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Objective:

The objective of this Instructable is to create a usable phone case from carbon fiber. Carbon fiber is a great material for a phone case because it is not only lightweight but also strong due to it being a composite material. Follow the steps below and by the end you will have a usable phone case.

Hazards:

When using epoxy, it is very important to avoid getting the epoxy on yourself or any objects around you because it will harden and not come off easily. Carbon fiber also can irritate the skin, so avoid touching it bare handed and do not rub your eyes after coming in contact with carbon fiber. A high speed dremel will also be used; so make sure you are careful when using equipment that could potentially hurt you. It is recommended that you wear vinyl gloves and safety googles at all times throughout this procedure.

Step 1: Prepare the Materials and Work Space

Materials

Phone Mold

  • Phone Case
  • Plaster of Paris
  • Water
  • Wooden Tongue Depressor
  • 16 oz Cup
  • 3 oz Dixie Cups
  • Glad "Press n' Seal"
  • Saran Wrap
  • Vinyl Gloves
  • Safety Goggles

Carbon Fiber Case

  • Finished Plaster Phone Mold
  • Carbon Fiber Sheet
  • Carbon Fiber Epoxy
  • Foam Brush
  • Vinyl Gloves
  • Masking Tape
  • Vacuum Bag and Nozzle
  • Vacuum Pump
  • Vacuum Hose
  • Saran Wrap
  • Wax Paper
  • High Speed Dremel

Work space

  1. Cut out a large square of saran wrap (2'x2')
  2. Tape down edges using masking tape to work space

This is so epoxy doesn't get everywhere

Step 2: Phone Case

It is now time for you to select which phone case of yours you would like to make a plaster mold out of. To insure that the mold effectively represents your case and the plaster doesn't ruin it.

  1. Clean your preexisting mold
  2. Place Glad "Press n' Seal" down into the case, ensuring the Glad touches every part of the inside of the case

Step 3: Pour Plaster Into Phone Case

Once you have made sure that the Glad "Press n' Seal" is smoothly inside of the phone case:

  1. Mix the correct proportions of Plaster of Paris with Water (ratio should be 2 parts plaster to 1 part water)
  2. Use the 3 oz cups to measure out the correct volumetric ratios
  3. Add the parts to the 16 oz cup
  4. Stir with wooden tongue depressor until the consistency of the plaster is similar to pancake batter
  5. Pour the liquid plaster into the phone case
  6. Let this sit for 24 hours so it will be completely hardened

Step 4: Remove Phone Mold

  1. Remove the phone mold from the phone case very carefully without cracking the plaster
  2. smooth over rough edges by dipping the wooden tongue depressor in water and working it around the mold

Step 5: Carbon Fiber Assembly

  1. Cutout a sheet of wax paper with 1/2 inch larger perimeter
  2. Cutout a sheet of carbon fiber with the same dimensions as wax paper
  3. Secure wax paper around the mold using masking tape, must apply tape to wax paper because it won't stick to the plaster
  4. Carefully wrap carbon fiber around the outer layer of the wax paper, making edges nice and smooth. Make sure you don't start unraveling the carbon fiber strands.
  5. Tape down Carbon fiber to the wax/mold but don't apply tape anywhere that will show in your final phone case or else you wont be able to remove it

Step 6: Epoxy Application

  1. Thoroughly mix the epoxy and hardener with correct ratios provided by manufacturer using wooden tongue depressor
  2. Once epoxy/hardener is mixed, use foam paint brush to begin applying epoxy to the carbon fiber
  3. Make sure you apply the epoxy thoroughly and with multiple layers; however, don't let it layer unevenly
  4. Leave on a flipped over Dixie Cup until it's time to vacuum the phone cases

Step 7: Prepare Vacuum

  1. Place bag on work space
  2. Cut the sides of the bag
  3. Seal the bag with adhesive tape, leaving one side open
  4. Cut small hole in the middle for vacuum and place valve inside the bag
  5. Place phones cases facing down inside the bag
  6. Seal the final side of the bag

Step 8: Vacuum Seal Bag

  1. Attach the hose to the valve
  2. Make sure hose is attached very well and doesn't come off
  3. Start Vacuum Pump
  4. Leave running for 2 hours
  5. Turn off pump

Step 9: Remove Plaster From Carbon Fiber Case

  1. Remove Carbon Fiber Case from Vacuum Bag
  2. Using Dremel cut out the plaster in the middle
  3. The plaster should start falling out with little applied pressure
  4. Use Wooden Tongue Depressor to get the inside corners
  5. Make sure to get all of the wax paper out as well
  6. Trim excess edges of the Phone Case

Step 10: Apply Coating

  1. Use the buffering head with Dremel to smooth out the phone case
  2. Apply final coat of epoxy to make the have a nice finish
  3. Now you have a nice carbon fiber phone case

<p>Those are neat :)</p>

About This Instructable

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