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Construction Lumber Desk

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Project by David posted 01-18-2013 04:53 AM 1544 views 3 times favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I needed a desk quickly to put my computer on, so I went to Home Depot and bought some SPF 2×8s. This is what came out of it, nothing fancy but it gets the computer off the floor.

For the desk top I cut 2 of the 2×8s in half, face and edge jointed them with my newly purchased 8in Powermatic jointer and planed them down to a little over 1” thick. I glued them all together and had a nice flat top… for about 24 hours. The next day I went down into my shop to find the top had warped about 1/2” out of flat.

Rather than redo the top and have it warp again, I decided to use the brute force approach (also great stress relief). I clamped it to my bench, took some straight pieces of scrap and used a few lag bolts to teach it a lesson. I oversized the holes to allow for wood movement and called it good. It has been a few weeks and so far it has remained flat enough that you have to look along the edge to notice any warp.

The frame is made of pieces of 2×8 surfaced down to about 1.25”x1”, mortise and tenon joinery.

Dimensions: 24” deep, 44” wide, 29” tall.
Finish is a heavy coat of tung oil followed by 3 coats of satin wipe on poly on the top and 2 coats on the frame.

At first this was going to be a temporary solution, but the more I sit at it the more I find I like the way it turned out. Amazing how cheap construction lumber can make something nice.

-- Perilous to all of us are the devices of an art deeper than we ourselves possess. --Gandalf the Grey http://davidwahl.org/category/woodworking/





9 comments so far

View Chris Moellering's profile

Chris Moellering

224 posts in 1301 days


#1 posted 01-18-2013 12:48 PM

I like it. I’m not good enough to justify big money on fancy wood, so I’m a 2-by and plywood kinda guy for a lot of projects, too. You have a nice, clean looking table.

-- Grace & peace, Chris+

View crashn's profile

crashn

518 posts in 1119 days


#2 posted 01-18-2013 01:39 PM

I think maybe the construction lumber was not dry or acclimated to your environment. Was likely still wet inside and after milling, the lumber warped. Happens when you need something in a hurry

-- Crashn - the only thing I make more of than sawdust is mistakes

View Fishinbo's profile

Fishinbo

11236 posts in 829 days


#3 posted 01-18-2013 03:46 PM

A quick, nice and useful table. Great job!

—www.sawblade.com

View bonobo's profile

bonobo

232 posts in 710 days


#4 posted 01-18-2013 06:10 PM

I really like it. Much nicer than any particle board/plastic thing you’d pick up at Ikea. The cleats will probably be just fine but next time you might want to try screwed on buttons that fit into slots in the apron.

-- “The easy confidence with which I know another man's religion is folly teaches me to suspect that my own is also.” ― Mark Twain

View David's profile

David

196 posts in 1317 days


#5 posted 01-18-2013 06:18 PM

Buttons/slots were my original plan but I didn’t want it to continue warping and pull them out. The lag bolts are 1/2” and go almost all the way into the top so if they don’t hold not much will.

-- Perilous to all of us are the devices of an art deeper than we ourselves possess. --Gandalf the Grey http://davidwahl.org/category/woodworking/

View bonobo's profile

bonobo

232 posts in 710 days


#6 posted 01-18-2013 07:37 PM

Sounds good. I mentioned it because I had a warping problem with a pine top I had made and the buttons pulled it all down nice and tight…but it was only 3/4” thick.

-- “The easy confidence with which I know another man's religion is folly teaches me to suspect that my own is also.” ― Mark Twain

View Surfside's profile

Surfside

3154 posts in 827 days


#7 posted 01-18-2013 09:34 PM

That’s a nice looking table!

www.bandsawparts.com

-- "someone has to be wounded for others to be saved, someone has to sacrifice for others to feel happiness, someone has to die so others could live"

View Zinderin's profile

Zinderin

94 posts in 786 days


#8 posted 01-22-2013 03:51 PM

Nice work … I have been doing “wood re-purposing” myself just to see what can be done with it. You can actually get some very nice results from kiln-dried box-store 2×4s, 2×6s and if you watch, you can get great pricing on cabinet grade plywood.

Its hard on your tools (amazingly considering the wood is so soft), it will never replace hardwoods, but as I said, you can get some pretty amazing results from very cheap wood if you’re creative.

View David's profile

David

196 posts in 1317 days


#9 posted 01-23-2013 03:08 AM

I didn’t realize it would be hard on my tools, is that due to the large amount of sap in the wood? I didn’t notice anything but I also generally don’t use soft woods.

-- Perilous to all of us are the devices of an art deeper than we ourselves possess. --Gandalf the Grey http://davidwahl.org/category/woodworking/

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