I live in a single occupancy hostel room in an Engineering college in Goa.
Now the Room measures around 8 feet by 10 feet, with a desk, a cot, a cupboard, window…. etc with no attached washrooms.
I am an Electronics hobbies so I have a decent collection of components and tools. So the question I how do you optimise the given space to keep all your tools and components and create a workspace for your projects within the given space while being on a tight budget.
I present to you my solution and how you can achieve the same, I hope you like it.
Step 1: Gathering Materials
So here are the things you would require.
- Cardboard Box
- Some M2 Nuts and bolts
- PVC pipes and Elbow joint
- Basic tools
Our institute orders many instruments every month, with every instrument comes a cardboard box. These cardboard-boxes come in all shapes and sizes and lie in the corner of every department.
Step 2: Building the Cardboard Cupboard
Building the cardboard cupboard is easy.
To build the base use some PVC pipe and elbow joint to form the structure similar to the one in Fig.2. Now you can make the main cupboard by using one large cardboard box and add many smaller box of similar length to make different levels. Multiple cardboard also adds strength to the structure.
Step 3: Packing Strategies
Ok now that the structure of the cupboard is done, we need to decide on the ways to pack the components.
Fig1 shows the typical way one would pack, using clear pet boxes. However they aren't the cheapest option available. We again resort to cardboard boxes. Now how do you close them? Depending on how often you would be opening the box you can have 3 different ways to close them
Fig2. shows my microcontroller box I use them very often hence on the two flaps I have placed a hook and a straight rod both made of copper. So one can easily slide in and out.
Fig3. Shows a box containing components for a line following bot, I rarely use them hence I can use a single piece of copper wire and used it to tie the two flaps closed. This is more secure than the previous method but takes more time to open.
Fig 4. Shows another variation for the previous method. This is slightly easier to open while still being more secure than the one in Fig2
Step 4: Building the Tools Board
If you're like me you have tons of tools and have found it hard to organise them in a proper way. So lets make our own makeshift pegboard for hanging tools.
As the theme of the instructable suggests, we will be making one out of cardboard.
Take a cardboard of suitable dimension and a pack of M2 x 12 Nuts and Bolts. Next, make holes at desired locations. Pass the screws through the holes while making sure that you add cardboard support on both the sides. This helps in providing support to the nut when you hang heavy tool on it.
Thats it, thats how you make a tools board
Step 5: Sorting
Now that we have built a cupboard for all the components and a tools board for the tools its time to sort the boxes and tools into their places. Fig1 and Fig2 show the before and after in my case.
Step 6: Other Optimisation Tips I (electronics)
As you can see in Fig1. I have combined multiple plastic racks to form one mega rack which I use as a project shelf to keep all items related to a particular project together.
Fig2. Shows a custom made whiteboard drawer. The whiteboard side is useful for taking quick notes and th other side is useful as a soldering station base.
Fig3. Shows how the secondary monitor helps cover up the wiring mess.
I usually have the habit of gathering materials which may be use full in the future, whenever I see them. These things i keep them unsorted in the two big cardboard boxes below the table as shown in Fig4.
Step 7: Other Optimisation Tips II (Studying)
Apart from making projects in my room, I spend a good chunk of my room time for academic studies. I have listed out the hacks I have used to optimise my room for academic studies.
Fig.1 Shows the mega homemade whiteboard. Aperantly institute had to replace a hostel notice board panel as they had lost the key to it. I took the acrylic board of that panel and attached some white banners behind and voila the gigantic whiteboard is ready. I use it to write down key concepts of any topic and also as a quick to do list.
Fig2. Shows the already introduced sliding whiteboard. The whiteboard I had bought had huge aluminium borders thereby wasting so much of space, it was also taking up large space of my desk, so I decided to remove the frame and use the frame as part of drawer slide framework. As mentioned earlier, the reverse side of the board can be used as a soldering station base.
I also have a Blank Presentation Board which I mostly use to draw up something or to post some post-it notes as shown in Fig 3&4
Step 8: Other Optimisation Tips III (living)
Goa's summers are extremely harsh, to combat the heat I have a table fan and a 4L water can as shown in Fig1, a dustbin is kept below the stool.
Toilet paper rolls can be extremely useful for cleaning especially when the nearest washroom is at the end of the corridor. Another living hack is an emergency washbasin as shown in Fig3. very useful when you need to throw some water out and don't want to go all the way to the washroom. Fig4. shows the outlet of the wash basin through the window.
"When the going gets tough, the tough get going", there are thousands of variable situation that we get into but the person who believes in working hard and is determined to get out of any situation will be able to do so.in such times even a motivational gesture (such as the ones in Fig6) is enough to make the person calm and confident.
It also helps to have a cute companion like Billi (Fig7) to ease out the stress.
Step 9: Overview
"How Much Land Does a Man Require?" asked Leo Tolstoy in his story.
Regardless of what you think is the right answer, I hope you liked my solution to living in 8 feet by 10 feet of land.
Feel free to add in your suggestions in the comments section.