Rigging a cheap cellphone holder for the iPod

I got an iPod a couple weeks ago, and I love it. I have been using it mostly in my car, stashed in the cupholder. It works, but it robs me of a cupholder, and to operate it any more than previous & next track, I have to pick it up and navigate it one handed while driving.

I wanted a more elegant solution, and found it looking through my local Walgreens drugstore for only $5.99. This holder is made by "Custom Accesories, Niles IL" and made in China.

What made this one special to me is the fact it is adjustable for width, height, and depth, and clips onto the fins of an air-conditioning vent. The perfect place in my car for it. Right of the steering wheel, and in direct line of sight. Not in the way of the stereo controls, and accessible enough for my wife to use it when she is a passenger.

Needless to say, I was disappointed when I opened it up and attempted to cram the ipod into it. Even at its full adjustable width, it is too tight on the ipod, and I am afraid of scratching the Ipod and breaking the holder, plus it is just too tight to cram the ipod in and remove it everytime I leave the vehicle. See how it is flexes the arms just to get the ipod in there:

So I did what I do, and immediatly found all the screws and took it apart.

The bottom plate is held on with 5 screws (one is hidden in the center under the height adjustment), remove these and set them aside.
Innards exposed, you can easily see where you can make some room for those side guides to stretch out a little more.

I took an X-acto knife and cut away those plastic tabs making an extra 1/16th of an inch on each side. Now, when I put it all back together, the ipod fits nicely, and is easy to put in and remove.

As a bonus, the shape of the cradle allows for attachments at the bottom, and it provides enough room for the ipod dock connector, so later I have the option of a car charger without modification.

Here's a shot of it all completed:

You may be able to find a better solution yourself, or a readymade mount from www.everythingipod.com or somewhere similar; but for $5.99 its a deal I thought more people might like to know about.

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