Introduction: Sony Cyber-Shot Battery Door Improvement

This instructable came because of problem. I have been given a Sony Cyber-Shot camera. The camera is great except that it has two annoying design flaws. The battery and card door's latch is extremely flimsy and the door tends to simply fly open when you least expect it. This combined with a weak battery hook makes it a disaster waiting to happen. The few times I used it, I ended-up having to get the battery off the floor. Annoying to say the least.

I tried searching on the internet and it seems this is a common problem. And since I don't think using tape is an elegant solution, I set out to over-engineer something that is a bit more elegant.

Granted, the materials I used are not the best and the design could benefit from a few improvements. But the essential details are there and the design is solid enough for daily use.

Step 1: Required Materials

For this project, you will need the following:

  • 1x tongue depressor (wide Popsicle stick)
  • 1x 1/4 20 bolt

And the following tools:

  • 1x 1/4 inch drill
  • 1 utility knife
  • 1 pencil
  • sandpaper
  • a metal hacksaw
  • a metal file
  • whatever else you feel you need to get the job done

Step 2: Marking the Hole Position

Just lay the camera on its back on a table and put the tongue depressor next to the tripod socket hole.

Use the pencil to simply mark the location of the hole.

The use a ruler to mark the central location of where the hole is located.

Take the drill and make a hole roughly in the center of the tongue depressor. This is not rocket science to just get it as close to the center as you feel.

Step 3: Trace Camera Shape

Now use the bolt to fix the tongue depressor to the camera and use a pencil to mark its outline

Step 4: Cut the Ends With the Proper Profile

Now using the utility knife (or any other tool) to cut the tongue depressor to the correct profile, fit it on the camera.

You will notice that the stick will block the door hinge. Mark where the hinge goes and remove some wood to make it fit.

You might need to file the head of the bolt too. If the bolt is too long, just cut it shorter with the hacksaw.

And there you have it, a now foolproof battery door latch. You just need to color it black like the camera.

To open the door, you simply rotate the new base to line the notch with the hinge and then open the latch.

Now this is just a proof of concept design that can be greatly improved using better materials. But still, it remains very functional.

On future improvements, I probably would put the notch on the front so that I don't have to deal with loosening the screw before opening the bottom. I would also make the screw permanent in the right position. I would add a tab on the short side of the camera to prevent counter rotation. And possibly make a set of small holes for the speaker. And maybe make it out of aluminum or plastic...

Those are all options I think are worth exploring.

If only Sony could sell such a gadget...

I hope you enjoyed this instructable.

And if anyone decides to manufacture a similar product, make sure I get a copy ;-)

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