The Creation of the CT Hackerspace Rolling Whiteboard & Stackable Chair Cart

Many Hackerspaces learn quickly that space is of a premium value. Besides the usual ideas of making items mobile for a more dynamic space, as well as embracing linear upward construction, one starts becoming more creative. In today’s case, the combination of these two ideas along with even more multipurpose came into play..

One would think that is would be easy to have enough room in a 4,000 + square foot facility. Even at CT Hackerspace, things become tight. One problem that I was wrestling with was chair storage. There are times, usually at events, where we may have 50 or more attendees. At these events, it is easy to justify chairs everywhere to accommodate everyone. The concern focuses on all these chairs in relation to the other 95% of events and other get togethers which average a dozen or so people: What to do with the chairs? Planning ahead, I had purchased stackable chairs which alleviates the overall footprint. But the footprint is still creating dead space …And chairs do get dusty quickly in our workshop environment when not in use.

As a hacker / maker with most of my personal projects being space focused, I took this on as a challenge to best make use of this storage concern.  On hand was 18 foot lengths of universal angle iron. A good start to framing. I added some moving dollies on sale from the local Harbor Freight. (If you catch the right sale at $7.99 per dolly, it’s even cheaper than buying the casters separately. Many times when I’m building rolling furniture at the space, I purchase the doilies and completely reuse the entire dolly in casters and extra wood.) A trip to the local Ace Hardware Store and I acquired (nut / bolt / locknut / washer( hardware as well as laminated white paneling and fresh plywood. Mixed together a few leftover quarts of donated paint and I was on my way.

The idea became larger than life when it left my brain and started becoming a reality. Wow, this thing was “gonna be big”. Occasionally I would ask for help from other members in rotating my massive build so I could continue assembly. The Rolling rack required to house all the chairs had a final measurement of 12 feet long, 6 feet high, and a depth of about 2 plus feet to accommodate the chairs internally . After the metal frame was constructed, the plywood added strength and optimally forced a 90 degree squareness in the build. Afterwards, the laminated paneling was added to function as a low cost whiteboard. Lastly, a tarp was ordered online to be fitted along the backside of the whiteboard to keep cover the chairs when not in use to keep them clean a ready for use..

Our new Cart now offered multifunction in one design. (1) Upward Storage, (2)Rolling Storage, (3)Clean Storage in a dusty environment, (4) An additional 4’ x 12’ whiteboard for creative or educational use. (5) An optional moving “wall” divider if needed.


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