Make a plastic phone cover using CNC milling
I made an instuction video on how to make this, and in this thread i want to reply on questions that you guys might have!
Why not design the injection point on the inside of the phone cover? – by @jegor-m
This is cause the inside has an insert to mold around, and in general you want to prevent injecting through inserts.
Where does the air go
Yes on big injection machines this is a problem, but here the tolerances are not so thight, one scratch and you will have plenty of ventilation…
What material did you use?
The mold is made out of Aluminum
How much did the mold cost?
We paid €400 for the mold, €50 for shipping
I used Solidworks mainly because i know the program very well and the iPhone can have difficult radii. you can easily use fusion360, thinkercat or any other (free) program, but im still learning those 😉
Where to find the mould files?
Mold files are in the download pack:https://github.com/hakkens/precious-plastic-kit/archive/master.zip
In this path: 5.create -> iPhone 7-8 mould -> STEP files 😃
Me and my colleague are looking for a PreciousPlastic Coin with Polypropylen
for marking our Phone Covers. This is the last step which we just got to have before we can sell our phone covers 🙂 we have a decent storage right now of like several dozen forms and want to sell them on the bazar asap.
My milling progress according to @jerrzeek plans!
I have make a few modifications to the mould!
Now the injection hole is at oposite side that means the case is clean and the injection sign is inside the case
Ok, somehow i cant upload the image :/
It’s not necessary to remake half of the mould, it’s possible to just remove the lip, drill holes for dowel pins to correctly align the two halves, and enlarge the clamping holes so they line up.
I’ve already suggested this fix to Manuel and he knows somebody who can do this for him.
they look great.
I see myself getting jealous, cause you dont have to stamp them 😀
also nice logo milled in the mould:)
@manuelmaeder I think the marking coins are out of stock in the bazar, but making them with a dremel or CNC should not be hard at all.
Another alternative is go the cheap route and make them this way: https://davehakkens.nl/community/forums/topic/hello-from-estonia/page/3/#post-131350
@manuelmaeder, i am running here a little service, offering mold machining as well, for volunteer prices (because we want to support PP success stories!!). However, we don’t design molds but do the machining only. the mold above would cost you about 150 Euro (material = 30 euro, 120 labor). It’s also cheap because it’s done by my PP students (but under my supervision).
about CNCs: you can build a quite good one (good enough) for 2500 euro in materials and about 2 weeks of full-time work, less is not really possible… I am posting the documentation of mine sometime here in the forum. in the picture below you see it what you can get for this money. working area 45x45x25cm, cuts steal and aluminium with no problems, precision 0.01 mm; it’s my 5th iteration of doing DIY machines and I am really happy now (after ‘wasting’ 1.5 years and thousands of euros).
Just as reference, there is story here in PP about some guys who made a mold for a sun-glass, they paid 3500 Euro for it….simple to make the math.
also, you will never regret to have paid for a CNC, i use it everyday, for all sorts of things, mostly using the xbox-controller or manual gcode only 🙂 go for it !
ok, this is the image
I manage to finish the phone case mold!
As you can see on the pictures below the result is not 100% professional like Jerzeek cases but for me to mill such a complex mould with 3axis cnc it was challenge!
Once more i would like to thank again @jerzeek who share the files for free!
I am a student and also a young entrepreneur. I am currently busy with a project where I want to design my own iPhone cases made of recycled plastic. While brainstorming about this idea I did some research and found your video. I am not very handy so I have no idea how to make a mold or anything that have to do with this. So, I have some questions about the producing process of this and I like to ask them to you.
I am from the Netherlands and I love to meet you if it is possible. I hope you could help my further with the problems that I now have.
Scott van den Berg
And don’t forget that the mould is made from several sizeable aluminium billets that probably cost 100 euro on their own.
It is possible to buy a cheap CNC router for 450 euro, but I doubt it would give acceptable results and even if it could it would take days or weeks to do it.
I think 450 euro sounds like a very reasonable, or even cheap, price. Of course you can purchase a cheap CNC but it’s less of a plug and play thing then it might seem. You need to invest quite some time and research to get super clean results with high precision.
Don’t want to sound like a know-it-all, but for €450 I think you could have purchased a cheap CNC and a +18.000rpm spindle and make the moulds yourself. Cheap CNC machines are not made for milling metal but if you make the GCODE to mill very slowly, it should work just fine 🙂
is there a link to the digital files for this mold?
edit: found it! (in the download kit of course)
according to my tests doesn’t matter the thickness of the mould at compression machine because all the mould reach high temperature..
only at injection machine you need specific thickness cause the mould is cold
the thickness depent from:
-the size of the mould
-from the type of plastic
-the force of the injection
*maybe this question is not for this topic
Can anyone here tell me what calculations are to be done to decide the thickness of the mould for compression moulding. We are using cartridge heaters.
what series of alumunium you use?
I was wondering, what is the radius of the holes that you made for the screws?
Also what is the radius for the injections cutout in the mold that you pour the molten plastic into it?
To illustrate the problem here are the cad files with the mould halves assembled:
Looking at the CAD files there does appear to be a discrepancy. The recess for the insert is exactly centered within the lip/groove, however the cavity of the phone itself is off centre by approx .75mm and the top and bottom halves are displaced by this amount in different directions, giving 1.5mm overall error which probably explains why it won’t fit together with the insert in place.
Out of interest how much did 3dHub charge to make the mould?
me and my friend just started recycling station with a shredder and an injection machine. We ordered the mold for the iPhone 7-8 with the drawings from your download kid and also ordered it from 3dHub but we got this here.
The groove and lip fit perfectly but when we put the insert mold inside then it doesnt fit anymore as you can see on the picture. Id really love to get a fast answer because of the problem is with the drawing then we cant say to 3dHub that it was their fault. So could you just take a look if its in the middle of the aluminum box on the drawing.
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