Ten years later, facing a disgusting, messy living room, an angry cat, and a guttural, manly need to create: he decided to do it again.
I wanted something simple, something minimalistic. After studying years and years of good design by buying everything Apple ever, and recently wasting untold hours on Pinterest, I had decided on three simple rules for making the best entertainment center ever:
1. It must be basic. Beauty is in simplicity, not complexity. Minimalism is key.
2. It must be timeless. Build it once, and only once.
3. It should be customizable. Make sure it can accommodate anything you need it to do.
The third one is debatable, but ideal. All those considered, I wanted a very simple, very small, very… easy entertainment center; because the focus isn't on the entertainment center, but the entertainment it's providing, right?
Apparently not. I pitched this to my roommate - it is his TV, and his systems, and his… apartment, so his input is vital. He declined it all.
He wanted something big, loud, and gaudy. To be fair, he himself is big, loud, and gaudy, so it's only right - I suppose. But this presented a problem: How do you make something big, loud and gaudy while also making it basic, timeless, and customizable?
And also, I ran into another very practical problem: we recently bought an Xbox Kinect in preparation of Mass Effect 3. However, since I'm human, and well, caucasian, I also have an odd curiosity about dancing. I downloaded the Dance Central 2 demo and since them have probably wasted about 72ish hours days playing DC 1&2. It's wonderful. It's like a whole new world for me. I can dance whenever I want to, I can leave my friends behind and just dance. I can dance. I can dance!
… except I have no room. Where the Kinect sits now literally leaves me a four inch sweet spot for dancing. "Born this Way," and "Toxic" force me to move out of it, and so the sensor thinks I fail, and so I get mad about being beaten by two Madonna Protogaes. If I can't take on her lackeys, how am I supposed to beat the queen? This must be rectified. I will not let Lady Gaga beat me.
So I need to move the Kinect back, plus make a basic, timeless, customizable, big, loud, and gaudy entertainment center. All while picking up carpentry for the first time since '02. In an apartment, and not ticking off my neighbors.
The design is basic enough: It's essentially a picnic table top, turned on it's side. The shelving goes in the larger gaps, and has stops and removable dowels to hold it in place. There are cable hooks in the back, and I love it much more than that 1970 microwave cart.
WHAT YOU NEED:
2 2" x 4" 32 inches
2 2" x 4" 18 inches
2 2"x 4" 6 inches (All this can be cut from a 2" x 4" x 10') - $4
5 2" x 6" 5 feet (2 2" x 6" x 10' plus a lumber guy who has lucky scrap) - $10 plus 10 minutes of wasting time.
3 1" x 10" 2 feet (can be Cut from 1 1" x 10" x 6')
8 1" x 1" x 16" (can be cut from 4 1" x 1" x 3'
10 1" x 1" x 1" cubes.
Tape Measure/ Ruler
22 #12 3" screws
8 #8 1 3/4" screws
Power Saw - I used a handheld Jigsaw but it was, in retrospect, DEFINITELY the wrong tool for the job. If you have a table saw, that'd be optimal.
Handheld saw - for detail and cleaning up rough edges.
Drill w/ 1/2" bit
1/2" dowel - 2+ feet
Sandpaper - lots of sandpaper
8 hooks that best fit your wiring needs - I threw the packaging away before I got the size off of it this, but this is a very subjective thing anyway. General rule: use the size larger than the one you think will work for your wiring needs.
All said and done, this cost me about $68 and four hours. I personally can't beat that for an entertainment center.