If your laptop has a very serious problem, you might want to look into getting a stand that has a built in fan (or get your computer looked at. I've also heard that spraying compressed air into the fan can help), but if your problem isn't too bad, I recommend this stand.
Estimated time: ~30 Minutes
Estimated difficulty: Easy
Estimated cost: $15*
*Per the amount of material you need for one stand if you use my design exactly. I used what I had laying around so mine was free. What I recommend you to do is to use the basic shape of my design but replace the parts with whatever you have already.
Step 1: Tools & Materials
Acrylic, 9" x 12" x 1/8"*
Just needs to be a stiff, strong sheet of something. Wood and stiff cardboard would probably work too.
Thick-walled rubber tubing, 18" long, 3/4" diameter**
Just needs to be something that can hold the laptop up at least half an inch
Small machine screws/nuts/washers, 4 sets. Plastic will not scratch tables as easily and will slide nicely. If you don't want sliding, use rubber pads on the bottom. If you don't have washers, use slightly larger nuts that will slide on the screw.
Just something to hold the tubing to the plastic
Bandsaw, or something else to cut plastic
Sandpaper to make the plastic edges smooth after you cut them
Drill with drillbit the size of your screws
Knife, or something else to cut rubber
Pliers/Screwdriver, or something to tighten the screws with
* These dimensions are whatever the bottom of the laptop is
** This dimension is twice the length of the laptop. When I say length I am referring to the distance from the front of the laptop to the back. Technically you can use either the length or width, but the length works better, as I will explain in Step 3.
Step 2: Cutting the Plastic and Tubing
Cut the tubing to 9" pieces
Step 3: Drilling the Holes
You will put two holes in either tube and two corresponding holes in each side of the plastic for a total of two holes in each tube and four in the plastic. Make two holes in each tube about 1/2" fromt the end (see note at end of step). Now make corresponding holes in the plastic, about 1" from the side edges. Because nothing here needs to be exact, I would (and did) just line up the tubing with the holes and see where to drill. Once you're done, make sure all the holes line up.
** Make sure the holes are not so far into the tube that you can't reach them to put a washer/nut on them **
Step 4: Laptop Cooler, Assemble!
Screw > Plastic > Tubing (one layer) > Washer > Nut > Tubing (other layer).
The reason this step is annoying is that it is hard to place/tighten the washer and nut inside the tubing. That's why the holes in the tubing are so close to the end.
Step 5: Conclusion
Quick note on design in general.
I started this project with the idea of a folding stand that had hinges, a lock and was all plastic. Over a little sketching (always sketch everything forever), I realized simpler and simpler designs until coming to this one. Although it wasn't as cool as the one I originally thought of, it was a better, simpler design. Sometimes that is the case and it is important to recognize it when it does.