Customizable iPhone Stencil Case

by sethmoser, published

Customizable iPhone Stencil Case by sethmoser Mar 6, 2013


This is a mashup of Benjamin's Stencil-o-matic thingiverse.com/thing:55821 and Makerbot's Customizable iPhone Case thingiverse.com/thing:40703 to create an iPhone case with any imagery you like.

First step is **Benjamin's Stencil Factory** chaaawa.com/stencil_factory.

Then "Open in Customizer" and paste in "input", adjust the other case settings, and you're ready to print!

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blank. what happen actually. i already create 2 account but still happen..im also use simple images such as font but the result still same.blank.......does anyone facing same problem a? is there any solution for this technical problem??

It would be great if you could put something together. My kids both have 5C's and there is not much here for that at the moment.

This is something I've been meaning to address for a while... the iPhone 5 dimensions work equally well for the 5s, but the 5c's rounded corners aren't really ideal for this design. Apple's specs on the shape are published online, I just haven't had time to build a model for the 5c into the code - if anyone has openSCAD code that mimics the shape of a 5c, I'd be happy to build it in here!

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**June 18 update: Finally got the fit right for iPhone 5, as well as some improvement for iPhone 4/4S. Woot! Thanks to everyone who helped figure this out.**

**June 15 update: Added a new version of the mashup that puts your image inside one of the base shapes in the geometric pattern, and fixed a few bugs in the code.**

May 29 update: New features added, notably a "mashup" that uses both stencil and geometric together for a cool new effect.

April 24 update: New version added with improved fit for the 4/4S and a taper feature to allow you to taper the walls of your case, improving grip. Also opening up all iphone size variables for tweaks. A number of smaller improvements are also included.

March 16 Update: Couple of changes in this version:
* Integrated the code from Makerbot's geometric customizable cases here, so you can choose what type of case to generate.
* Further tweaks on the phone sizing - should now fit better on iPhone 5

The first step is **Benjamin's Stencil Factory** chaaawa.com/stencil_factory - detailed instructions are below.

Once you have the output of Stencil Factory ready, **open this thing in Customizer and copy the output of Stencil Factory into the "Input" field.**

Next, **use the customizer parameters** to select the correct phone model (iPhone 4/4s vs. iPhone 5), the case thickness, and any scale / position changes you want for your image.

**Click save to STL and you're ready to print!**

**Note: The case tolerance** field should only be adjusted if you've already printed and need to make fine adjustments.


**The following instructions are copied directly from Benjamin's Stencil-o-Matic:**

*1.* Open the Stencil Factory and select your image (gif, png, jpg).

"Convert & copy", as its name suggests, also copies the output in your clipboard, so:
*2.* "Open in Customizer" and paste in "input".
*3.* "create STL", download and print.

**Stencil Factory** also available in .zip (with sources) for offline use.


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fitbaha on Mar 27, 2014 said:

blank. what happen actually. i already create 2 account but still happen..im also use simple images such as font but the result still same.blank.......does anyone facing same problem a? is there any solution for this technical problem??

pruitts on Mar 20, 2014 said:

Does anyone have the settings needed for the case to fit an iPhone 5C?

sethmoser on Mar 20, 2014 said:

This is something I've been meaning to address for a while... the iPhone 5 dimensions work equally well for the 5s, but the 5c's rounded corners aren't really ideal for this design. Apple's specs on the shape are published online, I just haven't had time to build a model for the 5c into the code - if anyone has openSCAD code that mimics the shape of a 5c, I'd be happy to build it in here!

marius on Feb 16, 2014 said:

I get the same blank rectangle issue...sure it's not a browser thing? What OS and browser are you doing this on? Would love to contribute but this problem appears to be keeping at least half the community from using it.

sethmoser on Mar 20, 2014 said:

Not sure about others - I've tested and used in IE and Chrome on windows and Chrome on osx. Most of the people who have had the blank rectangle issue in the past actually had an issue with the image they were using - if the image you have creates an island in the middle of a rectangle, openSCAD will drop that island out, thus creating a blank rectangle. Try inverting the colors in Benjamin's stencil factory interface (there's an option for this) or adding "bridges" in an image editing program.

