Bedside Table Project

I’d been toying with the idea of having a wireless charging spot on a bedside table for a while, but it wasn’t until I read about a similar project that I discovered you can buy a bare-bones wireless charging unit on Ebay for a lot less than one that has its own enclosure. A lot less.

Qi wireless charger board & coil from Ebay.

This one cost me under $6 (Australian) including shipping (which was free)!

I found a thick plank that a neighbour had given us for firewood so I dressed it and used my panel clamps to join three pieces to make a top piece that would be (plenty) thick enough in which to embed the charger coil and circuit board.

The next conundrum to solve was how to route a hole neatly. Trying to create a circular hole was beyond my equipment and skill level, so I used a 25mm cutter bit and some square limit guide boards to produce a rounded square for the coil.

Router guides on the table top
The router guide setup.
Coil space routed
The coil space.

After routing the coil space down leaving about a 3mm thickness of wood, I adjusted the guides so that I could make a space for the circuit board.

Board space routed
A place for the circuit board to hide.
The coil and board positioned inside the routed area.
It kinda fits!

While waiting to hear from the Ebay supplier if there were alternative ways of powering this module (apart from the micro USB connector), I made a wooden cover to fit the hole.

Wooden piece to cover the routed section.
Cover piece – not fully inserted.

After a long hiatus work proceeds… legs have been prepared and joined to the top, and the waxing process is underway. The ebay supplier said that the micro-USB connector was the only way to power the board, but I was not convinced. I discovered that the four pads near the USB connector corresponded to the four USB wires, so I found I could solder some four-core wire directly to the board. That way there is one less failure point with connectors.

Table legs with turned ends for fitting into the top.
The ends of the legs are “turned” to fit into holes drilled into the top.
Legs fixed to the top
Legs are glued in place and waxing started.

It took a while to figure out how to turn the ends of the legs. I didn’t want to use separate dowels because, since I don’t have a vertical drill press, I thought it would be impractical getting everything in line enough for the legs to be straight. I eventually created a sort of a jig that enabled me to use a 25mm surface planing bit in the router to make the round ends. I still had the problem of drilling the corresponding holes in the top, so I just had to do the best I could with my handheld drill.

After that it was a matter of applying the wax finish and fitting the board in place. Oh, and making a bottom shelf as well. 🙂

Coil and circuit board installed
Charging circuit in place.
And the cover in place
And with the cover piece in position.
The finished table, charging my phone
The finished product.
Close up of phone showing wireless charging
It works!

Overall I’m quite happy with the result!

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