B&Q have a system where you can pick out some wood board and ask them to cut it to a particular size; you get the first four cuts for free. So, I bought the thickest MDF I could find and got them to cut it to 90cm by 115cm - slightly larger than the mat. The board is shown on the right.
The only other bits and pieces I needed are shown on the left. I couldn't find any carpet underlay in anything less than gigantic sizes, but Homebase sold this strange matting that you're meant to put under rugs to stop them from sliding around, so I thought I'd try that. I also got some double-sided tape for attaching it to the board and duct tape for holding down the mat.
It was easy enough to tile the bottom of the board with bits of the rug grip to the bottom of the board using the double-sided tape, and then stick down the corners of the mat with the duct tape. The duct tape isn't ideal, since really I'd like it to be a simple matter to remove the mat and take it into work, to other people's houses, etc. Some possible options that I thought about included:
- Punching holes in the corner of the mat so that you could hook it (in some way I never figured out) to the board. I was reluctant to do this since I wasn't sure whether there was enough space in the bottom corners to put holes in them without damaging the mat. Also, if you'd torn through the mat and were stretching it out from those tears, that might not be good.
- Using those packing strip things in a "noughts and crosses" pattern to hold the mat down. (I think it's actually called "filament tape" or something like that.) If I could find some way of securing them, and it's actually possible to lay them down in that pattern without holding down the pads, that might be a good solution. That's assuming it's cheap enough that breaking the strips every time you want to move the pad isn't too expensive. The nice thing about that option is that you'd get the "tactile feedback" (mentioned in point 3 above) for free.
Anyway, the finished result is shown below:
It seems to work OK so far. I think the noise is somewhat reduced, although perhaps not as much as I hoped. The rug grip stuff is just a bit gross, as well - if I can find some less sticky underlay, I'll swap to using that. To be fair, though, it doesn't slip at all now, so overall I think this has been a reasonably successful exercise. I'll probably get an extra mat to take apart and mess about with more at some point in the future. (But maybe by that stage I'll be needing a Cobalt Flux or Red Octane mat. :-))