Saturday, 30 August 2008

Weekend Project #3: Crocodile USB drive

Marinka's project is too cute. It's a S�t Barnslig crocodile USB drive. I imagine it can work with any of the other animals but the croc may be the best choice, considering its shape.

Marinka says, "It looks like a normal S�t Barnslig stuffed animal. But when you remove its head, it's a USB-drive."


S�t Barnslig crocodile
USB drive
Needle to melt holes
Needle and thread to sew
Pair of scissors

Step 1:
Start with preparing the animal.
You have to cut off the head of the animal with a pair of scissors and pull out some of the stuffing to make space for the USB drive.
Step 2:
Than prepare the USB drive.
Melt with a hot needle some holes at the edge of the USB drive. Take care not to damage the inside of the drive. To heat the needle, poke the blunt end of the needle into a cork. Heat the sharp end with a flame.
Step 3:
Now put the USB drive into the body of the animal and the cap into the head. Fix the USB drive to the animal with needle and thread. Pull the needle a couple of time across the animal. Fold the cut edges a little inside when sewing the holes at the edge.
Step 4:
The finishing touch.
You could put a ring to its tail. Or to stop you from losing its head, you can attach a wire between the two parts. (I did this after I took the pictures)
See other Weekend Projects:
- Go fly kite!
- Hack a Lego table

Friday, 29 August 2008

A quick hat and coat rack

Matthias mixes and matches some pieces for a coat rack that will fit in a small entryway.  

Part list:
Grundtal hooks (5 pcs/package)
Grundtal hanger (2 pcs/package)
Grundtal rail(31 1/2")
Kludd glass whiteboard
Bj�rnum bracket (nickel plated, 11")
Statlig shelf oak (46 7/8" x 11")
Statlig shelf oak (31 1/8" x 7 1/2")

From top to bottom:
Bj�rnum brackets with Statlig shelf and Grundtal rail (with hooks) mounted on the bottom and approx. two-thirds of the shelf width from the wall.

Kludd glass whiteboard to avoid dirt on the wall.
The small Statlig shelf with 5 Grundtal hangers - mainly for the clothes of our little one.

Kludd glass whiteboard again.

Related hack:
- Delia's hat and coat rack

Thursday, 28 August 2008

A quality headphone stand for cheap

Wiretap builds this solid headphone stand from Ikea parts.

headphone stand
Parts list:
Main stand portion: Bjarnum Shelf Bracket 11''
Headphone holder post: Capita Leg 4''
Wire wrapping posts: Attest Knob

He says, "Some shorter bolts are needed for mounting the leg and knobs to the Bjarnum Shelf Bracket. They can be found at your local hardware store. Take the Capita Leg and Attest Knob to the hardware store with you to find the appropriate thread pattern and size. (metric thread size) The new bolts for the Attest Knob need to be 1/2'' long, and the new bolt for the Capita Leg should be no longer than 3/4''.

headphone standOne hole needs to be drilled with a 3/8'' or equivalent drill bit, and that is for mounting the Capita Leg to the 'top front face' of the Bjarnum Shelf Bracket. Measure 1'' down from the top and center of the front face of the shelf bracket. Drill the hole carefully so it is perfectly on center. After that is drilled, you can put the large bolt through the hole and mount the Capita leg to the shelf bracket.

Now, there are already two other holes that were supposed to be used for set screws on the shelf bracket, but it turns out the knob bolts will fit through them perfectly. Put the small bolts through those holes and thread on the knobs. Then all you need to do is mount the assembled headphone stand to your desk. I drilled some 3/16'' holes through my desk and mounted it with machined bolts, using washers and nuts on the other side to keep it secure. If you don't want to drill through your desk, you can also make a custom base for it, but that is up to you."

See more of wiretap's headphone stand.

Updated! February 23, 2009
Lauri's headphone stand from a toilet roll holder
She says, "I modified Grundtal toilet roll holder to a nice headphone stand. It stands next to my new rack that is made also from Ikea materials. The moding was very easy. Just slowly bend the metal."

Tuesday, 26 August 2008

Dishy lamps

Jim makes some cute lamps from Ikea.

He writes, "The first is a lamp I made for my sister�s kitchen from an Ordning colander. I�m pretty sure the base is from someplace else (Target). I have never lived within 2 hours drive of an Ikea, so I tend to stock up cool-looking stuff in hopes that I find a use for it.

Pretty straightforward project, but with especially pleasing results due to the industrial look of the colander - the long, straight sides are particularly pleasing, I think. For quick and easy colander-to-lampshade conversion, it is best to look for a colander that already has a hole in the center. Otherwise, drilling will be required. In this case, I only had to enlarge the hole to fit the harp of the lamp base.

