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I made a pedestal for my compact Mac out of some scrap wood - what do you think?


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I've recently been on the hunt for a desk that suits the compact nature of the compact Mac. I essentially wanted a small surface for the Mac to sit on with a tray for the keyboard below.  Suffice to say, there is not much modern furniture that doesn't completely dwarf one of these tiny machines. In the end I gave in and decided my only course of action would be to make my own. 

 

Here is what I came up with as a prototype for "Untitled Mac Pedestal Desk Thing"

 

IMG_3117.thumb.jpeg.a3cc54d6bc7e2669efa8986e77ff391a.jpegIMG_3119.thumb.jpeg.d87ceecf424e4886c78e75b4d4dfd290.jpeg

 

Apologies for the mess; I'm in the middle of an ungodly reorganisation of two dozen or so vintage computers. 

 

It's not going to win any beauty contests but as a proof of concept it works great. The column is thick structural-grade MDF and the lids and base are made from old solid oak floorboards. It's not as heavy as you'd imagine. The whole thing weighs around 10kg, maybe a bit less. 

 

I designed the height of the keyboard to be comfortable for both sitting and standing positions and the Mac itself is positioned so that the screen is exactly at my eye level when I sit in front of it. For a scrap-wood project that I essentially freestyled from start to finish I am very happy with my end product. As finishing touches I plan to add some trim pieces to the top and devise a cable management system. 

 

For version 2 I'd like to add an element of adjustability and a bigger keyboard tray, possibly big enough to use a mouse rather than a trackball. 

 

What do you folks think? Would you buy a flat-pack desk like this designed for compact Macs? 

Edited by PowerMac_G4
rectified an omission
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It's a great idea to be honest that takes advantage of the compact's form factor. However it would last less than 10 minutes in my household due to my loving cats jumping and tilting it to the ground. Still, looking forward to the next iterations, you're onto something here.

 

I for one would buy a desk/stand/pedestal designed specifically for our beloved compacts :) 

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If I could have a motorised sit-stand one, and if I were in the position of having enough space to have a compact-sized desk, I'd love one that would show off the smallness of the machine like that.

 

20 hours ago, PowerMac_G4 said:

Apologies for the mess; I'm in the middle of an ungodly reorganisation of two dozen or so vintage computers. 

 

Mine looks like that basically all the time, soooo...  that's a lovely attic space you have there!  Looks really light and comfy.

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20 hours ago, BacioiuC said:

it would last less than 10 minutes in my household due to my loving cats jumping and tilting it to the ground

 

I have two cats myself so I actually designed it to be relatively cat-proof. It's really sturdy – even sturdier than I expected it to be. I'd be amazed if a cat managed to tip it over. The centre of mass is surprisingly low, I think because the base is a few inches longer and wider than the top. The Mac's weight is exerted directly down the column so it doesn't have any leverage on the column, the latter being well balanced enough that this thing still stands upright without the base attached. I'll try to make a video of a tilt-test tomorrow, I think you might be surprised!

 

20 hours ago, cheesestraws said:

a motorised sit-stand one

 

This was actually my vision for the final product. I think the next version will have a metal base and column, hopefully motorised. Time to start researching large electronic actuators... 

 

The attic is lovely indeed, thank you! I am very lucky to have such a nice place to call my office. 

 

20 hours ago, Juror22 said:

You've invented the IPed!

 

For some reason this made me bust a gut :-D I love it!

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On 4/18/2021 at 7:36 AM, BacioiuC said:

It's a great idea to be honest that takes advantage of the compact's form factor. However it would last less than 10 minutes in my household due to my loving cats jumping and tilting it to the ground.

I was going to say the same.  Maybe I should make one incorporating some cat shelves into the design so that my two, and I can indulge in some retrocomputing together. 

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On 4/17/2021 at 6:48 PM, PowerMac_G4 said:

I have two cats myself so I actually designed it to be relatively cat-proof. It's really sturdy – even sturdier than I expected it to be. I'd be amazed if a cat managed to tip it over.

 

You have not met our cats.

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On 4/18/2021 at 12:04 AM, Byrd said:

And should you ever become a priest you'll also have a perfect lecturn :D

Yeah, that was my reaction too.  The nearby megaphone might be a bit over the top, though.

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On 4/23/2021 at 7:42 PM, quorten said:

The nearby megaphone might be a bit over the top, though.

 

That's the megaphone I use for shouting down angry Amiga enthusiasts :p

 

In all seriousness though I sure would love an Amiga...

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20 hours ago, joshc said:

I like this idea. This looks like it would suit a compact Mac pretty well. I haven't double checked dimensions etc but it looks suitable:
 

https://www.ikea.com/gb/en/p/knotten-standing-desk-white-birch-30299485/

Not sure if you can fit a color classic + keyboard on that one but I'd like it as my retro Mac desk in a tiny tiny office. It even has place to put all my boxed games! 

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20 hours ago, techknight said:

You must have a really long neck! haha.

 

I honestly just don't like the way that compact Macs force you to have the tiny screen at desk-level – they're not comfortable to use at all. The computer's screen is actually at eye level when I'm sat at this thing I've made, it just looks a bit weird. 

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20 hours ago, PowerMac_G4 said:

 

I honestly just don't like the way that compact Macs force you to have the tiny screen at desk-level – they're not comfortable to use at all. The computer's screen is actually at eye level when I'm sat at this thing I've made, it just looks a bit weird. 

 

Yeah everyone is different here I suppose. for me, the way a compact is, is perfect. But everyone is different. 

 

It is a neat concept though. 

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20 hours ago, PowerMac_G4 said:

Yet it seems I am the only one with a sore neck! 

 

Yeah. Mine gets sore though if i am staring down at a bench working on electronics with my head slumped over. Otherwise its fine. 

 

But, everyones physiology is different. I have a short neck. 

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I went through a rough period of ergonomic adjustments for using badly designed display setups. The Mac (SE) was the worst, but easily fixed. "Ramps" were available, but I fabbed my own from quarter inch Plexi. Bent a piece so the front was about 2.5" tall, the ramp matched the footprint and the backside bent up about a half inch or so to keep the SE from sliding off and keep the ports clear.. Made a world of difference. A ZFP peripheral underneath raises the screen, but tilting it back instead is far more comfortable experience.

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