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Ultimate Samsung Galaxy Note 3 Case w/ Cover, Magnetized, Sugru

by tonyyoungblood, published

Ultimate Samsung Galaxy Note 3 Case w/ Cover, Magnetized, Sugru by tonyyoungblood Jul 26, 2014
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Summary

UPDATE 10-15-2014
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A uploaded a new version of the cover that gets rid of a small gap in the bottom corners, as brought to my attention by user Kareesmoon.
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See this video for some of the features: http://youtu.be/rTBjehUN_zA
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I was fed up with the dismal case options for my Samsung Note 3 phone, so I decided to build my own with all the features the other cases lacked, including a magnetized cover and Sugru bumpers.
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Here are other variations:

  • No Bumpers (Magnets, Cover): http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:414865
  • No Cover (Sugru Bumpers, No Magnets)
    http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:424089
  • No-Frills (No bumpers, no cover, no magnets): http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:415418
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    I designed the case in three parts so that printers with small build areas (6"x6") such as the Printrbot Simple Metal could still print it.
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    The case features a protective cover with holes cut out to show the time and the music/audiobook/podcast navigation buttons. Now you can check the time in a theatre without distracting your fellow movie-goers!
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    The cover is held on by tiny magnets. You can purchase them for under 3 bucks here: http://amzn.to/1oqjeMp
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    I also added magnets to the back of the case so you can place the cover on the back when you're using the phone. The back magnets also allow you to use the cover as a stand. (See pictures.)
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    This case is designed to fit the Note 3 WITHOUT the original back piece. You can still access the battery by sliding off the two sections.
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    I initially printed a hole in the cover that allowed you to take pictures with the cover attached to the back, but I took this off because I realized I am always going to take the cover off when taking pictures.
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    The four corners have Sugru grips for added protection. I designed the corners so that the Sugru sticks securely. Buy Sugru at http://sugru.com or on Amazon here: http://amzn.to/1upL7Zw. Requires 2 small packs.
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    In the pictures above, I applied four coats of Plasti-Dip spray to the outer surfaces, but in retrospect, I don't recommend doing this. The Plasti-Dip eventually peeled off.
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    I went through 5 iterations before perfecting the case. After printing the version you see in the pictures, I added a half a millimeter extra to the length so you won't have a gap where the top and bottom meet. (Sand for a perfect fit.)

Instructions

Parts list:

  • 1/8" x 1/16" magnets, quantity 18.. http://amzn.to/1oqjeMp
  • Sugru, 2 packs. http://amzn.to/1upL7Zw
  • Epoxy Adhesive, such as Loctite 5 Minute Instant Mix: http://amzn.to/1tqn1MR
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    1. Print the Top, Bottom, and Cover using support structures for the Top and Bottom. I highly recommend InTheGarage's Slic3r settings here: http://www.camwatt.com/printrbot-simple-metal-slic3r-settings.html
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    2. Clean out the support structures using pliers. Fine tune with a Dremel and sandpaper. Be very careful around the openings. Keep testing until you achieve a snug fit. (Remove Note 3 back before sliding on case. This case doesn't use the original back.) After printing the version in the pictures, I added a half millimeter extra of length to the edges where the Top and Bottom meet in order to get a gapless fit. You may need to sand these areas to achieve a perfect fit.
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    3. Lightly Dremel the magnet holes. There are 6 holes on the front of the case, 6 holes on the cover, and 6 holes on the back of the case. You want a tight fit. For some reason, even though the back case holes are sized the same as the other holes, they may print a little large. Just use a little extra glue for these in step 5.
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    4. You'll notice holes in the corners where the Sugru will eventually go. These are NOT for magnets. I added these so the Sugru will grip tightly and not come off. If you accidentally drill through the corners a little bit, don't worry. Sugru will eventually cover these areas.
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    5. Insert the magnets ( http://amzn.to/1oqjeMp ), securing with the adhesive of your choice. I recommend Epoxy Adhesive, such as Loctite 5 Minute Instant Mix available at Home Depot or here: http://amzn.to/1tqn1MR. I used a messier glue in the pictures, but the Epoxy should give you a much cleaner finish if you're careful. The polarity is EXTREMELY important. The front case magnets should all go in one direction. The back and cover case magnets need to go in the opposite direction of the front case magnets.
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    6. Open a pack of Sugru ( http://amzn.to/1upL7Zw ) and divide into 3 equal sections. Take one of these sections and sculpt around any corner except the one near the stylus. Repeat with two other corners (but not the stylus corner yet.)
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    7. Open another pack of Sugru and divide into 3 equal sections. Take a section and sculpt around the stylus corner. Take note of the microphone hole. Use a pin to poke out a hole in the Sugru so that the sound will come through. Make sure you are able to pull the Stylus in and out.
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    8. Take another section of Sugru and sculpt around the speaker hole. Sculpt an opening so the sound will come out.
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    9. Use the remaining Sugru to add where needed. I added a bit to the headphone jack area to get a nice seal.
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    10. Clean out excess Sugru. Slide the case over the phone to mold any inside Sugru to the phone's dimensions. Remove the phone and let the Sugru dry.
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    11. If the cover is warped, pour hot water over it and bend to fix the warp. If this doesn't work, put it inside the oven at 200 degrees for a minute, then remove and bend out the warp.
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    12. Remove the Note 3's original back piece and slide the case right over the exposed back. This case does not use the original back. You can easily access the battery and sd card by sliding off your new case's top and bottom.
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      Enjoy the case! Let me know if you have any suggestions for improvement.

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I'm not sure I understand the question. You removed the back piece from the phone first, right?

I have printed this out. The problem I'm having is that the radius of the bottom corners of the cover don't match up with the radius of the case itself. Is this on purpose?

Did you get it figured out? I'm curious if I need to improve/adjust something. It's working well on my Note 3.

The case itself fits okay. The cover for the front has different curves on the top and bottom corners. There is a gap. I'll try to take a picture to illustrate the issue.

I think I understand you. You're absolutely right about that. For aesthetic purposes, I'll fix it and upload a new cover.

I'll fix the corners but keep the small section under the home button exposed -- otherwise the cover would be too big to print on printers limited to 150mm.

Updated. Thanks for catching that.

Thanks for the update. I'll show a picture once I'm done with the whole thing.

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