Help me find a specific kind of compact VESA mount
April 4, 2024 6:21 PM   Subscribe

I would like to attach a lightweight monitor to a secretary desk. The desk is something like this one. The idea is to screw the mount to the underside of the top of the desk, inside one of those slots, with a very short arm extending outward that I can attach the monitor to. The desk does not need to close when the monitor is attached.

When I search the interwebs for VESA mounts, I see all sorts of pictures of hardware in utter isolation, with no indication of how it would attach to anything. I also see mounts that have sort of a murphy bed design, so you can fold a monitor away under a kitchen cabinet. I don't need that functionality, although the mount might still work. But they also often don't have much by way of measurements.

The slots in my desk are 9.5 inches deep. One is 5.5 inches high. The other is about 3 or 3.5 inches high. (The location of the 3.5 inch high slot might be better, but I realize it may be impossible to get a screwdriver in there.)

Because the writing surface of the desk is relatively shallow (like the one in the picture), I'd like the monitor to stay very close to the desk. That is, the arm shouldn't extend far out of the slot -- ideally just enough to mount the monitor.

I'd be attaching a UPerfect 18.5 inch portable monitor (weight about 3 pounds), as seen in a recent AskMe thread.

Can Metafilter help me find a VESA mount to match these specs?
posted by Winnie the Proust to Shopping (7 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
How thick is the top board that you'd be attaching the monitor arm to, and do you know if it's real wood or if it's Ikea style veneer over honeycomb?

The murphy bed one I have has a mount that's 7" deep by maybe 4" wide? But it needs to be lagged into something pretty sturdy - mine is bolted through a 1/2" quarter sheet of plywood. If I were attempting to slot it semi-permanently into that desk, I'd probably make a mounting block out of plywood offcuts that the base could attach to that would slide into the cubby hole?

The bigger challenge is that you have to have a monitor with a particularly low VESA pattern to get the monitor to mount over the top of the arm - it's designed for ceilings, after all. So if your monitor has a top-of-center VESA pattern, it might be kind of annoyingly low. But if both of those are considerations that could work, you could mount it to the "ceiling" with some really really stubby either 3/8 or 1/2" lag bolts, if you have a right angle drill and driver to work in the space.
posted by Kyol at 6:56 PM on April 4

Otherwise there's always the OG DIY "mount something to something else" company - RAM mounts. You might be able to get away with a VESA mount with ball to c-size long arm to mounting point?

Admittedly, this is probably swerving hard back to the "pile of random bits in isolation" part of the question.
posted by Kyol at 7:08 PM on April 4

I think you'd do well to search for "clamp on" or "clamp mount" VESA hardware. At a glance I see this mount that has a C-clamp that could bite your shelf. There is no "arm", just an adjustable hinge for angle. So the monitor could mount very close to the desk, and be easy to attach/remove too. The RAM stuff above looks cool, and pricey. This is one piece for $35.
posted by SaltySalticid at 7:13 PM on April 4

What about something like this that clamps on?
posted by dobbs at 7:14 PM on April 4

I would be tempted to wall mount the monitor on a mount that can travel vertically downward to eye level. You’d have to make sure the mount clears the back of the desk.
posted by shock muppet at 7:41 PM on April 4

I'd go for the armless clamp above, or something like this or this that can be installed on a pole, which you could recess into one of the shelf spaces.
posted by qxntpqbbbqxl at 10:41 PM on April 4

Response by poster: Thank you for all of these suggestions. The point about the wood not being strong enough to screw into is a good one. I will look into the clamps. That might be simple, and very workable.
posted by Winnie the Proust at 2:41 PM on April 5

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