Kitchen Computer Hides in Pantry Door


You might look at the images above and think “oh neat” and then go about your business. But you’d be missing a great motorized hidden computer build. We simply must insist that you click on that link and look at all that went into it. Do it. DO. IT.

Still here? Okay, we’ll give you the gist and then you won’t be able to help yourself. First off, [Designforhire] built that door completely from scratch using skills that your average hacker wields. At first glance you’d think it was a retrofit or done with serious woodworking tools (quality table saw, router table, etc.). This actually started with a simple frame out of 2″x3″ pine studs. This is faced with Masonite which was affixed with glue and brads. From there the upper half was outfitted with a dry-erase panel, and trim pieces were added.

Now the hack really starts to get interesting. The opening for the monitor and the keyboard are both motorized. An old cordless drill (borked handle and dead battery) was cannibalized for its motor which is run using the two black switches just above the left corner of the monitor. When closed, a dry-erase calendar covers the monitor and a blank panel keeps the keyboard secret. The computer itself is actually in the basement, with cables running down the hinged side of the door and through a hole in the jamb.

We didn’t see a video showing off the build, but you can satisfy that craving by looking back at the Kitchen HAL installation from a few years back.


  1. VintagePC says:

    Please tell me “a hole in the jam” is an intentional pantry-based pun… I laughed more than I should have at that.

  2. ChalkBored says:

    Oh, neat.

  3. Zlac says:

    It’s not very hidden when you write hidden on it :D Just saying …

  4. rasz says:

    It might be the best hack in the world, BUT it was posted on instructables where you need to click 100 times on shit to see anything, its always click here to see next page, click there to expand pictures,
    yes instructables, I came to your site to NOT see any pictures or article, just the first page, so making everything expandable on click TOTALLY MAKES SENSE ….

  5. Michael U says:

    Also, the they in “and they you won’t be able to help yourself” should be replaced with a then.

  6. TiredOfTheComplainers says:

    Pressing “See all steps” is less satisfying to some people than complaining about someone’s accomplishments in building something interesting.

  7. What I really don’t like about hackaday is that what it really is a leach site.
    I have plenty hacks I would like to put up but you have to host them somewhere else and then hackaday links to it.

    • static says:

      T No doubt you, meant leech, not leach if you have a problem with the Hackaday SOP. here are plenty of free options to host projects, including hackaday forums. In the event you actually want to share your projects, Hackaday while not the the only way, it is pretty good way to share them.

  8. Z says:

    kitchen hidden pantry computer or kitchen pantry hidden computer?

  9. Jim says:

    …imagination runs off… It only opens if you spell ‘Computer’ with the magnets!

  10. justice099 says:

    20 comments and only 2 of them are about the hack itself…


  11. Ergo says:

    So the keyboard is all the way on the lower part of the door,
    and the video screen is forehead level ?

    Great ergonomics ! NOT!

  12. MatsSvensson says:

    Nice StarTrek-ergonomics.

    A keyboard bolted to the wall, and then a screen bolted to the wall where you can barely see it while using the keyboard.

    Ahh, future!

    • Brian Neeley says:

      Maybe the guy’s really tall, with gorilla arms? And I agree with voxnulla above, touch based. I saw a projector-based kitchen cabinet build here a couple of years ago. I think that would work best, except in my kitchen, where there is never any open cabinet space…

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