Intro: DIY Xperia Z3-Dual : Magnetic Charger
I was given a Sony Xperia Z3 Dual few days ago with a loose USB charging flap cover. It has a flimsy rubber around the cover and now I am losing part of the rubber. Thank Sony for the side charging connector on its Xperia line-up. I have ordered a replacement cover and also a magnetic charging cable online. While waiting for the shipment, I made my DIY magnetic charger for temporary/emergency use.
For Sony fans, let's take a look (^_^ )
Step 1: Materials Needed
- I have some cubical neodymium magnet around that I bought from Sparkfun at $1.5 each at earlier time. In this project I use 2 pieces.
- One piece of Male to Male breadboard jumper wire. Here I need a pair of male pin head.
- Old unused USB cable from mouse or printer. We need the USB plug and its cable. Old one has better wire quality. The new cheap mouse has very thin wires and might be too hot or even melting when delivering 1 amp of power.
Step 2: Get the Connector Pins Ready
Remove the male pins of the jumper wire.
- Peel a little bit of the pin stopper with a cutter or tweezers.
- Pull out from the wire side.
- Release the metal part clipping the wire jacket.
- Pull out the wire. Do not worry if you have remaining on the metal part clipping the wire.
- I use a pair of wire jumper, so I save the other part of the pins and the wires for other project.
Step 3: Plug the Pins on USB Cable
Old mouse cable has four wires in it. Green and White wires are for data sending, we don't need them so just cut them off leaving the Red and Black ones.
Now we put the pins head on the Red and Black wires. Clip the wire's jacket and solder the wire on the pins pointed with a pen in my photo above.
Step 4: Get the Magnet Ready
Find a piece of plastic, here I use a microSD container plastic. Cut a piece of it at the width of the bevel-in side charging connector area (the black oval area). Yes, it is very tiny and need patient working on it.
Simply stick it on the magnet with adhesive tape. This plastic is intended to keep the magnet align in the bevel-in charging connector area, otherwise you need to manually align your pin on the tiny connectors on phone and a little move on the connector will disconnect the charging. Don't worry, neodymium magnet is a kind of strong magnet and it will keep the connectors in place, moreover with this little plastic stay in the bevel area.
The usage of adhesive tape will also prevent scratches on your phone. Try to stick the magnet on your phone and make sure it doesn't move much. Or you can stick the plastic with a stronger glue before laminating it with adhesive tape for anti-scratch.
Step 5: Keep Moving On
- Put the red and black pins on the magnet sides and wrap them with adhesive tape.
- Bend the pins toward outside the magnet (on a line with the plastic on magnet).
- Test it on the phone and cut the excessive length of the pins.
- Remember to mark the red wire side. Here I wrap a piece of red wire jacket along with the pins and magnet. This is crucial as we need to know which side is red (5V) and which is black (Ground). You won't see the color of the wires once you wrap your cable with electrical tape, unless you use a transparent adhesive tape.
The breadboard jumper pins are tiny, so is the connector on the phone. If you find it difficult to make the connection then this is the additional step to make your pin wider.
- Use resistor's excessive leads forming "U" shape around the pins as you can see on the photo above.
- Put some solder on the top side of the pin (last photo).
Now we get a wider connector pins ( ^_^)
Update : My latest patch is adding a circle shape of resistor leads below the pins so that it get a better grip to the phone's connector. But to be honest this is a painful work of art for we are shaping, aligning and soldering a very tiny stuff on a premium phone (^_^ "). Need more coffee and double your patient.
Step 6: Snap and Charge
Before you give it a go on your phone. It is good to test the voltage.
Few things to NOTE :
- Always use Standard Travel Charger Adaptor that comes with your phone.
- Red (5V) is UP and Black (GND) is DOWN. This is the standard of SONY for its side charging connectors on XPERIA line-up. I have never put them in wrong direction yet. Last time I put it the wrong way was on my Xperia Z and my phone restart, nothing bad happened but I AM NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR ANYTHING BAD THAT MIGHT HAPPENS TO YOUR PHONE. DO IT AT YOUR OWN RISK!
Well, I take my risk and now I can sit back and relax waiting for my new flap cover replacement. No more using the micro USB charger and it also means no more opening the flap cover unless necessary like changing microSD or when I forget to bring the magnetic charger :D