Saturday, February 9, 2008

Airplanes: Adjustable Height Field Stand

If you're tired of kneeling or using picnic tables to setup your model aircraft at the field, you can easily use a camera tripod with my clamp assembly bolted to the camera mounting plate. I used a scrap of plywood with dado cuts to help stabilize the two bar clamps. The bar clamps are fastened down with wood screws and washers, but mending plates would be more effective here. The plastic pads on the clamps' jaws were removed so I could epoxy on some scrap bass wood with foam rubber pads to give the assembly more gripping surface area. I plan on adding landscaping spikes to the ends of the legs with hose clamps, so the entire stand can be anchored into the ground. This setup also works well in the shop, when you need your project at a taller working height. Future possibilities for this stand could include an enlarged plywood plate to accomodate a small tool or transmitter tray. Please add any ideas you might have for this stand in the comments.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Workshop: Homebuilt Laptop Stand

If you're looking for an easy way to mount your laptop to a vertical surface, you could build a pair of these brackets. I used scrap cedar and steel mounting hardware to anchor them into studs behind the wall. I would recommend using 3/4" plywood for the brackets and some plastic tabs or strapping on the ends of the brackets to lock the computer in place. I've had my Thinkpad T21 (the best laptop ever built)on these brackets for over a year now, and have had no issues with stability. Keep in mind though that the angle my brackets are cut at are not a good setup for typing. I made these so my T21 could be used for a jukebox and mini file server, and therefore cut the angles to make the unit as vertical and space efficient as possible. You could mount a horizontal shelf right under the brackets for a mouse and keyboard to complete your standing workstation.