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A completed home office desk in a bright indoor setting, underneath a stair case

Overview

Loaded with storage and plenty of surface space to spread out, this D.I.Y. desk project encapsulates the fabulous functionality of modern industrial interiors. The desk is supported at one end by a four-drawer metal cabinet (without the supplied castors), held in place with hidden angle brackets. The other end is a simple make – a painted timber frame – that helps to support the timber panel benchtop.

Photo credit: Natasha Dickins and Larnie Nicolson

Steps

1Assemble the cabinet

Assemble the cabinet according to the manufacturer's instructions. To make the timber frame, position the lengths of pine together and, from the ends, measure 680mm legs and 416mm rails, using a combination square to mark the lines. Cut with a mitre or handsaw.
A square rule and pen being used to mark a piece of timber

2Drill holes for the legs

At the ends of each leg, use a combination square to mark two holes, 10mm from the edges and 10mm and 30mm from the base, drilling with the countersinking bit.

A square rule and pen used to mark out a piece of timber

3Attach the legs

Apply timber adhesive to the end-grain of a rail, position it flush against the end of a leg, clamp to the work surface and secure with 75mm screws. Turn the frame, clamp and repeat with the second rail, then attach the second leg.

The frame of an office desk being screwed into place

4Prep and paint

Sand the frame all over, removing any loose timber and splinters around the screws. Fill the holes with filler, leave to dry, then sand until smooth. Wipe away dust with a damp cloth, then apply two coats of paint with a mini roller.

A length of timber being painted black

5Position the frame

On the underside of the panel, measure 250mm from the end and 50mm from the edges to position the frame. Stagger four countersunk holes along the rail to secure with 60mm screws.

Tip: To prevent the cabinet scratching the floor, cut flooring underlay to fit underneath it before positioning the top.

A screw being put into the underside of a desk frame

6Put it all together

At the opposite end of the panel, centre two brackets 50mm and 550mm from the edge, securing with 20mm button head screws. At the back, secure a bracket 30mm from the edge and 275mm from the end. When securing brackets, ensure they're positioned with the backs facing inwards to be flush with the cabinet. Enlist a second pair of hands to lift the panel, positioning it with the brackets around the assembled cabinet.

Tip: If the desk is positioned against the wall, the top won't slip back. But if it needs more support, screw the brackets into the cabinet by drilling through the holes in the side and back brackets with a 3mm drill bit, securing with 8G x 12mm self-tapping sheet metal screws.

Metal brackets being screwed into a timber frame

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More D.I.Y. Advice

Health & Safety

Please make sure you use all equipment appropriately and safely when following the advice in these D.I.Y. videos. You need to be familiar with how to use equipment safely and follow the instructions that came with the equipment. If you are unsure, you may feel it is safest to consult an expert, such as the manufacturer or an expert Bunnings Team Member.

Grave health hazards are linked to asbestos, which may be in homes built up to 1990. Health hazards may result from exposure to lead-based paints in older materials and copper chromium arsenic (CCA) treated timber. For information on the dangers of asbestos, lead-based paint and CCA treated timber and tips for dealing with these materials contact your local council's Environmental Health Officer. You can also use a simple test kit from Bunnings to indicate the presence of lead-based paint.