Introduction: Netbook & Laptop Stand

Picture of Netbook & Laptop Stand

A simple laptop stand in timber and steel made from cheap materials

Step 1: Materials & Tools

Picture of Materials & Tools

Materials:

2 large wooden door stops (wedges)
1 metal bracket (see image)
4+ button head wood screws
4+ self adhesive non-slip pads

The metal bracket should be wide enough to provide adequate support for your laptop. This one was about 250mm (10inches) wide. It is important to use button head screws, as countersunk screws will not sit well in a bracket. The non-slip pads need to be thicker than the screw heads to avoid scratching the laptop.

All up this was less than $20AUD

Tools:

Drill
Drill bit
Screwdriver bit

The drill bit should be about the diameter of the screw shaft for hardwood, or about 1/2mm smaller for softwood. The screwdriver bit should match the screw head (e.g Phillips head/crosshead).

That's all. Nice and easy.

Step 2: Measure Twice, Cut Once

Picture of Measure Twice, Cut Once

Mark out the position of the screws on the timber. I lined up the holes to make sure each side would be identical. When marking, think about whether horizontal and vertical screws are spaced enough to avoid intersecting.

When looking at placement of the screws, consider where you will place the pads (step 4). As it will probably be best to have the pads as close to the corners as possible, you may want to position the screws further down from the top.

Step 3: Screw It

Picture of Screw It

Drill holes in the timber. Make sure you drill perpendicular to the surface you are drilling, or the screws will not sit straight against the bracket.

Affix the bracket to the timber using the screwdriver bit. Make sure you don't strip the screw head (especially in hard wood). If the screw won't go without jumping, try re-drilling 1/2mm / one gauge larger.

Step 4: Padding

Picture of Padding

Stick on the adhesive pads. I might have used a few too many here, for a nicer look try one at each corner.

If you have a particular laptop you want to use it with, make sure the pads aren't going to obstruct the airflow.

Step 5: Done

Picture of Done

Your laptop should sit nicely on the pads without scraping on the screws. If the laptop is large, make sure you move it down the stand so it doesn't overbalance backwards.

There should be plenty of room for at least the normal airflow around the base of the laptop, and the steel bracket will allow you to easily add a fan, and keep it out of site.

The laptop now sits at a better angle for typing, and moves the screen up about 400mm (~2 inches) for easier viewing.

Enjoy.

Comments

MRedu (author)2011-10-18

Nice instructable! Maybe i'll give it a go.

thewarp16 (author)2010-02-21

 i made a wooden stand but mine had a 3" fan and 2x5watt speakers in the front.

i made mine with 2 squares of 10mm board then drill a lot of holes were the speakers and fan was then in between the boards i put corner bits.

good to see you didnt just buy some cheep laptop stand =]
5 outa 5

mbudde (author)2009-08-27

This is cool. How is that netbook? I've been looking at that asus aspire one netbook and the asus eee pc netbook, and I can't decide what one I should get.

joshedmonds (author)mbudde2009-08-27

I haven't used the EeePC, but I can recommend the AA1. This is the AA1 (model AOA110L) with an 8GB SSD and 1.5GB RAM. It weighs less than 1 kg, and is smaller and lighter than most of my textbooks. I have Ubuntu 9.04 installed and use it as my main PC. It is great for everyday workloads e.g. Firefox+OpenOffice+Rhythmbox etc.

mbudde (author)joshedmonds2009-08-28

Do they still make that one anymore? I searched online and all I could find were the batteries for it.

joshedmonds (author)mbudde2009-08-28

I'm not sure if they are still in production. I bought this one new for $340AUD (about $280US) four months ago on Ebay, and Expansys had them online until just recently, but it probably depends where you are. The newer ones don't have the SSD, and probably come with Windows, so they will be more expensive and heavier. The standard battery in the original AA1 is a 3 cell, which will only give 2 hours of battery life.

