When your hot laptop needs ventilation and your wrists need a break from a flat keyboard, you can drop 50 bucks on a fancy commercial laptop stand—or you can build one of your own. Do-it-yourself laptop users have built several creations from common household materials to keep their notebooks elevated while they work . Made of everything from wine corks to door stops to paper (and paper towel) holders, check out our favourite top 10 do-it-yourself laptop stands for your lap and workspace pleasure. Photo by hunter1_86.
10. Wine Cork Elevator
The most simple and portable solution in the bunch, the wine cork laptop stand gets your hot notebook off the table with minimal effort. Just slip two wine corks underneath your computer and you're done. You can substitute the corks for regular rubber door stops, too.
9. PVC Pipe Wire-Hider
Hide your laptop wires and elevate your notebook screen to eye level with a custom-built PVC pipe laptop stand. This stand snaps together like Lego at a height you determine, costs under 5 bucks, and saves space on your desk, too. (Original post)
8. Ring Binder with Hard Drive Storage
7. Paper Towel Holder Stand
Reader Marcelo repurposed an Ikea paper towel holder into a good-looking laptop stand with a drill and some elbow grease. Check out his Flickr photos for details on the construction.
6. Vertical Wall Mount
The blogger at Nolebotic wanted his jukebox/file server laptop mounted to a wall, visible but out of the way. This setup isn't good for typing on the notebook keyboard itself, but it could work with a wireless external keyboard. Here are the details on building these plywood brackets yourself.
5. Wire Shelf iLap Clone
Instead of spending $70 on a new iLap, you can put together one of your own with some wire shelving, old t-shirts, and zip ties, like reader Mike did to save his lap from computer burns. Check out Mike's Flickr photo set for details on how he put it together.
4. Magnetic Feet
Similar to number 10 but with a little more sticky factor: Attach a couple of magnets to the bottom of your notebook and the top of two rubber door stops for a portable and sturdy notebook elevation solution. Several readers don't like the idea of magnets near or around your computer, with good reason, so do proceed with caution on this one; seems that you should be ok with light magnets (ala the MagSafe). Here's how reader Jorgen attached his laptop's magnetic feet.
3. Laid Back Bed Stand
If you like computing while still in bed—laying down—you can build yourself a laptop stand for easy typing while reclining. Instructables user jumpfroggy built a $15 homemade bed stand much like the Laptop Laidback Stand (pictured), which'll set you back $140. Here's the full bedstand Instructable. (Original post)
2. Hardware T Stand
For a more industrial take on ye olde laptop stand, Instructables user johnbot headed to the hardware store to pick up a joint tie, wooden dowels, and anti-skid pads. For under $20, he assembled the parts into a minimalist stand that would look good on most office desks. Here's the full step by step for assembling the T stand.
1. Inbox Plus Door Stop Stand
Make your GTD inbox do double duty as a laptop elevator. Flickr user oldwisemonk put a couple of door stops and adhesive pads on top of a wire mesh document organizer to raise and tilt his laptop forward, and keep his paperwork in order underneath. Here's oldwisemonk's photo documentation of the Inbox stand in action.
What's your favourite contraption of the bunch? Tell us in the comments—or vote for your pick in the poll below.