Coming unhinged

A while back, I discovered the Miniot Cover for the iPad 2. This cover is made in Holland from a single piece of real wood.  It costs “only” $70, so I ordered one in early April.  It finally showed up June 30th — and it IS beautiful.  I chose a “Standard Series” Padouk wood cover.

When I placed the cover on my iPad 2, however, I noticed the cover did not have a hinge 🙁   I went back to the Miniot website, looked at ad and review photos and, sure enough, the cover does not have hinges and stays in place using a set of magnets.  The cover sometimes moves slightly when being held.  Removing the cover and flipping it to the back of the iPad causes the iPad to shut-off as the magnets are so strong they seem work through the cover and iPad.  Not good!

I looked at my Apple “Smart Cover” and its very sophisticated magnet attachment and articulating hinge and was even more amazed by Apple’s very cool design and ergonomics.  OK, I wanted Miniot’s real wood cover but with Apple’s hinge + magnets.  I decided to do some surgery and grafting.

To make a long story short, I disassembled the Apple cover using an Exacto knife, removed its fiberglass panels but kept the hinge and a few inches of its microfiber cloth.  I carefully pried-up the velvet backing of the Miniot cover and removed the left-side magnets.  I used spray adhesive to attach the cloth with embedded hinge under the velvet of the Miniot cover.  Voila!  I had a beautiful wood cover with the ingeneous Apple hinge.

It took more money, time and effort that I anticipated but I now have a gorgeous, functional and personalized iPad 2 cover.  Did I mention the Miniot cover also comes with free engraving?

Picts, comments and instructions after the break (click more)

Here are some picts with captions while I work up some instructions:

What's left after cutting hinge + flap from Apple cover
What's left after cutting hinge + flap from Apple cover
Magnets I removed from the wide-side of the Miniot cover
You can see how far the hinge cloth extends under the velvet lining
You can see how the microfiber cloth was cut near the hinge to hide under the velvet
I was a little crooked aligning the flap under the velvet before using the adhesive
Note the gray cloth attached to the hinge, layered under the black velvet
top view of Miniot cover with Apple hinge

4 thoughts on “Coming unhinged”

  1. I just got my Miniot cover and it’s beautiful, but I too miss the magnetic hinge of Apple’s Smart Covers. I would love to do what you did here by adding Apple’s hinge to your Miniot. Could you offer more details about your process?

    – Did you use a leather Smart Cover or polyurethane Smart Cover?

    – Where did you cut the Smart Cover with the Exacto knife? How much microfiber cloth did you leave attached?

    – Was the Miniot’s velvet backing difficult to peel up?

    – How has your Miniot cover been working for you with the new hinge?

    Thanks a lot,

  2. Hi Andy, nice mod for the Miniot. I’ve been thinking of getting the Miniot myself. When you say flipping it on the back of the iPad caused it to shut off, did you hold the Miniot with the wood side against the iPad’s back, or the felt side against the iPad? I’m asking because the Miniot website shows that you can use the cover with the felt side against iPad, implying that it should not shut off….

  3. Hello

    I’m Joe and I recently got the Miniot cover for ipad 2 and I tried what you said and did not really get it and it ruined my smart cover so I got a new one I dont want to try it again until I get more details.

    Thanks and hope to hear from you soon.

    – Joe

  4. More info to come! I will try to get instructions and pictures up as soon as possible. I had not planned on an how-to article when I did the “operation” but I’ll see what I can do…

    – Andy

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