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Education, Philosophy

DIY Laptop Case

DIY Laptop Case

I’ve been looking around for a case for my MacBook Pro.  I wanted something that didn’t require me to buy a totally new backpack, but did add some protection without much bulk.  They ranged from simple stick on skins which while cheap didn’t really add any protection, polycarbonate shells (with reports of scratching) that added some protection, but weren’t appealing.  The third option was purpose built cases, but most were very bulky.

Eventually I found myself gravitating toward the wood case.  Wood is (or at least can be) light, renewable, attractive and something I can DIY at home.  I looked at designs like this one from Silva Limited.  However, at $179 was out of my price range.  There were other faults with the design.  The snaps to hold the separate sides of the shell looked like a future point of failure to me.  And when they fail the laptop and remainder of the case were going to be headed for the floor.

Others were pointlessly complicated and ridiculously expensive($350!) like this one from a German designer.

Eventually I settled on a design similar to this one from Blackbox Case.

I liked the simplicity of it.  A simple slot box.  I could fit it into the existing padded area in my backpack and give my laptop some added protection when in my backpack.

Here’s what I came up with.

My DIY laptop case, Mk 1.

My DIY laptop case, Mk 1.

The design is simple.  A three sided oak frame with birch plywood for sides.  The interior is padded with hobby foam sheets and wool felt.  All told it took less than 2 hours to build and most of that was wait time for the glue.

The box.  Simplicity in design...

The box. Simplicity in design…

The box in the padded backpack area

The box in the padded backpack area

Interior with foam and felt padding during glue up

Interior with foam and felt padding during glue up


The Mk 2 will likely be a similar design, but plank built using bamboo… just as soon as I can find a supply of bamboo planks.


About Rob Sterner

English teacher, Film buff, Filmmaker, Writer, Musician, Photographer, Runner, Taoist, Thinker, List maker...


2 thoughts on “DIY Laptop Case

  1. What are the dimensions of your laptop wood case?

    Posted by j L | February 15, 2015, 1:25 pm

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