After 6+ years of checking out everyone else's Instructables, this is my very first Instructables!
This design is also an entry for the UP contest. Enjoy.
I set out to make my own portable speaker with a similar design to the Jambox with the addition of a few extra features.
For this build you will need the following: UPDATE: Prices and links to items
Small USB-powered speakers with built in amp
portable USB charger for cellphones
Bluetooth Stereo A2DP module $25
NFC Tag $2 per tag or less
Other tools and Materials:
Soldering Iron and Accessories
small square magnets
3D printer (My school had a Replicator 2)
Screwdriver (flat and Philips)
Hot glue gun
Pry tool used for cell phones
Step 1: Disassembling the Speakers
Find some speakers that will suit your needs. Test them to make sure the output is loud enough. You might need to purchase an amp to boost the signal if necessary. The power input should be 5v to be compatible for the battery in the next step.
Split the speakers open. Most have grills on the front that are easily removable.
If the speakers are not assembled with screws then you will have to remove the plastic around the components. I took a screw driver and a pry tool to split the sides. The amp should be in the unit with the power and aux cord.
Resolder the cables back to the board if necessary. Add hot glue to the cables so they don't pull out or short circuit other components.
Step 2: Open the Portable USB Charger
Next wire up the speaker power cable to the output power supply of the battery. I chose to cut the cable and directly solder it to the board. This allows for the ability to charge a phone or other device at the same time you are playing music.
Cut the cable with the wire strippers. The red and black cords in the cable will be the 5V and GND. The terminals on the USB female port of the PCB are large enough to directly solder to them without much trouble. This is the pinout for a female USB. Connect the red and black of the power cord to 1 and 4 of the USB terminals, respectfully.
Step 3: Measure Components and Assemble Electronics
Once you have all the components, connect them up to make sure that you did not solder something incorrectly. Its best to test early before you get ahead of yourself and find out you damaged a board or worse.
I choose to keep the Bluetooth module in tack in case I wanted to use it for my car stereo or another device. This means I have to power it separately once the internal battery dies. Its a small trade off but keeps the speaker and Bluetooth connection modular.
Measure the components including the spacing of the USB inputs, Bluetooth module, speaker diameter.
Step 4: CAD
Step 5: Printing the Case
Of the handful of 3D printing setup programs that I have used, I found this one the most intuitive. I learned the basics in about 20 minutes. You will need to export your CAD files as .stl and import them into the makerware by clicking add. You can rotate the part and center it on the tray. I chose to print the most detailed features I cared about face down. This was more ideal then in the z direction because the lines from each layer might not align perfectly on each pass. After your part is centered and aligned in your desired configuration, hit Make It!
The settings that a friend referred me to were to increase the nozzle temperature by 5 degrees, add a raft structure to build on and tape the edges of the printed area. I used a 20% fill ratio and have yet to try something more dense. One of the main concerns that was relayed to me was that large parts tend to curl. This is due to the cooling of the plastic as the nozzle moves to a different area of the platform. The rest of the settings were left as default. I used a UV reactive PLA filament.
You can saving the file to an SD card or sending it directly over USB to the printer.
Step 6: Assemble and Enjoy
Once you have your printed shells you can finally assemble the speaker :)
I might be spoiled with the surface quality of other 3D printers but do not try and sand the shell pieces. It ends up making the surface finish worse.
Test fit your components to make sure everything fits like it should. Minor adjustments can be made with a dremel if necessary.
The speaker grills were super glued in place. Next, the speakers were placed on top and hot glued to the surface of the grills.
Insert the electronics board into the top shell and secure it with screws and hot glue. A small amount of foam left over from the original speaker housing was used to block the side vents from letting debris into the housing. A small dab of hot glue around the ports blocks any spacing issues.
I chose to lock the Bluetooth module to the case with tiny square magnets that I had laying around my lab. Once you slide the module into the track, the magnets lock it into place for a semi-permanent attachment.
Finally, the added bonus of an NFC chip to directly connect to the Bluetooth was added on the vacant top side. For those unfamiliar, NFC or Near Field Communication is now being embedded in modern smartphones (excluding apple products) to allow for a quick tap and activate solution. The NFC chip takes short wave transmission and powers itself just long enough for the phone to read the tag. Users can write certain code to tags in order to do different actions.
I have been meaning to put my phone's NFC ability to use and I thought that it was time I did so via this project. After you purchase the tags which can come from many different supplies, download an app called NFC Task Launcher. Click the add button to set up a new NFC task. You can give it a name and set a handful of task to start when the tag is touched. For example, I chose to start my Bluetooth connection, max out the volume, and open a music app. Once you are done, tap save and write while you have your phone over the tag. The information will be stored and now each time you tap the tag on the speaker, you will instantly be connected without going through sub-menus to setup your connection.
The final product is shown under and ultra violet light and I took it to spring break for a few days on the beach B-)
The overall cost was around $50 but the coolness factor of telling your friends you made this speaker is off the charts. Hopefully this has inspired you to make your own printed portable wireless speaker!