iPhone 4/4S Gear Case

by QuentinT
  • White

    White nylon plastic with a matte finish and slight grainy feel.

Buy Now
To get each part made from a different color plastic, click the "Add Set to Cart" button, then select your color of choice for each part while the they are in your cart.

Note: Using the "Add Set to Cart" button to order multiple colors could make the case slightly more expensive than ordering it with the "Buy Now" button as a solid color.

Want to get a set?

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This is an iPhone case that has fully functioning gears and a Geneva Mechanism on the back.

This case is better than most because the areas beneath the buttons and sliders have been removed to make them easier to use, and a cutout has been made around the headphone port so bigger jacks will fit without having to remove the case. The edges of the case are also tall enough to prevent the screen from touching when placed face down.

When you receive the case, the gears will not be attached to the case yet due to printing limitations. Assembly is simple, you just need to place the gears in their proper locations (refer to the picture) and the pins should press fit into the case to secure them. Once you are happy with how the gears turn, turn the case over and touch the back of each pin with a hot soldering iron (or a knife heated with a lighter) to make sure they don’t come loose. Alternatively, you can use a small drop of gel super glue, but be very careful not to seize the gears. Lightly smoothing the surface of the gears with some 220 grit sandpaper, and spraying them with some CRC heavy duty silicone will let them turn very smoothly.

Thank you to Danny Tasmakis for the design idea.


IN: 2.435 w x 4.655 d x 0.561 h
CM: 6.184 w x 11.824 d x 1.424 h


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@That0neGuy yes, glue where you said. And make sure that you use a viscous glue so it doesn't run into the gears. If you are unsure if your glue will run into the gears, you could just melt the pins in place. And having them too tight is better than too loose, because as you use it they will loosen.
November 27, 2013, 9:47 pm
@QuentinT Alright, one more question, when gluing it... Where would I glue? The inside of the case, on the back of the pins? And the pins don't really "snap" in, they just kinda rest there, and when I flip it over they fall out.
November 27, 2013, 8:50 pm
@That0neGuy it could happen, but not for a while. If you're unsure of yourself then just don't glue the pins until you're happy with how it moves. Snapping them in should still let you remove them if you mess up. There's really only one way that everything will even fit together. Two of the gears are identical, but with different designs, so they are interchangeable (top left two). Also the pins are different sizes and lengths, so just make sure that all of the pins fit properly and don't go too far through the back of the case and you'll be fine
November 27, 2013, 8:25 pm
@QuentinT Would it be possible to add a how-to assemble video? Would be helpful for those of us who don't trust themselves to assemble. Thanks!
November 27, 2013, 8:13 pm
@Jasontravisott I believe it would be possible for me to make the case available in the metal options as far as printing constraints are concerned, but my issue is that I have no clue how the case would fit when printed in brass because it must flex to fit on the phone. Printing in brass would be more than $150, so I don't want to pay for the test, and I also don't want anybody to pay $150 for a case unless I'm sure it will work. One possibility would be making the shell in plastic, but adding metal options for the gears if that interests you.
October 9, 2013, 5:21 am
If you make one that fits the iPhone 5c, let me know!
October 9, 2013, 2:23 am
I love this design. Question I have is, can it be made with the "brass" material? I like the clockwork / steampunk look, but it just doesn't look right unless it's brass or copper...
September 27, 2013, 5:52 pm
@ItsJudy I just got done adding the option to order the case with different color parts. Your color options will be shown in your cart after you click the "Add Set to Cart" button. Let me know if you have any questions
August 26, 2013, 6:58 am
@ItsJudy I just got done adding the option to order the case with different color parts. Your color options will be shown in your cart after you click the "Add Set to Cart" button. Let me know if you have any questions
August 26, 2013, 6:55 am
@QuentinT okay thanks. Also let me know what my color options are. I know I want pink but not sure weather to make it the main or the gear parts that color. I'm really looking forward to owning this case!! :)
August 25, 2013, 8:36 pm
@ItsJudy Later tonight I will post them separately for you. The pins will have to be either black or white due to the design constraints of the plastic, but the other parts can be in many different colors.
August 25, 2013, 7:20 pm
@QuentinT Hi! I really love this phone case idea! I would love to purchase one soon and I was wondering if you could post pictures of the main case, gears, and pins separately so I could order them in different colors (I have the white iPhone 4S and I don't think the white would stand out and the black be too bold). I don't mind paying extra for the different colored materials since this is such a unique case. Please let me know, thanks :)
August 25, 2013, 7:14 pm
@QuentinT Will y'all make one for the iPod touch 5th gen? Would love to have it, but don't have an iPhone.
July 15, 2013, 10:12 pm
@akleinert Actually, I can't change it to any other color because the pins are smaller than the colored plastics allow. Would you be interested in me posting the case in pieces so that you could print different colors for each part of the case? This would let you print the main case in one color, the gears in another color, and the pins in either black or white. Please let me know if anybody wants this. The only downside is that each color would have its own 2$ charge from shape ways added on for handling.
July 2, 2013, 12:36 am
@QuentinT Thanks for the reply! It was the gear in the bottom right hand corner that was missing, so it was non-essential for the functionality of the system. Also, are you able to enable the purchase of other colours? Presently there are only black and natural available.
June 5, 2013, 3:11 am
@akleinert Another option to hold the pins in place is by touching the back of each pin with a hot soldering iron (or a knife heated with a lighter) to melt them in place. Otherwise, there are gel versions of super glue available, with a big selection at hobby stores. I personally used super glue, but I'll change the instructions to recommend a soldering iron instead. And thank you for pointing out the missing pin, as I did not have the pin for the smallest gear in the print file, but it has been updated. I don't know what happened to your gear though, because there were always all 7 in the file. Do you know which one was missing?
June 5, 2013, 2:14 am
@longwing There is one in the works, but I'm not sure if it fits an iPhone 5 yet. By the end of the summer it should be posted.
June 5, 2013, 2:06 am
Any chance there's going to be a redesign for other iPhone models? I would really love to purchase a version of this sized for the iPhone 5.
June 4, 2013, 10:22 pm
I just received this case in the mail. A bit of feedback ... (1) There were only 6 gears and 6 pins - from the picture above it looks like there should have been 7 gears and 7 pins? (2) I assembled it and put a tiny dob of superglue on each of the pins - but the glue drained straight through the porus material (Black Strong and Flexible) and adhered the pin to the gear, rather than the pin to the outer case. I don't think superglue is viscous enough for this. It's a really neat case, and I'd consider buying another and trying again, but need to figure out another way how to keep the pins in place.
May 28, 2013, 4:54 am
@QuentinT Awesome, thanks for the quick response and I will seriously consider getting it!
May 19, 2013, 2:48 am
@theOwen I have used an dropped this case for 4 months and it has yet to break. If you glue the pins in they won't fall out. If you are still concerned, you can easily touch the back of each pin with a soldering iron which will melt them in place and guarantee they do not fall out.
May 19, 2013, 2:45 am
Can this ever fall apart or disassemble itself?
May 19, 2013, 2:34 am


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