View Full Version : Home-Brew Laptop Cooler

04-02-2006, 06:14 PM
Hello everyone!

This is my first completed project, it's not a case mod per se so I hope it's OK to post it here. I've been building and building on my other computer but it still has a way to go before completion. In the meantime, I decided to put together another project I have been needing at home. I use an HP laptop in the living room and it has always sat on the carpeted floor (I know this is a no no) where the exhaust vents become sealed and airflow is limited to the very small rear vents. I had thought about buying one of those flat, laptop cooling pads but I wanted one that was a little taller because when I sit on the floor and type, my back begins to hurt. So I decided to combine the two elements into a not-so-breathtaking creation of a laptop cooler/stand. It isn't the most flashy or magnificent thing ya ever did see, but hell, it was fun to build and I haven't seen another just like it. Here we go:

First off you should know that I did not make any plans when building this, I have a terrible habit of just jumping in and sawing away to find out later that changes must be made. You'll see evidence of this here, I'm trying to break this habit but it's just the way I have done these things since I was a kid.

I had a decent sized piece of particle board collecting dust in the woodpile which looked perfect for the job. So I set the table saw up and chopped away.




Slapped on a coat of Flec-stone paint after routing the corners and drilling the holes. (also have a bad habit of doing things out of order...my theory is it stems from my lack of planning)


04-02-2006, 06:23 PM
I bought some scrap metal screening at my local hardware store (not really sure what it's usually used for) and used one of my case fans from a xoxide.com pack that I bought for the other computer. You'll probably notice that I had to mangle the top of the fan to get it to fit (you know why...)


The screen was used to cover the inside of the holes (duh...I guess that didn't require commentary)


Side shot with fan and screening installed, I didn't get paint to cover the upper edge of the holes but I didn't want to shoot another coat because sometimes it seems to throw off the surrounding tone and I didn't really see a need to cover an edge that won't be seen while on the floor.


Shot with the top placed...



04-02-2006, 06:30 PM
I really didn't want to run some type of power supply to this or install batteries that needed changing, so I wired the fan into a USB cable using the +5V output from the laptop's USB port. It worked fine, and I checked it compared to +12V and there was no difference in speed, so it'll do. I tried to make the cable as clean and nice looking as I could, but this is the first cable work I have done so there will be a learning curve.



I also thought it would be cool to wire in a small LED, the only one I had was a cheap blue Radio Shack LED which was only 300mcd. mounted it behind the fan.


I primed and painted the cable, then drilled a hole and hooked it up.



04-02-2006, 06:34 PM
And here it is, in all of it's glory! OK, I can hear you not clapping, but it's not visually painful either is it? By the way, the LED is so dim that I couldn't even get a picture of it with all of the lights out. Oh well, if spiders move in at least they will have a porch light...





Ok, shows over, hope you liked it. And I assume if it is not cool to post this here an administator will take care of it? If it is removed, is there anywhere I can post it?

04-02-2006, 06:38 PM
I forgot to mention that the lid is not fixed to the box, I did this so that I could remove it and store USB cables etc. inside as well as use the lid only when lying down and the fans will not be so close to the carpet.

05-03-2007, 04:14 PM
I at one point even considered going ahead and running a power supply (maybe an external in-line) and going full-out docking station. I could easliy fit HDD's in there and the laptop has a way to connect SATA drives. But in the end, decided to keep it simple. Instead I put accessories like cables and my usb trackball in there.

Link to original thread (http://www.thebestcasescenario.com/forum/showthread.php?t=2478)