Wednesday, 22 July 2015

IKEA Hack #1 Slim BESTA Entertainment Unit, remodelled 2015 (updated February 2017)

Note: Updates to the blog are at the bottom if you like to get up to date if you have read the original blog already.

So in 2011 I had built this entertainment system which I had submitted this on a site among other ones but only this one was published in December 2011. So I posted it on Blogger in 2012, since then I have moved & got new equipment.

This is the original blog reposted with the remodelling to follow at the end in which I have started in 2014 for a new flat & new equipment. So if you have read it before & don't want a refresher on previous blog then please scroll down...

BESTA, INREDA Pull-out frame, INREDA Shelf insert, SNUDDA, Hole borer drill bit

Main objective was to minimise space of all my entertainment equipment. In previous flat I had metal brackets with cut to size shelves to hold all equipment above TV which worked well on the solid wall.But in new smaller flat, its hollow plasterboard walls & doubtful it could hold all the equipment, so had to be free-standing & I decided to use a Besta Wood effect tall unit. 

I measures the levels where the shelves were to go to give breathing room to equipment, done w/o TV at 1st as was planning more units to hang on wall over TV. I then measure evenly the holes to drill out & big enough to feed a plug through. Then it was a case of fitting the equipment in & wire it all up & put in its place. 

Few months later I found out this wood effect style had been discontinued & couldn't get any more Besta's to match, I decided to put TV inside the unit on a pull out drawer & have it swivel so I can watch TV from the PC desk. I used a plank of wood to sit TV on, the bearing mechanism of a SNUDDA lazy susan to swivel the TV. All bolted/screwed onto the INREDA Shelf insert sitting in the INREDA Pull-out frame. 

The remaining space is for boxes of knick-knacks using PAPPIS cardboard boxes, which 2 fits lovely on each shelf & I was able to fit 4 with room for power supply at the bottom for all the equipment. 

Tho it took a few months to get all of it together, it actually was 2 days work & look great next to the other Besta I was able to get & use as a display cabinet. Next stage is to back light the units & then it will all be finished.


As I have now moved, the layout of the livingroom is very different & the Besta Unit now sits in the corner, TV has also been replaced as previous one died. So I got a bigger Widescreen TV unit & this meant it couldn't fit it inside the unit. So I went back to Ikea & found a matching new design Besta Cabinet Door & reconfigured the whole unit.

Most of the equipment is still above the TV, only the Game consoles aren't as they don't need line of sight for the remote controllers & thus have been moved & sit behind the cupboard door. Also I used the extra space for document storage too thus free up space on other Besta shelves.

You can see I drilled holes in the cupboard door big enough to fit leads through to TV & big enough for scart leads to fit through, then fixed the cables to the door & unit so not to get snagged when opening & closing the cabinet door..

The space below has now been turned into cabinet space & eventually I will light up the shelving system & cabinet with LED lighting. Also there's room for any future equipment now that I have moved them around to house the game consoles behind the cupboard doors.

With its new position & layout, it sits nicely in the new flat & continues with my original idea that has evolved as circumstances changes & no doubt will for many years to come. I'll update as & when this happens..

Update 20th June 2016

As the room evolves when decorating, so does the layout.

And thus so does the design of the BESTA Entertainment Unit, with new tech coming onto the market for watching media I have had to find new ways to incorporate it into the unit & be available to access directly or by remote.

Most what is in the cabinet part is the same, just had a lil move around to get more room to let the devices breathe. What I have added is the Chromecast & Amazon Fire Stick, as they both work on out of sight remote control it was easier to attach them to the cabinet door & have the Chromecast, Fire Stick & PS3 connecting to the HDMI connection of the TV by an auto select HDMI switchover box so whatever I turn on it switches to it & I can then enjoy using it.

All of these are stuck to the cabinet door with Commando Velcro tabs for easy removal if I need to move them, all tidy & hidden when cabinet door is closed. That's about it for now...

Update 20th February 2017

As January sales kicked in & Christmas money burning a hole in my pocket, I bought myself a Soundbar speaker to improve the sound coming from the TV as well as finally fixing the surround sound system cooling fan thus giving me a choice in sound quality. It did mean I had to re-organise the shelving to fit the speakers in place & to feed the extra cables.

Still looks good & tidy & the setup is still versatile as ever.

