Power Book- Hidden Cords in a Hollow Book




my family has amassed a considerable collection of portable electronic devices, and with it, an assortment of device specific power cords and plugs. i CANNOT stand the unattractive electronic spaghetti that cooks itself on top of our kitchen counter. it is an unsightly reminder of how far we have come as a people where we have substituted electronic gaming devices, cell phones, pdas, and i-whatevers, for a good book or instructive piece of literature. I know that I am guilty of buying into this consumerist culture (and I see no end in sight for me). so I have disguised those pesky (yet fun and useful) electronic devices in the most ironic of places- the common book. I have hollowed out a stack of books to hold and hide the power chords of the cell phones, nintendos, and other hand-held devices that mock the capitalist ego within me.

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Step 1: Find and Cut

choose some books. I know Im gonna get a lot of flack from the library police out there, but at least I'm not using the Koran or Salman Rushdies Satanic Verses; I'm cutting cooking books (French nontheless, how many French cooking books are there in the world anyway?!). anywhoo, I needed two large textbooks to hold the cables and plugs for all of the devices. I measured out a 1.25 margin around the book and drilled some pilot holes with a dremel. then I painstakingly cut out the pages with a metal straightedge and an x-acto knife. this is where all the work in this project lies, do a good job here and you are home free. I will not get into the details and troubleshooting of this part of the project since there are some instructables that already exist for hollowing out books (see also: readymade). but drilling the pilot holes are REALLY worth it.

Step 2: The Base

this is the "base" of the book. i notched out the bottom of the pages for cable access. i also cut the top part of the book so the plugs could fit and the cords for the devices had access to the middle book. i glued the inside corners of the pages together so that they would move in "chunks" of pages rather than in individual sheets. but i didn't glue all of it because i like the "natural" motion when you open the books and move them around.

Step 3: The Router

this book houses and splits the device cables that are stored in the bottom book. i cut some more notches in the pages so that i could keep them more organized and orderly. the base of this book has a matching hole in the bottom of it that mirros the base book.

Step 4: The Device Books

the top books are the "device books". they hide the actual machinery that is to be plugged into the "power book". i made one for my boys' nintendos and the other for my phone. i plan on making more "books" for other pieces of equipment that i want hidden.
i also hot glued the inside corners of these books as well. since they will move more than the other two, i felt the extra glue and page bonding was necessary.

Step 5: Final Assemby

run the device cables through the book notches and plug in your junk. put your junk in the box. now close the box. now your junk is getting it's juice and nobody suspects it; they just think that you are one well-read bloke.

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    23 Discussions

     I am unsure as to the purpose of this instructable and while i admire book modification for the purpose of secret stashes i cant see what this one accomplishes. 

    If it was to hide cords... it doesn't... as the cord is still sticking out. 

    If it was to hide the gadgets you could simply plug it them in behind the couch.

    If it was to appear well read the observer would notice fairly quickly you have not read but destroyed the books.

    Please enlighten me.

    1 reply

    It doesn't "hide" the cords, but simplifies them so that it doesn't look like an "unattractive electronic spaghetti that cooks itself on top of our kitchen counter."


    6 years ago on Step 5

    I'm hitting the $.25 book shelf at the local library. Or maybe I'll go to my local half price books and see if they will let me have some of the books that they were going to recycle. There are always water damaged books to put to a new use.


    9 years ago on Step 1

    Better Off Dead reference FTW


    This is a brilliant idea as decoration design!
    However I have 2 point to spot out;
    -Be careful of potential over heating and fire risk. common sens, and pro and engineers recommend to do not hollow high density of electricity in a small and unprotected (fire protection) space, and I would add, especially with paper (which can burn quite easily)
    -I also agree with Robotrix on the books value, and saving knowledge. I might have couple solutions; you can make a "fake" book, and add a hard cover from a real book or create it a hard cover (adding some of your creativity).
    in order to create your fake, you can use a yellow pages book, Or glue some (used) printer pages together.

    I especially like the MP3 player hollow book!

    Have a nice day! Long live creativity


    9 years ago on Introduction

    This is a nice way to hide your cords, and you did a great job. However, I personally think that if you are rebelling against the loss of importance of books in our culture by ruining some books, you may want to rethink your motives.

    It's a really nice project, I'm just not sure the message comes across.


    9 years ago on Step 5

     Totally brilliant!  I hate all those devices and cords hanging around.  I'm digging out some books tomorrow!


    Reply 10 years ago on Step 1

    OOh...a tip:When u try to take the nail(in my case) off,try destacking the pages down-side up:D


    you're really a sucker for the touch screens aren't you, I mean with the 2 DS's and the Iphone, I'm not going to lie the Iphone (or Itouch) is awesome, tilt touch, portable but PSP's are better than DS's

    2 replies

    10 years ago on Introduction

    I think this is great project. (as long as the electronics do not get too hot.) while I would normally object to the destruction of books, It does not result in the loss of knowledge it would have been before books were mass produced, and there are some books out there that just are not very useful. I briefly considered binding some blank books for a project like this and decided that would be more work that it is worth. Thank you for sharing this idea.


    10 years ago on Introduction

    IMO it would be a "neater look" if you routed all the wiring internally within the books instead of having the wires that go to the devices coming out of the edge of the book...

    3 replies

    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    i wanted the books to be interchangeable, i didn't want to have a howwoled out "block" of books. i really didn't want the two bottoms books to be connected, but the power plugs were to big to fit in a 2" thick book. you could glue them all together, it would be more sturdy and clean, but it wasn't my intention. thanks for the input.


    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    I was going to suggest the same thing, but then I realized that opening the individual stacked books would be a pain.


    10 years ago on Introduction

    I love this, I would only be worried about the chance of fire with the power cords totally wrapped in flammable materials