Make Your Own iPad Stand


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Percy admires the stand

UPDATE: I have added a new post with more construction photos and a slightly modified stand design here.

Here’s a simple woodworking project that I thought might be of interest to iPad owners . When I recently purchased my iPad 2 I decided to forego a “smart cover” in favour of a  leather sleeve from Saddleback Leather. To complement the sleeve I decided to whip up a wooden stand.  The design I came up with is easy to make with only three glued-together parts, as I describe below.

I made mine from white oak. Start by milling a two lengths of board, one to about 22mm thick (could be a bit thinner depending on what you have), the other to 7mm thick. I milled 300mm lengths of each as that’s about the minimum I can put through the thicknesser. The base part is made from the thicker board, and the upright from the 7mm board. The thicker board should be at least 110mm wide, and the thinner board should be cut to exactly 100mm wide.

Ultimately you want to end up with the three pieces, which have the following profile when the stand is viewed from the side. Note that the base pieces are being viewed end-grain on, so really their length is 100mm, not their width, but you know what I mean.

ipad stand plan

N.B. These measurements are for an iPad 2, NOT a first generation iPad. The width of the slot (9.5mm above) should be increased to 14mm for the original iPad.

These parts will be glued together to make the stand as shown below.

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For the base parts, straight cut a 100mm length of the thick board. It should be exactly the same length as the width of the thin board. What I did was finish the thin board to 100mm wide first, then used that as a template to set the cut distance for the thick board. Now you should have a base block which is 100mm long, at least 110mm wide and 18-22mm thick.

The next job is to rout the 5mm deep slot in the base. I suggest doing this before you make the angled cut which divides the base into two pieces. Using a table router is easiest. Cut the slot along the grain of the block, 10mm in from the front edge. Cut the slot about 14mm wide (18mm for iPad 1). This allows room to get the saw blade in for the angled cut. Mark a cutting line on the base of the slot 9.5mm (iPad 2) or 14mm (iPad 1) in from the front of the slot. Set the blade angle of your compound mitre saw to 14° and cut along the cutting line to make the front piece off the base. Make sure you’re cutting the angle the right way. The corresponding angled edge on the back part of the base will have some left-over slot cut in it, so trim it off using the angled saw. Now flick the back part around and cut the rear face at the same angle so that the long edge is about 70mm as shown in the drawing above. Keep the off-cut, as you’ll need it for the glue-up.

Lastly, with the saw still set at 14°, cut the thin upright board to length (165mm). Pre-sand the parts prior to gluing.

To glue the parts I sandwiched them between two lengths of wood as shown in the picture below. This is where you need to put the off-cut from the back of the base into the sandwich (don’t glue it of course) in order to make a vertical surface at the back.

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Finish the stand as you please. I went for a dark warm-brown finish using a reddish dye followed by a mix of red-brown stain and a dark brown stain sealed with amber shellac and finished with satin polyurethane.

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41 responses to “Make Your Own iPad Stand

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