IPod Protector


Introduction: IPod Protector

iPod getting all scratched up? Don't want to drop any more dough on a pink plastic 'Pod skin. Scrounge up the change under your couch cushion and make one.....packrat style!

Step 1: Gather Materials and Tools

Supplies needed
- 1 Dralla cutting board from IKEA (You get two in one package)
- A Sharp Knife with new blade
- 1/8" drill bit
- Drill or Dremel
- 4 - #8 10mm nylon spacers (If you can't find these spacers, you could always use some heat shrink tubing instead. Just make sure you modify the hole locations before you drill)
- 4 - 6-32 x 3/4" stainless machine screws
- 3"x5" index card or other card material of similar size
- Screwdriver to match the machine screws
- Some 120 and 220 grit sandpaper
- 4G iPod (Duh) *Note: the template in this HOWTO is for a 4G iPod. Since I didn't have any other iPod to test with you may have to modify the template to suit your needs
- Attached PDF file containing the template.

Step 2: Prepare Template

Print out the attached PDF. This drawing was created for a 4G iPod. Please test it out with your iPod first.

Cut out the outline and glue onto the 3x5 index card. This will add stiffness to your template.

Using your knife and the cutting board you don't want to use for you iPod Protector, cut out the window for the display and clickwheel

Step 3: Let's Get to the Cuttin'

Using the cardboard template trace and cut out 2 shapes from the cutting board. It should look like a stretched out dog bone.

Take your time, and don't sweat if you make a mistake, you have a lot more material to work with it.

Mix and match the colours of the two cutting boards if you like.

Obviously only cut the window for the display and the clickwheel on one of the two cutouts.

Be VERY careful with the knife. I found it was easier to cut out a rectangle slightly larger than the template and then whittle away the material until I got close to the mark.

I also whittled a slight chamfered edge on all edges of both cutouts. This made it easier to access the clickwheel, and took away the hard edge.

Use the sandpaper to smooth over any rough spots or edges.

Step 4: Dry Fit and Drill It

Compare your two cutout blanks to make sure they are roughly equal in size.

Add your iPod in between the cutouts, and position the nylon spacers on each corner of the iPod, and under the corners of the dog bone cutouts. Make sure there is ample material where the holes will be drilled.

Remove the top cutout, and your iPod, but leave the nylon spacers and the bottom cutout.

Using a pen, or awl, mark on the bottom cutout where to drill.

Stack the two cutouts on top of each other and drill through both cutouts simultaneously.

Step 5: Home Stretch - Put It Together

On the top cutout, S L O W L Y, start to thread the screws into the holes. The screws will cut into the plastic and make nice threads. Do this step by hand until at least the screws are in nice and straight and are poking through the bottom of the top cutout.

Now you can use your screwdriver to twist the screws until the heads are almost touching the top surface.

Thread your spacers onto the screws, position your iPod, and add the bottom cutout

Using your fingers press on the screw/spacer while you screw down to get the screw to bite into the bottom cutout. Don't tighten one corner all the way first, alternate so they all get tight together. You may notice the plastic starts to bow, but once the screws are just barely poking through the bottom piece you can stop.

Stand back, admire and nJoy! I found that all the controls, dock connector and headphone jack are easily accessible. One bad thing is if you ever want to get your iPod out you need a screwdriver.

Geek chic, or ghetto? Let me know.



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    17 Discussions

    I would say this is sortof geek chick/geek guy with the right colour material and a slightly different shape :)

    great instructable- the case looks great, it is probably the best you can get now a days for the older ipods

    I like the overall design and the project a lot. Awesome. $40 for aerospace carbon? Yo, F- that... I want something to protect it, is all. Awesome way to bring it back to its original purpose. Question, though: What prevents the whole ipod from sliding out of the case when you're done? I'm looking at the last picture in the last step. Could you perhaps add tiny little shims all around (made from the same material) that act as little lips to hold it in place?

    1 reply

    Hey Thanks!. Its kinda hard to explain with words but..... The corners of the iPod rest on the nylon spacers. Its a tight fit but the iPod fits perfectly and is not going anywhere. If I had to build another one, I would try to incorporate a clip for my heaphones...

    Forget that, my question now is, does this works for a colour screen iPod?

    1 reply

    Can't say. If the dimensions are the same as a 4G it should work fine. You could always measure your ipod (don't forget thickness) and alter the plans. If you are really stuck shoot me the dimensions and I will update this instructable for a colour iPod

    Hi, I am new and I am interested in building this case. I would like to know if this case works for iPod nano.


    12 years ago

    That is SOOOOO cool!

    Vrogy, those are slick but you could make about 10 or so Nano covers like that for 40 bucks!

    1 reply

    A quick estimate... you could make around 12 or so 4G iPod covers from the material in two cutting boards.

    I did get some inspiration from that design. I wanted to use materials that were easy to work with, would look ok, last, and were cheap.... err inexpensive.