I'm fairly certain that decades ago I read an interview in a computer magazine where someone (one of the Steves?) claimed that after the Apple II case was designed, there was some kind of problem with paying for the die (or mold), so Steve Jobs (with perhaps one other person) broke into a vendor's facility and stole the die/mold!

I now cannot find any reference to any such incident. Am I full of baloney? Is there any truth to the story in any form?

(Note: I have found web posts indicating poor quality reaction-injection molding was used for the initial cases. By December 1977, tooling was completed for cases made out of the more durable and smooth ABS [acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene]. I don't know which system the original interviewee might have been referring to.)

  • Which computer magazine? Do you have a rough idea when the magazine came?
    – Wertilq
    Aug 19, 2013 at 8:20
  • 3
    This doesn't seem to be especially notable - is it? Aug 19, 2013 at 9:29
  • @Wertilq: I would guess around 1980-1985, but that's just a guess. I recollect it as a magazine I read at the house of a friend who was an Apple II user, so it could have been something like A+, Apple Orchard, Nibble, etc. Aug 20, 2013 at 3:25

1 Answer 1


I realize this is an old question, but on the off-chance you haven't already found it, the interview in question appeared in the March 8, 1982 issue of InfoWorld. You can read the whole thing here:

Apple's Steven P. Jobs talks to IW

We didn't have much money to make molds. So we hired an outfit in Mountain View. [...] It got so bad at one point that we decided the outfit wasn't interested in supporting us, so we went down there and some of us kept the guy busy while the rest grabbed our mold real quick.

It is important to keep in mind that Jobs was well known for his embellishing flourishes of bombast and hyperbole when recounting a story, so the wooden mold "grab-and-dash" may be partially or entirely apocryphal.

  • 1
    It isn't clear to me whether this is actually a theft. i.e. Who owned the mold?
    – Oddthinking
    Jul 11, 2015 at 2:38
  • I should have added the interview pointer to the comments, not as an answer, as the question is "Did Jobs steal the molds", and that isn't clear in what he said. In fact, it's not even certain he was part of the group that retrieved the molds. Sorry - I'm an ignorant new user.
    – Mike
    Jul 13, 2015 at 15:35

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