DIY – Multi-Device Charging Station


Do you have your eye on a multi-device charging system, but don’t want to fork over the $’s to buy one? Have you ever considered making one? That’s exactly what Gadgeteer reader Robert Grenader decided to do. Check out his handy work.


Reading Eliminate Cable Clutter with the IDAPT Charging System, I was moved to send you a photo of my home grown charging station that only cost me about $25. Here’s how I did it…
I was surrounded by numerous devices all requiring constant charging. Multiple Bluetooth headsets, cell phones, smart phones, cameras, etc. The list goes on and on. Then I saw ads for those nifty charging stations that allow you to “charge all your mobile devices in one location.” Hammacher Schlemmer had one in ebony wood for $150, Brookstone has a nifty one for like $75, with an integral plug strip and the ability to hide the power bricks, but it would only hold something like 4 devices. Gee, this had to be better than headsets, phones, Kindles, iPODs etc loose on the edge of the bookcase.

Then I walked into an OfficeDepotStaplesMax (I can never tell them apart any more) and paid $20 for a wire desk storage thingy, $5 for a box of colored plastic butterfly clips and !presto chango! I can now charge all my stuff in one place.

What you don’t see is the surge protector around the corner behind the bookcase. This gives me the added ability to turn off the power when everything is nice and charged and eliminate at least one source of vampire power consumption.

All in all, I am quite pleased with the investment. Now, if I can only keep the Orange Cat from sitting on it….


What do you guys think? Have you created something similar, better? Tell us about it.

Posted in: Articles, Do-It-Yourself, How-To
{ 8 comments… add one }
  • Sandee Cohen January 31, 2010, 12:25 pm

    The closest I have has been to combine a whole lot of the charging plugs into one of those plastic combs things that help you control wire chaos.

  • eClipse January 31, 2010, 1:34 pm

    You can get a professionally made charging station from Homegoods for $14 that has a space for a power strip.

  • Ben January 31, 2010, 3:14 pm

    I did something simiiar i used colored heatshrink near the plugs to distinguish the cord. Then did the whole lot up in the plastic cable tidy. And it all goes thru a hole in the back of my desk drawers i keep a drawer free for charging that is lockable.

  • Xavier A February 1, 2010, 3:02 am

    There’s one thing these setups do not cover that IDAPT and such do: yo still need a charger for each device, which means a plug for each device. The IDAPT-ind of charging stations have a single cable and plug for the three-four devices they allow at a time. In my case, I never ussually to charge more than four devices at a time. However, I do need more adapters than they offer. This renders those adapters, if not useless, at least not good enopugh for my needs. If only they offered a 5V USB connexion!

  • chriszzz February 1, 2010, 3:35 am

    Here’s an easy way to charge devices : get a 4-7 port USB hub. These usually come with a AC to DC power adaptor to power all the USB ports. Just buy USB cables for each of the devices ( most devices come bundled with a USB cable anyway ), and voila, a power outlet, 4-7 devices. It gets easier as many devices are using miniUSB or microUSB.

    Feel free to hide the mess of cables behind any convenient box or tray. Or use retractable USB cables to ease cable mgt.

  • Cobin Rox February 1, 2010, 8:31 am

    Hey that’s cool! You should post it on Instructables.

  • Mark February 1, 2010, 9:43 am

    I made my own charging station a few years ago and love it. It was made out of some excess wood I had laying around.
    Basically, it is a box with a sloped front that doubles as a door. You swing the door open to reveal all of the charging cables inside and the “door” swings open and stops to create a flat surface for charging my devices. Once done charging, close the door and the clutter is hidden.
    I mounted the box on a wall in my kitchen right over an existing outlet.

  • Richi February 6, 2010, 9:24 pm

    Could you be more specific about the black wire desk storage thingy from OfficeMax etc so that one can also buy one.
    thanks richi

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