Mounting Components

Wired Components 

And now we have our wired components finished and ready to start mounting to the 3D printed enclosure, yay!

Mount Rotary Switch

Get the rotary-case and rotary-cover parts. Remove the hex nut and washer from the rotary switch. Then, insert the rotary switch into the hole of the rotary-cover part with the knob facing the flat surface. Push it all the way through and fasten the hex nut back onto the rotary knob - we don't really need the washer, so you can discard it. 

Now, thread the angled connectors from the jumper wires through the rotary-case part. Pull them all the way through and press the rotary-cover into the rotary-case. They should snap fit together.

Install Rotary Knob and Case

Orient the printed rotary-knob with the metal shaft of the rotary switch. The flat sides should be line up together. Press the printed knob onto the metal one until it goes all the way in. 

Thread the angled jumper cable connectors through the hole on the side of the base-main part. Now we'll need to glue the rotary-case to the side of the base-main part. This can be done a bit later, after we install the battery. Hold off until we get there. Alternative you can use mounting tack to hold it in place.

Mount PowerBoost 1000C 

Now we can mount the PowerBoost to the main-base part. Tap the mount holes on the PCB using a #4-40 tapping tool or simply fasten #4-40 3/8 machine screw into the two holes near the microUSB connector. We need to create the threads so do this before mounting the component to the case to make it easier. Once the threads are made, lay the PCB over the standoffs with the recessed area and line up the hoels with the standoffs. Hold the PCB down while fastening the screws to mount it in place. The screws should go a little over half the way through.

Mount PAM8302

Now we can do that same thing to the amp PCB. Use a #4-40 tapping tool or machine screw. I found tapping the back of the PCB easier - but it can be done either or. Again, place the PCB over the standoffs (the ones near center of the faux latch of main-base) and hold in place while fastening screws. Screws should also go a little over half the way through.

Install Speaker

Lay the speaker over the cavity and press it down to snap it into place. If the tolerances are too loose you can add some glue or mounting tack to hold it in place.

Install Switch

Now's a good time to thread the slide switch into the cutout on the side of the base-main part. You should be able to press the switch through the cutout, but if its too tight, you'll have to use a filing tool or hobby knife to loosen it up. I recommend pulling it all the way through and glueing it in place after all the components are mounted in place.

Install Battery Cable

Before we connect the JST from the battery back into the PowerBoost, we need to thread it through the battery-cap part and through the hole from the bottom of the base-main part.

Connect Battery JST to PowerBoost 1000C

Pull the JST cable from the battery all the way through the hole and plug it into the JST port on the PowerBoost 1000C

Mount Raspberry Pi

Before we mount the Pi in place, its a good idea to plugin the audio cable to the A/V jack. Once connected, go ahead and lay the Pi over the standoffs. You don't need to tap the mounting holes on the PCB because it's slightly loose for #4-40 screws. I ended up only needing two #4-40 3/8 screws to mount the Pi to the standoffs. These can be fastened all the way through so the head of the screw is flush with the PCB.

Mounted Components

And now we have mounted most of the components to the enclosure, Yay! We're almost done. Next up we need to connect the jumpers from the rotary switch to the PiTFT display.

Install LED

Insert the jumper wires from the LED through the hole on the corner of the base-cover part. Pull them all the way through and press the diffuser so it snaps into the hole with the ring being flush with the surface.

Connect Jumpers to PiTFT

OK, now it's time to plug in the jumpers from the rotary switch, LED and PowerBoost 1000C to the GPIO breakout on the 3.5" PiTFT. You'll need to follow the circuit diagram to get the placement of each but reference the photo to get best position of the connectors. The nice thing about this is we can easily plug and unplug if we get it wrong or want to use different GPIO. It's a good idea to double/triple check the connections.

Once you think it's all good, go ahead and install the PiTFT onto the Raspberry Pi by laying it over, lining up the pins from the PiTFT with the header from the Pi. Press it down until the pins are fully seated onto the Pi.

Mount Rotary Encoder

Now is a good time to mount the rotary encoder to the base-cover part. It's very similar to the rotary switch, remove the knob and hex nut and press it through the bottom of the part. Make sure its flush with the surface before fastening the hex nut back on. 

Rotary Encoder

You'll notice at this point our rotary encoder actually isn't wired to anything. That's because we haven't written any custom code to make it work with the pypboy software. This is more of a prop but it can totally be implemented in the future. If you're a programmer and know how to do this, we'd love to hear about it!

Secure Slide Switch

Remember that slide switch? Now is a good time to secure it into the cutout. Use quick drying glue to secure it in place. Best to do this before we close it up.

Install Cover

OK now most of the components are installed. Next, we can fasten the base-cover to the base-main part using four #4-40 3/8 machine screws. Place the cover over the part and line up the mounting holes. Hold the parts together while inserting and fastening the screws. Make sure everything is flush.

Install Screen Cover

The screen-cover part can now be installed. The tolerances should be pretty tight so you can simply orient it so the corners match up and press it down. Friction should hold these pieces together.

I didn't glue mine together cause the tolerances / friction worked out. I can also remove it incase I need to get in there and add upgrades or service the components / wiring.

Install Cylindrical Battery

Now we can insert the lithium battery into the battery-case part. Press the battery all the way into the case and slip the battery-cap so it snaps into the case.

Battery Clips

The battery will be held onto the base-main part with these two clips. They both have different contours so you'll need to test fit them before gluing them in place. The clips can be slipped or snapped onto the battery-case part. Follow the photo to reference best placement.

Once you've sorted out a good spot for the clips, add some quick drying glue to the bottom of the clips and work them onto the side of the battery-case part. I found the best location to be right under the rotary switch case. I tried to keep the clips right above the seam which the base-main and armband parts meet. I'd avoid securing the clips in the middle of them so the two arm parts can be separated.

Secure Rotary Case

Once the battery clips are glued dried, apply glue to the rotary-case to secure it to the base-main part.

Add Foam to Armband

This is where you'll need to sort out how much foam insulation you need for your arm. The armband is fairely large for my arm personally, but it should hopefully fit most arms. I used this foam that has a sticky adhesive side - it's meant for insulating windows or underneath doors. Stick them onto both the armband and base-main parts to your liking.

Final Build

And now we have our functional 3D printed Raspberry Pi Pipboy! Flip the switch and see if everything turns on.

Use the software page to reference how to launch the pypboy python program. Rotating the rotary switch should change the menu items. The audio should start playing too.

Final Thoughts and Things

The pypboy python program could be extended and developed further to include the rotary encoder and perhaps optimized for better performance - it can be slow at times. A lot of the pages are empty and lack inventory items but this can be modified to include more things. The foundation is there, so if you'd like to extend it, you're more than welcome to. Credit to the developers of the pypboy python program goes to githubber's Grieve and Sabas1080

This guide was first published on Feb 04, 2016. It was last updated on Feb 04, 2016. This page (Mounting Components) was last updated on Oct 13, 2019.