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Aluminium Teflon Coated Mouse Pad For Optical Mice

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Hey, this is my first Instructable so I hope I didn't mess it up to bad! Let me know how ! did!


I recently got a new desk and and I had a lot of trouble with my optical mouse and its not functioning with the surface.

I did a lot of research and found that new optical mice work very well on Teflon coated materials. Immediately I bolted up the stairs and grabbed my mothers T-Fal frying pan.  Upon trying it out i realized how responsive and precise the mouse was now reacting (not to mention the Teflon pads of the mouse on the Teflon top is slick as butter) . After looking at some Teflon pads online i thought... "hey, there expensive.... imma build one of those." The next day I stopped at Wal-mart an picked up a Teflon Coated pan.
 
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Step 2: Tools

-A cutting device: I used a hand grinder with a cutoff wheel attached, but you could use a jigsaw, or maybe a Dremel.
-A Metre stick, yard stick, or ruler.
-A pencil
-An old knife
-A bastard file
-Some sandpaper
-A sink with soapy water

Step 3: Marking out what size pad you want

Use the Metre stick and pencil to mark out the size of the mouse pad you want. your probably better off doing this on the bottom of the pan so you can see the pencil better while cutting. Actually.. your probably better of not using a pencil at all, that all I had at the time so grab a Sharpie instead!

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KnitPrincess2 months ago
Great idea! I live in a dorm so I couldn't really cut the teflon pan, so instead I bought a toaster sized cookie sheet and flattened it using my text books! Works great!
catmen2 years ago
I have the same mouse!
is that blood on that piece of wood next to the saw? in the first picture?
Alphonsus (author)  Hayabusa13374 years ago
No don't worry its not! that's wood stain from my father refinishing an antique chair!
 Haha, yeah, he's right. That was from me refinishing some chair.

Alphonsus... I am your father!
Alphonsus (author)  Aburame Shino4 years ago
dad you like naruto..? thats a little odd for a man in his late 50's isint it?

wait 15 on your profile.... are you sure your my dad? i want a dna test
Your mother is actually a fourteen-year-old Australian living in Portugal. Bwahaha.
"He told me enough; he told me you killed him"!
 Mr. Aburame, candlestick, workshop. Bwahahahaha!
reptilezs4 years ago
carbide tipped wood cutting blades cut aluminum very easily
pedla reptilezs4 years ago
If you forget the fact that wood cutting blades have a lot less teeth so they tend to bite into ali rather than cut through it. A hacksaw will also cut wood BUT just use the correct tool and you will avoid stuffups and hopefully injuries. OK. Worksafe.
newbeak4 years ago
Sorry to be negative,but I just use the surface of my computer desk,which is off-white in colour. I was using a pad,but found that my optical mouse worked fine without it..
some of us require a little more precision
Carmelite4 years ago
 whoahhhh.... that grinder is really dangerous
You should replace it with one that has a guard for cutoff disks. That way when the disk breaks, you won't end up with shards of hardened sand inside of you
Luke4014 years ago
Couldn't you also use any solid surface and apply teflon spray? Teflon spray warningsTeflon info,  and you can buy the teflon sheets here, or at ebay.
dchall84 years ago
Wow! Much cheaper than the skillet he bought, and already in shape.

Pretty large, so it could double as a laptop tray, and mouse pad?
omnibot dchall84 years ago
Oooohh, well spotted.
Yes, however that cookie sheet is 17"x14", bit of a large mousepad. Easier to shape down to size though I suppose.
acornman4 years ago
I am not sure what you mean by "pan" in the UK this would be like a skillet. Surely it would be cheaper and easier to buy a teflon coated Baking Sheet .These come with a nice safe edge all round and in small sizes . No cutting or work required ....use as is.
blopez4 years ago
you can buy teflon cookie sheets (IKEA has one for $6.99) that look just like your finished product. No cutting required.
Phoghat blopez4 years ago
You did some nice work and I don't want to pee on your parade but he's right,
www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/10133052


Unfortunately, while that look almost exactly like the final product produced in this instructable, the picture gives no sense of scale. The pan linked to in the previous post has dimensions of 43 X 35 cm (17" X 14" for all you non-metric folks). In other words, it is roughly the size of an actual cookie sheet, not a mousepad, so it would not work very well for the purposes stated in this instructable. Just thought I would point that out.

