Like many other new owners of the amazing Raspberry Pi device, I went searching the internet for an affordable, rugged case that also looked great. The problem was that none of the cases I found were strong in all categories. The best you could find was an affordable case that looked great but wasn't very durable...or a great looking durable case that cost more than the Raspberry Pi itself. I knew they’re had to be a better way….
So I turned to my father, Louis Pazdan, who has over 30 years of high precision manufacturing experience. With his help, we designed and built early prototypes of a case that was affordable, great looking, and extremely durable. I liked the end result so much, I decided to make it available to the Pi community. Personally, I think the uniPi case we developed is the perfect companion to Ras Pi.
We recognize that having a prototype is only a small part to launching a successful Kickstarter. I couldn't tell you how many times I've personally funded projects only to see them delayed numerous times. With that in mind, we are already developing strategies to streamline production. For example, we minimized the number of manufacturing steps and product SKUs for this campaign.
The design right now is not finalized as we're still tweaking it. We expect to have the design finished by the time the campaign is up. After successful funding, we're going to order the solid aluminum blocks (Multipurpose Aluminum Alloy 6061) from our supplier. Then, our machine shop Pazdan Manufacturing LLC takes over. They will use a variety of equipment to precisely cut, manufacture, and deburr each aluminum block into the uniPi case. Then, quality control begins by measuring the dimensions of each unit, ensuring each is within expected tolerances. Each unit that meets the product specifications will be bubble wrapped and shipped USPS standard post. We will take special precautions if also shipping with a Ras Pi to ensure all funders are delighted with their uniPi case.
If the number of orders is higher than anticipated, I am already in contact with larger manufacturing facilities that have CNCs to get the job done in time. Similarly, I have contacted a professional packaging and shipping company to help us if needed.
Pazdan LLC Machine List:
Manual Milling Machines(All with Electronic
4 Bridgeport Mills
1 DoAll Mill
1 Lagun Mill
4 Gorton Mills
1 Jotes SPO-30BMills 400X1000
2 Universal Lathes 800X2000
1 Tuc Lathe 40/1500
2 Mitsui Grinders
1 Brown & Sharp Grinder
2 Universal Grinders 280DIAX500
2 Jakobsen Grinders 400X1000
1 Gorton Tool Grinder
1 Optima Drill Grinder
1 Nua 25 Tool Grinder
2 Boyar–Schultz H612 Grinders
2 Universal Lathes
1 Warner & Swasey Automatic Lathe with bar feeder
Injection Molding Machines
1 Arburg Molding Machine 40 Ton
Saws, Drill Presses
1 Meba Saw
1 DoAll Saw
1 Cincinnati Drill
1 Belt Sander
1 CMM Discovery Measuring Machine
1 Comparator Scherr-Tumico
1 Nikon Microscope
1 Clark Lift Truck
2 Hoist 3 Ton
1 Ford Delivery Truck
Working with the great people at Ace Anodizing Inc., in Hillside, IL to get the cases anodized: http://www.acemetalfinishing.com/index.html
Risks and challenges
The challenges I expect are common to most types of manufacturing. First, the design has to be finished in order to provide the best experience for the user without issue. Second, securing source material given the number of orders is always a concern. Third, each unit will need to be hand inspected to ensure it conforms to design specs. Lastly, there may be higher than expected manufacturing variability of the output cases. If any of these issues arise, we will secure external suppliers and contractors in order to source, complete the design, and manufacture the cases. No matter what, backers can expect frequent updates from the uniPi team.
With your help, I hope the project is a success so everyone can enjoy the uniPi case.
Creator of the uniPi case
Founder & CEO of Pazdan Manufacturing LLC
Music used in main video: “By Grace” (by Podington Bear)
Hand Model in main video: Kimberly Pazdan
Social Media advisor: Douglas Stauber
Video advisor: Juan Hernandez
Graphics Designer: James Rainaldi
Lead Design and Manufacturing advisor: Louis Pazdan
In the main video I state there are no screws. I meant to say there are no visible screws. In the current prototype design, there are two screws used to mount the Raspberry Pi. This might change as we get further along though.
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- (30 days)