The second is of a lampshade made from old Art history slides - my Father-in-Law taught Art History but long ago switched to computer presentation. In this particular picture, the lamp base is also probably from Target, but it should work just fine using an Alang base. The slides are attached together with jewelry-making split rings through holes make with a tiny hole punch. I have made a couple of versions of this lampshade as gifts, and gave up on the hole punch. Now, I can drill through ten slides at a time with my Dremel tool and drillpress. The slides are attached to the frame of a lampshade. The trickiest part of this project is making sure to find a lampshade frame that attaches to the lamp base from the top - most inexpensive shades actually attach at the bottom of the shade - since the web of slides does not provide and structural support, this doesn�t work too well.

And, of course, like every table lamp in our home, the light bulbs are Ikea Sparsam compact fluorescents. I like the color and output of the bulbs and the 'looks like a real light bulb' outer shell.

Monday, 25 August 2008

The Mandal wall

Alisa gives her walls some love with the Mandal headboard.

She writes, "So I fell in love with the Mandal Headboard but I don't have a bed in my room, or a wall big enough to put it on, so I sawed the headboard down the middle, mounted the two halves vertically. I ended up with a pretty cool looking shelf, I also had an extra piece of wood that fit in the slots, so I added a mini shelf at the bottom."

See other hacks:
- The Mandal headboard as decor

Friday, 22 August 2008

House of the Week lights up with Ikea

You may think that Ikea does not feature often in designer homes, think again. Take a peek into Chris and Linda's magazine-perfect home and see how Ikea hangs comfortably with the best of them.

Chris says, "Ikea is throughout our new Seattle-area home, the House of the Week in the 2/3/08 edition of Pacific NW Magazine. We have an attached granny unit with a kitchen and bath totally in Ikea cabinets, dining lamp in same unit, a Varde-cabinet laundry room, stainless steel cabinet handles and stainless steel shelves in main kitchen and wet bar, 36 linear feet Pax built-ins (and two chest-of-drawers) in the walk-through master closet, stainless steel cabinet pulls in another bath and media room, a pendant light in the media room, a full-wall perforated metal shelf / computer workstation in the den / guest room, and a mirror and two wall lights in the powder room.

The big 'hack', though, is the way that six track lighting systems are installed in five rooms of the house. Rather than spending $40 per articulated rod for the 20 rods ($800) needed to suspend the tracks from the sloping ceilings, I showed the electricians the Ikea stainless steel Deka curtain-wire system and gave them directions on how to adapt it to suspend the tracks. It took 33 of these 'kits' at $4.00 each ($132) for the job.

It wasn't just a matter of cost savings. Our industrial-modern house has a lot of design elements and didn't need the addition of 20 black rods in the overhead space. The curtain-wires are nearly invisible . . . the tracks seem to float in space. We will soon use the same components to suspend glass shelves in a display cabinet in the entry."

Thursday, 21 August 2008

Ramvik TV and music console

Benny hacks the Ramvik into a music and TV control console.

He says, "I decided to put in a 17" LCD Monitor to control my music and TV stuff. It's not completely finished as the brushed metal frame for the LCD is still missing."

Related hacks:
- Ramvik arcade table
- Lite Brite coffee table

Wednesday, 20 August 2008

Clock some time on your guitar

John shares this little gem, inspired by Minty Amps.

He converts a broken down Ikea Dekad alarm clock into a guitar amplifier! And it doesn't sound all that bad either. Have a listen here. I was seriously surprised that the little clock could be made to boom that loudly. Also love the 'aging' of the clock. Lovely lovely touch.

Original Dekad

Hop over to see John's full post.

Tuesday, 19 August 2008

Computer turned vanity table

Meghan took a Flarke Computer desk, that cost $24.99 at Ikea and turned it into a retro vanity for doing her makeup and hair.

She says, "I took the desk, sanded it and then decoupaged the top with pictures of 1950's pinups and put a piece of glass on the top to protect the photographs. Then I painted the rest of the desk matte black, and attached a hook on the underside in order to have a place to hang my hair dryer.

Additionally I took a Fira mini chest, painted it black as well to match and use that to store all my miscellaneous beauty products. I'm pretty proud of the end result, hope you like it too!"

Monday, 18 August 2008

Under-lit Galant work space

Len had a job for a few months where his office desperately needed to be refitted. With a limited budget, he went to Ikea to find a way to make his work area more cool and funky.

