The Soule Institute, home of the Trunk Printer.
Have you ever needed to print a laptop document between meetings in your car, but didn't want to drive all the way to kinkos for a two dollar printout?
Well here is how to build a trunk printer, (photos and ROI analysis will be posted soon)
One printer - mine is a dell printer that came with my laptop
USB and power cords - these should have been included with the printer
Two bungee cords or rope - essential decor in any garage
Car Power Inverter - These are extremely useful for powering everything, Can be purchased at Walmart or online.
Step one - Install printer drivers.
Many modern printers are plug and play, if not, download drivers from the company website. Test your printer in the house, and make sure it works.
Step two - Configure set up
Put the AC adapter under the passenger seat. (it may be the driver's if this is more convenient) Pull the cord from the inside edge of the seat and plug it into the car outlet.
Load the printer in your trunk, next to the back seat - facing the rear. Thread the wires from the trunk, through the crack in the backseat, under the floormat and under the front seat. Most all cars let you fold down the backseat to expand the trunk space, fold the seatback temporarily so that you can route the wires into the cab.
Plug the power cord into the inverter and pull the USB cord up between the seat and the center console. This way it will be available to plug into your laptop for printing.
You will now have a powered printer in the trunk with its power and USB cords conveniently stowed away and ready to connect.
Step three - Securing the printer
Lash down the printer with the bungee cords or rope. There are many cracks, hooks, and protrusions to tie onto.
Step four - Load the printer
Since the printer is next to the backseat, merely folding it down gives you easy access and allows you to stock the printer with paper.
Step five - Test the setup
Plug your laptop into the USB from the drivers seat. Print normally and retrieve your documents out of the trunk.
You now have a mobile office solution for printing up that business plan or flyers in your car, all with items lying around the house. You can also leave a laptop charger plugged in under the seat for charging your notebook. Impress your friends and co-workers with your mobile office and custom documents on the go.