mounting a Powramid power center to an IKEA JERKER

Even though I’ve attached a massive 12 port power strip (measuring four feet long) to the bottom of each of my Ikea Jerkers, I’m still always finding myself in need of handier task based power.

Luckily, a few years ago I bought a few of the Powramid “power centers” – these are basically power strips with integrated surge protectors in the shape of a 6 sided pyramid.

Powramid in use on an Ikea Jerker desktop

Like most power strips the Powramid comes with a couple of basic secure points on the base. I fiddled around with these a bit, trying different sizes of bolts and wingnuts, until I managed to mount one to my Ikea Jerker standing desk. Here’s how I did it:

attaching a Powramid power center to an Ikea Jerker - Step 1

The Powramids I bought were made by a company called Kreative Power, but it appears they are now being made by a company called Accell Cables. Here’s  look at the bottom of one of them:

attaching a Powramid power center to an Ikea Jerker - Step 2

I used a small bolt and a wingnut to attach one side in a desktop test.

attaching a Powramid power center to an Ikea Jerker - Step 4

Then, I did it for real, securing a Powramid to a leg in combination with a single ziptie.

attaching a Powramid to an Ikea Jerker - step 3

And I assume you’d like to see how secure it is so here’s what it looks like on video:

a look at the Ikea Jerker height extension connectors

The Ikea Jerker height extension kit came with two of these, item number “106213” as it was called in the official Ikea Jerker version 1 instructions manual.

Ikea Jerker Connectors (from a version 1 desk)

Here are three scans of a version 2 connector (from the side, the front and a bottom):

Ikea Jerker height extension connector Version 2

Ikea Jerker height extension connector Version 2

Ikea Jerker height extension connector Version 2

In either case they have nearly the same dimensions and are designed to allow you to add leg extensions for added top shelf verticality. For the version 2 Ikea Jerker desk, two came with every box that looked like this:

Ikea Jerker Version 2 Height Extension Kit (and Top Shelf)erkerbox2

As Jerkers themselves become harder and harder to find it is the little things, like these plastic connectors (and the hard to find bolts that inspired this website), that get even more scarce.

So, with this post I am documenting the size, shape, and design of the “106213” connector. I hope this will be useful for the 3d printing crowd, and/or for an experienced woodworker to maybe play around with.

Ikea Jerker height extension connector piece dimensions

The original “height extension connector” (aka the “106213”) is made of polyproploene plastic (that’s number 5 on the recycling chart), and is basically a hollow box with exterior dimensions of the interior of a Jerker leg.

When properly placed, the height extension connector can be pushed down into the top of a leg until the connector reaches its halfway point where when what I’m calling the “lip” will prevent it from going too far down. Then, eight nuts, previously placed into both ends of the connector can be bolted into place and provide a secure and mostly wobble free upper story (or two) to your Ikea Jerker (btw, it may be the case that newer version 2 connectors have a more wobble free design – but I have not done enough studies to confirm this).

As you can see with the bottom view of my illustration (pictured above) there hollow “racecar” shape on the inside of the version 1 (and a kind of boxier version in the version 2). Harder to see, in my digital reconstruction, are the chamfered edges at the top and bottom that allow the connector to start easy.

You may also have noted some suspicious-looking packing tape placed over the ends of the black extension connectors. These are my own idea, with the intention of preventing my nuts from falling out and running down my leg.

Yeah, you can laugh, but this is serious Jerker life, and I’ve had my nuts fall down my legs (perhaps because the old polypropylene retainers have been aging).

Anyway, to avoid your own nut loss I recommend you place a piece of packing tape on the bottom of your own connectors (but be sure to puncture the holes you’ve covered up with the tape so as to make it easier for your bolts to screw into the nuts).

In addition, here is the proper placement from the instructional cutaway:

Height Extension Connector Instructions from the Ikea Jerker version 1 manual

In case you were wondering, life without extension connectors gets very complicated and less space efficient, looking something like this:

heightening an Ikea Jerker without plastic connectors

For more on how I did this hack, look at my post entitled Heightening Your Ikea Jerker The Hard Way.

How to add casters to your Ikea Jerker – PART 1: Drilling and Mounting

Do you sometimes need to drag your Jerker away from the wall to get at the your desk’s cords and cables? We do too. But a cool Jerker owner doesn’t just drag his Jerker around, he glides it.

