Repurposing found or obsolete items to dock phone, pda & accessories in one neat little desktop package.
I know this is a really simple instructable, but I wanted to post it after seeing a list of ugly, complex or impractical "solutions" posted on another site.
This is specifically for those of us who must carry more than one device due to work and personal obligations, and who want to keep the devices and related stuff neatly corralled on a desktop. For me, that means one iPAQ pda and one mobile phone; various media like flash drives and SD cards; and charging and syncing cables that used to get tossed around on the desk or banged around in drawers.
I prefer to repurpose found and/or obsolete objects, which is both economically and environmentally responsible (cheap and green, yay).
Step 1: Gather Your Materials and Tools
Gather your materials and tools
1 old desk accessory/memo holder (who writes memos on paper anymore? I found this in the abandoned desk supply heap at work)
1 scrap of an old mousepad (who uses mousepads anymore?)
1 discarded piece of rubber (this is a foot from an old zip drive or something (I would have used some mousepad pieces glued together if this wasn't available)
1 hollow tube (I used my old chapstick tube, cleaned, of course).
Twist ties for cables (velcro, coated wire, elastic pony tail bands, etc.)
Rubber pads or more mousepad pieces, if your desk is very slippery.
Something to cut with: scissors, cutter, razors, katana, etc.
Glue or sticky tape to attach hollow tube
Step 2: Prep:
Clean the memo holder. This is necessary to get out the years of accumulated dirt and ink (caution: if the ink can't be removed or isolated/covered, move on to another memo holder, it will get on your cords, devices, and eventually, your clothes).
If necessary, attach rubber pads to bottom of holder to make it nonslip.
Step 3: Fit the Pieces
Fit the pieces.
Cut a mousepad scrap to fit the opening (the photo shows the green mousepad piece). You may need more than one layer to keep your phone keys accessible. I just drop my phone in there, open or closed, attached to the charger or not.
The fit of the mousepad does not need to be perfect!
Do make sure the height allows you to access your phone's keypad, if that is important to you.
Step 4: Fit the Pieces (contd): PDA Cradle
Fit the rubber piece
Cut the rubber to fit around the cord and hold the pda upright in the memo holder opening. I shaved the sharpest angles of the zipdrive foot and it fits snugly. The cord is not attached, just feeds through the opening.
If you don't have a handy rubber foot from an old drive, use a mousepad: glue small rectangles to a larger one to make a U-shape similar to this one.
To attach the pda for daily cradling and charging, I hold the sync/charge cable in place and plug it in, or pull the whole thing out, plug in the pda, and replace it. I can lower it enough to hide the cable, while keeping the pda high enough to see the whole display. This also prevents stress on the cable.
Step 5: More on Fitting the Rubber Piece to Create a Pda Cradle
Some detail on the pda cradle piece
This rubber piece came from an old zip drive. I cut the sharpest angles to fit it in the memo holder, which created a slight angle that holds the pda stable. Experiment with the angles and your device: it just needs to fit snugly to hold the rather light pda in place and not weigh down the syncing cable.
If you do not have a similar rubber foot handy, glue together some mousepad pieces.
Note that whe the PDA is charging, I put the pda case in the memo holder section behind it. This helps to make the PDA cradle even more snug and secure.
Step 6: Another View of the PDA Cradle Piece
The rubber cradle piece is not attached in any way to the memo holder or the sync cable. This makes removal and replacement simple.
Step 7: Optional Spare Stylus Holder
Optional spare stylus holder:
Cleaned tube, sticky-taped in place, right next to the iPAQ cradle. A piece of cardstock would work fine too. If you want it more permanent, use double-stick foam tape or super glue. Removing and replacing the tiny iPAQ stylus is a bother when the device is cradled. I keep a larger stylus handy for use when the iPAQ is docked.
Step 8: That's It!
--I use the pen holders to neatly hold sync cables for the camera, mp3 player, micro and mini SD card adapters, etc. Use the optional ties, velcro or elastic bands to bind them.
--My iPAQ case fits neatly behind the iPAQ when it is cradled.
--My random flash drives and spare memory cards go in the accessory trays.
--I occasionally use a binder clip in the middle of that first section, and hang things on it, like my wedding ring.
This keeps my desk neat and prevents me from knocking my pda and phone on the floor.
It's sturdy, simple, costs nothing and uses things that would otherwise have ended up in the landfill.
I hope you enjoyed my first instructable!