We believe that every living space should have a workspace that can bring ideas into reality. But if you're like us and don't have that convenient extra room or garage, you have to get a little creative with how you use the space you have.

One such creative use of space is an over-the-bed worktable - a standing table with a massive amount of project space that spans the length of a queen-size bed and rolls away when you want to catch a few Z's. The top surface of the table is whiteboard, meaning you can draw your project plans to scale or organize your components by marking out space for them. We've also sized the table perfectly to fit through most doorways and be easy to maneuver into place. Let's get hacking!

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Time Needed: ~4 hours

Total cost: ~$140

Materials: (Note: These dimensions are for a queen-sized bed, but they're easy enough to adjust!)

Tools: (We made it at TechShop Pittsburgh)

  • Cold miter saw or horizontal band saw
  • MIG (or TIG) welder plus filler, clamps, accessories, and safety gear
  • Phillips screwdriver
  • Power drill with 3/16" metal drilling bit
  • A faucet and cup of water
  • Hand grinder
  • Orbital sander

Step 1: Materials Prep: Steel

There's surprisingly little to do with the wood and panel board, aside from cutting it to the right dimension - so let's get started on our steel by cutting it down to size, drilling some holes, and blasting off the black coating that it ships with.

Take an old rag and some acetone and scrub down the steel pieces you received, to get rid of some of the oil and grease. Then spin up your cold saw or horizontal band saw and cut the steel in the following lengths and quantities:

Length (in) Qty Purpose
82 3 Horizontal length-wise support
22.25 4 Horizontal supports along head and foot of bed
38.75 4 Vertical leg supports

You'll have to use an 8-foot length apiece for the three longest pieces, but you can cut two of the 8-footers into a 38.75" and two 22.25" segments, then cut the last bar into two 38.75" pieces, plus some scrap.

Time to weld the frame together!

<p>Years ago I saw a version of this spanning the width of the bed. You just leave it in place and when you sleep you put it at the foot of the bed. I didn't like the visual of that so never did it as I do not have an &quot;away&quot; to roll it to. My problem is 4 cats ... there is usually at least one of them on my 3 possible work places: the kitchen counter, the top of the washer and dryer and the coffee table. I salivate just thinking about this table but anyway would not have the skill nor patience to weld anything. Lovely idea, thanx.</p>
<p>as i read, i thought, &quot;rolls away <em>where</em>?&quot; it's nice, but if i had a space in which to roll it away, i'd probably just use it<strong> there</strong>. :)</p>
<p>really amusing, me too.</p>
<p>Some others have proposed building it out of wood - if you don't have access to a welder, that seems like it should work out pretty well!</p>
<p>Ya seems as tho your feet have no where to go </p>
<p>You can just prop them up on your bed as long as your knees don't reach the table.</p>
<p>Very nice 'ible. </p><p>What casters do you recommend for this project?</p>
<p>Oops, guess we missed those in the parts list! Here are the ones we used:</p><p>http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B007JXBGZY</p>
<p>Nice job. An idea I had was to build a similar idea but instead invert the drawing board facing downwards (at arms length) so you could lay on your bed comfortably and draw out your ideas and ponder your plans. </p>
<p>That's awesome! And you could totally combine the two :D</p>
<p>Smart design!!</p>
<p>Thank you! Several others have proposed neat changes to it, too, like building it with wood or threaded pipe so that you can build it without a welder</p>
<p>Smart design!!</p>
<p>Very nice and you have given me an idea. Instead of building this using pipe it could be built using wood with a piano hinge for the top and constructing it in a manner suitable for opening the work area when in use and folding away the work surface when sleeping. It would then not be necessary to have wheels but could remain stationary and either built for the side or head of the bed depending on the amount of work surface required.</p>
Would you be able to do this project by buying threaded joints for all of the piping instead of welding it?
<p>Seems possible! We haven't worked with threaded joints, though, so afraid we can't offer much advice on that front</p>
<p>Interesting! When you're sitting at the worktable, is the bed in the way of your feet underneath?</p>
<p>We were worried about that too, but it hasn't been an issue - your feet rest on the legs of the stool, and there's plenty of space for your knees above the top of the mattress</p>

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