Tungsten T2 flip cover







the magic tape

  I love the Palm hand computers, and use these PDAs since 2000. For a chaotic and absent-minded person as myself, it's a perfect extra brain. My main reason for using a Palm is the electronic address book. Having lost important addresses in the past, I enjoy the security of always having a backup.

Of course, a modern Palm is more than just an address book, but that's a different story.

In April 2004 I switched to Tungsten. I considered either buying a Tungsten E or a T2, since both had attractive prices. The TE was 2000 SEK (220 €) and the T2 was 2500 SEK (270 €). What I really liked about the TE was the standard black flip cover, reminding me of my previous Palm V. What I did not like about the T2 was the standard plastic screen cover.

Finally, I bought a T2.

I thought I might learn to like the standard plastic cover, but I soon hated it more and more. With the cover on, I could only reach the 4-way navigator button. Taking the cover off would be just another way to forget it and lose it.

I searched all the world and all the web for a flip cover fitting the T2, but alas, there was none. And those hard cover cases were way too thick and bulky. Hey, I carry my Palm in the back pocket of my jeans! Every millimetre of thickness makes a difference. So...

I made my own flip cover

I made the cover from a VHS video cassette cover. The 1.6 mm thick black plastic had the perfect mix of stability and elasticity.

The lower part of the lid I heated and bent slightly, creating a slight bulb over the 4 buttons and the navigator, preventing them being pressed with lid closed. This is barely seen in illustration 2.

I then increased the cavity inside the lid using a file. (ill 3).

The cover had to flip over the top.

I made the joint of duct tape. Maybe I will switch to rubber later. But duct tape is very strong and adhesive. And on the back the tape only builds up a fraction of a millimetre (ill 4). On the photos the tape looks a bit glossy, but in real life it's elegant, and people hardly see that it's just duct tape.

The duct tape has 4 layers, mainly fixed to the back, but also fixed to parts of the front side (ill 6).

To fix the lid when closed, I simply made 2 rolls of duct tape (ill 3). After one week they were still adhesive, and did not increase the thickness (ill 2).

At the time of writing I have replaced the "double-sided tape" with real velcro straps. The velcro is more elegant and long lasting, but increases the thickness way too much, even after I made extra cavities in the lid for the velcro. The velcro is standard stuff from a textiles shop, so I am now looking for ultra-thin velcro straps. Any feedback so far is appreciated.

Meanwhile, I enjoy having the coolest T2 lid on the web.

Per Åkesson, 13 April 2004