Simple, Cheap, Quick DIY Lapdesk From (Scrap) Laminate Floor Boards

Until now I have been using my laptop without an external mouse. I now needed to use an external mouse for my work because the touch-pad and the buttons on the touch-pad slowed me down.

A while ago, I had purchased an off-the-shelf cheap lap-desk for my laptop which did not have space to put external mouse and mouse pad. This still cost me £10. So I did not want to spend more money to buy another one. Also, lap-desks with space for an external mouse were quite expensive and not normally easily available.

So that got me thinking, the aim was to figure out a quick, cheap (almost free) way to make a lap-desk with decent space to accommodate a mouse pad and external mouse. You may choose to not have the space for an external mouse. This Instructable shows you step by step how to make such a lap-desk from scrap laminate flooring.

The picture on this page is of the finished lap-desk.

Materials and Tools

The aim is to make it almost free or extremely cheap. When I say cheap, definitely cheaper than the off-the-shelf one which had cost me £10.

Materials:

1) Scrap, unused, off-cut, reclaimed laminate floor board. You have freedom to choose whatever color you like. We need two pieces to click into one another so as to allow the width to fit the lap and so that you can rest a decent sized 15 inch laptop on it. You may measure the size (length and breadth) of your lap that you want to cover and the size of the laptop. One piece requires to be slightly longer than the other to allow the space for an external mouse. You may choose not to have space for an external mouse, in that case you should have both the cuts of the laminate of same size. Images show the cuts that I used.

2) Some form of wood/construction glue.

3) A chair cushion. The size would be to cover the lap area.

Tools:

1) Jig saw or hand saw or some saw to cut the laminate as necessary.

Joining the Two Offcuts of Laminate Flooring Boards

 

1) First of all, I cut and rounded the corners of the laminate boards as they can be quiet annoying when you use the lap-desk.

2) You may choose to trim the unused tongues on the side but I did not bother. As the idea was to save time and make it quick. Also time is money :).

3) Apply the wood/construction glue into the tongue of the laminate board and then click the second piece into the first one as shown in the image.

4) Leave it for the glue to dry out.

5) In case you would like to attach more support for the two boards, as
shown in the image, you can glue a couple of supporting laminate or wood pieces. You can use clamp to hold them until they are properly stuck and the glue has dried. Althought, the boards glued and dried properly should be strong enough to hold without requiring this step.

Attaching Seat Cushion

1) Apply glue on the back side of the composite laminate in order to attach the chair seat cushion.

2) Place the cushion on the glue, press it to make sure the cushion is attached properly.

3) Reverse the assembly and put some weight on top and leave it for the glue to dry out.

The idea behind the cushion is that it provides support and cushioning effect on the lap while resting at least 1 or 1.5 Kilo worth of laptop weight. Most of the off-the-shelf ones do come with some form of cushion. I already had a memory foam chair cushion and that is what I used. However you may choose whatever is available.

There is no step here. Just that after the glue is dried, the lap-desk is ready to be deployed 🙂 as shown in the image.

 

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Turning Wood on a Lathe For the First Time :)

First time learnt to turn some wood on a wood lathe today at RLAB. Received a lot of help and guidance from my fellow members at RLAB.

And created the following. Helping out somebody by creating missing pieces for their toy rack.

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Super Simple DIY Coffee Table Made from (PVC) Waste/Drain Pipe and Fittings

I wanted to make a smaller table which could be used as a coffee table as well as a table for kids. I searched a lot for a quicker and easier way to make such a table but could not find any instructions online. So I thought about it and came up with a way to make the table. I would like to share with you how I made the small table.

The frame was made using the plastic (PVC) waste pipe and pipe fittings (32 or 40 mm diameter) mainly used for bathroom/kitchen waste/drains. I bought these parts quite cheap from a trade DIY shop. In UK these type of pipes and fittings are called solvent weld pipe and fittings. Solvent weld means they can be stuck/attached with solvent cement (also known as PVC Glue).

This is what the finished table looks like 🙂

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Components Required

  1. Solvent weld (PVC) pipe black, 32 mm diametertools3
  2. Solvent weld (PVC) 90 degree conversionparts2
  3. Solvent weld (PVC) Tee, 32 mmparts1
  4. Solvent weld (PVC) access plugparts4
  5. Solvent weld (PVC) straight coupling 32 mmasmb1
  6. Solvent Cement (PVC Glue)
  7. About 5 mm MDF wood for the topTop1
  8. Any nice decoration (paper or paint etc.) to go on the topTop2

Tools Required

  1. Drill with a wood drill bit
  2. Screw-driver
  3. A wood saw (manual, hand one or powered) or get the wood already cut
  4. Plastic, waste pipe cuttertools2

 

Please be careful while using these tools. First part of the process is to stick the access plug to the wood top of the table in order for the table legs to be screwed on. I first unscrewed the cap and glued the cap on the back side of the wooden top. I also drilled a hole through the top and the plastic cap and passed a screw and fixed it with a nut on the bottom side.

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Applying solvent to a 32 mm straight coupling to make a joint with the access plug.

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Then applying solvent to the straight coupling and the pipe cut to the size of the table leg that you require in order to create the leg of your table.

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Finally the leg of your table is ready :).

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The leg then is screwed onto the cap of the access plug which we stuck on the back side of the table top before.

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Now solvent is applied to the Tee to create stable base on the legs of the table.

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The following image shows the entire table leg. The main reason behind creating such a base at the end of the table leg is so that the table can easily slide on the carpet or laminate floor. This also stabilizes the table and gives strength to its structural integrity.

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In order to create the middle support and leg rest, 3 Tees are stuck together as shown in the following image, by applying solvent to the Tees and small pieces of pipe to link and interconnect them.

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The 90 degree conversion is then stuck to the middle Tee. This forms one end of the leg rest in the middle of the table.

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Then pipe is cut and stuck to the 90 degree conversion on one end, length wise to create the leg rest.

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Similarly the other end of the leg rest is created using the Tee and the other 90 degree conversion.asmb11

This structure serves two purposes, a nice leg rest and provides much required structural strength to the table.

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Finally the table is ready. So easy to make, so quick to make.

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