Here is a simple dock made from acrylic, machine screws, and an existing iPhone/iPod cable.
It is made of four slices of 1/4â€³ acrylic (actual width 0.22â€³). The top two slices have an oval opening just snug enough to fit the ipod connector and keep it in place with friction. The third slice has a channel for the cable to escape out the back, and the bottom slice keeps the cable from falling out and provides some pushback when the iphone is inserted. Itâ€™s held together by four 1â€³ 2-56 machine screws with nuts. I was a little concerned with the nuts scratching the table, so Iâ€™ve since added little hot glue feet to the bottom of each nut.
I didnâ€™t add an additional layer at the top to provide lateral support of the iphone because I didnâ€™t have long enough screws. And besides, it doesnâ€™t seem to need it. If I get longer screws, I might make one that has the extra layer, which would also make the dock bigger, to encompass the bottom of the iPhone. And that would be good because it adds more mass to the dock, making it more stable.
Also, see: http://todbot.com/blog/2009/07/15/quickie-laser-cut-iphoneipod-dock/
- Laser cut the pattern in the .svg (or .eps or .cdr) file.
- Push iPod cable into top two slices, friction-fitting them in.
- Attach cable channel slice, running cable out the back.
- Add bottom slice, then use 1" 2-56 machine screws & nuts to secure it all.