I hacked an IKEA desk lamp into a tablet mount for bed time browsing.
Articulating tablet mounts only need 3 readily available components to work, a tablet holder with a tripod mount, a mini tripod to act as a connector to the articulating arm, and an articulating arm from a desk lamp. There’s countless variations for each of these, all of which can be inexpensive, so you can customize your tablet mount to suit your needs. You probably have some of the components on hand.
For this project we only need the articulating arm of the lamp. This IKEA lamp only had two small bolts attaching the lamp head to the arm, after removing the two bolts there was a retaining clip around the switch which released the light fixture from the lamp housing. The electrical wires were clipped and the light assembly was separated from them the articulating arm. The electrical cord was then pulled out through the lamp. I saved this light fixture for use on a future project.
The only part we need from this cheap tripod is the swivel head. This model had telescopic legs that were removed from a screw in the base.
This swivel head will act as connector piece between the tablet and the arm, allowing the rotational freedom to position the tablet into any angle desired.
This IKEA lamp uses a pinion to swivel the lamp head. While this works for casting light we need greater movement for positioning a tablet for viewing. Luckily we can use almost all the existing hardware to make the connection from arm to tripod mount.
Removing the adjustment knob from the arm that holds the lamp attachment we can see there’s a plastic collar that wraps around the pinion that held the light. We can use this plastic collar to wrap around a new machine screw, this machine screw matches the threads inside the tripod mount where we removed the legs from. Insert the plastic collar with a machine screw back into the arm and install the adjustment knob.
The machine screw can now be screwed back into the base of the tripod and tightened. It may get a little tight with the adjustment knob and tripod mount, so consider using a small washer to give you some room if needed to tweak the adjustment knobs when getting the arm into position when using.
With the arm securely anchored in place you’re ready to lean back on your favorite chair, or lie back in bed and enjoy surfing the information superhighway with no more tired arms.