Apple only includes its fancy charging case if you buy one of the $10,000+ gold Apple Watch Edition models, so I decided to DIY my own using the box Apple includes with its mid-range, stainless steel Apple Watch collection.
If you bought an Apple Watch model— the entry-level Sport collection comes with cheaper, somewhat disposable packaging— you get a box much like with the Edition minus the charging features and leather shell.
With a few drilled holes and less than $10 worth of materials, I transformed my box into a charging case that looks a lot like the Apple Watch Edition charging case.
Here’s how I did it:
The best 4K & 5K displays for Mac
1. First I drilled a few holes side by side directly behind the groove where the Watch sits in the box (this is where we want the magnetic charger to sit). After the initial holes, I slowly increased the drill bit size to bore out the holes and make them wider. I started with a 9/64 bit and moved up to 5/32 before moving to the 3/16 bit to bore out excess material. These are the drill bits I used and this is the screw driver I used.
2. Next I chiseled out any excess material between the holes using a flat head screwdriver and hammer, and spent a bit more time with the 3/16 drill bit to make the hole wider on the back side (we need enough room to accommodate the USB side of the charging cable):
3. Now I was able to run the cable through:
4. To finish off the rough edge of the hole I made, I used a thin strip of foam with adhesive backing. I bought strips of foam like these from the hardware store, cut a small 1.5-inch piece, and wrapped it around the cable just underneath the magnetic connector to allow for a snug fit when I positioned the charger.
5. To keep the cable underneath tight to the case and tidy, I used a piece of white duct tape.
6. Next, I added small felt pads to act as feet for the box— like these ones for furniture. That gave me enough height to have the cable run underneath and still have the box sit flush on a table.
7. Lastly, I put a velcro patch— like these ones— on the back of the adapter and the inside of the case. This allows me to store the adapter in the case while traveling without worrying about it moving around and damaging the watch.
And here’s the finished charging case:
Sure, you could just sit the Apple Watch in the box and plug it in, but that’s not the most elegant solution if you want a permanent setup on a nightstand or desk. My charging case also allows me to close the box while charging, and it will make everything a lot easier for traveling— the box itself acts as a cord wrap, so you can just grab it and go.
Remove the time I spent experimenting, writing this article, and shopping for materials, total build time was around half an hour.
Head to the gallery below for more photos and check out our DIY Lego Apple Watch charging stand: