Friday, 31 October 2008

Extra large low coffee table

This is from Ran, who wanted a big, low coffee table, but couldn't find one that fitted the two requirements. So he hacks one from Lack shelves. I love the size and the white strip. It would work great with Capita legs too.

He says, "I thought about using a desk surface and adjustable feet, but finally I had the idea of using the Lack shelves - they are cheaper and come in better colors.

I made this from the Lack shelving. I used five shelves as the surface and the wall mounts were used as legs. The small white foamy things at the bottom are also from Ikea - I don't remember their name though.

It isn't a very clean hack - I could have done a better job with putting the surface together, but I just used two pieces of scrap wood I found in the trash outside my apartment and some wood glue, and used about three different kinds of screws for the mounts cause I didn't have enough of any one kind. It's short enough that you can never see the bottom unless you crawl under it, so it doesn't matter.

The final result is quite nice though - it's fairly stable and quite cheap considering how big it is. While it's not as wide as some coffee tables I saw, it's much deeper and that's harder to come by. Since the Lack shelves come in many colors (at least in Israel they do), there are a lot of variations you can make with this setup."

Thursday, 30 October 2008

Antifoni microphone stand

A neat mic stand from Sam. It retains all the manoeuvrability and makes you feel like you're in a studio. The mic is just super glued onto the Antifoni work lamp.



See more of Sam's mic stand.

Wednesday, 29 October 2008

XL cutting table

A husband is a good thing, I'm gathering from these recent hacks. Handy hubby Larry whips up this mega-sized cutting table for his wife's fabric and sewing business.

He says, "My wife runs an internet-based fabric and sewing business and recently took some office space. She wanted a new cutting table for the space with a couple of requirements: 
  • It had to be big. Really big.
  • It had to be smooth so as not to catch fabric on it when laying out and cutting patterns
  • It had to be high - higher than the normal 35" countertops
Our solution? A 4' x 8' sheet of laminated particle board (from Loews), trimmed with oak, on a couple Ikea Galant bases and legs. The Galant legs extend the table top up to 40" high, making for a very comfortable working area.

Cool stuff, ideally suited to the task at hand without blowing a bundle (whole thing came in under $350)."

The inaugural stitching-n-bitching round the new table. 

See more of mega-sized cutting table.

Tuesday, 28 October 2008

Make a Halloween lantern sans pumpkin

Some humor for the spooky season.

A Halloween lantern
Ben shares his Halloween lantern, made with one 8ml tube of cadmium orange Cotman water colour, one 17�" Regolit paper lampshade and one Hemma lamp cord. Just an hour or two and out came Jack.

What do you think? Should he draw a Jack o'Lantern face onto it or just leave it as a harvest moon?

See more on Regolit Jack o'Lantern

Halloween must have: the Pumpor
Well, the next one, I won't call it a hack, more like a spoof. It's a flat-packed Ikea Halloween pumpkin, complete with Ikea name, nuts, bolts and confusing illustrated assembly instructions. Conrad, you made my day.

See more of Conrad's flat-packed pumpkin.

Related posts:
- Ikeaslyvania!

Monday, 27 October 2008

Ikeahacking goes casemodding

Corwin tips me on this casemod in progress by Domovoi, featured on a Dutch computer forum. It looks amazing, as far as I can see from the Sketchups.

It's based on two Fl�rke TV stands linked together, with a media center PC, power supply and all necessary cabling neatly tucked away inside. The Sketchups and photos give a pretty good idea how it all fits but, sadly, I can't seem to find a final picture of the hack. Or is it just that I don't read Dutch?

See more of Domovoi's casemodding.

Friday, 24 October 2008

Rustic flooring for the bathroom

Chris saves his pink bathroom with some outdoor decking. It turns out pretty good, with an almost rustic 'spa' look.

