Bamboo Laptop Cooler




About: Slinky Harmonics Engineer by day...

My first laptop cooler was made by a name brand company, my cost came to about $47. After it broke, I looked around for a better more durable solution. Metal and wood seemed like a great idea...

Bamboo coolers already available in the market have a weird design where the laptop feet get stuck in between the holes of the air channels and the metal coolers... well, you are paying a big premium price for them ($70+ last time I checked.)

So, I tried making my own cooler trying many different materials such as AL, wood, tempered glass, Lexan, etc.

Best and easiest to work with is Bamboo...

Ironically, as I am trying to write this, someone has taken the laptop cooler with them and I am not able to post more photos of it...LOL...

So, here it goes:

To make your "Super Cool Bamboo Laptop Cooler," You'll need:

1 - Small Bamboo chopping board (~ 10.5 inches) - $3

2 - Old, 12V CPU fans (The ones I have are AMD branded) - Free~!

2 - 8 X 0.8 X 1 pieces of wood - Free~!

1 - Old, 12V power adapter - Free~!


1 - Cordless Drill

1 - 1/4 inch drill bit

1 - 2 1/8 inch doorknob tool bit

1 - Pack of clear plastic feet

1 - Gorilla Glue / Sumo Glue / whatever strong wood glue you might have.

1 - Heavy Duty Utility Knife

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Step 1: Drill All Holes First!

So, measure the middle and about 1 inch border around the chopping board.

Using the drill with the 1/4 drill bit , drill 13 holes (the same way I have done in the picture.)

Using the 2 1/8 inch doorknob hole tool bit, drill 2 holes parallel to each other.

sand down all the edges if needed...

Step 2: Glue the Legs and Install Fans

Glue both 8 X 0.8 X 1 legs in such a way that they run across the bottom of the board and try to glue it as flush as possible to the edge. (one on each side)

Gorilla and Sumo take a while to dry so, clamp both legs down or apply pressure with a few books and let it dry for 24 hours.

After the glue is fully dry grab the Utility knife and cut away any and all glue residue that might have seeped out.

You can now install the plastic feet (4 or 6 should be enough.)

This would be a nice moment to install the CPU fans over the 2 1/8 inch holes you drilled before. Make sure each fan is centered. The arrows of the air flow should point "up." So, the air moves from below the board up and onto the laptop's bottom.

Step 3: Get the Cables Ready...

Both CPU fans are 12V and the power block is also 12V. As far as I am concerned you don't need any other power regulator chip.

The power block has 2 wires a red wire and a black wire. Your CPU fans should have 3 wires(red, Black, Blue or Yellow.) Connect both CPU's red wires to the power block's red wire do the same for the black wire.

The blue or yellow wire is used to measure temperature / RPMs. I stapled mine to a side, should I ever want to hack it further and use them to measure something, they'll be there for me...

Step 4: Finally

SO, you can now place your laptop on the cooler pad and plug the power block in... now, unlike USB hacks from others... these fans will kick out 6000+ RPM of "cyclonic air." That will cool anything really fast...

That said and done, the total cost of this Bamboo laptop cooler is less than $5

Have Fun! :)

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    10 Discussions


    4 years ago

    With a little but of tweaking you maybe able to get 12 v fans to run at 5v or find some 5v fans that could be powered off a typical USB connection.

    1 reply

    Reply 4 years ago on Introduction

    Yeah, I used the 12V power block because it was free, I had it laying around for years... LOL. However, there are a few Instructables which deal with fan modding from 12V to 5V to USB, etc. So that is very easy to do too...


    4 years ago on Introduction

    Might want to put some sort of grill on at very least the bottom side of the fans. Keep fingers or parts of one's lap out of the fans. Not as much of a big deal with the top side of the fans because there should (usually) be a big-honkin' laptop in the way of putting fingers into the fans...

    Also, as sottinger said, if one can get the fans to run off 5V (either modding these fans or using actualy 5V fans) one can run this off a USB port of the laptop that's being cooled making it just as portable as the laptop (and even more need for the finger guards...).

    Otherwise great idea. I hadn't even through of modding an inexpensive cutting board until I saw your instructable. Thanx for the inspiration.

    1 reply

    Reply 4 years ago on Introduction

    I have the grills for the top and bottom but I did not put them in because the space available under the board is so small that virtually nothing will be able to get caught in there. This cooler should stay in a flat surface for best performance and cooling anyway...


    Reply 4 years ago on Introduction

    You know, I was originally fooling around with the idea to have a built-in cold pack tray. So, the air would flow pass the cold pack and out the other end towards the laptop already cooled... But at 6000 RPM these fans cool everything really fast...