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Want it? Make it, DIYers

With the Maker Faire less than a week away, it's time to show off a bit of DIY inspiration. Peter Glaskowsky shows off some of the gizmos he's made recently.

The annual Maker Faire, which lies somewhere between San Francisco's counterculture tradition and Silicon Valley's materialism, is set for this weekend in San Mateo, Calif.

Now in its fourth year, the event is organized by Make magazine and showcases the work of people who build everything from wooden bicycles to life-size robotic critters.

I've been making some fun things myself since I bought a small milling machine awhile back. Here's a titanium adapter I made to attach a small commercial USB flash drive to my keychain:

A USB flash drive (right) with keychain adapters milled out of titanium. Peter N. Glaskowsky

The assembled titanium-reinforced drive fits into any USB jack. Peter N. Glaskowsky

Not long ago I found some blocks of aluminum bar stock at HSC Electronics in Santa Clara and had the idea to turn one into a stand for my iPhone. I had the standard iPhone dock, but it's not very stable, and I wanted something better. I realized I could mill a pocket into the aluminum block for the dock, plus create a face for the iPhone to lean against. The result was nice, stable stand.

I decided to preserve the original finish on the block for an industrial look:

The first-generation iPhone stand, made from a cylindrical block of aluminum and Apple's iPhone dock. Peter N. Glaskowsky

After making that first one, I thought of some other ways to apply the same idea:

Another design. The Apple iPhone stand slots into the recess at the bottom, between the "wings." Peter N. Glaskowsky

Another design, polished up a little. Peter N. Glaskowsky

This one's my favorite so far:

Yet another design, also with wings. Peter N. Glaskowsky

A side view. Peter N. Glaskowsky

There's always something at the Maker Faire to inspire more projects. Come back to Speeds & Feeds next week for a review of the event.