08 February 2021
Making light of reading in bed
This is such a simple design – little more than a box with a couple of additions, but it works like a charm not only to raise a bedside light high enough that reading in bed is again a pleasure, but it increases your storage space on the bedside table – and into the bargain, makes a handy bookcase.
This unit was made from offcuts and leftovers from other projects because when it was made, what with the Covid-19 lockdown and Mica stores being either shut or only available for specific essentials, we had to make do.
So we did!
In this case we used a length of 144x12mm x 1.8m SA pine, a tempered hardboard backing, wood glue, 25mm panel pins and another piece of hardboard to make the front ‘stoep’, and six felt pads to protect the bedside cabinet top from any marring from the book-lamp stand. We also used pine coloured filler to hide the panel pin heads.
- Before the book-lamp-stand and a bit cluttered.
- The materials we were initially planning to use was a 44x9mm cover strip, but ended up not doing so
- We cut the two sides, the top and the bottom of the case from the length of 144x12mm SA pine; each piece is 300mm, but you can make the unit whatever size you wish.
- Apply glue along each edge and clamp the box together while the glue sets.
- Then use three panel pins on each join to secure them. Note that we have countersunk the head of the panel pin on the right and filled the hole. We followed up by countersinking the others, filling the holes and sanding the filler smooth when it had dried.
- It is best to sand all the pieces before assembly, but it can be done afterwards if you prefer.
- The beauty of an orbital sander is that you can get right in to the corners.
- We attached the backing, also using panel pins and glue to secure it, but not the lip. This is to stop the unit sliding forward- it keeps it back against the wall behind the bedside cabinet. We also added the felt pads at this stage.
- The completed unit, but still to be stained to match the bedside cabinet more closely. Note that the ‘stoep’ acts as a handy shelf for a mobile phone- and also ensures that the unit will not topple forward.
This shows a profile representation of the unit. The extended lip of the back keeps the unit against the wall and the front ‘stoep’ ensures that it cannot topple forward (and of course it cannot topple over backwards because it is against the wall). The total working height of the bookcase part of the unit is 324mm, width is 300mm and the ‘stoep’ projects 75mm- not a great deal, but effective for its intended purpose. Note the addition of a small space of 144x12mm offcut under the leading edge of the ‘stoep’.