CMT220 on Jan 16, 2014 said:

The top right corner for the iphone 5 never seems to print out well. We use PLA with the Replicator 2 printer. What can I change on the dimensions to make the top right corner fit as perfect as the other three corners?


sethmoser on Jan 16, 2014 said:

Sorry to hear that - can you explain how the fit is bad (or send a picture)? Is it too small, too big? I sometimes have issues with warp in the corners, particularly with ABS, if the print isn't sticking to the build plate perfectly - are you having a similar issue?

wildnrg on Dec 26, 2013 said:

Printed one, looks great, can someone make a version of this that uses the second extruder instead of making a cut out of the stencil. This would 1. make the case stronger, 2. allow more details without causing material to break, and 3. Allow shape like the letters "A, O, P, R" etc to be able to be stenciled using a second colour without the hole falling out.

silvergirl16 on Oct 29, 2013 said:

could you make an iphone 3 version please

sethmoser on Jan 16, 2014 said:

I don't have an easy iphone 3 model, unfortunately - if you have a reliable model of the iphone 3 handset, let me know, it would be relatively easy to incorporate it into the design. Same for any galaxy 3, 4, 5 users out there (or iphone 5c)...

srl4770 on Oct 11, 2013 said:

what are the geometric inputs for the example one (middle) above?

50centner on Oct 10, 2013 said:

How much does this case weigh?

the_alteran on Oct 7, 2013 said:

Tried using the customizer, but the image just loads a blank rectangle.

firefighterjrp on Sep 22, 2013 said:

Printed one of these yesterday for my 4s, fits great and looks great. My only concern is that the case sides are flush with the front of the phone, so it won't help me any if I drop the phone face down. I printed the slim case, so does the sturdy one have this feature, or is there a parameter I can change in customizer? I would like the case to stick up a couple mm past the front of the phone. Thanks!

MeirB on Aug 28, 2013 said:

I'd really like to try this out, but when I open the site, it's just a blank page with a file selection field. When I select a file nothing happens. No luck with explorer or firefox... Any idea why?

sethmoser on Sep 5, 2013 said:

Someone else reported a similar problem lately - it works on my end, not sure why it might be down. You might want to try contacting the user benjamin, he runs the chaaawa.com site. Good luck!

excell_13 on Aug 19, 2013 said:

hi, I've got some problem with your stencil link, I just cant open it...really have no idea why...

TheNewHobbyist on Aug 13, 2013 said:

I've been having some trouble getting the iPhone 5 case to fit flush. The upper left corner seems to be short by ~.5mm. I'm guessing that's not actually the case, any advise on settings to tweak in customizer to make it fit? Printing in PLA at Makerware medium settings.

sethmoser on Aug 19, 2013 said:

I have this issue occasionally depending on the material I'm printing with - seems like tolerances need to be adjusted for each plastic due to different flow rates at the same extruder temp, or something like that.

If you go to the dimensions tab (last tab in customizer, I believe) you should be able to increase the horizontal and vertical tolerances to take care of the issue; maybe try 0.5 or 0.6 instead of 0.3mm.

Joel_the_survivor on Jul 29, 2013 said:

When i input my stencil it just shows up as an empty box any tips?

sethmoser on Jul 30, 2013 said:

Hey Joel,

Just replied to unifrak - wondering about a similar issue here. I've had this problem when I had an image where the pattern was in white and background was in a dark color (vs. dark pattern on light background). It shows up OK in Benjamin's code, but what's actually happening is the pattern itself is an unsupported island in the middle of a box. Then, when you copy in, the unsupported island drops out and you just get an empty box.

