General Purpose Tools

Wobble Wedge

Stabilizing plastic shim

As a grad student, I spend a lot of time working on a laptop in coffee shops and living in old houses. What that means: sitting at notoriously-wobbly cafe tables and shimming furniture on uneven old wood floors. Wobble Wedges are small, clear plastic shims with a ridged surface that are invaluable in both instances. Since they weigh just an ounce or two, I always keep a couple in my computer bag (better than jamming newspaper under a coffee shop table). I usually go to a coffee shop twice a week, sometimes more, and find myself having to use them about 30 percent of the time. Sometimes I forget and leave them behind, but they’re cheap enough it’s no big deal. At home, these also work great because they are clear enough to be almost invisible. They are plenty strong enough for a fully-loaded bookshelf and, in the five years I’ve been using them, I’ve never had one break down or crack. Losing them is another story: I once used some to shim a pedestal sink and never saw them again. But the sink never wobbled either!

-- Donovan Finn 01/28/09

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