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make your classic touchstone hold your pre 3 better
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Old 10/05/2011, 09:29 PM   #1 (permalink)
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or, a possible alternate title: My Touchstones work better than yours! neener neener neener!

The back of the Pre3 is shaped very differently than previous Palm phones. Stock Touchstones just barely hold the phone in place, because the phone sits 'high-centered' so the magnets in the touchstones don't get very close to the metal inserts in the phone's back; this also allows it to rock side to side adding to the trouble.

The solution? Reshape the surface of the touchstone to better accomodate the Pre 3's back, so that it makes better contact with the magnets and sits without rocking. Horizontally, the shape of the touchstone is ok, but vertically it's too concave. The Pre 3's back is almost flat in the vertical dimension.

There are no doubt many ways to accomplish the re-shaping, some of which are more elegant or prettier than what I did. I just took a half-round file and ran it vertically across the 'palm' logo, though because of the concavity only the areas above and below the logo actually got filed. My Pre 3 now locks in just as well as my Pre+ always did, and sits solidly without rocking.

(edit: I should mention that the flash used to take the photo (pre 3) really makes the filed areas stand out glaringly... which is good for showing you what was done, but might scare you to think it will make your touchstone an eyesore. under normal light, the filed areas just look a little grey, but don't really stand out so bad. the filed areas could be dressed with fine-grit sand-paper (start at 400, finish with 600 or even 800) to make them look nicer.)
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Old 10/05/2011, 09:39 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I should mention that simply removing the plastic ring around the top of the Touchstone does help some, because the upper and lower edges of the ring are the highest points holding the pre 3 away from the surface of the touchstone. Removing it breaks some little tabs, so you may have some trouble getting it back on.

also, as you might guess, doing this has absolutely no adverse effect on any older Palm phone you might still wish to charge on the touchstone.
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Old 10/05/2011, 10:47 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Bravo, Bravo!

Now break out the 600 wet/dry sandpaper and the flat Black spray paint

you'll have it looking pretty good in no time.
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Old 10/05/2011, 10:53 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I'm actually thinking some PlastiDip on the outer ring to increase grip.
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Old 10/05/2011, 11:21 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by TopTongueBarry View Post
Bravo, Bravo!

Now break out the 600 wet/dry sandpaper and the flat Black spray paint

you'll have it looking pretty good in no time.
actually the flash used in the photo makes it look a lot worse than it does in reality. when I do the other one for my car I may go ahead and work on it with some sandpaper as you suggest, though I'm sure I'll call it good enough before breaking out the paint. I'm far more concerned with function than appearance.
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Old 10/05/2011, 11:29 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Bravo, Bravo!
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Old 10/06/2011, 12:10 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Thanks. This place is great. I was just telling my friend how the only problem I had with my new pre3 was that it didn't fit on the touchstone well. I also told her that I was sure there would be discussion here. Not just discussion, there is a solution. First thread, first post!

Thanks!!!

-- Sent from my Palm Pre3 using Forums
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Old 10/06/2011, 01:09 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by johnsonx42 View Post
I should mention that simply removing the plastic ring around the top of the Touchstone does help some, because the upper and lower edges of the ring are the highest points holding the pre 3 away from the surface of the touchstone. Removing it breaks some little tabs, so you may have some trouble getting it back on.
Did you do this? can you post pictures?

Visually it all seems like a slight spoil to something that was initially such an elegant function.
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Old 10/06/2011, 03:57 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Or, if you don't want to damage your Touchstones, you can just cut two thin strips of flexible magnet and place them on either side of the PALM logo. The strips should be long in the vertical direction and narrow in the horizontal. I made mine about 1 cm wide (or less) and about 2/3rds the diameter of the Touchstone in length. What you would have would look like:

(|| PALM ||)

Make sure you get the polarity of the magnets right before you cut (by making sure they stick where you want them on the Touchstone).

I just tried it with both my Pre 3 and Pre 2, and both stick on firmly. If you get the placement right (strips as close to the outside as possible), you can get both Pres to stick on even when the Touchstone is mounted upside down.

To clarify the OP's description, the Pre 3 curves a lot in the horizontal direction (reading direction for PALM logo). Therefore, you need to create a "valley" oriented in the vertical direction.

The magnet solution works because the thickness of the magnets creates this valley. It continues to work for the Pre 2 because the magnets are still flush against the Touchstone, keeping the shape flat for the Pre 2. The Pre 2 would have a slight gap in the center where the "valley" is, but it has no effect on the magnetic connection.

I'd take a picture but the magnets I used had a design on them that I don't want to publish.
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Old 10/06/2011, 05:36 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Or, if you don't want to damage your Touchstones, you can just cut two thin strips of flexible magnet and place them on either side of the PALM logo. The strips should be long in the vertical direction and narrow in the horizontal. I made mine about 1 cm wide (or less) and about 2/3rds the diameter of the Touchstone in length. What you would have would look like:

(|| PALM ||)

Make sure you get the polarity of the magnets right before you cut (by making sure they stick where you want them on the Touchstone).

I just tried it with both my Pre 3 and Pre 2, and both stick on firmly. If you get the placement right (strips as close to the outside as possible), you can get both Pres to stick on even when the Touchstone is mounted upside down.

To clarify the OP's description, the Pre 3 curves a lot in the horizontal direction (reading direction for PALM logo). Therefore, you need to create a "valley" oriented in the vertical direction.

