Hackers Help

Published on November 11th, 2010 | by Jules Yap


Hacker help: Any ideas on how to turn the Mala into a menuboard?

Materials: Mala

Description: Ok. So I bought a Mala Tabletop paper holder and paper roll for our son to draw on. I then saw this Junction Paper Holder (see pic, right) and want to hack my Mala into this expensive wall board. Any ideas on how to do this? Thanks.


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The Author

Jules Yap

"I am Jules, the engine behind IKEAHackers and the one who keeps this site up and running. My mission is to capture all the wonderful, inspiring, clever hacks and ideas for our much loved IKEA items".

11 Responses to Hacker help: Any ideas on how to turn the Mala into a menuboard?

  1. Douzecho says:

    Sorry for this late answer but I discovered this site few hours ago…
    If I unterstood well, you didn’t get any simple solution for this hack ?
    I thought about something simple for this, without disassembling the Mala.

    - 2 brackets (and screws) to suspend the Mala upside down and fix it to the wall (if you have a better idea, use yours of Course)
    - a screw driver (that fits the screws ;) )
    - 2 flat elastics (sewing elastic can be good too)
    - 2 little pegs
    - a drill and 2 drills to make holes (sorry I don’t know the diameter in inches) but one of them must be the same as the pegs and the other one just a little bit bigger (AND the bigger one must be thinner thant the movable piece of wood !!!!!)
    - 2 little eye-screws
    - 2 little partial eye-screw (the eye is not ‘closed’)
    - a grater (sand down tool)
    - glue (for wood stuff)
    - a thin and thick piece of wood almost 2 inch longer than the Mala
    - maybe 1 or 2 metallic teeth bands from food film dispenser boxes (you’ll see, I think this is optional) to help cutting the paper

    HOW TO:
    1. Take measurement of the (brand new) paper roll thickness when it is properly engaged in the Mala.
    2. In the 2 channels (that guide the movable piece of wood that blocks the paper) make a mark with a pen to remember where the paper is when it is ‘full’ (new roll).
    Make another mark (estimate) where the paper roll is ‘empty’
    After that, shift theses marks of about 0.5 inch
    3. Make a hole on these 4 new marks with the biggest drill. Join the 2 holes on each side
    to make 2 symetric tracks in the channels.
    4. Use the grater (???) to finish it properly.
    5. Push the movable piece to the ‘empty’ mark and draw a mark on the movable piece through the tracks as closely as possible to the ‘empty’ mark.
    6. Make 1 hole with the littlest drill put a peg (with glue) inside the hole. Do the same for the other side.
    7. Screw a partial eye-screw on each peg
    8. Screw an eye-screw on each end of the rolling tube
    9. Place the 2 elastics between the eye and partial eye-screws and settle tense (not too strong, just for the paper not to roll out by itself)
    10. Fix it on the wall and roll out some paper (the paper must roll out against the wall)
    11. Place the thin piece of wood at the desired height and fix it on the wall (you can use 2 metal slices to simulate the paper thikness)
    12 TADAAAAAAAAAAA et voilà you’re done !!

    You can add another identical thin piece just under the Mala if you want to be sure that the paper is really flat against the wall

    Hope this helps and you’ve waited for me :)


    (Please, forgive my english but I’m not a native as you understood)

  2. Ariel says:

    Not impossible at all! I did something similar with the Mala to make it into a drawing table for my daughter–suspending it upside down is the main challenge, which I found easy to solve with rubber bands (you’ll want something perhaps a little classier if it’s visible. I’d get a basic wall shelf, attach the Mala beneath it, then mount the empty picture frame suggested above to the wall with 1/4 inch spacers, so the paper slides behind it. Paint/stain the whole thing so it looks of-a-piece.

    The art table I made, which is a rip-off of a far cooler Ikea hack posted…somewhere.

  3. Moontree says:

    why not just get a chalk board instead of wasting paper?

  4. Softwood Timber Suppliers says:

    Smash it up, and build it again but.. completely diffrent. Don’t think you’ll have much luck with it as it is.

  5. Anonymous says:

    If you could get your hands onto to a picture frame fitting the width of the MALA, you could saw off one of the legs to make the MALA L-shaped, saw off the picture frame’s top and bottom bars, attach the frame to the long leg of MALA and attach the top and bottom bars onto the frame, so that the paper runs behind the bars as in the reference Junction Paper Holder.

  6. AtomicVole says:

    Simply – Put the base against the wall.
    The paper roll will be “hanging out there”

    mmm So put the feet against the wall and secure it – and re-drill the holes to move the rod closer to the wall.
    Follow the details provided in the infarrantlycreative link already posted.

    I also saw a Mala Easel – unfortunately not available in the US.
    Nice hack for that here-

  7. Anonymous says:

    This hack seems a bit far fetched. I think you should go with Allison’s idea and make it using a much simpler method.

    Good luck!

  8. Birgit K. says:

    I don’t know if it will work with the Mala as is, but here’s a tutorial on how to make one: http://tinyurl.com/26xc4ba
    You’d certainly be able to use parts of the Mala. HTH!

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