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      For machine shop we had to build our own clipboards using aluminum, brass, plastic, and an assortment of machining tools. This was a very fun project because I got to learn how to use a lathe, CNC mill, sheet metal tools, and how to inspect parts for tolerances. To make the clipboards unique, every student is required to add their own self inspired feature. I chose to add in an iPod dock with a stereo amplifier and four speakers. Below is the resulting clipboard.


aluminum clipboard with iPod dock and stereo amplifier

      I got the stereo amplifier from a cheap iPod dock that came with two speakers. I added two more speakers just because I had them and I could. There's a main power switch on the left side above the clip and two switches on the right that turn on and off the top and bottom pairs of speakers separately. The iPod button wheel and screen are still fully accessible when docked.

     The emblem on the clip is another way we got to personalize out clipboards. A small CNC machine was used to engrave the emblem. Originally I was going to use a custom designed biohazard symbol, but the detail was too fine for the smallest bit on the CNC machine so I switched to the simpler yet still cool nuclear waste symbol.


aluminum clipboard with iPod dock and stereo amplifier back

     The amplifier posed a problem when being mounted. To make sure that it did not get smashed if the clipboard was set down I added feet to the clipboard. I got these from the stereo receiver I put in R2D2 because it didn't need them anymore. I thought the circuit looked cool so I left it uncovered. I placed the battery pack at the base of the clipboard to balance the loads of the clipboard when being held in one hand. The bright blue spot on the amplifier is the power light which is blindingly bright.

     I used a brass strip to cover the wire that runs from the battery pack to the amplifier. It keeps the wire protected and looks good all at the same time.



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