I assembled and finished four of these iPhone/iPad stands in one day. I made two sizes: a narrow one for an iPhone, and a wider one for an iPad. I built three prototypes, and from doing that I learned there is no one-size fits all. The thickness of the support bar has to be just ever so slightly greater than the thickness of the device, so you will need to know that measurement. I also found that a wider version works better for an iPad. The design is simple and allows for two viewing angles. I scooped out the center of the lip piece that’s attached to the support bar so it’s easy to push the home button. I used walnut and cherry for three of my stands, and walnut and maple for the forth. Any contrasting woods will work.
Stationary belt or disc sander.
Spindle sander or drill press sanding drum attachment with a 1-1/2″ dia. sanding drum.
Bar clamps, 6″ opening.
Spring clamps, 2″ opening.
Your success is greatly dependent on being able to sand the surfaces of the assembled main block flat. If the tops are not perfectly flat, then the support bars won’t lay flat when they’re glued on. If the bottom is not flat, then the stand will rock. I used my stationary sander to sand the surfaces as smooth as possible, and then I used hard sanding blocks (sandpaper adhered with spray adhesive to pieces of 3/4″ thick MDF) to fine tune and flatten the main block surfaces.
The end tabs on the bottoms of the outside main block pieces are there so the support bars can be glued and clamped flat to the assembled main block. The tabs are removed after the support bars are attached.
Assembling the main block is not as simple as it may seem. The glued pieces slide when clamp pressure is applied. My solution was to use my workbench vise as a clamp and glue one side to the center, let it dry, and then add the other side. The bench vise applied pressure is such a way that the pieces did not shift.
Cut out these shapes. Don’t finish sand until after the main block is assembled.
Assemble the main block. Smooth and flatten the top surfaces.
Make the support bars. This assembly makes two support bars. I glued together two pieces, but it could just as easily be made in one piece with a rabbet cut to create the lip. The scooped finger slots are created using a 1-1/2″ dia. sanding drum. I used double-stick tape to adhere my support bar to a scrap of 3/4″ thick MDF to add support while sanding the slots. Cut the lengths of the support bar pieces a little long.
Glue and clamp the support bars to the main body. Center the finger slots on the main block center piece. Trim the support bar ends flush with the sides of the main block. Cut off the clamping tabs. DON’T
use your band saw to do this. It’s too dangerous. Instead use either a handsaw or a stationary sander. Sand and flatten the bottom.
Finish sand everything, ease all the sharp edges, and then apply finish. I used clear Deft wood spray finish; it’s fast and effective. Add clear rubber bumper feet.
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