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6/11/01 Monday's News: Story DetailReturn to News Page


Reader's 2001 iBook Conversion
- Painting the Cover

By William Rivas
Posted: 6/11/2001
I saw a post where someone converted his or her iBook to look like a mini PowerBook G4. I wanted to do something similar but noted the person painted the outside of the iBook. [The page on the MiniTi exterior surface painted (w/textured paint) 2001 iBook is here-Mike.] I did not want to do my project that way for fear of scratches and the possibility of the sweat from my hands removing the paint. I have noticed that the iBook takes scratches rather easy on the outside, and white is cool but I wanted a different look.

I took the top cover off by removing the four hex screws and looked at the shell, I saw that the inner part was painted and the paint could be removed. The only thing that concerned me was a gasket that seemed to part of the shell. I got a small screwdriver and was able to separate it from the top shell.

ibook gasket

Here is the gasket found on the inside of the shell. You have to remove it if you want to paint the inside of the shell a color other than white. It is fastened to the inside of the shell with double sided clear tape. Remove it carefully to keep it from breaking.

removing paint from cover

Next I had to remove the white paint from the inside of the cover.
As you can see I had to sand it off with fine sand paper, the grit I used was 220. You have to take your time when sanding plastic and go in the same direction where possible. With the inside lips I had to go the opposite direction but later blended it all in slowly in an east to west direction. After I removed all the paint I started to go over all the inside with a coarse steel wool pad and then finished it off with a fine steel wool pad.

I then went over the outside of the cover to give it a brushed appearance, using a coarse steel wool pad and finishing it with a fine pad.

Here is how it came out.

ibook cover prepped

You notice how smooth the finish is, it took about 6 hours of sanding. It came out so I slapped the unpainted cover back on the iBook to see how it would look.

ibook pix 1

Not too bad eh? Check these other pictures out.

ibook pix 2

As you can see you can get that G4 tower look if you wanted, did not look to bad. Here is the finished product.

ibook pix 3

You can see my fingerprints on the upper part of the cover, just wipe with a cloth and their gone.

ibook pix 6

And the last picture.

ibook pix 5

You can see my fingerprints on the upper part of the cover, just wipe with a cloth and their gone. I used an aluminum look paint available at automotive stores, the under side was not painted as its not really seen.
-William Rivas

For another painted iBook, see the MiniTi page .

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