Picture of Cheap drafting table made from plywood

I have wanted a drafting/drawing table for awhile, but did not want to spend a few hundred dollars on a large commercial one.
I created this design to fit onto a 90 x 180 cm piece of plywood (standard size here in Japan), and it can be scaled to 4 x 8' using the included Google Sketchup 3D design file.
(Click on the [i] at the top left of photos to see an enlarged version.)

Materials used
- One 90 x 180 cm piece of plywood (1.2 cm thick)
- One 60 x 90 cm laminated wood table top (1.8 cm thick)
- One 2.7 x 90 cm strip of wood for the table top lip (0.5 cm thick)
- Two 4 cm dowels (1 cm diameter)
- Two 2 x 5 cm supports for arches (2 cm thick)
- Several 3 cm wood screws to hold the table base together
- Two hinges for the table top
- Four 1.2 cm screws to attach hinges
- Wood putty to hide screws
- White paint (optional)

Tools used
- Handheld circular saw
- Handheld jig saw
- Power drill
- Phillips screwdriver ("+" tip)
- Countersink drill bit
- Straight-edge guide and clamps for straight cuts

The attached Sketchup file shows the 3D assembled drafting table, as well as the cutting pattern of the plywood.
I have entered this instructable in the Shopbot challenge, I appreciate your vote - thanks!

Remove these adsRemove these ads by Signing Up

Step 1: Cutting the plywood

Picture of Cutting the plywood
The first step is to cut the plywood sheet (measurements included in the diagram, or refer to the Sketchup file).
I used a circular saw for the straight cuts, and a jig saw for the arched supports.
The square cutouts in the top of the base were made by drilling holes and cutting out the square with the jig saw.
I used plywood that has one side pre-painted (used in construction for concrete forms) which provides a smoother surface for painting. I painted the outside surfaces white to match my computer desk.
pierrock5 months ago

woow i loved this! great job, i think its easy and very usefull.

im making it this weekend, ill post some pics when its done :D !

cyberbuilder11 months ago
You should put furniture moving pads at the bottom
Cbw771 year ago

nice table my daughter will love it when I get it done

awsome man out of all the things i commented on this is the one i am going to build cool
canuckinjapan (author)  wolfking10163 years ago
Glad to hear it. Please post pics if you do.
tux_linux3 years ago
really good plan! I will post this on the woodworker forum I'm contributing too. Guess some of them would like to have such a table. My vote: +5!
canuckinjapan (author)  tux_linux3 years ago
Thanks, please let me know if there is any feedback.
shazni3 years ago
enter this to the furniture competition. :-)
canuckinjapan (author)  shazni3 years ago
Actually, I tried to yesterday, but the furniture contest started the day after I posted this tutorial, so it's not eligible.
Not right that you aren't eligible to enter this in the contest. Instructables made it's mark, by persons contributing content for free. All contributions should be eligible for contest entry. . No doubt they run the contests as an incentive to gain more free content, but there's a case to be made, that by not allowing all contribution to be eligible there's a risk the contests could be an incentive, not to post projects to instructables at all. As a for profit venture Instructables needs, the DIY community more than then that community need Instructables.
AHHH....i just hate it when that happens...:-(
ancaf333 years ago
Nice :P
Great job! I've been wanting something like this for awhile.
These look just like the animation tables at my previous college. All it needs is a hole in the middle of the desk for the animation disk and of course a short goose neck lamp of some kind you could screw in the back for the lights up the window on the disk for paper flipping est.

Of course if it was me I would save the cut circle and place it back when i just want a plain old drawing/creative table.
canuckinjapan (author)  Treasure Tabby3 years ago
>These look just like the animation tables at my previous college.

I actually thought about making it into a light table as well, but I haven't done any hand-drawn animation since college so I just went with a plain table top.
That looks amazing! Wonderful job!
canuckinjapan (author) 3 years ago
Thanks for the input - good idea.
I had actually attached little rubber strips under the four corners of the base for that same reason (irregularities in flooring etc. means it may not sit flat on some surfaces).
Very good clean desk project. I like it. What I did was added a two inch deep radius to the leg floor edge to create four corner feet by a band saw or your jig saw. Why, you ask? It desk sets more comfortable on a rough tiled floor than as shown here.