Instructables

The IKEA charging box - no more cable mess! Very easy to do

Picture of The IKEA charging box - no more cable mess! Very easy to do
Based on what I read on the web about cable clutter and mess ( mobile phone, PDA, iPod, etc. -chargers), I figured out how to make a simple and very easy to do charger box.

I made this especially regarding its simplicity and, why not, discrete and cool looks. Ah, and light weight plus reduced volume. You can place such a box anywhere.



http://www.metacafe.com/watch/714116/how_to_make_a_charger_box_very_easy_no_more_cable_mess/

Now I use in my home 2 boxes like that and they really saved me a lot of effort and stress, because all those cables (besides of being simply ugly lying on the floor) gather a lot of dust bunnies, like a fishermans net, when they lie around on the ground one on top of another.

Plus my cell phones, PDA, camera, electric razor all share now the same spot when they charge; and even when they are not. It helped not to place my phones/camera/other devices in the entire house any more, without any logic. Can you believe me, I almost lost one of my phones in the house because of that? Not a nice feeling when you're in a hurry not to be late at work..
 
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Step 1: Ikea Box

Picture of Ikea Box
Buy a box like that from IKEA.
Or just buy any similar box you can get at any store. Make sure it is not too small.

Step 2: Drill the box!

Picture of Drill the box!
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Drill the box by using a larger drill bit, like the one shown in the video

Step 3: The cables

Picture of The cables
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Put the power cable inside, the chargers, and connect them.
You've done it, no more cable clutter! ;)
No more dust collectors.

Very easy to do and simply great. And cheap too!
agis685 years ago
Nice, understood and easy. Thanks pal. Awesome idea. I have to do it immediately 5/5
InstructMeA5 years ago
I made one of these out of a cardboard shoebox. Would this be a fire hazard?
The idea is in principle ok, but you need to ensure sufficient holes to ensure air flow through the box. AC adapters (and other small electronics) are sized to be installed at room temperature. Often it is easier to hide the power splitters at the underside of a table.
wiedo6 years ago
i made one based on your charging box: http://www.instructables.com/id/Charge_box/ (only more plugs!)
Williz7 years ago
I prefer English plugs.
LDW Williz7 years ago
Don't forget to unplug / switch off the chargers when you're not using them. 8% of the UK's power consumption goes on battery chargers / devices left on standby. Allegedly. Save the planet!
whatsisface LDW7 years ago
How can that be possible when there is no load on the charger?
LDW whatsisface7 years ago
Follow this link:

http://www.energysavingtrust.org.uk/aboutest/news/pressreleasesarchive/index.cfm?mode=view&press_id=535

(item 2)

Even without a load, the charger is using electricity. If you touch it, you'll feel it is warm: that heat is generated in the process of converting 240 volts to 20 (or whatever). Or attach an energy monitor and see how much energy is being used. On its own it may not seem significant, but according to the UK energy company Calor:

"Most people do not know which domestic activities generate the most carbon emissions... 93 per cent of people failed to correctly place everyday appliances such as mobile phone chargers and plasma televisions in order of their carbon output... Numerous misconceptions were identified, such as the widespread belief that patio heaters generate more carbon emissions than televisions.

In fact, televisions in the UK were found to generate 210 times the amount of carbon dioxide than patio heaters, while mobile phone chargers were found to be twice as harmful.

Andrew Ford, corporate affairs manager at Calor, said that the survey was organised to find out how much consumers know about carbon emissions.

He added: "Nearly a third said they would never use patio heaters due to their effects on the environment, yet most consumers still don't turn their TVs off standby, which is responsible for 37 times more CO2 emissions in the UK than patio heaters.""
whatsisface LDW7 years ago
I would have thought this is only true for chargers that use a transformer, as opposed to other ones, such as a PSP charger, which when not under load is not warm.
Most wall warts use a transformer simply because it's easier to mass produce a charger with a transformer, diode bridge, a couple caps and a 78xx regulator, Than it is to produce a transformer-less wall wart such as the PSP charger.
LDW whatsisface7 years ago
Could be - I don't know much about PSP. But all the items shown here (mp3, mobile/ cell phone, camera, razor would have chargers that draw on the mains when not charging - or am I mistaken?
alexsim20046 years ago
(removed by author or community request)
Doesnt matter - Ive found the name of the box

The IKEA box as shown in the video is called 'SLUGIS'

Link for:

Box

Lid

Just a note for UK viewers - if you use the IKEA box as shown above - you can only fit a 4 socket extension inside the box.

bluesman (author)  alexsim20046 years ago
The nice thing about the box is that it's not transparent. Bigger boxes were transparent and didn't look too good as a chaging station.
Yes! cool but the idea's been pilfered from some commercial offering (Maplin had something like it,fully waterproof for outside.) Old and busted toolbox alters the theme somewhat and instead of splitting the box to slip the wires through (as some of the plugs are not molded) take the plug apart then push the wire through and then rewire it within the box.
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PROD7 years ago
Great project, that was just what I needed.
I've "extended" it by adding an individual switch to each power supply.

You can have a look at IKEA-Power-Charging-Box-with-individual-switches
Thanks!
strods7 years ago
I think you're part way there to great idea. I would suggest adding a battery and a solar panel (or wire a solar panel to it and place the panel by a window or something.) That way you can charge the battery during the day, charge your gear while you sleep and all of it free. Just my 2 cents.
camiller7 years ago
The only problem I have with this is that most of those power bricks throw of some heat and enclosing them in a box will keep that heat from dissipating. I would think that the life of the power brick would be shortened by the hot environment.
AllanButton7 years ago
Hey that inspired me! My desk is a peice of wood sitting on a file cabinet and some 2x4s in a box shape. I think I am going to add another peice of wood to the underside of this desk, seperated by 2x4's and slice up my computer desk into 1ft strips. Hidge them all up, and drill holes in it to run my wires into. Then I can have a cable free desk, and still have 4 screens and a laptop.. :D
This is the most useful, simple and well done instructable I have seen all weekend. Great music direction! Thanks!
jwater77 years ago
Fire hazard?
bluesman (author)  jwater77 years ago
It's about the same if not even lower than having that powerstrip full of chargers lying on the carpet or a wooden floor.
mrmath7 years ago
Isn't this just a more detailed version of this???
bluesman (author)  mrmath7 years ago
Actually I did not know of that instructable. What I did was to put in practice some of the ideas I found at lifehacker.com. LOL, they resemble so much! Ah, now I see, that box has also a illuminated switch. :) Neah, why get too complicated? Just plug the power strip in and out.
mrmath bluesman7 years ago
I found this site because of Lifehaker. If you haven't already been there, I highly suggest it. http://www.lifehacker.com.

I think LH got it from that one that I pointed out, btw.
Isn't it great? There's always room for another one :D
LasVegas7 years ago
Nice, but your cell phones never gonna charge! You left it unplugged. You're going to need a larger power strip. I'm jealous of the European three-prong system that apparently lets you plug power bricks in with apparently three different orientations. In the US, most strips require the power bricks be plugged into the last outlet or sacrifice an empty outlet that gets covered by the bulk of the brick.
bluesman (author)  LasVegas7 years ago
Heh, who said I left it unplugged? Just because I didn't show in the video the plug in the wall socket, doesn't mean it was unplugged. ;)

Btw, it depends on how large the power bricks are. Nowadays most power bricks do have some ergonomics, and yes, they are much smaller. I remember the old Ericsson cell phones, those chargers were huge! And heavy.

Here's a site covering all the plug types in this world. Very handy http://www.dbicorporation.com/internat/intpower.htm ;)