I wanted a bigger, perhaps even fancier, drawing table than what I've been using for a few years; and I had a pile of wood left over from other projects, so! I'm really pleased with how it turned out.

The instructions here are different from what I did in a couple places, because I realized after the fact a better/more efficient/etc way of doing it.

Hi-Res Blueprint

What You Need
Wood: I used mostly mahogany and poplar; but the pegs are oak dowels, the roll guard (not the real term, but I don't know what it's actually called) is pine; the lightbox, pivot plates and angle rings are plywood (obviously would be fancier with real wood); the bottom of the lightbox is pressboard
Glass or Plastic Sheet: 24x36" piece; glass is cheaper, but plastic--plexiglass, acrylic, etc--would be sturdier; if you do go plexiglass, you'll need a thicker piece than with glass, as it's not as stiff, and so will need to route out more of the top to make it flush
Light(s): I used a set of under-cabinet lights; might get more even illumination with a flourescent bar-type light
Spray-On Glass Frost: in addition to diffusing the light in the lightbox, this also gives the glass a decent enough texture to keep stuff from sliding around on the desk
Stain 1: a light color; this will be your base; I went with a "sunbleached" shade; you just need a small can of this and your other stain color
Stain: a darker color; I went with a burgandy; again, just need a small can
Shellac: I used an amber shellac, as it imparts a warm, aged look to the wood; you could substitute lacquer or polyurethane; you'll need enough for at least 2 coats, more if using a more porous wood (mahogany, oak, etc.) and wanting a very smooth finish
12 Small L-Braces: these are used to strengthen the pivot plates and angle rings
2 Wooden Knobs: these will be fixed to the angle rings' pegs
2 Small Chains, 6" each: these are fixed to the pivot plates' pegs
Wood Glue

Step 1: Cut Out Pieces

4 legs (part A); 36x4 to 10x1"
4 feet (part B); 15x2x1"
2 leg supports (part C); 10x1.5x1"

2 desktop length pieces (part D); 42x3x1"
2 desktop width pieces (part E); 20x6x1"
1 slide bar (part N); 38x1/2x1/4"
2 lightbox length walls (part G); 30x3x1"
2 lightbox width walls (part F); 21x3x1"
1 lightbox bottom (part I); 30x21x1/4"

1 leg bracer beam (part L); 40x3x1"
2 angle rings (part J); 20x10x1/2"
2 pivot plates (part K); 3x1.5x1/2"
4 pegs (part M); 3x5/8" 

Use your preferred method to cut these out, obviously. I used a jig saw to rip the leg bits, then a bandsaw to clean them up. Circular saw for the lightbox and top pieces. Bandsaw for pegs and pivot plates.

For the angle rings, I used a jigsaw to rip them, then a belt sander and dremel to even them out. I freehanded them, so they're not perfect--I was going for an antique look, so didn't want to use a circle guide. You'll obviously get smoother curves if you do.
<p>Some modifications to the original design...even added an outlet for charging phone/listening to music while working :). </p>
<p>Very cool! The hardware changes you made should make it more stable than my version, as well. Looks great.</p>
<p>Have you thought about led rope lights? Would they give off enough light to work by?</p>
Awesome. I made a small one awhile back using a glass cutting board from a thrift store &amp; a fluorescent light. This one is very nice.
<p>You can use opauqe plexiglass. </p>
You can; I didn't because a piece of plexiglass the needed size is about $60 whereas real glass was $15.
<p>Make me one too ??? LOL. This is great idea. I plan on making this soon. </p>
My dad used to make one for me, but did you do so flexible, good!
I made a similar drawing table, but I used a florescent light. <br> I placed aluminum foil under the light and this brightened things up considerably, making it easier to trace.......
I thought about doing something like that, but with the lights pointing up it didn't seem like it would make that much of a difference. I'll give that a shot--it's good enough as is, but I'm all for making it better where possible.

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