Modify Bumper Openings - Anyone Actually Done It?

Discussion in 'iPhone Accessories' started by redman042, Jun 28, 2010.

  1. redman042 macrumors 68030

    redman042

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2008
    #1
    I see all this talk about taking a dremel, drillbit, or a file and enlarging the Apple Bumper Case openings for larger headphone plugs or dock cables. But has anyone actually DONE this?? I'd really appreciate some stories and pics. Obviously my concern is that this is easier said than done, and will look lousy in the end. Anyone brave enough to try this? It will determine whether I get this case or not.
     
  2. doodads macrumors 6502

    doodads

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2007
    Location:
    East BF, TN
    #2
    TOFTT.....Buy one, try to modify it, and let us know how it goes.
     
  3. james92se macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2010
    Location:
    Dallas, TX
    #4
    My Griffin dock cable didn't fit into my bumper.

    BUT, rather than modify my bumper itself, I modified the dock cable with my dremel (tapered/beveled the edge). I mean, your dock cable is the part that won't be seen very much. Rather modify the cable than the actual dock.

    Although, on the dock part of the bumper, it could be "opened up" pretty easily with a small bit on a Dremel as you've basically got a built-in template/guide and it's on the hard plastic section and it could be done quite cleanly.

    Trying to CLEANLY modify the audio jack opening, though, would be a crapshoot, IMO. The cut-out for the audio jack is the soft rubber, and that's always hard to work with with a Dremel (unless of course you don't mind the "hacked up" look). I'd taper/shave down the end of the audio cable itself rather than trying to modify the bumper on that section.
     
  4. redman042 thread starter macrumors 68030

    redman042

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2008
    #5
    Well, I've got a number of dock cables and headphone plugs that won't fit, and I'm not going to be grinding all of them down. Anyway, I just called the local Apple Store and they think it could be at least 1-2 weeks before they get any more bumpers in, so I've got some time to think about it.
     
  5. zeeflyboy macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2009
    #6
    a new and sharp drill bit should do a fairly good job on the headphone jack bit of the bumper i imagine - especially if you used a wood drill bit or similar. Should be able to get a pretty clean cut, the trick would be to do it in as many stages as possible, ie stepping up 1mm drill bit at a time until you widen it sufficiently.
     
  6. Daremo macrumors 68000

    Daremo

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2007
    Location:
    Chicago
    #7
    I used a dremel to open up the bottom port. Give me a few minutes and I'll post a few photos.


    EDIT: Here you go...

    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  7. ScubaCinci macrumors 65816

    ScubaCinci

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2008
    Location:
    Cincinnati OH
    #8
    Got my bumper today, a dremel tool will work fine although right now, I don't see a need to mod it.
     
  8. Daremo macrumors 68000

    Daremo

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2007
    Location:
    Chicago
    #9
    I did it, because other then my Apple plug, nothing else would work to charge it. My car uses the aux out from the doc, so I needed that plug to fit.

    THe dremel works good, just remember to do slow and easy. You can rip through the plastic very quickly and easily. I used a combo of the dremel and hand file.
     
  9. SheepNutz macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2007
    Location:
    Kantuckee
    #10
    I wish I would have seen this thread before I did mine today. I finally managed to get mine big enough for the old style iPod cords to work (the ones with the hooks that lock it into the phone). I started by trying an exacto knife, but the plastic is too hard for that. Then I tried using a soldering iron to melt the plastic, and that was too messy. Then I ended up using a combination of a dremel and finely pointed file to get the job done. I did a pretty ****** job since I didn't want to go all the way through the opening (the recessed part that is just large enough for the pins to get through). I didn't really care though, because I'll end up replacing the bumper sooner or later. This gets the job done in the mean time.
     
  10. plusonechoi macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2010
    Location:
    San Francisco
    #11
    It can be done with an exacto knife, just need to be patient with it. I also filed it down to smooth it out.
     
  11. ToroidalZeus macrumors 68020

    ToroidalZeus

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2009
    #12
    It's not a good idea to dermal down the bumper because you are going to weaken the structural integrity which will probably destroy the durability of the bumper in the long run.
     
  12. mrknowitall macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2010
    #13
    The Bumper is not structural. You comment does not hold water.
     
  13. ChrnoXIII macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2010
    #14
    yea im a dent student. i havent tried it but im thinking i can just use the drills in the prosthodontics lab to open up my headphone jack :p then sand it down + polish it... prostho lab is pretty much all about making + polishing plastic things anyway :p so if any of you have access to that kind of equipment, go for it. im def doing it to my bumper!
     
  14. ToroidalZeus macrumors 68020

    ToroidalZeus

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2009
    #15
    Your comment makes no sense, everything has structural integrity. By cutting the bumper you are probably going to cause the rubber to peel away from the plastic after a good bit of daily usage.
     
  15. SheepNutz macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2007
    Location:
    Kantuckee
    #16
    I don't see this happening. Mine's been modified for a few weeks, and has been through all kinds of use and abuse. It's holding up just fine.
     
  16. jmpage2 macrumors 68030

    jmpage2

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2007
    #17
    My wife's a general dentist and she modified my bumper case for me using the tools at her office. I think she used a diamond burr to do it.

    In any event, all the various dock connectors and cables now work with it, but the downside is that the edges are a bit sharp and there's a bit more play in it to me.

    You would think that Apple would wizen up to this and make the very tiny modification to the bumper design that would allow it to work with more accessories. Hell, it doesn't even work with the iPhone 4 dock if you have it in the bumper case!
     
  17. iggypod macrumors 6502a

    iggypod

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2010
    #18
    This post (thank you Daremo) gave me the courage to brake out my husband's dremel tool and modify my pink bumper's bottom. 30 minutes later, tis finished and it works.

    The key really truly is going slow and steady.

    Moral of the story: if I can do it ANYONE can do it.
     
  18. FieldingMellish Suspended

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2010
    #19
    Exercise caution out there, kids. The Dremel is one mean cutting machine and you need control or you can shred more than the case.
     
  19. Jusfer macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2010
    Location:
    USA Intermountain West
    #20
    I have yet to get my bumper but thanks to you, I know what's coming my way (in terms on incompatibility). I will not blame Apple that their bumper doesn't work with cheap aftermarket plugs (or rather: vice versa), and I will not work the bumper because that's already rather scanty. So, my approach will be to sand or file down the offending plugs and make them fit. I only have (and only need) two of those, so it won't be a big deal.
     
  20. theo871 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2010
    #21
    I bought a cheap at&t iphone car charger off ebay recently. It would not fit properly with the bumper case, so I took a dremel to the bumper for about 5 minutes and now it fits like a charm! I'm glad this trick worked because I was considering purchasing a different case!
     
  21. Che Castro macrumors 603

    Joined:
    May 21, 2009
    #22
    How about using a box cutter to slice that part off?

    Some of my charging cables don't fit in there
     
  22. plusonechoi macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2010
    Location:
    San Francisco
    #23
    i used an exacto knife and it worked very well. just gotta be patient with it. while i got one non apple charger to fit, it still does not fit my pioneer ipod connector in my car. i am now thinking of opening it up some more...
     

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