I spotted this ever so slightly modded Ikea Jerker version 1 on Craigslist a while back – but honestly – I don’t think it would work. Those casters look like they were stolen from some cheap plastic cart or some cheap plastic chair.

A Jerker with casters?

If you’re going to go Jerker, I say go steel and go big. To that end, this post, the first of three, is designed to get your Jerker up on casters.

To follow our design you will need four casters, two with brakes like the one in the image below. The two casters with the foot-activated stoppers go on the front of the Jerker, the other two, simple free-wheeling casters, go on the back. The casters we used in the post are 3″ in diameter, 1 1/8″ wide, and rated for 180 lbs each. Following our formula, you will also need eight 3 1/2″ steel bolts, eight matching nuts, and eight lock washers. You local hardware store should have everything you need. The pictured caster costs $16Can each up here in the Great White North.

Do not try to thread the Jerker’s legs to attach the casters as the leg metal is too thin and soft. I tried and it immediately stripped the threads tightening the bolt.

You’ll want to drill straight through the bottom and then the top of the leg. After the first hole has been drilled, attach the caster with a bolt and nut. Then drill through one of the holes in the caster’s plate, from the bottom. You drill from the bottom via the caster to ensure the bolt will fit in case your drill bit wanders. Once the hole has been started you will need to remove the caster to be able to drill all the way through.

If you are unable to drill all the way through you can use a center punch so that your drill bit does not wander. Remember to measure twice.

This is what your typical steel bolt looks like.

And here is one of many types of lock washer.

 

Here you can see my drill bit barely getting through the second side of the leg. You should try to get the holes to be as snug as possible. If you are unsure of your bits and bolts do a test drilling through some scrap lumber. This scene is after I have drilled a hole guided by the hole in the caster’s base; only the bottom of the metal leg needs to have the holes match perfectly.

And here is the first caster bolted on. Note that the nuts are on the bottom side, out of the way, with lock washers.

Remember to put the two casters with brakes on the front. Lock washers keep the nuts from getting loose and falling off of the bolts. It is bad form to have a wobbly Jerker (even if you’re not British).

 

 

Yep, this is what a metal drill bit looks like. Do not forget safety glasses if you don’t wear glasses.

 

 

Here is one leg with casters, yep kinda ugly. I advise mounting the casters on the inside so that they won’t hit anything, such as a wall or toe. The Jerker leg moves fine on thick carpet with me standing on the leg.

 

These two drill bits are for wood only, and will not work on metal.

 

Here are some cement drill bits, yes, just for cement.

No casters were harmed in the making of this post.

Why I switched from Ikea Jerker Version 1 to Version 2

My last Ikea Jerker Version 1 desk

When I started using Ikea Jerkers (or collecting them might be a better way of putting it) I started with the Version 1. I paid $200 for it and collected about five or six (or maybe seven) after that. I ultimately settled on the “birch” coloured one, in part because I liked it better, in part because it’s legs always came in grey (the same colour as all version 2 legs). But at some point in my Jerker journey I decided to make the switch from Version 1 to Version 2. And here’s why:

Ikea Jerker version 1 desktop sitting upside down on a version 2 desktop

That’s my old Ikea Jerker version 1 desktop sitting inverted atop my then new first version 2 desktop. Can you see the size difference? The version 2 is wider and deeper.

I loved the pull out arms of the Version 1. [btw, the big drill hole at the center of the back of the Version 1 desktop was my addition and not a built in feature]

Ikea Jerker Version 1, arms extended and inverted on top of an Ikea Jerker Version 2

But, as you can see, while they get you closer to the desk (and look awesome) when they’re extended they don’t ultimately increase your desktop area as much as the Version 2 can.

Further, the Version 1 legs are somewhat troublesome (being both shorter and deeper) they take up valuable floorspace and don’t offer as much secure verticality as the Version 2 legs.

Check out one of my 2013 Version 1 builds (below) and note how close to the desktop the top of the leg ends are and how it thus requires more extensions and more connections (and thus more concomitant floppiness).

My 2013 Ikea Jerker Version 1 setup

Have a look at the replacement, my first Version 2 just as I was setting up and note the increased desktop space. [BTW, just to it’s left is a hybrid construction connecting multiple Ikea Jerker 1 shelves with a pair of Ikea Jerker Version 2 legs]

My first Ikea Jerker Version 2 build

I love the version one, but can see little reason to actually use it myself. Do you have a story regarding your preference for the Version 1 to the Version 2 or vice versa?