-Bob
dchall84 years ago
Thanks for the idea here.  I looked at Wal-Mart for something like the Ikea cookie sheet but all they have is "jelly roll pans," the ones with the rim around like you started with.  What I bought was a regular, white, plastic (polypropylene) cutting board.  I got the 8.5x11-inch one for less than $4.  I've tried it on 3 mice and it works very nicely.  One of my mice has drag issues but works great on the poly cutting board.  The cutting board is, of course, much thicker than yours.  The cutting board is so slippery I might have to put something under it to hold it still. 
Lightally4 years ago
An interesting idea, but in my northern climate it would be too freakin' cold to use an aluminum mouse pad...it's cold enough hanging onto the mouse during the winter months nevermind running it on an aluminum surface!
n0ukf Lightally4 years ago
You could do what we do in northern Minnesota... turn on the furnace. ;)
ac-dc n0ukf4 years ago
Funny, yet true.

Seems like another instructable... USB heated teflon coated mouse pad.  Shouldn't be too hard either, put feet on the pad to raise it off the desk a quarter inch then epoxy 4 x 10 ohm, 2W resistors to the bottom in a 2 series x 2 parallel configuration for 10 ohms (500mA from 5V USB power) total, add USB connector and a couple wires.

Or turn on the furnace.  ;)
Instead of resistors, would be better to use small 30 AWG gauge wire.  There's an instructable on here about doing juts that for jackets/motorcycle clothing.  This would be more even heating that resistors, just run a line around the edge, or a few loops where your palm will rest.

Metal objects tend to feel colder even at room temp, since they suck heat away from your body faster than less-conductive materials.  So even in a warm house, a heated aluminum mouse pad might not be a bad idea.
While in theory that sounds nice, in practice that would require over 38 feet of 30 gauge wire, and a more involved method of attaching, thermally conducting that heat.  I suppose you could cannibalize the wire from an abandoned transformer's windings but otherwise a spool of wire and enough thermally conductive epoxy to 'sink it all will cost quite a bit more than 4 resistors and a small dab of epoxy each.

4 resistors would do the job ok, remember it is the bottom of a frying pan/etc, meant to conduct heat itself so all you need to do is put the 4 resistors 33%/66% across and down from the edge of the pad.

On the other hand if you really want to use wire, nichrome heating element wire would be more manageable than plain copper wire., much shorter, smaller, less hassle heatsinking it, but it is still more expensive than 4 resistors.

There's no need to make things harder than they are for some idealized purpose.  "Good enough" is a great place to be.
ac-dc ac-dc4 years ago
Oops, there's a typo in my post above.  It would require over 48 feet, not 38 feet of wire.
Alphonsus (author)  ac-dc4 years ago
it really doesn't need to be heated! its a little cold at first but within minutes its all warmed up
On the other hand, if you didn't have resistors or nichrome wire but you did have a few dozen feet of 30 gauge wire and a big tub of epoxy lying in front of you already, might as well use it unless you were going to shop somewhere selling the resistors soon, and yet you use up something, the wire and epoxy, that inherently had more value someone had to pay for.
Alphonsus (author)  Lightally4 years ago
I live in Canada on the east cost, it was minus 25 (Celsius) here last week and I had no troubles with mine being cold!
why didnt you just buy a teflon sill pat that use for bakeing.
"sill pats" aren't teflon, they are silicone (not silicon) with fibre glass reinforcement.
arpruss4 years ago
One can also buy a 0.060" bondable 12x12 teflon sheet on amazon for $12 (or thinner for less), and then use contact cement or, better, epoxy to attach it to a mouse pad, or some smooth plywood, or one's desk.
Nice! But why did you keep the back lip on it? Why not cut it flat, and perhaps chisle and sand a pit of the same size and width as your mousepad into the desk to inlay it into your desk? i want to do it now!
 I remember using a Teflon "spray" from a compressed canister maybe that'd be a cheaper alternative and you can use the teflon for other purposes too!
 Just a hint using some kind of greasy product in the filing stage will protect the teflon and trap any filings that come off during the process this should come off with the "bath" you give it later hope this helps :D
pinkston324 years ago
Wait, the mouse in the picture (MX Revolution) is a fancy laser mouse. Turn it upside-down and it says "Performance Laser". They track on practically anything except a few shiny surfaces like glass.
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