The magnet solution works because the thickness of the magnets creates this valley. It continues to work for the Pre 2 because the magnets are still flush against the Touchstone, keeping the shape flat for the Pre 2. The Pre 2 would have a slight gap in the center where the "valley" is, but it has no effect on the magnetic connection.

I'd take a picture but the magnets I used had a design on them that I don't want to publish.
What kind of flexible magnets would work? How thin must they be? Thanks. {J}

UPDATE: Never mind, got it working, using strips of adhesive magnetic vinyl (the kind used to make custom bumper magnets). Here are pics of both my home and in-car (with my Home Depot parts custom lower bracket) installations:



and




{Jonathan}
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Last edited by Jonathan I Ezor; 10/06/2011 at 07:02 PM.
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Old 10/06/2011, 08:17 AM   #11 (permalink)
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when I do the other one for my car
I'd be very interested to know whether either of these fixes will hold the Pre3 strongly enough to leave it on the Touchstone while driving around. I use my Pre- that way, but it was sounding like I would need a new solution with a Pre3...
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Old 10/06/2011, 08:48 AM   #12 (permalink)
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I'd be very interested to know whether either of these fixes will hold the Pre3 strongly enough to leave it on the Touchstone while driving around. I use my Pre- that way, but it was sounding like I would need a new solution with a Pre3...
I'm wondering that, too.
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Old 10/06/2011, 10:56 AM   #13 (permalink)
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I'm taking the one I modded out to the car today. I'm certain it will work well... The hold is every bit as strong as it was for the Pre+.

regarding the other proposed solution of adding extra magnets, i'm not so sure about that one; it would make the hold better, but I'd worry about diminishing the contact between the charging coils... My solution gets them closer together. But i'm all for multiple solutions to fit everyone's needs.
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Old 10/06/2011, 11:51 AM   #14 (permalink)
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What kind of flexible magnets would work? How thin must they be? Thanks. {J}
I used a simple refrigerator magnet that I got for free. The more "magnetic" they are, the better they will hold in place on the TS, and consequently the better your phone will hold in place.

The distance they have to be apart will vary with the thickness. What I did to test before I cut was wedge the magnets between the Pre 3 and the TS until it stopped rocking. The thicker, the further apart the magnets have to be.

But we're talking on the order of a millimeter (or less).
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Old 10/06/2011, 12:03 PM   #15 (permalink)
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I'm taking the one I modded out to the car today. I'm certain it will work well... The hold is every bit as strong as it was for the Pre+.

regarding the other proposed solution of adding extra magnets, i'm not so sure about that one; it would make the hold better, but I'd worry about diminishing the contact between the charging coils... My solution gets them closer together. But i'm all for multiple solutions to fit everyone's needs.
I have not put it in my car yet, but I just tried shaking it back and forth. It holds at a pretty good shake, but not a violent shake. Unless you have one of those things that make your car bounce up and down, or you off-road race, I can't imagine your car feeling more Gs than the shaking I gave it.

We're talking about an induced magnetic field--the contact between charging coils is irrelevant. As long as you are within range of the magnetic field, it will charge (and it does).

Furthermore, you aren't increasing the gap on the Pre 3 (in fact, you are reducing the gap at the edges--it stays in the same location in the center). You only increase the gap for the Pre 2, but not enough to put the phone out of range.

Naturally, permanently changing the shape of your Touchstone will give you a better hold (for the Pre 3), but if you want to use your Touchstone with multiple phones, or don't want to make it look like you bought it at a garage sale 20 years ago, this type of solution is a good compromise.
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Old 10/06/2011, 12:09 PM   #16 (permalink)
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what about just putting stronger magnets in the base? Members were doing that for extra hold power for bumpy rides. Would that solve the problem with the Pre3?
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Old 10/06/2011, 01:47 PM   #17 (permalink)
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as I already posted, the change in shape to the surface of the touchpad has no effect at all on older phones... My old pre+ works just as well on the modded touchstone as it did before.

so far so good with the modded touchstone in the car, though I've not done any dukes of hazzard driving today

regarding contact between the coils, I'm just referring to distance between the coils, not literal direct contact... Induced current will be an inverse square of the distance. If the extra magnet solution still leaves them close enough to get a good charge current then no worries.
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Old 10/06/2011, 01:53 PM   #18 (permalink)
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what about just putting stronger magnets in the base? Members were doing that for extra hold power for bumpy rides. Would that solve the problem with the Pre3?
The problem is the shape of the Pre 3 back is different than the older Touchstone backs so even with stronger magnets, one side or the other will not make contact with the surface.

With equally stronger magnets at all four corners, the Pre 3 might be held against the center of the Touchstone, but what would more likely happen is it would more strongly lean to one side. Would two stronger magnets on one side keep it in place in a moving vehicle? I don't know.

John
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Old 10/06/2011, 02:07 PM   #19 (permalink)
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I have been using my pre3 on a touchstone mounted vertically in my car for a couple of weeks now and it hasn't fallen off once. Still, I like the idea of a better fit and will give my touchstones a filing!
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Old 10/07/2011, 02:39 AM   #20 (permalink)
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I have been using my pre3 on a touchstone mounted vertically in my car for a couple of weeks now and it hasn't fallen off once. Still, I like the idea of a better fit and will give my touchstones a filing!
Hm... I, too, have a touchstone mounted in my car. All my other phones stick on that perfectly even on some more rough bumps. But my Pre3 falls down everytime, even if there were not really bumps. I wonder why I have such a different experience...?

I'll try the magnet solution for my car touchstone as soon as possibe (I don't care for my other TS, thouch ).
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