Instructables
Picture of 15-Minute Hanging Desk
So, last May I was just hanging out at home while I waited for my internship start date to come around. I had about two weeks of downtime after school had ended and was living with my mom, meaning I no longer had access to the ridiculously large desk I had been using in my dorm.

Using my little high school desk for the whole summer was out of the question, so I decided to build a new one. Since I had a loft bed, I got the crazy idea to build a desk that would hang from said bed instead of resting on the floor. Surprisingly, it actually worked - and worked well! It was also super easy and quick to build.

Here are steps I took to build it. You can also view the original tutorial at my blog.
 
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Step 1: Buy ALL THE MATERIALS

Picture of Buy ALL THE MATERIALS
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Ok, so this step may take a little longer than 15 minutes (what with traffic and lines at the cash register), but it's obviously necessary unless you already have everything laying around. Here's what you'll need to get this hanging desk started:

Materials:
- One 4ft x 2ft x 1in (or thicker) piece of hardboard (HDF) - not particle board
- Four sections of 4ft-long chain. I prefer Tenso chain, because its double-loop link design makes it really strong. It's also super cheap. Whatever you get, make sure it's rated to at least 150 pounds (the Tenso I bought is rated at 244).
- Rope. Any kind will do, though I'd personally avoid super thick rope. It won't be bearing any weight anyway.
- S-hooks, spring links, or a combination of both. You need 8 in total. I'm using a combination because Home Depot didn't have 8 of either in stock at the time.

Tools:
- A drill with a large drill bit. If you have a Forstner bit it'll be easier, but I got by with a standard twisted bit (college kids gotta make due)

That's it! In the next step we'll start the build process. You might notice that the picture of the board here already has holes in it; I forgot to snap a pic of it beforehand. Anyway, moving on...
iti1 year ago
Hmm, perhaps use two (or one if its hinged to the frame) closet rod along the longest face and run the hanging 'stuff' down through the holes around the rod and up the hole again? Could be fun, decorative.

Could also, just run cable down, through the left hold, across the bottom, up through the right hole to the top through a pulley? Even more more fun.

OH oh. If you used the cable in the back and in the front, hooking each to a pulley and running the back cable again through the front pully, you can just raise it. The structure itself should keep it from tipping/tilting.
bethmwl2 years ago
i like the your idea, but i don't like the chain wrapped around the desk to hold it. I wonder if you could find a metal piece, shaped like a T that would come up from the bottom and hook the chain to it. I wonder if you've seen swings from a few years back that use that system.
thomasfrank09 (author)  bethmwl2 years ago
Yep - if you scroll down and look at dimtick's comment, I addressed that. It would probably be better, but I was just kinda lazy when I was shopping for materials.
JohnsonJ2 years ago
Very cool Idea!
sjeenyus2 years ago
I haven't built this yet, but I'm curious about your opinion on an idea i have for your design...
Do you think it would be possible to, instead of using rope to secure the desk to ONE support, to install hinges on TWO supports? this way, the desk could be raised to hide it away..... just a thought, I might give it a try one of these years.......
thomasfrank09 (author)  sjeenyus2 years ago
Yeah, for sure. Actually, you could easily modify this one-support design so that the desk could be pulled up and hidden.

Instead of using chain to hang it, you'd probably need to use rope or steel cable. Instead of looping the cables and attaching them to themselves at the top, I'd make them extra long and route them up and through to the back. Attach a series of strong hooks to the bed posts, and you'd be able to "link" the cables to them and get your desired height.

Then, replace the rope with another set of "hooks" - two attached to the back of the desk and point downward, and set of upward pointing hooks that they could "lock into" so the desk wouldn't swing.

It'd be a little more complicated this way, but I think it would work.
Player 12 years ago
Yes. So now I could knock my monitors over by kneeing the bottom of the table. Actually, I think it would look cool if you suspend it to the floor too to prevent it from going up. But I rele like the idea of a hanging desk, gonna make one, with it chained up and down. :)
thomasfrank09 (author)  Player 12 years ago
Funny story - I actually spent a lot of time kneeing the desk and seeing how far I could tilt it when I got bored. Trust me, it takes a lot to knee this thing enough to knock over a monitor.
dimtick2 years ago
very simple.
rather than looping the chain, I think it may work better if you use eye screws.
to keep the desk from swinging around and your expensive monitors crashing to the ground, you may want to add l-brackets to secure the desk to the bed frame legs.
thomasfrank09 (author)  dimtick2 years ago
Thanks for the comment!

I actually covered both of those points in this tutorial. In Step 2, I mention that you could use something to keep the chain from coming back out of the holes instead of looping it - I just didn't have eye bolts on hand when I was building it.

As for preventing the desk from swinging, that's the entire purpose of Step 3 :)
Dr.Bill2 years ago
Not a bad idea. I have a double wide loft bed with a crappy overkill over built desk made of unpainted plywood. I need something nicer like what you made. i cannot have legs hanging down because of the boxes I store there so Hanging is the way to go I think. Thanks.