The Ultimate Ipod Altoid's Case




About: DCI is David and Chuk Industries.

We here at DCI would like you to know that this is maybe considered satire so don't try most of this at home you could really get injured or ruin your Ipod. With that out of the way feel free to try this I'm not your damn mother.

It's happened to all of us. After building so many projects for your Ipod out of Altoids tins and you're left with nowhere to put all those minty little devils. Thankfully here at David and Chuk Industries we have solved this dilemma. With a few basic tools, a small handful of parts, and 7 to 13 hours of your time you too can have a wonderful new Ipod Altoids Case, or as we call it the original DCIpod.

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Step 1: Assemble the Parts

You are going to need:

1 Ipod
We suggest using only the larger Ipods (generation 1-4). Do not attempt to use a Zune for this you could be badly injured.

2 Hard drives
You are going to get your magnets out of these and you should only use new or lightly used hard drives so that the magnets will be "the freshest." If you are removing these from your mother or grandmother's computer please back up their Quickbooks for god sakes.

2 Hinges
We got these from a hardware store. We made sure to get brass ones so we could list this Instructable as "Steampunk."

1 Tin of Altoids
You could use the giant pile of them you have laying around your bedroom from previous projects. We had to buy ours because we unfortunately don't use Altoid tins for projects because we live in a town with an electronics store that sells project boxes. We chose Wintermint because it's obviously the classiest flavor.

1 Large Piece of Steel Wool
We will explain later.

Step 2: Assemble the Tools

We here at DCI believe in using the right tool for the job every time we do anything. That's why we have complied a collection of tools we feel are absolutely necessary for completing this project with the best possible results. Please remember to use all the latest safety devices (chain mail) before using power tools and have a first aid kit on hand in case of emergency.

The tools we used for this project are as follows:

4 utility knives
nail set
assorted screwdrivers (6)
window scraper
ground lift adapter
1 wire nut
2 way coax splitter
2 spark plug gap gauges
1 1/2" drill bit
off set screw driver
8 inch half round bastard file
5/8 combination wrench
soldier sucker
mini level
rj45/rj11 crimper
1 stapler (black)
1 silca gel pack (do not eat)
1 caulk gun
sawsall w/ demolition blade
air duster
1 mapp gas with nozel
1 propane gas with nozel
2 1/8" oil filter wrench
1 ruler (for measuring tools)
14" abrasive cut-off saw

We do not recommend using other tools than those listed due to a higher probability of castration and/or death.

Step 3: Carefully Separate the Ipod Housing

Using the 14 inch abrasive cut-off saw carefully separate the outer casing of your Ipod. Apple designs these things to be kind of tricky so this could take some time. Notice in the picture that Chuk is using OSHA recommended safety glasses. Please remember when working with power tools to practice good safety practices.

After you have separated the Ipod use the nailset, spark plug gapping tools, and the off set screwdriver to finish opening the Ipod. Be sure not to puncture the battery inside the Ipod because it could explode and damage your mom's basement and wood paneling is very expensive stuff these days.

Step 4: Dismantle the Internal Parts of Your Ipod

Carefully remove the circuit boards, battery, hard drive, intergrated circuits, fuses, screen, and the large capacitor. You will need to losen the individual chips with a 5/8 inch combination wrench as pictured. Use the steel wool to short out and discharge your Ipod's battery so you and your cat are not injured.

Step 5: Clean Up the Plastic Half of the Ipod Housing

Using the demolition blade on your saws-all carefully remove all the tabs that are used to hold the two pieces of the Ipod together. You wont need these once you have the hinges and magnets installed.

Step 6: Obtain the Magnets From Your Hard Drives.

Using the Mapp gas as a hammer and a half round bastard file as a chisel carefully open the outer casing of the hard drive. We do not recommend actually using hammers or chisels for this because of the delicate nature of the work. Also do not light the torch end on the Mapp gas this will not help you and could end up filling your house with Carbon Monoxide. Which as most people know is the #2 cause of the gum disease gingivitis.

Once you open the hard drives get out all the magnets. You'll know them when you see them.

Step 7: Brazing the Hinges and Magnets Into Place.

With extreme caution use your Propane torch to braze weld the hinges and magnets into place. It is probably a good idea to use low lead or lead free soldier considering that food will be stored in the Ipod. If you don't have any handy just remember that your Grandparents all had lead pipes in their houses and they lived to be 89 years old.

Step 8: Customize Your Ipod

Via Serial Cable to USB to Firewire cable plug your DCIpod into your computer twice. This will download your favorite background onto your DCIpod. Don't question how the computer knows which one is your favorite.

Step 9: Configure the Ipod Altoids Interface Management System

Fill the DCIpod with delicious Altoids. Do not use the chocolate covered Altoids because they will melt under the tremendous heat given off by the electronic components inside the Ipod. After you are done with the tin feel free to discard the unnecessary Altoids tin (as pictured) or you could turn it into a tiny microwave or nixie clock or fill it with Necco wafers.

Make sure to check out the video tutorial for great tips on using your DCIpod.

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    64 Discussions


    4 years ago

    Zune holds less altoids.


    6 years ago

    Why the band-aids??


    11 years ago on Step 3

    the guy with the yellow thing around him looks like seth from superbad. lol

    1 reply

    Reply 8 years ago on Step 3

    :\ Not all fat people are Jonah Hill... That's almost as "insert class here"-ist as saying all black people look alike, or all chinese people look alike.


    10 years ago on Introduction

    there was no need for the power saw to open the ipod.. all you do is pry a thin object like a knife betweent he white and the metal and pop it open. its easily snapped shut and snapped open.

    3 replies

    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    Apparently you missed the entire point.....none of the steps are accurate or required, the whole thing is dripping with sarcasm


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    read her post
    then yours
    then hers again

    and realise hers was dripping with sarcasm too


    11 years ago on Introduction

    we all know the real reason not to use a zune for this, it is because the firmware on the zune out ranks the I pod firmware by a million! no i even herd it from my step dad (he went to MIT, and is a total nerd, he is also close minded and is pro mac... the zune is the only Microsoft product he supports) it is much easier to navigate with a zune... i had an i pod mini, and traded it for an 80 gb zune. i will never go back

    2 replies

    8 years ago on Introduction

    This looked dangerous, so I decided to work on it outside. Then it got dark, so in step 6 I lit the MAPP gas container. Any advice on how to keep it lit while hammering? I also dropped the container, but it's pretty easy to find in the dark using a match if it's still making that hissing noise.


    I seem to have run out of bandaids and switched to duct tape to hold my appendages on. I wonder if I'll ever play the violin again... :(

    BUT WOW my songs have never been so fresh! They're almost minty!

    Hmm... and the bass is curiously strong now. odd..


    9 years ago on Step 4

    Steel wool + 9V battery => awesome firestarter!


    9 years ago on Introduction

    someone had WAY to much fun working on this... :)


    9 years ago on Introduction

    Turn the altoids tin into something valuable, turn something valuable into an altoids tin. Awesome!