This dock made from materials around the house will boost the reception of your iTrip- allowing you to broadcast your tunes over the radio clearly from all the way across a room!
For this project, you'll need:
1 Paper Towel Roll or 2 Toilet Paper Rolls
iPod with iTrip or similar radio broadcasting device attached
2 Empty Tape Rolls
A writing utensil
Wire (Any gauge will do)
Hard-Plastic Card (optional)
Step 1: Measure Your Paper Towel Roll for Size
After gathering your materials, lay your iPod next to the Paper Towel Roll with one of your empty Scotch Tape rolls on either side. Now mark just past the second tape roll (it's better to leave extra room than to cut too close)
Step 2: Cut the Roll Once- Then a Second Time
Now that you've measured your roll, it's time to cut it. Cut right along the line you drew, all the way through.
This section of your Paper Towel roll will hold your iPod.
Next, cut a slit all the way through your new roll.
Step 3: Make the IPod Port
Now, line up your iPod so it's an equal distance from the left and right sides of your Paper Towel roll. Mark just beyond either side of the iPod, and make a short slit along both marks. (Approximately 1/2")
Step 4: This Is Where Things Get a Bit Tricky...
Here the tricky part-
First, push down the flap that you just created by cutting the slits.
Now, put one of your empty tape rolls into each edge of your Paper Towel Roll.
Next, wrap the Paper Towel Roll tightly around the tape rolls ***MAKE SURE that you wrap the side with the flap UNDER the other side***
Use a small amount of duct tape to secure the rolls in place.
Step 5: Fitting Your IPod
Now it's time to fit your iPod into the dock. Do this by carefully wiggling the iPod into the slot that you created earlier.
Note that it shouldn't fit at first- you'll need to wiggle it in, which will rip the slot open just far enough to get the iPod into place.
Step 6: Reinforce the Slot
Next we'll need to reinforce the slot we just created. To do this, remove your iPod and begin the process of covering just about every area of your Paper Towel roll with duct tape.
Step 7: Check for Fit, Then Prepare the Antenna
Now that we've sufficiently reinforced the dock, it's time to prepare the antenna!
Get a bunch of wire- I used about 10 feet, but use a length equal to the distance you want to have your iPod from your stereo.
Next, fold over a section of wire approximately 2 inches long. Make another 2 inch fold, and a couple more- stop when you have 4-5 folds (more if you use a high gauge wire) -see the 3rd picture for a better understanding of the folding process.
When you have your folds, make the creases as tight as possible, and then reinforce them with duct tape (picture 4)
Now we're ready to put our coil of wire into our dock! Insert the coil BEHIND the section of cardboard that is folded back to create the slot (see picture 5)
Once it's in, use gratuitous amounts of duct tape to reinforce the antenna. This is a very important step- we don't want it to fall out!
Step 8: Balancing the Dock
Now it's time to get the dock to stand on it's own. We'll do this by first cutting a piece of our paper towel roll (or using another toilet paper roll) to approximately the same length as our original roll.
Mark where you plan to cut, then cut the section of the roll.
Next, cut a slit all the way through the new roll.
Here's the tricky part- you'll need to cut a section of the new roll out so that it will fit nicely with the other roll. The idea is to make it so that when you push the two together, it's a fairly even surface on the bottom. (see the pictures for a better explanation)
Step 9: The Stand, and DUCT TAPE!!!
Next, reinforce the stand with duct tape- here's how:
Carefully cut a piece of duct tape that's just shorter than the width of the iPod slot. Attach that piece to the middle of the stand, and then attach it to the back of the iPod slot.
From there, curl the stand in towards the main dock until they are even heights on the bottom.
Reinforce everything with lots of duct tape, then make sure the dock stands on it's own and the iPod still fits.
Step 10: Accessorize!
You're done with the bulk of the building! Now it's time to accessorize!
First, we'll improve the stand- cut out a piece of cardboard with the same footprint as the entire dock.
Then, duct tape the cardboard to the bottom of the dock. Now you're dock will stand much sturdier than before!
If you have velcro, now's a good time to use it. We'll use the velcro to ensure that our dock remains secure even on an unsecure surface. Attach a small piece of velcro to the bottom of your dock, and the matching piece to whatever surface you'll want to put your dock on- and you're good to go!
Finally, let's add a wire holster. Take your hard-plastic card (credit card, gift card, etc) and cut out the sections shown in the picture below. You'll be able to wrap your wire around this, and keep it out of your way!
Step 11: Attaching It to Your Stereo
This is the final step!
It's time to attach the other end of your antenna to your stereo.
If you're using a low gauge wire, split the end into two sections and twist each of them tightly so they're easy to manage.
Locate your stereo's antenna, and attach your's- Congratulations! You've just enabled yourself to listen to music from your iPod over the radio- even if your iPod is across the room!