A modern monitor setup the Ikea Jerker desk (version 2)

Ikea Jerker VERSION 1 with CRTs

The Ikea Jerker was designed in the days of CRTs – you remember, those big heavy deep monitors that cost a ton and weighed a ton – in fact, the Jerker version 1 came with the a 45cm (17.7 inches) deep monitor shelf – that thing is designed to withstand 100lb monster 27″ CRTs! The version 1 add-on shelf and all version 2 shelves are a much more sensible 35cm (13.7 inches) deep. Designed for LCDs, they’re also able to hold hard drives, staplers, and earbuds. But, I’m of the school that monitors should hang, not rest. And though big is good, maybe biggest isn’t best.

I’ve had my Jerkers set up in many configurations, the biggest being with three side monitors (a combination of Samsung 23″ and 24″) and one big Viewsonic 27″. But in my constant quest for the perfect Jerker workstation I’ve come up with a pretty terrific combination (at least for me).

I used a combination of an LG 34″ Ultrawide model 34UM65 (pictured as “1” in landscape mode on the left) and a tiny 16″ ACER X163W widescreen (pictured as “2” in portrait mode on the right).

My sit-down Jerker setup:

Photo of Ikea Jerker MONITOR setup (workstation)

And because it worked so well I actually replicated the exact setup for my Jerker standing desk:

a photo of MY MONITOR setup on my Ikea Jerker standing desk

With the monitors mentioned, and mounted on the slightly modded Vista vesa mounts, I get enough clearance on the left, top, right, and bottom for ventilation, re positioning (a rare occurrence), and the mounting of lights and swing arms on the legs to left and right. Here’s a little map:

Ikea Jerker (Version 2) Monitor Positioning Map

A = 9.5cm (4 inches) clearance
B = 2.5cm (1 inch) clearance
C = 4cm (1½ inches) clearance
D = 5cm (2 inches) clearance

But there are other ways to go. For example, here’s The Geek Redneck’s giant 40″ 4k tv sitting on his Ikea Jerker Version 2:

40" TV on a Ikea Jerker (Version 2)

And an accompanying video:

Personally, I think that screen is too close. The speakers have no room. And there’s no room for that essential second monitor.

So tell me, I’m curious, how have you maximized your Jerker monitor setup?

the Ikea Jerker keyboard drawer (there wasn’t one)

Okay so there is no “Jerker” branded keyboard drawer – people sometimes say there is, like in the ad for the one pictured below:

Ikea Jerker KEYBOARD DRAWER

Ikea Jerker KEYBOARD DRAWER

Ikea Jerker KEYBOARD DRAWER

Now this is an Ikea product, and it seems to fit under Jerker, but it is actually a “Summera” (product number 10035) keyboard drawer, and it was designed to fit various older Ikea desks. Some of the Summera product line is still around – as are the Signum desk accessories (which were mostly designed for GALANT and MICKE desks).

But to my mind, the question is: Is this the keyboard drawer you should use with your Jerker?

None of my Jerkers have (or have had) a keyboard tray. Do they need them?

Previous desks I’ve owned have actually had decent built in keyboard trays but they also have had room for a mouse and a mouse pad (or even a Forminco “Mouse Arena”) – I’m thinking the Summera design just looks a little too wimpy.

On the other hand, the Galant desk below looks pretty good all kitted out with a Summera keyboard tray and Summera CPU hanger.

Summera accessories on a Galant

By the way, did you notice the size of the keyboard? It’s one of those compact ones.

Have you had any experience with the Summera tray on a Jerker? Or, have you come up with one of your own or maybe built one?

I don’t think I’m actually in the market, but if I were were looking to modify my Jerkers with a Keyboard tray I’d go with something substantial, like this Ergotron design:

Ergotron Keyboard Tray Arm

The the Ergotron’s mounting bracket wouldn’t automatically fit into the Jerker leg hole pattern I think a little drilling might solve that.

add an Ekby Alex drawer set to your Ikea Jerker desktop

Designed as a standalone shelf, the Ekby Alex drawer unit can make a very, very useful addition to an Ikea Jerker (version 2) desk.

