One user has made new hardware for his Tesla, so he doesn’t need to carry around a key card any longer.
San Francisco-based Reddit user u/TrevCostales fabricated his own Tesla key fob, including detailed, step-by-step instructions (via prior instructions from u/andy2na). Within the post’s description, as shared on the Tesla Motors subreddit, the user explains that he doesn’t normally carry a wallet, so the normal key cards aren’t particularly convenient for him.
Using epoxy, acetone, an RFID chip and antenna from Tesla’s key cards, the user coiled the antenna to fit into a generic key fob, then sealed it off so it would fit within the plastic housing.
The user was then able to use the car to detect the key fob using his Tesla car, while simply keeping the key fob in his key chain.
The end result simply looks like a generic key fob one would get from any automaker, perhaps with a little bit more wear-and-tear “character” from the process of putting it together.
Here are the full DIY instructions below:
You’ll need new key cards, key fobs, epoxy, and acetone.
I recommend buying new key cards. If you mess up your originals, you’ll have no way to add or remove key cards and phones.
Add the new key cards to your car. I suggest doing this first before you mangle the key cards. It will be easier to check the key fob if it’s already been added.
Place the key cards in acetone.
Remove the existing chip and antenna from the fob.
After about a couple of hours, remove the RFID chip and antenna from the key cards.
Coil the antenna by twisting and folding. This is the orientation I found that will work. Other methods of coiling resulted in the car not being able to detect the RFID chip.
Place the coiled RFID chip and antenna into the new key fob.
Before sealing the key fob, test that the car will detect it.
Bring up the lock screen while moving the fob around the console. When it detects it, the key will move to the top, change to bold type, and show “Active.”
Seal the key fob using epoxy.
Tesla fans have shown their creative prowess through a number of impressive DIY projects, in the past, including this working paper mache Supercharger and more recently, this retractable automatic charging arm, among a number of others.
Contributing Writer at TeslaNorth.com from California’s southeast Bay Area. Covers electric vehicles, space exploration, and all things tech. Loves a good cup of coffee, live music and puppies. Buying a Tesla? Click here to get 1,000 free Supercharging miles.