Project Tabeee Mk-1 The Beginning…… So back at the start of this year, I’ve contemplated getting an e-book reader for use while travelling to uni aboard public transport. This was under consideration for a good 6 months, and through much research I realised that only one model laid in my price range, the Sony e-book reader. However due to typical Sony, this was only available in the good old us of a and although I could purchase it, this entailed ridiculous shipping costs, and difficulty in having the product repaired/ replaced if damaged. This option was well, frankly not acceptable at all. Thus we have the beginning of the Tabeee . With the 9” model of the Asus eee pc being released, numerous 7” models were being sold for bargain prices in OCAU’s trade section. I bought such a model coming to approximately $255 AUD, which is much much less then the Sony e-book reader which came to $430 AUD with shipping. Now this would save me almost $200 AUD, and as a an advantage I have a color screen instead of B&W, ability to surf the WWW, wireless connection, ability to do more then read books, be used as a pad to jot down uni notes. All this with only 3 disadvantages, the weight, size and the battery life. But this was a small price to pay, as the weight is negligible when you are sitting down on a bus, size is still smaller then most full size paperbacks, and well battery life… yeah umm, well ok, that’s a major disadvantage. So well, if you are still awake from my ramblings, I present to you Tabeee in all its glory in a Sketchup design. One of the simplest yet most frustrating program at times I should add. This design shall be composed of 3 parts, the base made of aluminium, the cover, made of fluro orange Perspex, and the lcd mesh, made of steel mesh. Materials and Cost to Date (All prices in AUD) 1 x Salvaged Aluminium Lian Li case $0.00 1 x 500mm x 500mm Fluro-Orange Mesh from GAMMODS $41.00 (inc shipping) 1 x 500mm x 500mm AC Ryan steel mesh from PCCASEGEAR $29.00 1 x 7” Touchscreen (From ebay, no name listed as service was horrible and product not as advertised) $60.15 (inc shipping) 1 x Powerbook button (From ebay) $16.04 (inc shipping) Note that logs will be separated by sessions as I’ve been on this project for about 2 weeks, and don’t have exact dates with the camera date being constantly reset. Session 1 First the disassembly of the eee pc for measurements, won’t bother providing too many images as you can find these easily on the WWW. After much measurement, the design was done in Sketchup as seen above. Further detail will be seen in following construction sessions. Session 2 First piece was purchased from PC case gear, the AC Ryan Mesh. Now this product was fairly annoying as no one knew what sizes the holes were, thanks to a helpful member of the AC Ryan forums, I found out it was 2mm holes. This mesh is really strong even though its only 0.7mm thick, bending this without proper tools will be fun. Also found a old Coolermaster heatsink, made of copper, will be an excellent heat-sink for the 3 chips (cpu, gpu and northbridge) on the eee pc. Session 3 Fluro Orange Acrylic from GAMMODS finally arrives, paypal seems to be taking longer to clear with banks these days, took me about 6 days! No pictures, as well it’s a piece of acrylic which is covered by a protective sticker, which I am unwilling to remove. Kapton tape arrives from Dealextreme, about 5 times cheaper then Farnell, and considering its shipped from HK too, it shows how much of a rip-off Farnell is. And yes I know Farnell tape has higher specs. Session 4 Now that most of the materials I needed have arrived, its time to start cracking. Here’s a pic of my source of aluminium, an old Lian Li case. Ensuring the aluminium is protected by using tape…. Cutting to size with a saw Pasting a template printed from Sketchup on to the aluminum The square things in the middle of the template are locations to paste the copper heat-sinks. This will probably be done through some sort of thermal adhesive so the entire bottom aluminum section acts as a giant heat-sink. Session 5 In order to make the bottom base a single piece, I had to find a way to bend aluminum. Googling around soon found a simple way without buying an expensive metal brake, giving this. This pretty much just uses a few pieces of wood and some hardwood. Another view The last time I bent aluminum, I was unfortunate enough to have it crack on it, luckily this time it bent nicely! And finally the end product That said I am not too happy with the curvature of the bend, the hardwood I used was Tasmanian Oak and its one square edge has seem to be warped by the force of the metal and rounded into a corner, giving me a curved edge on the aluminum. Due to this and the imprecision of my cuts as I only have a jigsaw (no circular saw ☹ ), I have thus relabeled this project Tabeee MK 1, so that when I have better tools I shall build a better and more accurate one. Anyways back to the project at hand, more cutting pics. As can be seen in the below pic, there’s about 3mm extra near the top end of the board, to the top of the base. This was meant to be a snug fit, but I seemed to have bent the other ends too far out ☹. Still should be fine though. Session 6 So my touch-screen package from ebay finally arrives after 2 weeks and luckily it wasn’t broken! Unfortunately the seller’s description of ‘solderless’ well…. was false. As you can see not only is the required wires not provided for the touch-screen controller, 2 of the wrong wires he provides don’t even have the connectors attached. Luckily I believe I have some lying around somewhere. Also anyone mind explaining to me what that green triangular piece of plastic is? Anyways back to cutting stuff. Cutting a piece of acrylic to size. Surprised the jigsaw gave such a clean cut with the acrylic, perhaps my jigsaw ain’t useless after all. Filing the metallic base with an indent for the acrylic. Now to bend it with a heatgun borrowed from work. And here the fun begins, using my method above it seems to be impossible to bend a piece of acrylic along a line. First attempt, too short :/ Second attempt, too long :/ Fixed that with some filing along the edge of a ruler to ensure straightness.