A laptop keyboard when sitting flat on a desk is something that I find awkward to use. This instructable shows how to make a quick and easy stand that provides just the right angle for me and fits into how I have my desk space set up.
Step 1: Materials
Approximately 1' x 1' of 1/4" Masonite
Three bead moldings 1' x approximately 3/4" wide x 3/8" thick
1' of closet rod with the bottom side ripped flat
Step 2: Tools
I had the lumber yard rip the closet rod; otherwise you'd need a table saw or some other method to cut one side flat.
Handsaw for cutting the screen molding, if necessary
Step 3: Basic Construction
I took the closet rod that had a flat edge cut on it and glued it to the back of the piece of Masonite. This formed the rear of the stand. The laptop could be elevated, and this was the end of the project for a while.
By having the whole laptop sit on the piece of Masonite, I was able to slide it back-and-forth when I wanted to move it out-of-the-way. The top of my desk is a beater surface so I wasn't worried about scratching it up. If it were wood, I would have included felt glides.
Step 4: Next Step: Sled Rails
The next evolution in the design came about because the one square foot piece of Masonite was difficult to slide back-and-forth when the whole surface contacted the desktop. The solution was to glue rails to the bottom of the Masonite. This had an immediate improvement, and made it easier to grab onto the Masonite to slide the rig back and forth.
Step 5: Final Step
The final evolution to the design was to add a strip of wood to the front to keep the laptop from sliding down. It worked OK without this design feature for quite some time, as the laptop for the most part stayed put, but I finally decided to do it and it was a good move.
Step 6: Epilogue
I get some satisfaction through making things myself. I'm sure there are laptop stands that I could purchase, but I'm happy that I made this.
In fact the first "laptop stand" I made was just the flat-on-one-side closet rod by itself. I still have this first one in my laptop bag so that I can use it on the road.
I hope you found this fun, and maybe it will inspire you and your own work.