He says, "The wife and I just moved into a new rental, and it was perfect, except for the bathroom: pink countertop, sink, tub, and toilet. Even worse, the floor was 1960's era church-kitchen linoleum (white and beige and brown random shaped flecks). It was really cold after getting out of the shower, and was just ugly as hell. Obviously, since we don't own the place, putting down better permanent flooring wasn't an option, but I definitely wanted to do something. Strolling the maze at Ikea one day, I stumbled across the Platta (can't find the link on Ikea's website) outdoor decking. It's $7 for each 18 inch section. Obviously, the bathroom floor isn't a rectangle in multiples of 18 inches, so I borrowed a jigsaw and some expertise, and this is the result.


Apparently, though, Ikea says that this wood (acacia) is only for outdoor use, since the color can leech out and stain whatever it's on. So I put down some clear visqueen first."

See Chris' rustic bathroom floor set on flickr.

Thursday, 23 October 2008

LCD media storage

Gus had a new flat TV and an old wardrobe. A little hacking later, they both fit like hand to glove.

Gus says, "Like the rest of flat-screen TV buyers I found out that my old CRT-based entertainment center was inadequate for the new wideness of LCD. Well, I had to look no further than my Ikea Pax wardrobe. This 93" tall utilitarian behemoth is nothing more than shelves where I put my clothes. However, the idea came to me that it might also serve as a good entertainment center, just in need of a little hacking. The Pax unit I purchased in 2006 was $111.28. This included the box itself and six shelves. I figured for that price I would have all of the entertainment center storage I needed plus I would undercut the price of a smaller (inadequate), however, TV specific unit by at least $60, according to what I had seen listed. So I saved my pennies and took my measurements to make sure my 37" television would fit inside my, what happens to be, 39" wide wardrobe and I put caution and shelf strength to the wind and headed down to Ikea. It turns out they have inflation in Sweden. In 2008 my aforementioned Pax configuration cost me $149.80. However, I was still beating the price of some of the smallest TV stands by a nice margin.

Now, you might be saying to yourself, "this entertainment center idea is not a hack, it is a repurposed wardrobe!" However, you would be wrong because the load-bearing composite-board (the integral life force of all Ikea furniture) had to be drilled to make way for wires. These holes are very important as without them my little electronic boxes do not receive power or connectivity.

So, with my Dremel-esque (borrowed) tool, I took bit to flimsy composite and watched many, many particles of dust fly. My cuts were less than precise, how I measured shelves' distance by the screw hole (not to be confused with my drilled holes, these line the interior of the cabinet for shelf hanging purposes) for tight fit and maximum storage and up went my Ikea hacked Pax wardrobe-cum entertainment center."

See more Gus Money's Pax wardrobe turned media center

Wednesday, 22 October 2008

Elevated dog bowl feeder for $22

I'm loving this elevated dog bowl feeder from Melody and Brett. It looks great and sits really well in their space. Pugs are not shabby either. 

Recently I was seriously considering purchasing a pricey pet bowl for my 2 spoiled pugs to share, but decided to give a go at making one myself (or at least coming up with the idea and having the husband execute!) The bowl I was going to purchase was this one but the bowl I made cost me only $22 in Ikea pieces and we just used the bowls we already had.

Using 2 Slinga brackets (can't find the link on Ikea website) and 1 white Jarpen shelf we traced the bowls and cut 3 holes out using a jigsaw (think we should have used a router, but we don't own one so jigsaw it was!) Then we mounted the shelf to the top of the Slinga brackets using the screws and plopped in 3 metal bowls that we had in their old dish, water in the middle and food on the sides. Rizzo and Romeo now have a cool modern elevated doggie diner so they can eat in comfort, with company, and in style. It's sturdy and just the right height.

See other doggie hacks:
- How to raise the dining standards for your dog

- Tasteful dog crate
- Kitchen bench and dog bed

Tuesday, 21 October 2008

Time to put on some new skin

It's amazing what new skin can do to furniture. These from Anna of Forty Two Roads look simply gorgeous with new fabrics.

