DIY Lithium-ion USB IPhone Charger in an Altoids Tin




Introduction: DIY Lithium-ion USB IPhone Charger in an Altoids Tin

This is my first Instructable so please do not expect too much. I made a video and then took screen shots from it to make this.

I hope you enjoy!

Please check out the videos as well.

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Step 1: Parts Needed...

You will need:

1) A tin of your choosing (must be big enough to hold all the parts)

2) Soldering Iron

3) Solder

4) Electrical tape

5) Hot glue gun w/ hot glue in it

6) 1 Lithium-ion 18650 battery holder

7) 1 Lithium-ion 18650 battery

8) 1 Lithium-ion Charge controller

9) 1 USB Charge circuit

10) A well ventilated area to solder in! (Don't just try to hold your breath.. it never works)

11) An exacto knife or a sharp knife (to cut the type to size)

12) A small but effective file

13) Strong Scissors or small tin snips

Step 2: Step 1 - Grab the Tin and Tape...

Cover the bottom of the tin with electrical tape to keep components from shorting out on the metal. This step you do not want to skip, especially when using Lithium-ion batteries...

Step 3: Step 2 - Knife Cuts Tape...

Take your knife or exacto blade and cut the tape so it is covering the bottom of the tin only..

Step 4: Step 3 - Drillin'

Drill a hole in the desired spot for your USB Charge circuit. I drilled 3 holes about the right width for the USB female to stick out. Then i lined up the LED and drilled a hole for it.

Step 5: Step 4 - Good Scissors Cut These Tins Pretty Easy...

Use some good sturdy scissors to cut out the hole as best as you can without making it too big. Filing is next and that will make the size of the hole right.

Step 6: Step 5 - File Work, Take Your Time...

Get to work filing the hole to fit the female USB. You want to have to kinda force it in to keep it nice and snug. Take your time and make it look good...

Step 7: Step 6 - Make Sure If Fits...

Take the USB charge circuit and fit it into the holes you made. Take it back out and set aside for now.

Step 8: Step 7 - More Drilling...

Drill 2 small holes about the width of the Lithium-ion Charge controller and then check the size. Get the scissors and cut the hole, jam the file in there and start working it... You need to be careful again you want the size to be big enough but not too big.

Step 9: Step 8 - Admire Your Work...

Take a minute to appreciate the hard work you invested into making this tin look nice and fit the components.

Step 10: Step 9 - Solder the Parts Together...

I added a wiring diagram to explain the process.

Step 11: Step 10 - Install the USB Charge Circuit...

Line up the USB Charge circuit so the end is pretty flush with the outside and solder it to the tin.

You need to get a little solder on the corner and then hold the iron on the tin, solder and USB female at the same time to heat them a bit until the solder will adhere and hold them together. Do it in 2 spots at least and then test for strength.


Step 12: Step 11 - Install the Lithium Charge Controller...

Fire up the hot glue gun and apply a nice amount of hot glue to the hole area where the Charge controller is going to be and then hold it in place for about 5 to 10 seconds so it can set. It might be a good idea to plug in a USB mini plug from the outside to make sure it is just right and on a good angle.


Step 13: Step 12 - Install the Battery Holder...

Apply 2 or 3 good size dots of hot glue to the area where the 18650 battery holder will go. Put it in place and hold with your thumbs or other fingers if you don't have thumbs, no judging here..

Step 14: Step 13 - Testing...

Insert the battery and try the charger. My circuit has an LED flashlight so i tried that first and then plugged in a phone. Tested and works...

Thank you for viewing my first intractable.. Please check out my videos for this build as well.

Step 15: Step 14 - Watch the Videos...

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    DIY Hacks and How Tos

    Nice portable charger. These would be really useful in an emergency.