Friday, 22 May 2015

As one chapter closes, the next one starts

This morning I awoke for the 1st time in weeks feeling.. well the best I can describe it is feeling less dark, refreshed, a spring in my step & generally feeling less old. All I can say is that the past few months have made life feeling a tad dark inside & tiring mentally as well as physically & a lot older than I am & have felt in a long time. There's been a few changes in my life I can't undo & after the 1st decent night sleep last night in quite a while, I feel now it's time to close this chapter of my life for the past 10yrs & accept these changes are here to stay & time to open the next chapter of my life.

I know I won't be the person I worked so hard to be for the past decade, sure ain't gone how I want it & definitely not completely stick free. It hasn't been a complete failure, I have gained a lot from the past 10yrs & gained new experiences that will stay with me for life, etc... The next chapter has already gone off to a good start with having a job that I love, enjoy to be in & slowly expanding my knowledge & hours working there.

Cycling will still is part of my life, maybe not quite how I wanted it to go as have to watch my knee & make sure it don't flare up but not letting it disappear from my life like it did 20yrs ago. Cycling does help keep knee going & with me now working too it'll help the knee a lot. Also new bikes are on the cards as well as the continuing rebuild of my Roadrunner project to help with my knee as looking for more suitable lighter bikes.


The flat has been on hold with decorating for far too long, combination of knee issues & work/life balance needed it's fell to the back of the list & it's time to re-address that. So working on starting to get flat back in order.

So here's to more good mornings like I had today to make my day a great day & look forward to better things in life for this next chapter of my life...

Wednesday, 22 April 2015

Stumbling blocks to my plans...

As those who have been following me over the years now, I have been working on getting to be stick free after a major op on my left leg. Well its like 10yrs now & again my knee has locked up on me in February & I am back on my stick atm & relying on painkillers for a bit. But this time its a game changer as after been referred to do some Hydrotherapy treatment it was bought to my attention in my medical records the results from latest scans shows I have early stages of Osteoarthritis in my knee & it is this that's causing my knee to fail on me & flare up & lock it.

So today I have visited my specialist about my knee & he didn't beat around the bush about the condition to my knee, simply put I will never be stick free. Instead I will be mostly stick free, my knee will never be healed as its a degenerative condition & the best I can do is manage it to slow the process. So it's not all doom & gloom, as explained by the specialist & also what I have read up on the condition is keeping active is the best method to manage it. Specialist is pleased I am working where I am on my feet all the time, walking & standing. Its the best way to build up my muscles & even with knee flaring up & back on the stick I haven't stopped working & it sure helps.

But what it does mean is I have to re-adjust my lifestyle some more, first is seating. Had to replace sofa with a recliner one so to minimise the knee being bent. Also helps when using hot & cold packs around the knee too.

Next I had to stop cycling, after pain had eased I purchased a basic turbo trainer so I can use the bicycle indoor where I can gently pedal my legs where it has no effort to aggravate knee on the lowest settings. Also limits the chance of aggravating the knee on the roads with twisting & turning the bike, jarring, drivers etc. This way helps control the environment & can limit my time & effort in using it. But after 6 weeks I am back cycling outside, going slow & gentle but am getting the miles in. But the planned sponsored rides are likely to be cancelled.

Other things I have to now avoid is kneeling & crouching, not the easiest of things to avoid so will learn eventually. I have to also to do regular exercises to build muscles up more in my legs from my gluts to my ankles.

Another thing is to get lighter bikes to help ease the effort of cycling, now I know Roadrunner is a light bike & in the middle of being repainted right now. But its not a good bike to do my shopping on, shape isnt right for it & so I need to find a lighter version to lil Trekr.

But I also need to think ahead, it clearly documented that a recumbent bike is the best bike to cycle with Osteoarthritis & as I know full well it's not going to fully improve, eventually a standard bike will not be helpful & have to go for a recumbent bike. So going to have to work out a saving plan on this as these bikes cost over £2k & more for the folding version as I can then store it indoors.

Other things I need to do will be to loose some weight, I was doing well on that but each flare up of the knee means I become less active & weight goes back on quicker than I had lost it. This sure wont help for the knee weight load. That's about it for now, its late & a lot to try get straight in my head after today's revelations so probably a few things I've forgotten atm.

I may not be stick free ever again, but I am sure hell gonna make the use of sticks as lil as possible & have my folding stick gathering dust where ever I go. The battle is not lost, just need to change the game plan... :)