM? We Use MX2.
  3. NiceGuysFinishLast
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    NiceGuysFinishLast New Member

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    I'd have to double check with my grandfather (his machine shop), but yeah, that should work. Anything we can generate g code off of. Are you actually interested in helping? If I get a working prototype, you'll get one for free, or at substantially reduced cost, depending on what it costs me (shouldn't be much).
  4. Joseph61189
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    Joseph61189 New Member

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    Yeah Im rather interested. I am currently in trade school for machining and looking for a good CNC project to wow my instructors with. I have a Droid2, just didn't think about ever making a case. Certainly going to require some thinking design wise.
  5. Khyren
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    Khyren New Member

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    I have an idea in which to make the front part lock to the front open or closed without clips. Only one spot where it won't be locked but that's when your fingers are sliding it open. PM me for the details.
  6. zero7404
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    zero7404 New Member

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    i'm a mech engineer and have access to sw ... although i'm not sure if i should grab a license/seat to make somthing not pertaining to my job.

    if i were to sit and design a case for this phone, i would make it a tribute to all those that have been wanting a quality design with integration for the extended battery. because i know otterbox don't care ...

    btw, how would you propose getting a metal case on the phone securely ? in order to get the curves just right, the contours of the phone need to be traced precisely .... tough task without a starter model that's got the contours already in it.

    best way for you is to do this:

    go to cellular nationwide network and grab a dummy droid 2 phone (they sell these).

    then slap modeler's clay all over it, and heat it just enough in an oven to get it hard enough to remove from the phone dummy, which will likely melt. then harden it some more in the oven.

    after it's hard enough you can take it to a machine shop who can then reproduce and turn it into a metal mold for injection molding use.

    there's some serious money involved in doing this, best option is to just buy a case already on the market.

    if you're adamant about making a nice case for it, perhaps buy yourself the semi-rubberized droid 2 case from verizon. hog out the center where the ext. battery goes, then give it to a machine shop and ask them to make it out of Garolite G10.
  7. LtKen
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    LtKen New Member

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    I've seen many metal cases come and go -- the commonality being that the metal kills the signal from the radio. Think faraday cage.....
  8. Abe21599
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    Abe21599 Super Moderator

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    i know SW fairly well but where do u plan on getting the exact dimensions? i have a DX but figured id throw in my 2 cents lol
  9. NiceGuysFinishLast
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    NiceGuysFinishLast New Member

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    I'm not giving it to the machine shop, I'll be doing this from the ground up. As for dimensions, there's no problem here that I can't solve with a pair of micrometers and some careful record keeping.. If you look at the inside of any case for this phone, they're very, very regular. Mine has no depressions or contours that aren't cosmetic (there's a bump at the foot to provide surface to keep the speaker off of any flat surface you lay the phone on). Simply put, I want to make a 4pc case, 2 pieces per side, that slide together (lengthwise) over the phone. There's no serious money involved in it because all of the measuring and design would be done by me in my spare time, and the machine work is free (for me in small quantities, if I run batches of these, I'll have to charge for labor), and I'm sure there's enough pieces of scrap aluminum laying around for me to experiment with for months. I'm pretty sure I can overcome the antenna blockage in the same way the iPhone cases do... Make a cutout, or series of small ones. It'll all come down to experimentation.
  10. zero7404
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    zero7404 New Member

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    a lot of r&d go into making a case specific to a device. the best tools to import geometry would be laser 3D scanners that can generate a model of the surfaces. or a properly configured CMM machine that can touch the phone in several places and generate points which can then be turned into surfaces.

    but all of this is a lot of work ... your best bet is picking a case you like the most and either modding it to suit you or using as-is.

    as i said before, this would be a good candidate for Garolite G10, it's a strong engineered plastic that can be easily machined. if you are a skilled machinist, you can probably machine out the contours, see if that fits, then machine the rest into a case. but the tabs are the most critical part of the design.

    you can snag blocks of any engineered plastic you want on amazon or onlineplastics. large blocks of garolite aren't cheap though, somewhere around $ 1000-$ 2000 for a 24x36x1 block ... or something like that.
  11. zero7404
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    zero7404 New Member

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    you may experiment with aluminum, but it will obliterate your wireless signals
  12. NiceGuysFinishLast
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    NiceGuysFinishLast New Member

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    I'm not doing this because current cases don't work for me. I'm doing this because I think it would be a neat project, even if I only ever made ONE for me. I just thought there might be some people here who were better at this than I am. As it is, I can take measurements and draw things up, as well as work with the guys who DO know solidworks, etc. My grandfather's been doing this for longer than I've been alive, and likes DIY projects, he's helping me.
  13. zero7404
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    zero7404 New Member

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    i wouldnt mind jumping in on designing a case but id need dimensions & layouts. it might be possible for me to spend some of my own time @ work doing this. after the model is made it can be saved in a format that is friendly to cam/cnc. but i think additional software packages are necessary to fully convert a 3d model to cnc code that would drive a machine.

    if u have such resources ill see what i can do on my end. but for production runs ur going to need to go to a machining house

    posted via android
  14. NiceGuysFinishLast
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    NiceGuysFinishLast New Member

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    Well, I wouldn't exactly be doing production runs. I'd do one or two runs to fill the needs of forum members. I don't expect to sell a bunch, or turn a profit, just thought it would be fun, and if I can make it work, it might appeal to some members. As for a machining house... My grandfather owns a multimillion dollar company with every CNC machine you could want, so that's no issue haha. Also, there's a plugin for solidworks that will take anything you make and automatically convert it to g code for CNC machines which is pretty amazing, IMHO.
  15. Digital Cha0s
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    Digital Cha0s New Member

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    Hells ya I want one of these cases for sure make sure to post when you get them all worked out

    Sent from my Superior Android Device
  16. kptphalkon
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    kptphalkon New Member

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    While i dont have any helpful knowledge i would absolutely love to have a case like you describe.

    If only there were a way to design it so that it could actually boost signal reeception :/

    Sent from the F-Zero cockpit on my D2G
  17. douglasman100
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    douglasman100 New Member

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    i want one
  18. TeddyMarinaro
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    TeddyMarinaro New Member

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    Most definitely love one of those. I've been looking up other cases for cellphones and while I agree that you might end up with a faraday cage like scenario, aluminum tends to be a fickle metal when it comes to being electrically charged so it may end up doing nothing to the signal. (Most cages are made of a composite of mostly iron or copper due to their conductive properties) Guess trial and error are needed! I'd send off a build, but I don't have the software anymore since college. Still would love to be in the first batch of ones when they come out!
  19. zero7404
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    zero7404 New Member

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    i still cant see a solid metal case on this phone ... it would be multi-piece with hinges & other misc parts ... if it was one-piece youd end up scratching the phone trying to get it on ...

    posted via android
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