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Ikea Besta Jagra hack - hiding A/V equipment for under $20

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In this Instructable, I'll chronicle the steps my wife and I took to plug the A/V opening on the Ikea Besta Jagra. We decided we needed to do something because our 8 month old kid is into everything, including turning off my gaming consoles and messing with the settings on the stereo.

This is a simple and relatively quick hack that hides your equipment and cleans up the look of the Besta Jagra, keeps the A/V opening cool, and keeps little hands from things they should not be touching.
 
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Step 1: Materials

The following is a list of materials that I purchased in order to complete this task, along with prices (no tax).

clear shelf pins (8 of them in a single package, normally used for holding up shelves) - $2.97
rubber bumper variety pack - $3.97
screws (6x1 1/2") - $3.54
furring strips (1x2x8, need 10 feet total) -  $ 0.97 each
speaker fabric (from the fabric store, 1/4yd) - $3.25


Step 2: Cut the wood

The Besta Jagra opening is just a bit wider than 44" and just a bit taller than 6" (about a quarter of an inch in either direction), so 44" and 6" are the final dimensions that we used. This way the fit is tight enough that it fills the hole well, but not so tight that the frame is difficult to remove.

My first step was to cut the 44" lengths. I cut two, one for the top, and one for the bottom. Once this was complete, a quick trip through the router took about 3/8" of an inch from the furring strips. I did this to make sure the corners were strong and square. This part can be omitted, but I think it makes the overall build much nicer. It does require a router (and a router table helps, too).

After that, I cut a total of four pieces for the height of the frame. The two ends, since I had taken off a total of 3/4", were cut to 5 1/4", while the two center risers were cut at 4 1/2".
jbrecken3 years ago
Does your remote control work through the fabric, or did you need a repeater inside the box?
hbomb9000 (author)  jbrecken3 years ago
Yeah, the remote controls work great. One is an IR one, which could theoretically be an issue, but the others are bluetooth (the remote and controls on the PS3 and the wii controls), so it's not a concern. You can actually see the LED's of the devices through the fabric (they're muted). It might be a cool effect to get LED's or cold cathode tubes to light the space behind them up.
Is there a back behind all of the stuff or is the only airflow from the fabric?
hbomb9000 (author)  four_eyes9543 years ago
The TV stand I used has a fairly large opening in the back - probably about 4 inches tall that runs the length of the unit - that is supposed to be used to pass cables through. I was finding that it was staying warmer than I wanted it (about 10 degrees warmer than the ambient room temperature - I have no record of how much warmer it was BEFORE I put the fabric screens on), so I added a 120mm fan in the back to blow air out into the room. I plugged it into the AV Receiver, so it's only on when the stereo is on. Since it's one of the super quiet 120 mm fans, noise isn't really a factor at all.
Hi ..Cool hack ! I'm interested in doing something similar but am worried about the airflow. Do you mind putting up some pics of the fan setup - how you've mounted it and more importantly how its hooked up to the AV receiver... USB? how it draws power etc? Thanks in advance.
hbomb9000 (author)  cyberwiz9733 years ago
Yes. I'll see what I can do. I have the fan connected to a transformer that plugs into the back of the AV receiver - the plug would be used to turn on the CD Player/ whatever other aux components might be plugged into the receiver, normally, but on mine they just sit empty.

As far as mounting, it currently resides in the back of the cabinet at an angle, resting on the receiver.

Like I said, I will get together a little more information on the cooling system in the next couple of days and will post it when it's ready to go.
BananaBread3 years ago
Good job there. What about heat? I saw you have a PS3 in there and mine heats up a lot. Is that a concern?
hbomb9000 (author)  BananaBread3 years ago
Heat was about 10 degrees above room temperature. I wasn't super happy with that, so I stuck a 120 mm fan in the back, which has cooled it back down nicely.
SNACKS3 years ago
It looks good but what do you do when you want a new DVD / game is it a hassle to remove all the time Thanks
hbomb9000 (author)  SNACKS3 years ago
It's not really a hassle to remove. The frames are in there with tension only (a couple of rubberized pads), so it's not that big of a deal. If you are worried about that, I would imagine that it would be easy to put in hinges or something similar to make them hinge open instead of pop out.
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