If that's the problem, you can resolve this by clicking "invert" at the top of Benjamin's program. Hope this helps! If not shoot me a copy of the picture, I'm happy to try to help.

unifrak on Jul 28, 2013 said:

Great, but when i input it into the customizer, it doesn't seem to pick up the details on my stencil... help?

sethmoser on Jul 30, 2013 said:

Wondering if you have "unsupported islands in your image" - i.e. details that would be left behind on the build plate after printing due to lack of connection to other parts. For instance, the letter "O", unedited, would turn out as a circle instead of an O, since the middle is not connected. To resolve this, you can add bridges in any imaging program, or even inside Benjamin's code (there are buttons at the bottom to draw bridges freehand).

If that's not what's going on, maybe you can pass on the image you're using - happy to look into it!

ferdyp on Jun 5, 2013 said:

Prints great on my Replicator2 with PLA. Really like the ease of adding a stencil. Great work!

I am using Makerwares High-quality profile with speed reduced to 50mm/sec and temperature increased to 240 degrees for the red PLA from Makerbot store.

anewsome on May 29, 2013 said:

I'm glad to see someone else finally figured out that tapering the walls is really the only way to get a firm fit. From my iPhone cases I first printed months ago, I quickly figured that out. However I was doing it *manually* by getting the STL from thingiverse, opening it in Blender and editing the mesh manually to taper the walls. If you think doesn't sound pretty, in practice it was way worse. I can't wait to try out a proper tapered case. Thanks for all the hard work sethmoser.

sethmoser on May 29, 2013 said:

I think maybe you're the one who gave me the idea??

Hope it works brilliantly - my 4s cases have been fitting like a glove since the most recent updates :)

vinnie90 on May 28, 2013 said:

Super awesome combo with iphone case and stencils... However I have printed out 4 of these cases already...It always .25" too big and when I try to scale down the size it is too small and I crack the pla when putting it on...

any help guys? baby step me if you need too, I would really like to get this case to fit my iphone 5!

sethmoser on May 29, 2013 said:

This is entirely my fault! I've had a tough time with 5 fit as well, and haven't had time to test it enough. My suspicion is that fiddling with the iphone5 size parameters (available in customizer) is the key. If you have a caliper, you can try measuring yours and comparing to the numbers I have in there; I've tried to "fudge" them in the past, so you'll likely get slightly different numbers.

Alternatively, if you know it's always .25" off in one dimension, you can try adding/subtracting 5-8 mm from one of the dimensions and testing the print.

I'm trying to find time to get to this testing process, but if you figure it out in the meantime, please let me know what worked!

And thanks for the compliment on the design :)

MARTIAL on May 22, 2013 said:

Hi, I've printed some and it's great ! congratulations, would you include samsung gs 3 as a customizable model as well ?

MARTIAL on Jun 1, 2013 said:

the model is not available anymore, but the mockup could help... : thing:27428, gs4 mockup is

sethmoser on May 22, 2013 said:

I'd like to - unfortunately I don't have access to a gs3, so I don't have something to go off of for fit, etc. Are there any other cases on thingiverse that have worked well in the past and could make a good base model?

rx7mike88 on Apr 6, 2013 said:

Would anyone happen to know the best tolerances for an iphone 4/4s? I have been printing a couple of these with varying tolerances and they don't seem to fit very well.

BenWittbrodt on Apr 24, 2013 said:

You have to go into the scad file and change the dimensions of the phone.

I've been playing with it and got it to fit quite well with:

4cornerR = 8.71;

my height tolerance was 0 and perimeter tolerance was 0.85

keithcl on Apr 12, 2013 said:

any luck with this? printed one and it's only 2mm out. should the tollerance be lower to reduce size?

Benjamin on Mar 6, 2013 said:

You can remove the last sentence in "Instructions".
Bridges are supported.
One more tool and you can draw whatever you want.

sethmoser on Mar 6, 2013 said: