instead i decided to spend some time and build one preferably as easily and cheap as possible!
note that you will need some minor electrical experience (if you ever added a light switch or outlet you should be OK)
EDIT(dec07): the laptop finally died this week. the hdd is dead by overheating. i may replace it but it's probably a question of time until it dies completely.
EDIT(xmas07): i replaced the dead hdd with one i had around and now i'm running the internal fan at high speed all the time to keep it cool. i also got a clearance fanless logitech laptop pad for less than $10 and dremel'd a hole into it to allow air intake for cooling. hopefully it will last longer this time :)
Step 1: What you need
- some acrylic (11"x14"x0.093" ) or other type of material that you can use as a base. i got mine from the door & windows section of home depot
- a USB cable from your dollar store (i used male to female cable)
- electrical tape to insulate the cables
- a fan - bigger is better but you need to test it first and make sure it works at 5 Volt. i got mine from a PC power source.
- fan screws or glue
- felt (the ones you put on the feet of chairs & tables to protect against floor scratches)
- dremel tool or some other tool that you can use to cut holes
- SAFETY gear (glasses)
Step 2: Mark & cut the acrylic
if your laptop has multiple fans on the bottom you need to have a hole in the acrylic for each of them! if you dont you risk overheating it. you can however just add a single fan (preferably under the bigger laptop fan)
Step 3: Cut the cable & add the fan
make a note of the direction of the airflow! then check your laptop's fan. the cooler needs to drive air in the same direction as the laptop's fan. this is very important!
mount the fan in the appropriate direction (inlet or outlet).
Important note about the fan: USB ports can support up to 500mA (0.5A). your fan needs to be below this limit or it could damage your computer. most fans are rated 100-150mA (0.1-0.15A) which should be fine. fans that include LEDs may have higher power requirements however.
Step 4: Verify your work
Step 5: Final touches
the book you see in the picture is the final touch. it's giving you the inclined surface you need to type comfortably and allows the fan to pull/blow air. i know you can add another piece of acrylic instead of the book but this is really meant to be cheap and fast :)