Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Building A Desk - THE LEGS - Part 2

If you missed it, Part 1 covered the table top of the desk and today we're covering the legs!  As I mentioned before, I wanted the desk to be easily dismantled for when I next move, so these legs are pretty basic and simply slot into the top :) The sturdy factor of the overall desk is about 7/10 but if don't need the ability to dismantle you could easily secure the legs to the table top for 10/10 sturdiness

Leg Inspiration - here and here

THE LEGS - PART 2 (3 days to complete)

What you'll need

Everything from Part 1 + Some brackets!

4 x sturdy brackets (I ended up using 4 more which I'll explain in a second)


Step /1 Measurements
Work out the height of your table. I used this site to work out the right dimensions for my height.  I then encountered that it wasn't possible to have the desk, quite the right height due to my chair height + wanting to avoid my knees hitting the desk so I gave myself a bit more height so my legs could fit under comfortably

Step /2 Measure Twice Cut Once
With your measurements above, cut your pieces down to size, you're going to be making 2 square frames and you need to know their height (gathered in step 1) and their width which will be dependent upon your table top's width (gathered in Part 1).  I actually cut my height pieces a little longer and as you'll see in part 5 this was a very lucky thing! But if you're not like me just take your time measuring and cutting correctly :P

Step  /3 Sand
When using reclaimed wood, the upside is that you may be able to get your pieces very cheap or free but if you want a professional looking finish you'll have to put in the time to sand your pieces down. A rustic look may be you thing though so potentially discard everything I just said :P

Step /4 Clamp and Screw the Frames
Using your 90 degree clamps build your frame minus the bottom board. Put some wood glue between the join, pre-drill a hole and then use a screw (remember, drill a hole a fraction bigger than the screw but the same length).

Step /5 Test and Correct
Temporarily put your frames (minus their bottom piece) into the underside of your table top to double check your measurements.  It was here I had realised one of my frames was going to be a fraction shorter than the other (luckily I had allocated extra length during step 2). For an even desk you definitely need both leg frames the exact same height so at this stage do your final cuts to make sure they both match.

Step /6 Finish the Square
Pre-drill and screw the final piece of wood to the leg frames to complete the square shape.

Step /8 Add Brackets
I added 2 brackets to each frame.  I initially thought I'd only need 2 for each frame and these would sit at the top, hidden by the table top but to make things sturdy I did need to make some adjustments in step 7 below!

Step /7 Test the Sturdiness
Once the two frames were finished I tested them again underneath the table top. I found the frames had a slight wobble so I went out and bought some longer screws (changing the 50mm lengths to 75mm) and re-screwed (plus re-glued) the four joins - I also added an extra set of brackets at the bottom corners of both frames. Learn from my mistakes here and it probably won't take you 3 days to complete :P

Step /8 Sand
Fill any holes (with either wood filler or wood glue + sawdust) and sand your leg frames (I ended up filling and sanding my legs around 4 times to make sure the end result would be beautiful! After this process make sure you give all your pieces a good wipe down ready for the painting stage!

In Part 3 I'm going to discuss all the final steps before your desk is ready to use!

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