Steampunk Laptop

Introduction: Steampunk Laptop

About: Steampunk-Design builds and developed the most modern technical equipment, fine jewelry and futuristic devices implemented with funds and materials of the Victorian era.
Hi all,
Today I will present you my newest Steampunk-Design Workshop creation.

Here you can read something about how i got the idea to built my first Steampunk Laptop.

Because my pictures are soo poor...

I deside to take a video in HD, you will enjoy it!!!

Depend on the diversity of the basic Laptops you get in this world I can show you only an overview of the single steps and the trouble you get with single parts…

For my Steampunk Laptop I use my first Laptop which still works well but is now too slow for newest applications.
It still works well for Videos, Music and Internet.

My model is the Toshiba Satellite 1100.

Parts List:
  • Toshiba Satellite 1100
  • Big Wooden Gingerbread Box
  • Profiled Timber
  • Plywood
  • Old Brass Car Horns
  • Copper T-Pipe
  • Brass Caps
  • Latchet
  • Knobs in different sizes
  • Red Velvet
  • Brass E10 Bulb base
  • LED’s
  • Switches
  • Wood Stain
  • Wood Wax
  • Hinge Joints for Box lid and Keyboard
  • Enough Time

Step 1: Disassembly of the Laptop

I don’t describe the disassembly in detail. Be careful there are many tiny, tiny screws.
Also take some pictures of the metal shield.
Some parts don’t work when they are not connected over the metal shield to ground.
For example the touch pad there is a Brass plate on the lower side.
I don’t connect it to shield/ground and the touchpad don’t work.
After few hours I recognise that there was a small metal sheet mounted which I miss I supersede it by a cable.

Step 2: Monitor Frame

When I measure the Monitor and the Box I got a gap of 2.2cm on top and bottom and a 1.7cm gap on the sides.
I decide to build a wooden frame out of profiled timber.

The profile I got was 2.3mm wide.
Depend on the different gap I remove on the outer side the 1mm and 6mm.
The result is that the profile in the corner doesn’t get correct together. There is an interrupt in the profile. I smooth it a little with sandpaper.
After painting with black wood stain you don’t see this fault.

I mount the Monitor with the original metal frame on the wooden frame I use very short wood screws for this.
Because the wooden frame has exact the measurement of the box lid I am able to clamp it into it without any glue and screws…

Step 3: Keyboard and Status LED Board

I don’t want to lift the keyboard manually out of the box but I also know that there is a problem with the keys are too high and get in contact with the screen.

I decide to use leverage force of the lid to push up the Keyboard.
I don’t have enough space for an idler pulley and ropes.

After some hours I got the idea to use a small board which is connected to the lid and pulled out when you open the box to lift up the keyboard too.
As a hinge i use chime parts from the of a wall clock.
I try it but it doesn’t work well because it was too weak in the hinge. When you use the keyboard it starts to teeter under the pressure.
I use two screws in the side of the box to absorb this pressure.
I also recognise that I can control the way if it moves in/out and the angle of the end position.
In the second picture you see the sliding block to lift the keyboard. Later I put a brass pipe on because the board flip too fast down and get in contact wit the E10 sockets with the LED’s in.

Step 4: Speaker

The speaker design was well know before I decide to build a Steampunk Laptop.
I got these nice brass horns some month ago from Ebay. After I see them on Ebay I know that I build speaker with them.
The only challenge was to get small speaker.
After I got the speaker out of the laptop and I recognise that they are oval it was clear that I am able to use a T- copper part out of the hardware store.
I use a 1” T-Pipe and 1” Brass Caps.
I also buy a cabinet door hinge.
The assembling is very easy I put the speaker into the tube and adjust the middle of the speaker into the outlet and mark the position of the cable.
Slide it out and drill a small hole for the cable.
Then I solder the brass horn to the T-Pipe.
I polish it and put the speaker in again, I fix it with hot glue in the right position.
Then I drill a hole in the centre of the brass cap.
Above I use the hinge with the pin for the lower cap I use a short screw which fall down in the hole of the hinge when you meet the centre.

Step 5: Mousepad and Keyboard Frame

For the Keyboard and Touchpad frame I use a flat profiled timber. Cut it in the right length and be very carefully with the angle in the corner! If you make a wrong angle you will see later a gap and this looks very bad…
After I glued it together I use wood stain and wax for the right look.

Step 6: Mainboard

First of all I cut the slots for USB, Monitor, Power plug and heat outlet in the backside of the box. I also make slots for the CD Rom and the other parts in the sides.

For the mounting of the Main board in the wooden box I use the original mounting leg. I cut it out of the plastic case and glued them in place.
I need the original mountings the get the right height and the stability inside the box.

Step 7: Wires

Wires stands for get weird.

The pins are so close together and so small I that I solder them under a magnifying glass. I need 3 hours and 5 day to solder them. After some minutes you will start to jitter and the result is that you solder 2-3 pins together.
So take time if you do something like this.

Step 8: Status LED's

Yippee another part that makes you crazy!
The nice status LED’s in the brass E10 bulb sockets are very nice but the replacement of the SMD Led’s though cables is terrible.

I buy a 10 piece pack of cheap 25Watt bulbs with brass socket and remove the bulb and the glass in the socket.
How you get it out I explain in another Instructables some month ago.

Then I stick small magnifying glasses in the socket which I get out of a disposable camera (lens) which I use in this Instructables.
I use normal low current LED's in different colours through the lens it seems that the complete brass tube is glowing inside.

Step 9: Final Handles and Pictures

After I am sure everything works well and stable I paint the last parts.
To cover the CD-Rom slot outside and the card slot on the right side I saw some nice formed wooden plates which I colour with brass paint.
I also mount handles for an easy transport.

At least I glue a modified Compass, Clock and Thermometer on the Status Panel.

Feel free to ask if you need some special information’s or some helpful tips…

Admiral Aaron Ravensdale
Owner of the Steampunk-Design Workshop

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    Professor Quill
    Professor Quill

    3 years ago

    Does it really work? Or is it just for show?


    6 years ago

    is it me or was the keyboard keys overlooked in the tutorial?


    7 years ago

    Admiral Aaron Ravensdale... Is Ravensdale your real Surname or did you make it up? 'cause it's awesome!


    7 years ago

    Can I just say this is the coolest thing ever? I am SO making one!

    Wow!!!!!!!!!This is so epic!! But,sadly my mom would kill me if I took apart my laptop.


    8 years ago

    just wondering how you got the "key" power on/off thing to work? and wondering since this will be my first time making a pc if using a larger laptops interior workings (motherboard etc) with a simple usb screen/monitor and keyboard would work? and finally I just wanted to say off the many steampunk laptop I looked up yours is my favorite.

    I was wondering if I could get some more detailed instruction on how to set up the lock and key on switch?


    9 years ago on Step 9

    Please, where did you get the key caps and how did you apply them?



    9 years ago on Introduction

    put this in the radioshack thing!!!!! it is soooo cool!


    Reply 9 years ago on Introduction

    Yes, but would YOU want to lug one of these monsters around?


    Reply 9 years ago on Introduction

    I've considered building a 'laptop' with a CRT in it, actually. The end result would be something more similar in form to the Apple Macintosh Plus, except it would have a built-in keyboard that comes out on a pair of drawer slides, and speakers that come out of the sides. Wood case, brass buttons, everything.


    9 years ago

    Please, tell us where the desktop software came from! It's Ubuntu, isn't it?


    10 years ago on Introduction

    After looking at a bunch of different steampunk laptops, I still have to say that I like yours the best. This is a fabulous instructable. Thank you very much.