Never Lose Your Charge Again: New 3D Printed Smartphone Charger


Smartphones have become ubiquitous. They’re everywhere.

Even elementary kids have their own iPhone or Android phone these days. However, for all that use, there’s still a real challenge when it comes to battery life.

Manufacturers have made strides toward providing better battery life, but it’s still not quite where most of us would like it. An interesting new solution gives makers the freedom not to worry about the charge level on their smartphone, though.

Power Bank

Portable smartphone chargers are nothing new. You can find them pretty much anywhere, from electronics stores to Wal-Mart to dollar stores.

Of course, they’re not exactly perfect, and they do come at a cost. And then there’s the lack of customization and personalization.

One Instructables user decided to do something about that. It wasn’t too long before the Power Bank began to take shape.

“Hobbyman” is the brain behind Power Bank, and says, “As the functions of cell phones have increased astronomically, so have their power requirements. Nowadays, a phone which is purchased new can hardly stand working for a day or two and its endurance even decreases as the battery inside wears down as it gets older.

So many people are buying and using battery power packs.”

To get started, Hobbyman took inspiration from the existing battery packs, including both their successes and their failures. “I looked at the ones already designed and built, being sold on eBay.

I saw lots of them are very similar to each other. I did some concept sketches and settled on a boxy, rectangular shape with rounded corners.”

The final design is interesting for several reasons. First, it’s just two pieces that can be snapped together. There are no screws or glue necessary.

Second, by being able to open the charger, the internal battery can be replaced easily, meaning that you’re able to save money without having to buy a new charger every time.

The parts Hobbyman chose for his creation are readily available from electronics stores, as well as through online retailers, meaning that pretty much anyone at all could order them and assemble the charger at home, as long as they have a 3D printer. Of course, the 3D print portion of the build can always be outsourced to a friend with their own printer, or even a 3D printing provider (although that would drive up the price).

Once the components were sourced, Hobbyman had to turn to Solidworks for the design and modeling portion of the project. In addition to creating the exterior design, he also designed an interior support tray that would connect the interior elements.

Then it was time to print the housing. It took about five hours to complete using his own printer, and he opted for ABS filament.

The final charger had enough juice to fully charge a completely dead phone battery, as well as another battery up to 50%. Not too shabby for a home-designed product.

Currently, the full file list can be found on Instructables free of charge.

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