About this project
If you're a fan of the Raspberry Pi you'll most likely be overwhelmed with the number of cases there are out there... I know I was. Even though I had plenty of choices, they all seemed to follow the same pattern and I was left wanting something different... something unique. I wanted a case with a simple, clean design, quick access to the board and better cable management. The result is the Spin Case.
It's the Design that Sets it Apart
Nearly all Raspberry Pi cases on the market have cables sticking out in all directions. The Spin Case is radically different. It is a 2 piece design consisting of a chassis and a cover. The Raspberry Pi is securely attached to the chassis and cables plugged into the board are routed around posts that steer them out the back of the case as one neat bundle. It's not just an aesthetic design... The mechanical purpose of routing the power and HDMI cables around the posts is to alleviate any stresses that might weaken or damage the Raspberry Pi or the cables themselves by supporting them in line with the connector.
Once assembled, the Spin case is approximately 6" in diameter and 1.5" tall (150mm x 38mm). Closing the case is as simple as aligning the tabs and rotating it to the locked position. Cables are cleanly routed out the back giving the case a sleek, refined look.
The Manufacturing Process
The cover of the Spin Case starts as a solid block of 6061-T6 aircraft grade aluminum and is CNC machined using Lathes and Mills. The chassis is also made from aircraft grade aluminum and is cut on a high power industrial laser. The cover and chassis are then anodized for protection. Finally, the posts are pressed into the chassis using a multi-ton press and the Spin Case is complete.
NOTE: The prototype you see in some of these photos has a raw bead blast finish but looked TERRIBLE after it was anodized. As it turns out, bead blasting and anodizing the 6061 alloy of aluminum always results in a dull, splotchy and inconsistent appearance. Unfortunately, the 6063 architectural alloy is better suited for bead blast and anodize BUT it is not readily available in the diameter of the Spin Case. For these reasons the Spin Case will only be anodized and not bead blasted. I can assure you that a non-bead blasted machined finish still looks SLICK! (I personally am keeping the machined finish)
But wait there's more... More Power!
After more negotiations with my suppliers (the day after launch) I was able to secure new lower pricing through more efficient production methods which cut the cost of each Spin Case by nearly $20. Instead of pocketing the money I'm adding it toward the top reward in the form of the Power Module. I was saving it as a stretch goal, but it is too cool to not offer right now.
The Power Module, with circuity developed by Mausberry Circuits, adds a stylish on/off functionality to the Spin Case. I'm continuing to perfect the final design of the Power Module so be sure and check the project updates for more details.
More? Sure why not?
One of the top requests for the Spin Case was for the ability to add storage. Great idea! Here's the Storage Module, part of the "Super Ultimate Spin" reward:
With such high end equipment comes high cost of manufacturing, but by taking advantage of the economies of scale I can bring the price for a precision machined case down to a reasonable level. With enough backers, the Spin Case can become a reality.
If we can reach a $5,000 funding level, I will be able to offer the Spin Case in clear or black with a slick laser engraved logo.
Risks and challenges
I would consider this a low risk project since designing and producing machined components on tight deadlines is something I've been doing for the past 12 years. However, any production run is always at the mercy of an outside vendor's schedule. For that reason I'm doing an initial batch of 50 cases for expedited delivery which is an easier number of units to produce in a quicker amount of time. Any quantities beyond the first 50 units will be delivered as a standard delivery option around March 2014.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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