Anna writes, "I recently reupholstered some furniture in my house with Ikea fabric (from the As-Is bins, where I usually hunt for cool fabric pieces). I've really been loving the new patterned fabric that Ikea has been coming out with - and to get some pieces for cheap from the As-Is department is doubly awesome!"

The first is a rather straightforward redo of the Bonny/Verksam office chair, with googled "how to reupholster office chair" instructions.

See more of Anna's reupholstered office chair.

Next we have this rocking snail (inset) that's not so cool with the kid anymore. No fear. Snail grows up into a chic rocker. Anna shelled the snail and found that it had pretty cool-looking guts, which I totally agree. I think it would have made a sweet ride with just a coat of paint and a padded seat.

With more As-Is fabric goodies, Anna reupholstered the ride into this:

See more of Anna's chic rocker.

Monday, 20 October 2008

A desk job

Another workstation out to capture our hearts. Martin puts together this desk from the Effektiv range.

He says, "We painted our room and took out the cabinets. When we put them back we decided we wanted a bookcase at the right end and a desk in the middle. The cabinet that had been there was fitted only with one interior shelf and two doors. We did not reinstall the other wall cabinets.

I took apart the base unit and fitted the top of the cabinet in between the remaining cabinets at a desk height. The remaining pieces had to be shortened to fit between the cabinet and the wall. The base remained the base, but not attached to anything.


The sides of the original cabinet became the lower bookcase shelves. The interior shelf became the top shelf and matched the width of the upper cabinets. The doors had to be cut narrower and matched the width of the upper shelf.

All the pieces had finished edges which made them look like original fittings. I still have the back of the cabinet, but all 4 edges are unfinished."

Friday, 17 October 2008

How about this for a workstation?

Rob from Austin TX pulls off this gorgeous desk-bench-storage system, with clever use of the Effektiv storage cabinets, Effektiv doors, Lansa handles, and several lengths of the Pronomen Beech countertop material.

See more of Rob's desk-bench-storage system.

Thursday, 16 October 2008

Red, blue, yellow, green? What colour do you want?

Marc tips me on this chameleon desk on Apartment Therapy's Unplggd.

Vince Welter adds the multicolour Dioder lighting strips to his Vika Lauri desk with frosted glass and aluminum sides. The lighting strips are placed towards the front. At a flip of a switch the light show starts.

See more on Unplggd or Vince's flickr set.

Wednesday, 15 October 2008

Make a Luminaria

Erica salvages a broken Iviken light with some paper.

She tells me, "I just hacked an Iviken light - I have two, but the glass broke on one. I didn't want to waste it so I followed some instructions on The Paper Studio website (see how to make a luminaria video), bought some paper, some double sided sticky tape and voila! My after shot of it doesn't do it justice. I got some nice hand made paper for $8, and have enough to do the other one. Do you think there is someone out there who needs a spare glass bit for their Iviken light?!"

Original Iviken

New Iviken

Tuesday, 14 October 2008

Spring Chick's to-die-for craft room

Once in a while I receive a craft room hack that turns me green, really really green. This is one of them. Lucky you, Kari!

Kari says, "I recently moved to a new house and am lucky enough to finally have a whole room for my crafting hobbies/business. I do a lot of sewing so I wanted a big, flat, and high (to save my back) work surface where I could lay out fabric. I also needed a lot of storage space.

My solution was to buy four Ikea base kitchen cabinets (2, 30" and 2, 18"). After assembling the cabinets, we (my husband and I) bolted them together on the bottom and added turned feet (to make it higher and prettier).

We flipped it right side up and built a top out of MDF. We covered the MDF with nice fabric (actually a shower curtain, for the width) which we stapled on underneath the edge.

We had a piece of glass cut to cover the whole top. As finishing touches, we added wood trim to hide the 'seams' between cabinets, glass knobs, and an Ikea rod (Bygel). I think it turned quite nicely and it functions just as I had hoped. A huge work surface (with a knee hole for sitting), with tons of storage underneath.

