Simple Low Cost Desk/Table

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Introduction: Simple Low Cost Desk/Table

About: I like to design and build random things.

This is a modified version of the desk from the Ana White website. Keeping with my upcycled theme, this project was built from the top of an old desk. If you prefer, the top can be made from 2x12s. I’ve also included a quick video of the build along with a PDF version of the plans.

Video:

Drawing:

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B21TbB8gGNQbMFZER...

Step 1: Tools/Materials

Tools:

  • Saw (Table or Miter)
  • Drill and bits
  • Pocket hole jig (optional)
  • Nail gun (optional)
  • Sander
  • Tape measure
  • Pencil

Materials:

  • Table Top (48” x 24” or two 2x12x48)
  • Five 8 foot long 2x4 (think ahead with the cuts)
  • One 8 foot long 1x4
  • Screws or Nails
  • Glue
  • Wood filler
  • Paint or Stain

Step 2: Cut Wood for Legs

You will be building two identical leg assemblies. Cut the following pieces:

Step 3: Leg Assy - Step 1

Attach the “Leg – Horizontal – Thin” sections to the “Leg – Vertical”. Pre-drill and use a countersink bit for the holes. I used 2 ½” deck screws and glue for this attachment.

Step 4: Leg Assy - Step 2

Add “supports” as shown. I used a nail gun and glue for these connections. A second option is to use a pocket hole jig.

Step 5: Leg Assy - Step 3

Attach “Leg – Horizontal – 45 Degree” to the top and bottom of leg assemblies as shown. I used a nail gun and glue for this attachment.

Step 6: Leg Assy - Step 4

Before installing the “Leg – Horizontal – Thick” sections, pre-drill the pocket hole jig holes to 2 of the 4 pieces. These holes will be used to secure the legs to the top. Attach “Leg – Horizontal – Thick” to the top and bottom of leg assemblies as shown. Again, I used a nail gun and glue for this attachment.

Step 7: Leg Assy - Step 5

Add the feet as shown.

Step 8: Repeat

Repeat process for the second leg assembly.

Step 9: Cut Horizontal and Angle Supports

Cut horizontal and angle supports as shown. Think ahead at this step and add the pocket hole jig holes to the ends and to 2 of the horizontal pieces that will be used to secure the top.

Step 10: ​Attach Horizontal and Angled Supports

Attach horizontal supports as shown. This step will most likely require two people.

Optional: Add angle supports. Note that I didn’t include this step on this version due to the smaller size. The large version shown below includes the supports

Step 11: Sand / Paint

Wood filler could be used at this point - depends on how “rustic” you want the desk to look. Sand assembly as desired. I painted both sections at this point since it’s easier to paint separately.

Step 12: ​Attach Top

Attach top using the pocket hole drill holes. Note that screws or nails can be used in lieu of the pocket hole jig attachment method. Just counter sink the holes and use wood filler to cover the holes.

Step 13: Finished

Step 14: Larger Version

I previously built a larger version which is closer to the Ana White plans.

Step 15: Matching Book Shelf

3 People Made This Project!

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21 Comments

So pretty! Looks like you did an awesome job building it, and you did a wonderful job explaining the process. Thanks for sharing!

1 reply

I'm interested in making this desk. Do you know of a way I could add a drawer to the underside of the desk?

1 reply

It's a very basic "rustic" design so I'm not sure how I would incorporate a drawer. You might want to consider a shelf to go on the top surface. Maybe a smaller version of this:

https://www.instructables.com/id/Rustic-Book-Shelf-or-TV-stand/

Beautiful job! Hoping to add my own "I made it photo soon" (re-doing my jewelry bench and everything around it). Thank you.

I would also like to ask what type of wood did you use i used pine but I feel like it is a little to soft and that oak would have been a better material to use eventhough it is a little more expensive

2 replies

I used pine 2x4s and 1x4s for the legs. For this build, the top was hardwood. For the larger version, I used 2x12s. Yep, it's soft but dents add character :). I found the main disadvantage with working with 2x4s is the rounded corners. Filling the gaps (if desired) is tedious and limits your finishing options. Oak would be a nicer choice but it is much more expensive.

I used pine 2x4s and 1x4s for the legs. For this build, the top was hardwood. For the larger version, I used 2x12s. Yep, it's soft but dents add character :). I found the main disadvantage with working with 2x4s is the rounded corners. Filling the gaps (if desired) is tedious and limits your finishing options. Oak would be a nicer choice but it is much more expensive.

This is very very nice! I have tons of lumber from a few really large pallets that could fit this bill. Its a bit above my skill set. Yet it appears to be possible without it being such a huge problem!
Thanks so very much for sharing!

Very nice design, both structurally and aesthetically.

Simply splendid.

Thanks for sharing.

Nice, very nice.

Suggestion: Replace 2x4s with 5/4 clear pine, let's you stain and show off the wood grain.

just fantastic...very nicely made

very nice and impressing.It looks professional.

Is polishing or varnish needed?

Nice looking design, and looks great with the different finishes.
A very descriptive Instructable.

The larger version is wonderful in black, like an old strong table. Fav !