DIY Modern Desk Made W/ 1 Sheet of Plywood

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Introduction: DIY Modern Desk Made W/ 1 Sheet of Plywood

About: Hi I'm Linn and on my Youtube Channel I have lots of great videos about building, construction and fun projects. You can also check out my site @ http://darbinorvar.com

I wanted to make a clean and modern looking desk using only 1 sheet of 3/4 inch plywood. I decided to use my large CNC machine to cut out all the pieces, although you could certainly use a circular saw and a jigsaw to make all the cuts instead.

The desk is designed so the rails fit into the legs, providing a sturdy design, and there are brackets on the inside to provide extra reinforcement. For more detailed plans (and access to the pdf, svg & vetric files for CNC use) I have a plan available on my website - also free to my patrons. http://www.darbinorvar.com/misc/desk-one-sheet-ply...

The legs on this desk are angled which contribute to the modern looking design, and overall it's a pretty straight forward design which really highlights the look of the plywood.

Step 1: Design

To begin I designed how I wanted the desk - 60 inches long, 28 inches deep and 28 3/4 inches high. It was my goal to make all the pieces fit on one sheet of plywood - and you can either use a CNC machine, or cut the pieces out by hand.

The legs are made up of two pieces glued together to provide a thickness of 1 1/2 inches. The inside of each leg (so one of the two pieces that gets glued together) has sections removed for the rails to fit in.

Step 2: Cut Out Pieces

The first step, is cutting out all the pieces for the desk: one top, 8 pieces for legs, 6 rails and 4 brackets.

I used my large CNC machine, although if you'd like to cut the pieces by hand, I have templates and measurements available in my plan (which also has a pdf, svg & vetric files for CNC use): http://www.darbinorvar.com/misc/desk-one-sheet-ply...

Step 3: Glue Legs

Once all the pieces are cut out, begin by gluing together the pieces for the legs. Make sure to first lay them out, and double check you're gluing the right pieces together, taking into account the angle of legs and the inside/outside of the cut out pieces.

Step 4: Pocket Holes

I'm using pocket hole screws to attach the rails to the top of the desk, so cut pocket holes in the rails using a jig.

Step 5: Secure Brackets

Next up, glue together the legs and the long rails. Then glue down the brackets on top, reinforcing with screws. Once all the brackets and legs have been connected, lay sideways and add the short rails as well, to connect the pieces for the base together,

Step 6: Secure Top

Position the top upside down, add the base and screw down using the pocket screws.

Step 7: Add Lower Rails

To provide additional support, add the last short side rails with pocket screws. This will further stiffen the desk up and provide a lot of additional strength.

Step 8: Conclusion - Watch the Video

For additional information, and to see the final result, make sure to check out the video that goes over all the steps in creating this practical and nice looking desk.

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    9 Comments

    0
    BlackSheep1
    BlackSheep1

    9 months ago

    Sure looks like it'd make a great hobby table or sewing table too. Thanks for sharing the design and instructions!

    0
    LloydCeramics
    LloydCeramics

    9 months ago

    The whole concept from beginning to end is exceptional. Just one sheet of ply which could easily be reduced to much less used ply for production volume.Great well done.

    2
    rdy4trvl
    rdy4trvl

    9 months ago

    Nice design...and design process. Just curious, what CNC machine do you have and are you happy with it?

    0
    darbinorvar
    darbinorvar

    Reply 9 months ago

    Thank you! I have an Avid 5x10 ft CNC machine - so far very happy with it!

    0
    charlessenf-gm
    charlessenf-gm

    9 months ago

    First off, I do not have a CNC Router Table. Second, try as I might, I cannot justify the expense. However, I would hope that, were I to discover one in my barn/shop tomorrow, I would learn how to use it to design projects that incorporated traditional (woodworking, in the instant case) joints/joinery where applicable.

    Ah "Stretchers," the term for that piece added to tie the front leg to the rear leg finally came to me. I thought a notch in the outer leg piece(s) would nicely accommodate the ends of that stretcher (which, by rights) .earned a laminated approach as done on the legs. Indeed a 'dovetailed' notch would really hold with just the glue.

    In CAD Software (I believe) one might model legs that splayed out 3 degrees or so in two dimensions - not sure if your CNC Router can cut beveled edges - but I thought that the idea of including the 'apron' between each pair of legs might be possible (in one sheet) if the apron were sandwiched and the leg/apron assembly were split in two to allow each section to be rotated to better fit the material, then joined as part of the sandwiching process. If the leg pieces were "dovetailed" at the respective verticals at each corner, might that not result in a sturdier construction?

    Forgive my Mano Aided Design

    Legs.bmplegs2.bmp
    0
    travlinjohn
    travlinjohn

    9 months ago

    Since you have a CNC and are very good at using it why not lay out your parts using the least amount of material. In doing so you reduce the number of cuts and save time. You also reduce the wear on the router bit. There might be enough conserved material to make another project!

    1
    UncleEd
    UncleEd

    9 months ago

    Almost the same thought as Rypo81--such a nice design I wish I needed a desk. I'd have to do it with other tools, but the design is really great!

    2
    GerryL13
    GerryL13

    9 months ago

    Impressive! Wouldn't think it can be made out of one sheet. Very efficient.

    1
    Rypo81
    Rypo81

    9 months ago on Introduction

    That is a lovely modern design. Honestly, if I had a CNC machine I'd make one immediately (and I have no use for a desk currently).