Joint Project - Computer Lap Desk - Ellen35 and moonls (Lorna)

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Project by ellen35 posted 03-17-2011 12:28 AM 2252 views 3 times favorited 25 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This computer lap desk was a joint project that Lorna and I completed a week ago. Lorna has a wonderful treasure trove of old plans and we decided to spend some time making some of the projects. This computer lap desk is made using 1/2 inch walnut for the body, 1/2 inch maple for the top and purpleheart doweled breadboard edges on the top. We used a piano hinge to make it easy to open completely. The drawer is attached inside – useful for thumb drives, etc., there is a hole for the cord and the bottom is covered in felt. It is finished in 3 coats of wipe on poly. It will accommodate a standard 11×16 inch laptop inside and, while it is easier to use the computer on the slanted top, it can be used inside the box as well. Lorna’s husband has suggested that we make one that allows for use in the box by making the riser in front lower. We are working on this idea. This is probably better suited to use on a table where one wants a computer available but not obvious. I’m not sure how comfortable this would be on my lap!
The best part of this project was 2 woodworkers working together in the planning, adapting, building and finishing of the project. What more can we say!
Thanks for looking.
Ellen and Lorna

-- "Don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good." Voltaire

25 comments so far

View MsDebbieP's profile


18615 posts in 3253 days

#1 posted 03-17-2011 12:33 AM

I love that side drawer!!

I look forward to seeing version II.

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (

View rsladdwoodworks's profile


311 posts in 2262 days

#2 posted 03-17-2011 12:42 AM

it look like it would be fun to make

-- Robert Laddusaw and no I am not smarter then a fifth grader ( and no I canot spell so if it is a problem don't read it ))

View NBeener's profile


4808 posts in 2267 days

#3 posted 03-17-2011 01:14 AM

I’m with Debbie: if it weren’t for the drawer, I would “only” love it, but … for some reason … that drawer just kicks it up yet another notch, to me !

Great project !!

I wonder (literally, just that) whether drilling or slotting could help with cooling. I know some laptops can run pretty hot.

-- -- Neil

View Kate's profile


400 posts in 2967 days

#4 posted 03-17-2011 01:29 AM

Nice lap desk for the laptop. I like the combination old and new. Looks great.

-- Kate,

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile (online now)

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

8625 posts in 2012 days

#5 posted 03-17-2011 01:51 AM

I love the thought of having something “handy but not obvious” and I think this fits the bill well. It is really a handsome piece and I have to agree that the drawer just kicks it up to another level. Great job you two! What a wonderful project! :)


-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs ( Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile (online now)


16750 posts in 2768 days

#6 posted 03-17-2011 01:52 AM

Nice job. Have you considered having a full sized keyboard flop down in front?

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View Lenny's profile


1379 posts in 2620 days

#7 posted 03-17-2011 02:57 AM

Great job Ellen and Lorna. It is an attractive piece that you executed well. Like most, I love the contrast of walnut and maple and the purpleheart adds a subtle accent color. Kudos! I hope this is available for viewing.

-- On the eighth day God was back in His woodworking shop! Lenny, East Providence, RI

View patron's profile


13422 posts in 2434 days

#8 posted 03-17-2011 03:09 AM

a chocolate drawer

what will you girls think of next

nice work
and useful too i bet

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View grizzman's profile


7633 posts in 2396 days

#9 posted 03-17-2011 03:12 AM

you both did a marvelous job, its a beauty for sure…always love walnut , and as neil has said, the drawer is a very cool thing..which a slot or two might be a cool thing too..ha…i can have a play on words too…voondava… it…grizz

-- GRIZZMAN ...[''''']

View tdv's profile


1139 posts in 2163 days

#10 posted 03-17-2011 03:24 AM

I read your write-up in my e-mail before looking at the post & I never expected to see the drawer in that position, that’s really neat..thinking outside the box …or was it at the side of the box?? Anyway nice one

-- God created wood that we may create. Trevor East Yorkshire UK

View Woodwrecker's profile


3769 posts in 2668 days

#11 posted 03-17-2011 03:31 AM

My hat off to both of you. This is a wonderful looking piece and will grace any room it is in.
The purple heart accents really set it off.
Nice work !

-- Eric down in sunny Florida.

View sedcokid's profile


2702 posts in 2691 days

#12 posted 03-17-2011 05:11 AM

Ellen, What a great project and what fun to work with another woodworker on. I like it, drawer and all!!

Thanks for sharing

-- Chuck Emery, Michigan,

View degoose's profile


7143 posts in 2447 days

#13 posted 03-17-2011 09:13 AM

Very attractive and well made..

-- Drink twice... and don't bother to cut... @ For lovers of all things timber...

View steliart's profile


1817 posts in 1781 days

#14 posted 03-17-2011 09:30 AM

very nices and cool design

-- Stelios L.A. Stavrinides: - I am not so rich to buy cheap tools, but... necessity is the mother of inventions - --

View littlecope's profile


3018 posts in 2595 days

#15 posted 03-17-2011 01:12 PM

Great Job Girls!! :)

-- Mike in Concord, NH---Unpleasant tasks are simply worthy challenges to improve skills.

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