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Apple interested in creating colorful, durable carbon fiber devices - Page 2

post #41 of 48
Notice all the brushed aluminum laptops with black keys coming on the market? Some of them even tout how they're made from a single piece of metal.

Lots of the usual suspects are angrily rebuffing the obvious debt to Apple by claiming that the MacBook Pro/Air look is "obvious" and "the only way to make a premium laptop." Sounds familiar?

Anyway, I hereby predict that if Apple begins to make things out of uniquely colored carbon fiber or some other exotic material, and other manufacturers begin to follow suit, we will get the hear about how colored carbon fiber is a no-brainer and the self-evident way to go, and Apple zealots only think people are copying because they're such sheep.
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post #42 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by addabox View Post

Notice all the brushed aluminum laptops with black keys coming on the market? Some of them even tout how they're made from a single piece of metal.

Lots of the usual suspects are angrily rebuffing the obvious debt to Apple by claiming that the MacBook Pro/Air look is "obvious" and "the only way to make a premium laptop." Sounds familiar?

Anyway, I hereby predict that if Apple begins to make things out of uniquely colored carbon fiber or some other exotic material, and other manufacturers begin to follow suit, we will get the hear about how colored carbon fiber is a no-brainer and the self-evident way to go, and Apple zealots only think people are copying because they're such sheep.

The newest one is Lenovo's new U300s. I love how Lenovo advertises the larger glass trackpad. That's obvious, too.
http://www.slashgear.com/lenovo-u300...aled-01175972/ PS: Remember the criticism Apple got over the chicklet keyboard? How it was a clear sign they don't care about Macs anymore?
Dick Applebaum on whether the iPad is a personal computer: "BTW, I am posting this from my iPad pc while sitting on the throne... personal enough for you?"
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Dick Applebaum on whether the iPad is a personal computer: "BTW, I am posting this from my iPad pc while sitting on the throne... personal enough for you?"
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post #43 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sambredeson View Post

No. Molding carbon fiber into shells has been used, yes, and coloring those shells has been used also. However, such shells are usually just painted to color them, which in the case of car, plane, and boat hulls, works great.

I can't speak for cars or planes but I've looked very deeply into boat building and I have to object to the description you have given. Usually what you see is a mold that has layers built up before the fiber layer is even applied. Thus the fiber gets molded to layers of color that are already in the mold. While this is't a process of coloring the resin used for the laying up the fibers one could certainly do so. From the practical perspective I've heard of people adding color to the resin used to lay up the layers of fibers to be able to gage application but this has little to do with making the boat pretty.
Quote:
What Apple has patented is the method of repeatedly dying each layer of a carbon fiber shell (which may have been done before, although I've never heard of it) and applying a finishing layer to the top (which is almost definitely new, as bonding different layers to carbon fiber is very difficult).

I'm not sure where you get the idea that bonding different layers is difficult as that is exactly what is done in boat building. Obviously there are a lot of variables here but I don't see this as extremely difficult. frankly there is even a method of boat building that doesn't use a female mold and effectively leaves one with a system like you describe above.
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Even if this entire process HAS been done before, it certainly hasn't been patented, which is really all that matters anyway.

Actually it does matter. If this is just a rehash of existing methods (open to debate) then why should Apple be able to patent it. The excuse for many of these patents seems to be "well it is a new use for the technique". Maybe maybe not but it does raise the question of just how obvious the technique is.
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If Apple filed a patent for this two years ago and were planninon ever actually using it, I thiink they already would have.

Nope! it could take them five years to bring this to market, maybe longer depending upon exactly what they are aiming for.

As to Apples intentions that seems to be rather clear, they are in the process of actually beefing up their materials teams with a strong emphasis on fiber technology. So I would have to say something is up.
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As an engineer, I think it's safe to say that it would be difficult or impossible for Apple to make an iPad shell out of any kind of resin fiber composite that would be as strong as aluminum while staying as thin - carbon fiber is much stronger pound for pound than aluminum, but since aluminum is much denser, it can be made much thinner. Resins also have the nasty habit of cracking very easily...

In the end it will come down to economics. If Apple can come up with a lighter and less expensive shell they will. As to thinnest well when is the last time you wadded up some aluminum foil, or ripped off a sheet. Aluminum isn't all that strong and in things like the iPad a lot of strength comes from the shape of the shell as it would with fiber resins. Aluminum has to be rather thick to have any stiffness at all where as fiber resins have more control over the structure and stiffness. This is easy to see just by picking up sheets of aluminum or fiber reinforced resin.
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Oh, and to the guy who said that this would let Apple's air shipping costs to drop: do you really think Apple's internal shipment costs are what drive their product designs??
post #44 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by macadam212 View Post

Hmmmm looking at my simple and minimal iMac with it's effortless stylish aluminium unibody exterior, then I glance over at the complicated heavy layered plastic iMac G5 and wonder why Apple would want to start paining and adding layers to stuff.

To give it a fresh, exciting look.
post #45 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

Nope! it could take them five years to bring this to market, maybe longer depending upon exactly what they are aiming for.

And it's already been 2 years since the patent was filed and they had to have been working on it for a while prior to that.
I wouldn't be surprised to see something within the next year.
post #46 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris_CA View Post

And it's already been 2 years since the patent was filed and they had to have been working on it for a while prior to that.
I wouldn't be surprised to see something within the next year.

OTOH there are any number of interesting patents that never seem to come to anything. Not to mention things like the Liquidmetal purchase, which, who knows?
They spoke of the sayings and doings of their commander, the grand duke, and told stories of his kindness and irascibility.
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They spoke of the sayings and doings of their commander, the grand duke, and told stories of his kindness and irascibility.
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post #47 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by utahnguy View Post

I'm so sick of people claiming that whatever patent Apple comes up with is "invalid". This exact process has been used a million times before? Show me. Show me the previous patents, or just show me a manufacturer claiming to do the exact same thing. Post a single link to back up your claim.

You mean like these guys.....

http://www.cstsales.com/colored_accent_panel.html

First popup in simple google search.....

Edit:

A little more prior art.....

http://www.google.com/search?q=clore...w=1024&bih=660
post #48 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris_CA View Post

And it's already been 2 years since the patent was filed and they had to have been working on it for a while prior to that.
I wouldn't be surprised to see something within the next year.

Depending upon the device I would expect that Apples goals will be to lower production cost. With most fiber reinforced plastic techniques that is hard to do. Unless of course that part is largest like the iPad. I still have this idea that iPad like shells can be mass produced cheap enough if Apple really wanted to.
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