On the other side of the room, I needed a desk. We also used Ikea kitchen cabinet bases for this (one 24", one 18"), one side with drawers, one with a door. Then we just used the Ikea white kitchen counter top (Pragel) for the top. We also added feet and glass knobs to the desk. When I pulled up a chair to the desk, I realized that (duh!), this desk was higher than a regular desk, because it is counter height. Therefore, I had to go buy a counter height stool (Ikea Henriksdal). I modified their standard cover by sewing on a little Ikea fabric (Fredrika) around the bottom for a more custom look."

Monday, 13 October 2008

How about a mini chest tool box?

I've seen many hacks on the Fira mini chest, most of them decorative, so this one from PK Shiu is a new take on it. It turns out to be a pretty neat looking tool box but methinks it needs a coat of red.

He says, "A 10-minute hack to turn a plain looking Fira mini chest into a high tech looking tool box for my electronic parts."

PK simply added Kosing handles to the top of the chest. Measure the centre line of the small drawers against the top piece of the chest (if not, the drawers will get stuck.) Screw in the handles (he added 4 washers as the screws were too long) before assembling the chest as usual.

See more of PK Shiu's high tech mini chest tool box.

Check out PK Shiu's previous hacks:
- Magiker shoe cabinet
- Self-watering plant pot

Friday, 10 October 2008

What's with Helmer, the 24 core Linux cluster?

When it first came out a shipload of people [thank you! you know who you are] tipped me on this hack - a Linux cluster Janne ingeniously built into a Helmer drawer cabinet to help with 3D rendering. [via Hack a day] It's not pretty but I've been told that it works wonderfully.

Click here to read the story of Helmer, a Linux cluster in a cabinet.

If you liked that you're gonna love his ideas for Helmer II and III (though I don't think it's a Helmer anymore).

Tim's version (updated 12 January 2009)
When Tim came up with the idea himself, and selected the Helmer cabinet as the ideal case for a cluster, 5 minutes later, he saw Janne's story on Guess great minds really do think alike.

Tim says, "For many applications such as real-time stock prediction algorithms or brain simulations, there is a need for extremely fast and massively parallel computing in the form of a computer cluster. We imagined there existed some kind of cabinet that would be perfect for housing a bunch of hand-built computers, and we found that in Ikea's Helmer. Each computer in the cluster fit inside a single drawer and consisted of a motherboard, power supply, RAM, quad-core CPU w/ fan, and hard drive. The final product is an inexpensive well-ventilated 24-core supercomputer in an impressive 2.65 cubic feet.

The difference is that my design is cleaner and cheaper. For instance his entire cluster cost around $5000 when I did it for $2550. Also, I kept all the drawers intact, putting one computer in each drawer for a total of six. He had wires hanging out all over the place and actually uses two wire that he has to touch together to start each computer - I added a push button to the front of each drawer. Well, like you said in your story - "it's not pretty...", and I took the idea to the next level of elegance. In fact from the front you can barely tell that there's even a supercomputer in it besides one small button on the front of each drawer."

Click to view more of Tim's 24-Core Linux Cluster.

Thursday, 9 October 2008

Now you see it, now you don't kitchen countertop

Madga is blessed to have 2 "designer guys" living with her and whipping up such great stuff. With my kitchen, I would so love to have an extra countertop that tucks away nicely. The extra pull out shelf for the coffee maker is an awesome idea.

She says, "Since we have a really small kitchen we have to find storage for everything even some extra countertop. My two designers guys (my dad and my husband) made this for me.

It's a countertop made from a top of a black Lack table (found in the "As is" section of our Ikea store ) and a basic rail from the local hardware store. So, as you can see, in the morning all is hidden behind the aluminum curtain of my Avsikt cabinet.

My coffee maker has a little shelf of its own too just to make it more convenient in the morning (it's a little extra hack for this cabinet made out of a piece found in the "As Is" section also). It's very useful for preparing coffee and toasts in the morning: I just pull it out and voil� some extra countertop!"