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Can't get Windows Phone accessories? Print them in 3D!

It’s no secret that Windows Phone accessories aren’t exactly flooding the market at the moment. And while there are great places like the WPCentral store (opens in new tab), here in South Africa our choices are more limited.

You see, many local stores don’t stock anything, and shipping items from the states just isn’t worth it most of the time. I even went to an official Nokia store here to get a cyan cover for my Lumia 800, and not only did they not have any colors besides black, their black ones were 3rd party products. Yep, the Nokia store did not sell Nokia covers.

Recently I have been wanting a dock or stand for my Lumia 900 to prop it up on my desk, but of course, I couldn’t find one. Rather than waiting to get one shipped, I thought I would make my own.

Enter: 3D Printers.

3D printers really are amazing little machines – and every time I use my MakerBot Thing-O-Matic I am reminded of that. There are many variations and kits that you can buy, or build yourself, and prices are dropping drastically as they become more widespread.

So I fired up Google Sketchup (opens in new tab) (which is actually pretty terrible, but hey, it's free), which is a free basic 3D CAD program, and threw together a quick model of the stand I wanted. With the 900 being the “Batman Phone (opens in new tab)” I thought I better use the logo everywhere I could.

A few hours later and I had my final product! The only material used to make it was ABS plastic (and some black spray-paint) which is rather expensive per KG, but goes a long way. The stand cost just under a dollar to print, or R6 in South Africa. The finish isn't perfect, but there's nothing that some Acetone, sandpaper and a Dremel can't fix.

I've uploaded the source files to Thingiverse - so if you have a 3D printer, go ahead and try it out: http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:31078 (opens in new tab)! Next up is a dashboard mount for using Nokia Drive safely in my car.

24 Comments
  • Batman fan or not,very nice work. I'll be looking into this option myself now,thanks
  • Hadn't even thought of this is as an option. Brilliant!
  • Id love one of these 3d printers. But $2000 is a bit much, just for toying around with it.
  • Yeah, 2K is still too high for me, too. $300 is my trigger price for one of these, although I'm not sure what I'd use it for anyway.
  • How about $499? http://www.solidoodle.com/
  • Very nice - im tempted!
  • That's at least feasible, but I don't know what I'd make out of plastic and under 6" x 6" x 6". My own Lego pieces??? I think it's sweet what you did and am happy for you! I'll keep thinking about it, though. It is most definitely cool tech!
  • dang cool.  Nice work and thanks for sharing!  (if only I had a 3D printer... )
  • That is so awesome I cannot justify buying a 3d printer right now unfortunately
  • Lol
  • I have not seen one for under 10k. 500 sounds perfect
  • Amazingly cool and creative stuff.
  • Awesome job.
  • For those interested in a short video of this printing, check: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SNZ2yGDWDdA&feature=youtu.be
  • I bet some people here would buy some of the stuff you make.  Cheaper than buying the machine!
  • Awesome job! Anyone have design files for a fully-functional, fully-TMoUS-compatible 920? :D
  • 3D printing is cool and all, but yikes at the cost. A while ago I found and bought a couple of these for $5 a piece off eBay:
     
    http://www.breffo.com/collections/spiderpodium
     
     
    You can do almost anything, including putting it in your car (attaching a few of the "arms" to the heater vents works pretty well). They're pretty flexible and dare I say more economical than buying a 3D printer.
  • Our school has a 3D printer...maybe I'll ask if I can make some stuff
  • Here come the batman lawsuits ;-)
  • mine seems having a problem. is there a way to fix it?
    http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v70/salleh98/2012-09-25-090.jpg
  • I have to stop printing when this happen
    http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v70/salleh98/2012-09-25-0911.jpg
    :(
  • Dammit, should have added to the instructions that you must print it flat on its back! And it should print fine without a raft. Sorry :-/
  • ohh great! im new to this and i don't know that i can still rotate the orientation of object before printing haha.
    Thanks a lot ;)
  • ohh great! im new to this and i don't know that i can still rotate the orientation of object before printing haha.
    Thanks a lot ;)