Ikea Ekby Alex (drawer unit)

Official Ikea Jerker drawers are pretty hard to come by, in part because they were an optional item, in part because they’re were not designed to be paired with for ⅔rds of the Jerker desk designs.

But, the Ekby Alex drawer shelf just so happens, and believe me I was very excited when I found out, to fit absolutely perfectly between the legs of an Ikea Jerker (version 2) desk. You could place one of these units on a top shelf, but the fact is, even if you use it where it is most hand, on the desktop, it still leaves you with lots of desk-space for keyboard, mouse, joystick, and similar peripherals.

The Alex Ekby comes in one long box. It’s actually manageable to carry out of the store, but is a bit heavy, weighing 12kg (27lbs). The build time is about a half-hour. In addition to the parts an pieces in the box you’ll also need a hammer (the back is assembled with about thirty little nails), a flathead screwdriver and a Phillips head screwdriver.

Here’s a video showing the whole build process:

As mentioned in the video, be sure to note the sizes of the connector pieces, in my build I didn’t at first distinguish between them and it took a bit of time to straighten my mess out.

Once together, I found the Alex Ekby to be a very sturdy little shelf drawer set.

One other point to bear in mind, the drawers only pull out slightly more than half way; but the insides of the two drawers have plenty of space: The horizontal space measures, front to back 24cm (9.5 inches) and 54cm (21.25 inches) from side to side. And the depth is a mere 5.75cm (2.5 inches). One drawer will fit one ream of printer paper and dozens of pens pencils, erasers, a couple of pairs of scissors and a stapler. But most tape guns, office sized tape dispensers, and three hole punchers will not fit in these drawers.

Here are photos of mine in use.

Ikea Alex Ekby on an Ikea Jerker (version 2)

Ikea Alex Ekby on an Ikea Jerker (version 2) drawer open

And, for those Jerker owners don’t have enough top shelves, or just want to be different, you can also use the Alex Ekby (or two?) as a monitor riser. The Alex Ekby is rated to support 22kg (44 lbs) and each would raise your monitor by 11.5cm (4.5 inches).

Here’s a scan of the end of the box:

Ikea Ekby Alex (Drawer Unit)

How much does (or did or should) an Ikea Jerker desk cost?

Ikea discontinued the Jerker (Version 2) Desk more than a decade ago but they’re still for sale on the secondary market.

Sites like Craigslist and Kijjiji have Ikea Jerkers for sale every single day, all around the world.

But how much should a Jerker cost?

The best way to answer this question is to see how much they cost back when Ikea sold them.

Here’s the original price for an “Ikea Jerker Desk” in a screenshot from the USA Ikea website, February 9, 2005:

Ikea Jerker Desk from 2005

And here’s a screenshot showing the price of an “Ikea Jerker Computer Desk”:

Ikea Jerker Computer Desk (2005)

And here’s a screeshot showing the price of an “Ikea Jerker Computer Table”:

Ikea Jerker Computer Table (2005)

So, back in 2005, we’ve got prices ranging between $90 and $190 US.

A sample of various sites around North America had listings ranging from FREE (and usually “Gone”) to $40 to $400. My experience, which is pretty good, I’d say a typical Ikea Jerker should sell for between $60 and $150. These will have scratches on the legs, dings and maybe scratch or two on the desktop and the shelf. A pristine condition Jerker, version 2, could sell for $200.

3D-printed Ikea Jerker desk accessories are AWESOME

I’d never thought of anything I wanted to 3D print, until now.

Check out these two 3D-printed Ikea Jerker desk accessories (specially designed for the Jerker) available for anyone to 3D print or order from Thingverse:

I particularly like this headphone hanger.

3D printed headphone hanger for Ikea Jerker

3D printed headphone hanger for Ikea Jerker

You can download the plan or order HERE.

I’m not a Sony Playstation 4 owner, but check this out!

Playstation 4 hanger for Ikea Jerker

You can download the plan or order HERE.

And, there are many other accessories that get new uses out of other Ikea products – take for example this webcam mount for the ubiquitous $10 Ikea Tertial worklamp:

 WALT the Webcam Mount (Logitech C910)

You can download the plan or order HERE.

You may even already have a Tertial, it looks like this:

Ikea Tertial work lamp

There are dozens of 3D printed items available for the Tertial, check it out HERE.

Have you printed any of these, or anything else for your Jerker setup?