He says, "I succeeded, and a lot of the credit goes to this really easy hack of a Galant desk. There are several pieces in the Galant family. I chose the silver A-Frame adjustable legs and the Galant rectangular 'desktop with frame.' The desktop is glass, slick on the top surface and frosted (translucent) on the bottom surface. The frame is a rectangle underneath the glass. As soon as I saw this desk, I knew I had to find a way to light it from below. A quick trip through the lighting department led me to the Dinge lights. They are available in a translucent white/grey that goes perfectly with the silver painted frame of the desk. When paired with the correct Sparsam fluorescent bulbs two of these will consume less than 15W of power while providing a bright, crisp white light.

If you screw open the clamp on the Dinge all the way it just exactly fits on the frame of the Galant desktop, pointing upwards to shine on the underside of the glass top. Use some white zip-ties to secure the cords to the frame, and you're done!

These photos don't do it justice... the lighting is really pretty even rather than being the distinct 'hot spots' shown in the photos (blame the camera). I really miss this desk & lighting, so I may re-create it someday."

Friday, 15 August 2008

Improve your kitchen counter lighting

Kelly solved the bad lighting problem in her boyfriend's apartment with the Grundtal.

"When my boyfriend moved into his current apartment, the first thing I noticed was the horrific lighting in the kitchen. There was an old style 90s California light panel or whatever they call them; basically panels over fluorescents, like an office. There were cupboards over most of the counters, and it was hard to see what you were doing at times.

A run to Ikea solved this. I bought two packs of the Grundtal spotlights and some long pieces of baseboard moulding and double sided tape from my local hardware store. Using some nails, I attached the base of the lights to the baseboard, then hung up the baseboard with double sided
tape, which has now held successfully for almost two years. (He's a renter, so I didn't want to do anything major) There was a little ledge on the underside of the cupboards, so it looks like the lights are attached to the cupboards.

I then attached the halogen portion of the lights, clipped the wires and switches up and out of the way, and now have some nice task lighting, and just nicer than the horrid fluorescent lighting!"

Thursday, 14 August 2008

Fitted dishwasher for the Udden

Fitting a dishwasher drawer into the Udden system is quite a feat. Jerome does it with aplomb, even maintaining the brush steel look of the Udden.

"When we upgraded to a new, larger apartment two years ago for our family of now four, we turned down the poor-excuse-for-a kitchen it was going to be fitted with, took the builder's credit and went with our own selection of Udden free-standing components.

The upside of this relatively inexpensive product line by Ikea designer Ehl�n Johansson is the use of honest materials (all durable and recyclable, except for particle board) to achieve a modern, industrial look. Its European space-conscious features are also great, but the downside was the higher cost of outfitting it with matching 24-inch kitchen appliances where we live, in North America.

My Udden hack was to recycle my custom 3-drawer cabinet to fit a Fisher & Paykel single Dishdrawer, keeping only the top Varde drawer for cutlery. The cabinet was too narrow to accommodate the dishwasher. Space was created to specifications by reducing the cabinet to its top third and by designing a platform that is both supported and suspended. I went so far as to use sheets of stainless steel to case in the Dishdrawer on one side.

I wanted to share this hack to suggest an alternative dishwasher setup solution for Udden kitchen owners. The smaller dishwasher works for us and it's a great, if not the only way to keep the clean, off-the-floor look of Udden.

Here's a close-up of my Varde drawer/Udden (cube) cabinet hack to fit a Fisher & Paykel single Dishdrawer.

Here's an overall view of the kitchen and all the Udden components it incorporates.

Here's a close-up of the space I created under the corner counter with an Udden wire shelf to fit our recycling bin (another hack, I suppose).

And you finally get to see my half-width Udden console hack to fit a Miele 24-inch cooktop. Sinking the Numerar countertop (38 mm / 1 1/2" thickness) into that console to leave only the top 12 mm (1/2") of it showing (and match the Udden lines) was anything but trivial!

Modeling my entire kitchen on my computer in 3D gave me the confidence that everything would probably fit as planned.

I built custom cabinets to fill the spaces between the consoles. Just what we need to store oven trays, cutting boards and regular trays.

I still have to finalize some finishing touches to apply here and there.

It's probably hard to tell from the pictures, but I still have not applied the grout to the tiles I set last month.

I want to create a bookshelf in the left corner for our cooking books.

One day, we plan on installing under-counter 24-inch refrigerator and freezer units, under the long counter on the left. The space is there, waiting, and meanwhile we 'make do' with a full-size Fisher & Paykel refrigerator, which sits just outside the kitchen space. It was just too obtrusive when it was located in the kitchen. The counter space we gained in the trade-off was well worth it.

This is not a kitchen for everyone. I wanted it to be functional and not just for show. There probably isn't as much storage as many people would like. (We keep a pantry in the basement.) The intent to downsize and simplify was deliberate. I don't think it's OK to spend tens of thousands of dollars on a kitchen.

I now have two modified Varde drawers for sale to anyone interested in doing the same thing."