Introduction: Wireless Charger From IPhone Box

Just got my iPhone X, and as I still have a lot of Qi wireless charging boards from ebay, I decided to make a proper charging holder for the phone in my car. I wanted to reuse as much as possible the box for the iPhone X.

You will need a steel ruler, X-Acto knife (and spare blades, the box is built _tough_), hot glue gun and a Qi wireless charging board from ebay.

Step 1: Main Chassis From Bottom Half of Box

1. Mark out the 4 cutting lines on the bottom half, one inch or 2.5cm from the top edge.

2. Carefully cut through these 4 lines. You need to be very patient as the cardboards are more than 2 layers thick in some places. It's best to score and cut lightly multiple times than to try to force your way through quickly.

3. As you cut through the cardboard box, note that you will see cut lines in the formed 'plastic' inside the box. Mark and cut accordingly (following the parts already cut, and you will finally be able to separate the two halves.

4. You may notice that there is a protrusion for the power plug (well, in UK and similar models). Draw a line that extends from the one you already cut through and continue cutting to finally create the top of your wireless charger.

Step 2: Cut Out IPhone Screen Image on Box Top

The iPhone box top has a 1:1 scale image of the iPhone. Carefully cut through a rectangle that is the DISPLAY of the iPhone (minus the bezel). As you cut through, you will realise that there are 2 layers; the iPhone display image and another layer below. Retain the bottom layer for support struts later. If you then carefully cut around the curve of the display of the top sheet, you will end up with a thin cardboard that fits right onto/into your wireless charging box.

Step 3: Placement of Phone Base

This is possibly the most important step, to be able to create a stable and precise base for the iPhone. From your working surface, place the following parts in the correct order:

Top case of the charging base that you so laboriously cut in step 1
Cutout of iPhone from top box
Rectangular cutout from when you cut out the iPhone image from the top box
Rectangular spacer of 0.5 inches or more
Table or cutting mat (working surface)


You will notice here that you have created the exact spacing needed for the iPhone to sit correctly.

Using a glue gun, put glue around the 4 corners, the top and bottom, and just a 0.5" of glue along the center of the long edge.

Grab a beer; we are halfway there!

Step 4: Mounting the Charging Coil and Circuit

Beneath the now base for the iPhone, mark out with a sharpie where you intend to stick your charging coil. The following are critical:

1. The charging coil on the iPhone is dead centre at the back of the iPhone. The wire coil is _towards_ the phone.
2. Cater for where you intend to put the charging board and the USB connector.

Put a smallish dab of hot glue onto the charging coil and stick that to your marked area.

It is now time to cut out the places on the edge where you intend to mount the circuit board.

Once you are happy, before you secure the board, use the cardboard that was underneath the iPhone image (from the top box) and cut out a couple of widths (0.5" thick is fine) to glue onto the back of the iPhone image cardboard as support.

Finally, secure the circuit board with minimal glue (just for positioning) - you can secure it better later.

Try to ensure that the board is flush with the bottom of your case.

Step 5: Create and Mount Base

Remember the very bottom of the bottom case we cut in Step 1?

Tear out all other extraneous cardboard. It's time to carefully cut out the sides, leaving just the base of the bottom case. The edges must be preserved if you wish to fit them all together as perfectly as possible.

When you are finally ready, take a deep breath, glue up the edges, a dollop on the back of the circuit board as well, and stick on the bottom flap you just cut out.

Step 6: Plug in and Test!

That's basically it.

This method introduced some gaps between the various layers, which I am actually quite happy with, as some kind of thermal venting is always good. The charging board came with an LED to indicate charging status, and the hot glue seal around the box actually allowed a thin red or blue line to show up.

Issues faced for further rectification:

When mounted on a steel holder I welded for my previous phone, I realised that removing the phone can be difficult as it fitted really neatly in the case, with no space for my fingers to easily remove the phone. I will be exploring how to add a ribbon or something (like those in battery bays) to easily lift the phone out.

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