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I am a HUGE Ikea fan. Most of my house is furnished from either Ikea or free stuff on craigslist. I have two Lack endtables beside my bed. The way our bedroom is laid out, the only outlets on our side of the room are either behind my bed, or almost on the other side of the room. I was tired of the ugly mess of wires that my current setup had, and thought this would be a great idea to give me outlets nearby, and clean up my table.

Step 1: Materials

This project can cost less than $10 if you have some of the materials on hand. I bought most of them, and a couple extra, and still only spent 11 bucks.

Items Needed:

  • 1 1/2" Outlet box
  • Black outlet (I bought the tamper proof one, which is nice if you have little kids around. It acts like the plug protectors, but built in)
  • Black outlet cover
  • 3 prong cable (can be salvaged from an old PC cable or similar)

Tools::

  • Outlet tester
  • Hammer
  • Screw Driver (flathead and phillips)
  • Boxcutter
  • Wire Cutters

Step 2: SAFETY!!!!

When using the box cutter or similar sharp tools, please practice proper safety precautions. Always cut away from you and never use your body as a table for cutting. This picture is the result of poor planning.

Step 3: Trace the Hole and Cut It Out

Place your electrical box on the top of the table where you would like it to be. Using the boxcutter, trace around it, lightly nicking the wood. Then cut deeply into the table (without cutting through the other side), and cut out the square. Inside will be a honeycomb shaped paper structure, which is why Ikea furniture is so cheap. Remove this and clean up the edges of the hole. Try to fit your box into the hole. My hole was a little small, so I had to shave the edges off around it until the box fit.

Step 4: Make the Hole for the Wiring

I chose to put my wiring right next to the outlet, and not run it longways along the table. Simply cut a small hole on the side of the table where you want the wiring to come in at. There is some actual wood here you will have to scrape/cut out to make the wiring fit through. Once you cut the hole, fish the wiring through and up and out of the hole.

Step 5: Place the Box and Wire Up the Outlet

Make sure you tap out the side of the box where the wiring comes in. Fish the wiring through this hole and into the box.

If you have never wired anything electrical before, its quite simple. Strip your wires down to metal. There should be 3 wire colors. Black, White and Green. On the outlet, there are 3 colored screws: Brass, Silver and Green. Remember this to help with your wiring:

Black to Brass

Green to Ground

White to White

Wrap the wires around the screw, and tighten the screw until the wires are in firmly. Make sure that no insulation is touching the screws. Then pull any slack you need out of the box and screw down the outlet to the electrical box.

Step 6: Testing Your Outlet

Find a normal outlet first and use your outlet tester on it. Confirm that it is operating properly and has no issues. Then plug in your table into the wall outlet, and then plug your tester into your table outlet. I did my test with the cover off, in case I needed to go back and fix anything. Read your tester for specific instructions, but mine shows 2 amber lights when they are working correctly.

Step 7: Done!

And your finished. Clean up any mess made from scraping/cutting/etc..

Future attempts at this project, I will use a USB outlet, but my budget didn't allow for it this time. I would also put a little bit of silicone around the edges of the outlet cover, in case of any minor liquid spills.

Thanks for reading this instructable! it's my first, so any feedback would be appreciated!

Cool idea. A vertical setup would be safer if you ever spill liquids on your table.
<p>Cool idea and ikea stuff isnt expensive so if you make a mistake it dont hurt so bad. thanks for sharing</p>

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