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I needed space to do some Instructables and other projects and I also needed a kitchen table, thus my multi function desk. It works well and it was fairly cheap (about $150 total).

Step 1: Tools and Materials

From IKEA (or wherever you can get desk parts):

3 Table Tops
4 Legs
(2 Magnetic Strips)

From Local Hardware Store

2 Hinges + Screws
Sand
Wood Screws (12 to 20 depending on the size of your desk top and length depends on desk size, but about 3")

Tools

Jigsaw
Drill
Chisel
Rule, Square, Pencil, Clamps, Safety Glasses

Step 2: Cutting

To make the inside of the desk hollow for storage and use, take a table top and cut out the middle bit.

Mark out 2 or 3 inches from the edge of the desk and mark it accordingly (pencil and ruler!). The width can be adjusted some, but much more will prevent you from storing stuff on the top and much less will negatively effect how sturdy the desk is.

To allow the desk to open and close easily, as well as look good, cut a U shape and a length. The U shape should have every finished corner on it so the desk looks nice at the end.

  • A note about IKEA desks:
Ikea desks are mostly hollow in the middle, which is nice for this project. There is a wood block though on each corner which is about 5x5" and a particle board edge which is <1" thick. You will feel this as you cut and should keep it in mind when attaching the desks together because the wood is sturdy.

Step 3: The Basic Desk

You can do this one of two ways. Either build the IKEA desk (attach the legs to the bottom desk top) first or build the whole 3 desk bit first then attach legs. We built the desk first so we had a place to build the rest of it.

Whenever you build the basic desk, you need to put sand into the legs. The desk with tools in it is heavy and so opening and closing it is hard without the counterweight at the bottom. This is only for the little dinky legs I have to increase stability.

Step 4: Construction

So we had the 3 desk tops. One is attached to the legs. One we already cut up into the U and the Length. One will be the top.

Attach the length to the bottom desk (one attached to the legs). Measure this out carefully so it open and shuts well. It is easiest to use the U to place it and then brace it in place while you screw it in. To make it look nice screw from the bottom desk into the length.

Attach the U to the top desk with screws. To keep the top nice drill from the U into the top. Measure this out carefully.

Step 5: Hinges

To open and close this, you need hinges. We found some cheap ones, but to make it pretty we had to sink them into the desk.

Measure out where you are putting the hinges very carefully. Place them where the screws will go into the wood at the corners of the desk.

Chisel out the wood/cardboard so the hinge will lay flat and the desk will shut properly.

Attach the hinges carefully so the desk opens and closes well. They will attach the length to the very top desk.

Step 6: Last Steps

Attach the magnetic strips so you can hang all your wrenches and tools.

You can attach handles to the top desk wherever you want to help with opening and closing.

Now you have a desk where you can keep the top clean, the middle fully of tools and the bottom dirty from your home projects!

  • There are some mods you can include. Including light strips or power strips would be good. Different arrangements of magnetic strips or peg boards were also be good. This one works for me but you can change the innards to change for your own projects.
nice instructable
Get 2 of those things that are on folding tables that are used to stop and lock the legs from moving.<br />
I love the idea. I'm going to try and make one this summer.
una pena que no se pueda leer en castellano
este no perfecto, pero <a rel="nofollow" href="http://translate.google.com/">http://translate.google.com/</a> puede ayudar.<br/>
A bar to stop it from accidentally closing was discussed, but it is stable enough for my projects. It would be easy to attach a bar inside, like one of the old bars used to keep car hoods up. Screw it into the bottom desk and have it attach somewhere near the U beam on top.
awesome hidden workspace...add something to prevent from closing accidentally and its perfect

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