The 10 Minute Laptop Stand




After putting one of those $30 prefab plastic laptop stands back on a store shelf I began thinking of an easy way of gaining similar functionality without the wastefulness or expense. Rummaging around my local hardware store I came across the materials needed to build this simple yet effective laptop stand for about half the cost of a commercial one.

Step 1: Required Materials

I purchased all of the materials needed for this project at my local Home Depot.

Materials Needed:

Simpson Strong-Tie OT structural joint tie 12"x12" - part# 044315774300
4 Rubber Anti-Skid Pads with included screws - part# 039003096444
3/4 inch wooden dowel - part# 049437396911
small bolt and nut

Step 2: Cut the Wood Dowels to the Correct Size

I cut the wood dowels to 3 inches which gives a good viewing angle while it's sitting on my workbench. I would recommend cutting them longer at first and then reassess your viewing angle and re-cut if needed. Drill two small pilot holes in the bottom of the dowels as to avoid any cracking when the anti-skid feet are screwed in.

Feel free to paint the wood dowels any color you desire. I've painted mine matte black to match the color of my rotting soul.

Step 3: Screw the Dowels Into the Base.

Now position the metal base between the rubber foot and the dowel. The pilot hole should be facing the metal base and the rubber foot. Drive the included screws through the rubber feet and into the wooden dowels, sandwiching the metal base in the process. I've tightened down the dowels finger tight then pulled them forward towards the front in order to correctly align with my Macbook Pro . You may need to perform slight adjustments before fully tightening down the dowels depending on the size of your laptop.

Step 4: Insert the Front 'stopper'

Now with the rear dowels completed you can insert the front stopper. Mount the two remaining rubber anti-skid feet by holding one on each size of the metal base while bolting them together. This will form the third foot of your laptop stand and will prevent the laptop from sliding forward.

Step 5: Finished! Now Enjoy Your New Laptop Stand.

You should now have something similar to the simple stand shown below ready and waiting to host your precious laptop. True, it's not as nice as most of the commercial stands but this one has the benefit of being inexpensive and reusable if you should happen to be retrofitting an old home in the future. (The base is often used to join roof joists). Total cost is around $19 but if you opt for a standard steel finish you can save around $3-5 bucks.

Other options that would be nice to have.... an adjustable front foot to change the viewing angle, rubber stoppers where the dowels meet the laptop or perhaps angled back legs to mesh better with the bottom of a laptop. If you have any additional questions or have any suggestions to improve upon this design let me know. Enjoy!



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    42 Discussions


    3 years ago



    6 years ago on Introduction

    its good you can use stike there rubber protraction when ther foul because the avoid the laptop damage


    8 years ago on Step 5

    You could cut the dowels on an angle to fit the bottom of the laptop.


    9 years ago on Step 5

    Home Depot, as well as most hardware stores, offer non-skid rubber pads to prevent scratching things such as table tops or hardwood floors. You can get a variety of tan felt pads also, but I would use some of the black rubber type. They are round, self adhesive, and available in a variety of diameters. Sticking those on top of your dowels should solve any scratching issues.


    9 years ago on Step 5

    Yeah, I was thinking it was upside down the whole time XD I think at least putting a couple of rubber stoppers on the tops of the dowels would help with the denting issue, and definitely prevent any scratching of the case. Very cool; simplistic whilst managing to avoid tackiness. I like it.


    9 years ago on Introduction

    Can you add your rotting soul to my compost pile? My wife will be getting one of these when she needs the stand. I'm still chained to my desktop.


    10 years ago on Introduction

    Great instructable! How about filing the top of the dowels into a slope to help stabilize the laptop?


    11 years ago on Introduction

    I'm going to have to build this, I just got a MacBook Pro and its like having a jet engine on my desk. Nice instructable.

    2 replies

    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    I just bought a Compaq CQ50-106CA and it is seriously intensely hot. Those Turion 64 processors are amazing performers, but run VERY hellishly hot. Considering that its got a fsb of 2.0ghz its pretty dam hot.