Desk Shelf With Light

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About: Hi, my name is Ulrich Retief. I am currently a fourth year medical student at the University of Stellenbosch in South Africa. Although I am very busy with my studies and extracurricular activities, I love t...

I live in a residence at university and my desk is very small. I still wanted to find a way to decorate and I also needed more light for when I was working. That's when i had the idea of doing something of a Shelf / lamp crossover.

I went over to pinterest and saw some things I liked, but decided to cross these 3 ideas and came up with the design I wanted to make.

The last is actually from another Instructable, so go check it out!
https://www.instructables.com/id/Makers-Light-Shelf-Power-Box/

Step 1: Plan and Re-Plan

I was going to refurbish wood for this project, so usually I would first see what wood I have available. This time I was not at home though, so I first came up with an idea. The wood I found was not really suitable, so I came up with the grey and white design after a few attempts at making an idea that looks nice, but is also structurally sound.

These are the shapes I used, the lengths and dimensions depend on the wood that you have.Here is what I made:

A - x3 : 20x3x1 cm
B - x3 : 10.5x3x1 cm
C - x8 : 29x3x1 cm
D - x3 : 75x3x1 cm
E - x2 :75x13.5x2 cm
F - x1 :60x13.5x2 cm
G - x1 : 40x13.5x2 cm

Step 2: Prepping the Pieces

I started out with 2 planks, the one was 2,7m x 13,5cm x 2cm and the other was about 4m x 15cm x 1cm.

The thicker plank I just cut to the correct lengths. The thinner planks I first cut to shorter lengths and then I set up the gate on our table saw and ripped it into the 3 cm wide planks. I then these planks to match the dimensions and shapes i showed on the previous step.

When all pieces were sorted out, I divided the pieces that had to be white and the pieces that had to be grey and painted them accordingly.

I only lightly sanded all pieces to prep them for the new layers of paint.

Step 3: Start Assembly

I was feeling experimental and used a new product, called :Sticks Like", that I haven't used before. It worked perfectly for most parts, but decided to use a mix of glue and screws at all the parts that play a big role in structural stability.

I started by assembling the upright supports for the left part.

Step 4: Making the "C"

While waiting for the previous step to dry, I assembled the "C" of the shelf. This was fairly easy.

I used a clamp to hold the one plank in position and my girlfriend helped by letting the bottom plank lie on op of it. After attaching the first two arms to each other, I simply place everything on the floor and the attached the top plank.

Step 5: Making Uprights and Supports

Once the upright supports dried, I continued by adding the bars that diffuses the light to the top supports. While waiting for this to dry, I started adding the corner supports to the "C" after which I glued the top support to the top shelf.

Step 6: Making the "T" and Mounting the Light

I then went ahead and assembled the "T" that would form the middle shelf. While this was drying I attached the light to the bottom of the top shelf and I started fastening the supports to the shelves with screws, not just glue.

Step 7: Attach the "T" to the "C"

Unfortunately I did not take many photos while attaching the "T", but I was on my own and just wanted to finish the project.

I simply place the frame flat on the floor then attached the middle shelf to the top supports and then attached the bottom supports. After this I simply glued the front light diffusers to the frame.

Step 8: And Voila!

All that was left was to place the shelf on the desk and place my decorations.

The flasks were all gifts, the pipe is the first (and only, thus far) pipe I ever made and I had some plants chilling on my desk, so it turned out quite peaceful and sentimental!

I attached a multi-plug to the side to supply the light with power, but I also plugged my amplifier, laptop and cellphone charger in there.

Thanks for reading! I would love to have your feedback!
Please check out some of my other projects and vote for me if you think I am worth it!
Also go and have a look at my brother's new woodworking instagram page, @contreuve !

Ps. I wrote this instructable while using this light...

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    4 Discussions

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    Penolopy Bulnick

    15 days ago

    I love the unique design! It was nice to see how you planned it out using Tinkercad too :D

    1 reply
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    UlrichR2Penolopy Bulnick

    Reply 14 days ago

    Thanks! I really like using tinkercad for planning, it just helps visualizing it all and working out sizes. It also helps a lot when you try to explain your idea to someone!

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    Uncle Kudzu

    17 days ago

    A very nice-looking project! Well done, and thanks for sharing!

    1 reply