- It eliminates the need for a dedicated Pi power supply (the Pi is SAFELY powered through backfeeding from its USB port)
- Adds plenty of 500mA USB ports (instead of the two 100mA the Pi comes equipped with, which can't fully power most peripherals)
- Provides a stable power supply for your Pi
- Eliminates the hassle of carrying/plugging lots of different cords
The case also has a handy cover for the SD card (I never really liked the fact that it's sticking out like that) but if you don't like it you can always use another Lego piece there to make a "classic" case that reveals the SD card inserted.
There is also a special Lego piece (the windshield) taken from a Lego car set that lets you view which LEDs light up.
The USB hub used is a Belkin 7-Port Powered Mobile Hub which is quite handy since it's a somewhat smaller same size as the Raspberry Pi and can be fitted right on top of it. Unfortunately, the design eliminates one USB port but I have found this to be trivial, since I have never used the Pi with more than 4 peripherals at the same time and if such a need arises I can always use the remaining port on the Pi itself. Here is a link to the USB hub used: http://www.belkin.com/us/p/P-F5U701
I have created detailed instructions on Lego Digital Designer and included them in the steps of this guide. The instructions are divided in 3 parts:
- Part 1 is the base of the case (you will put the Pi in there when you finish the assembly)
- Part 2 is the first "roof" of the base (this covers the Pi and is also the base for the USB hub)
- Part 3 is the second "roof" (this covers the USB hub and completes the structure)
Although this design is pretty solid (no Pi rattling - USB hub rattles a LITTLE) I plan on improving it in the future to include even more useful stuff (like another floor for a card reader, or a "basement" floor below the Pi for a small external HDD).
This is my first instructable everyone, I hope you like it! You are free to modify this design anyway you like and even post your modification in another instructable (a link to the original would be very much appreciated). Thank you! :D