Build your own DIY Wrist Rest for CHEAP
Finding a comfortable wrist rest is quite difficult. Many claim to be comfortable but none of them have ever suited my needs. Personally, I prefer to make my own as it’s comfier and lasts far longer than any other wrist rest I have purchased.
Here is the video of the DIY Wrist Rest:
If you want to take on this project you are going to need a number of items:
- Thin MDF wood
- This makes a good backing in order to stack the materials on.
- Camping foam
- This type of foam is made for you to sleep on whilst camping and is surprisingly comfortable as a wrist rest.
- Old spare pillowcases or any other similar material with a cotton blend.
- This is what is going to make your wrist rest a bit more comfortable and fluff it up quite a lot.
- About 6-8 pieces of thin Packing foam will also help make the wrist rest comfortable.
- This is optional but I like to use an old pair of board shorts as the topper.
- These shorts are very comfortable and soft. Personally, I like the smooth texture but it is personal preference.
Some tools needed are:
- A staple gun.
- Almost all staple guns are fine but you will need a staple gun an not a normal stapler as a staple gun allows you to put enough force to staple all of the materials together.
- A hot glue gun
- Make sure you have a good quality hot glue gun with good quality glue sticks. Otherwise in my personal experience the glue will come undone as time goes on. Also another tip with the hot glue gun is to make sure you glue gun is nice a hot before you use it. Waiting about 30 minutes in my experience helps the gun to heat up enough so that the glue melts enough to make a proper bond.
- A pair or scissors to cut the mdf or another cutting tool to score it and break the mdf off.
- Personally I use a good pair of scissors for thin mdf although it is quite difficult. Something like a dremel tool might be better or even using a knife to score the line on the thin mdf and then cutting it.
- A pair of shears that cut fabric is also helpful.
- This is not required at all but can be useful when cutting the material from the pillow cases.
- A pen and a ruler will also help you to measure out how long you need things
- A bowl or something else circular will help you rounding the edges if you want.
- I personally felt an iron will help you press out any creases on the material before you permentaly put it on otherwise you may feel the wrinkles when you wrists are on the wrist rest.
- Get you mdf and measure out how the length and width of your desired wrist rest. A good measure I use is to measure your existing keyboard and see how long you need to make it. To test the width of the wrist rest I personally place the mdf board below the keyboard and see where I usually place my hands. I make sure there is enough room for my hands to lie on the wrist rests to the keyboard to type comfortably.
If there is too much width too much of my arm will be on the wrist rest or the wrist rest will be hanging off the edge. To little and it will hurt my wrists as I try to type on an awkward angle. Personally I went for length of 43cms a bit shorter than a full sized keyboard. The width is 11cm which is enough for my wrists to rest on the wrist rest.
Do keep mind the width will change as you add layers on this mdf wood later on.
- Now draw you lines out for the rectangle piece of mdf.
- To cut it out I scored the lines with a knife and then cut the mdf out with siccors and a lot of strength.
- You could try to break the mdf out by scoring it but it can leave damage on the mdf from it not breaking fully and that’s something we want to avoid.
- Once your rectangle is out you can round the edges if wanted to make the wrist rest look less ridged and feel better when typing. It would be a good idea to turn your hot glue gun on as well now. Just don’t forget about it!
- This is what the bowls are for and I personally measured the roundness with a bowl then cut both sides out.
- Once you have done that measure the out the correct amount of camping foam and cut the camping foam out.
- I did this by putting the rectangular mdf on the foam than tracing around it and then with a ruler.
- Keep in mine the foam is still rectangle and you will need to round the edges off you want later on.
- Now turn on your hot glue gun and wait thirty minutes if you haven’t already.
- Place camping foam with the foil side up as this is what we are going to glue the mdf too.
- Now place a reasonable amount of hot glue onto the mdf but be quite quick. Place the mdf carefully onto the foil side of the foam and apply pressure for about a mintue till the glue cools down.
- The glue will melt into the foam but that is ok as we are going to add layers and the hot glue is on the bottom side where you will not feel it.
- Now use your staple gun to staple in all four sides of the mdf into the foam as shown in the video.
- Round the foam edges if need be. Also trim off any excess foam from the edges as the foam needs to be in line with the MDF board. Using a sharp knife or scissors will help.
- Now add one layer of packing foam to the top of the foam and measure it out so that it covers the top completely but only a small portion of it will be excess on the bottom.
- Once you have done this cut about 6 layers of packing foam to this exact same size. Now get all of the packing foam together in a nice neat pile with all of them aligned and staple it back on the top and bottom edges with about two staples for each edge as shown in the video. Then staple then down on the back bottom and top with about a 5cm gap between the staples the whole way through. You will only need about 4 staples right now on the back. This is a rough estimate. Please note to pull the righ t and left sides down nicely into the rounded edges and tuck them in like you are wrapping a gift then staple them.
- Cut most excess out but leave enough so that the staples can hold in well. Cut about 1cm away from the staples. This should leave you with a nice square border.
- Now cut the pillow cases or your desired fabric to a bout 5-6pieces which are all able to cover the wrist rest fully.
- We are going to repeat the same steps with the pillow cases as with the packing foam except this time we will iron all of the pieces out so that they are flat with no wrinkles. Also that since the fabric is so thick we will need to staple the bottom only there will be no need to cut off the excess currently.
- Once you have staple the sides on trim off any excess as shown in the video.
You may add more staples now if you find that the material is not holding onto the mdf like its tearing away.
You can also use a sharp knife and a ruler to make sure its neat and tidy.
- To fold the left and right side edges in tuck them in and staple them in. If you are having trouble with the you can make a slit in the middle as shown in the video and then pull in the outmost side left or right to staple in wards on top of each other.
- You can also take away any excess material that is left.
- Onto on of the final steps now.
- You will need to cut up your board shorts or your fabric of choice for the topper. You will need two layers.
- I cut mine down the center of the shorts to make it easier to work with. I was cutting two layers out here.
- From here I estimated the size needed and cut it into a rectangle. I then ironed it out.
- I then placed both onto the wrist rest and chose the best orientation to get the best parts of the material.
- I tucked in the topside and stapled it down. I used a similar process as earlier. One mod you could do here is by stapling down one of the topper materials and instead with the second one you could use strong velcro or even double sided stape to stick it down tight and whenever it gets dirty you can throw in the washing machine to wash it out and keep it clean. Now back to the steps again.
- Keep in mind the material is really thick now and you will need to press very hard in order to get a staple in.
- I repeated this for the bottom as well.
- As said before I tucked in the left and right edges by tucking each side down then stapling. Next I pulled the left or right edges front piece and stapled this down.
- Now I cut the excess off using a ruler and a sharp knife. Scissors cut also help.
- Now I added extra staples to keep the material down by stapling one staple about every 1.5cm
- Finally now the wrist rest is complete.
- Personally I added an extra piece of pillow case to the bottom to cover up the ugly cutting.
- I did this by folding the piece of pillow case into a neat rectangle then gluing it with little dots of hot glue to the bottom and now its all nice and complete.
- One more tip if its feeling uneven make sure you staple any excess down and or try to cut it off. It should feel even because all of the wrist rest is ironed out and added flat on top of each other.
- For cleaning, I personally use alcohol wipes and clean the top whenever it gets dirty. Also if you use the other mod I said earlier you could just throw the top piece into the washing whenever you want.
This is the final product. I really am enjoying this wrist rest and it feels amazing to type on or even game. Its standing the test of time well and I have been using it for nearly 10 months now. This wrist rest is really built to last!