joshedmonds (author)joshedmonds2009-08-30

And before anyone says anything about the price, I know that would be expensive if I was in the US. But I'm not. In Australia, the cheapest netbooks now are about $600AUD (you pretty much can't get the Linux ones anymore), so this was a great deal.

mbudde (author)joshedmonds2009-08-28

So the keyboard isn't too small? That's what I've heard on a lot of the netbooks.

joshedmonds (author)mbudde2009-08-28

The keys are not smaller themselves, but are placed closer together. I find it fine for extended use except for the absence of a numeric keypad, and not having dedicated home/end keys. Of course having a riser or stand is really helpful, as the AA1 is so thin that your hands are at the wrong angle when it is sitting flat on a desk.

macobt (author)2009-08-29

How much is this useful,I am asking about the temperature drop?

joshedmonds (author)macobt2009-08-30

Short answer: I don't know. If you wanted to ensure air flow, you would definitely only place the pads at the corners (rather than in a line like my image), and you could mount a small USB powered fan underneath. The AA1 has vents at the front and sides, not underneath, so I imagine it is slightly better as the sides overhang about 10mm, and the front is raised about 10mm from the desk. I hadn't found temperature to be an issue on the AA1. I have the acerhdf fan module installed (download from piie.net, instructions at help.ubuntu.com/community/AspireOne) and the fan rarely comes on. Even when hot the AA1 is really not 'hot' externally.

amakerguy (author)2009-08-28

Cool! nice instructable! very simple idea!! There always the best! (well most of the time)

DrCoolSanta (author)2009-08-28

Oh lol, I have the same Laptop (Acer Aspire One) and I love it, and it also has the Ubuntu stickers from the ship it CDs. A coincedence :P But yeah its really tiring to work on it, and having a laptop stand will help, I will do that sometime.

giantoz (author)2009-08-27

Nice Job. Great Operating System. Preach it brother!

joshedmonds (author)giantoz2009-08-27

No need to preach, most people just need to see it in action (especially on a netbook). The only thing I preach is open standards and formats, and using open source software is the best way to keep interoperability alive.

booth.derek (author)2009-08-27

...or you could just buy a 3 ring binder and set your laptop on top of that ;)

Yerboogieman (author)booth.derek2009-08-27

This is a netbook, not a full size laptop.

joshedmonds (author)Yerboogieman2009-08-27

I designed this for my AA1 netbook, but it does work for larger laptops (see the image at step 5). The main issue with larger laptops is the depth of the body - if the centre of gravity sits near or behind the rear of the stand, the laptop will be unstable or overbalance. The laptop in the image is a 15inch and works quite well (read safe/stable) but perhaps a 17inch laptop would need some design mods.

Yerboogieman (author)joshedmonds2009-08-27

He said to use a 3 ring binder.... A netbook is usually smaller...

joshedmonds (author)Yerboogieman2009-08-27

Aha, I though you were questioning the effectiveness of the design. The 3-ring binder is not a bad idea, but it isn't really the same, is it? You can get small (A5) binders though, and they are usually free as they are throwaways from company training manuals etc.

joshedmonds (author)booth.derek2009-08-27

I think the 'fold some paper, tape it together, stick it under the back of your laptop' type stand may be more your style (there is at least one instructable for that)

Houdinipeter (author)booth.derek2009-08-27

but u'd have to cut out the middle so there'd be airflow.

joshedmonds (author)Houdinipeter2009-08-27

The main motivation for me was to have a more ergonomic position for the netbook without the hassle of an external keyboard and monitor. It's true that this design doesn't add a lot of extra airflow under the laptop, however the stand is narrow, which allows the laptop to safely overhang, and (especially for the AA1) provides better ventilation as the vents are on the front and sides of the lower case.

Lithium Rain (author)2009-08-27

Awesome! Where did you get that sticker? WANT :D

You get them when you ask ubuntu to send you a disk! I have 4!

capricorn (author)2009-08-27

Aaaaaaaaaaand that's a winner :) Nice job mate, willl try that as soon as possible, thanks for sharing :)

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