More 3D Printed IKEA Hacks Make Life Better

There’s an old joke that the CEO of IKEA is running to be Prime Minister of Sweden. He says he’ll be able to put together his cabinet in no time. We don’t speak Swedish, but [Adam Miklosi] tells us that the word “uppgradera” means “upgrade” in Swedish. His website, uppgradera.co has several IKEA upgrade designs you can 3D print.

There are currently six designs that all appear to be simple prints that have some real value. These are all meant to attach to some IKEA product and solve some consumer problem.

For example, the KL01 is a cup holder with a clip that snaps into the groove of a KLIPSK bed tray. Without it, apparently, your coffee mug will tend to slide around the surface of the tray. The CH01 adds a ring around a cheese grater. There are drains for a soap dish and a toothbrush holder, shoulder pads for coat hangers, and a lampshade.

We worry a little about the safety of the cheese grater and the toothbrush because you will presumably put the cheese and the toothbrush into your mouth. Food safe 3D printing is not trivial. However, the other ones look handy enough, and we know a lot of people feel that PLA is safe enough for things that don’t make a lot of contact with food.

Honestly, none of these are going to change your life, but they are great examples of how simple things you can 3D print can make products better. People new to 3D printing often seem to have unrealistic expectations about what they can print and are disappointed that they can’t easily print a complete robot or whatever. However, these examples show that even simple designs that are easily printed can be quite useful.

If you don’t have a printer, it looks like as though site will also sell you the pieces and they aren’t terribly expensive. We don’t know why IKEA invites so many hacks, but even they provide 3D printer files to improve the accessibility of some products.

28 thoughts on “More 3D Printed IKEA Hacks Make Life Better

          1. He said paint, not print.

            Painting on food safe epoxy is a good way to seal the surface of a 3d print to prevent bacterial growth, or so I’ve heard. You just have to make sure to get it into all the nooks and crannies

          2. The print would be coated with epoxy after removing it from the build plate and perhaps doing other post-processing steps. The printer should not be involved with the epoxy.
            Assuming you were being serious.

    1. “It’s the dose that makes the poison”
      Which is why you’d want to be particularly careful about something you might use daily for years.

      Even dinnerware manufacturers get it wrong. Look up about lead in plate glazes.

    2. No, it’s the cleaning. You all have no clue what the issue is and try to “debunk” it anyway! It’s not safe! Nothing made that way will be! It’s got little to do with the leaching of chemicals.

  1. “CEO of IKEA is running to be Prime Minister of Sweden. He says he’ll be able to put together his cabinet in no time”

    Yes but there will be a few loose screws and a couple of nuts left over!

  2. “we don’t know why IKEA invites so many hacks, but even they provide 3D printer files to improve the accessibility of some products.” Really? It’s clear that it is basically a free marketing tool for them. Plus, the more applications they get from a piece, the more sales they can get. They also don’t make the best instructions, so getting some for free from paying customers? And word of mouth to others? Gold.

  3. I have about 300 linear feet of IVAR shelving in my lab. Too be honest, there is no way that I could recreate it based on material costs and something for my time. So I’ve been very adept in adding things that can fit into the IVAR eco-system or ways of using it that are unusual. For example, I have a ton of parts that fit into 30 of those Plano / Harbor Freight divider boxes that have 24 compartments. Using IVAR I built a rolling cart that holds all of them. It sits on the wall, but when I’m in build mode, I roll it next to me, all of the parts boxes are in reach. IVAR shelves, uprights, a cross member ,metal piece, 4 Ikea casters and screws; you took longer to read this than it took me to assemble it.

    Exposed ends of the shelving have peg board on them to let me hang things on them as another example.

    My IKEA has a discard/resale room that has parts / returned items. You can find lots of things at 70% off that can be repurposed into something else. Even at retail some things are cheaper than Home Depot, like the Komplement hinges at $5 each. Need some doors? Billy shelves as the fronts, some hinges, a forstner bit and you have doors.

    Lastly while the orginal article has food stuff, nothing stopping you from 3D printing a rack to hold your test leads on the sife of your IVAR shelving.

    Happy Hacking!

  4. With some modifications these hacks can be used for non-ikea stuff. Clothes hanger clip-ons can be filled with paper to be tight enough on thinner hangers. Toothbrush tray can work in some cups. Same for soap tray.

  5. Not good safe doesn’t mean it is dangerous. Yes in the grooves of 3d printed objects can grow some bacteria. But your cutting board also doesn’t kill you. I wonder how all the generations before have survived without “food safe” items in their kitchen?

    1. Wood cutting boards have a natural way of killing bacteria by wicking away moisture from the surface that dehydrates bacteria. They self-heal well, too. Plastic, if washed well, is good, but wood lasts a long time.

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