Curved-Front Desk

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Project by ChuckV posted 03-11-2013 05:37 PM 2796 views 11 times favorited 26 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I built Chris Gochnour’s curved-front desk from FWW #225. The wood is cherry with maple drawer parts. This piece was a challenge for me – it taught me some things and pushed me a bit further along on my journey.

The splayed legs and concave front had me scratching my head more than a few times. My biggest challenge was getting the drawers right, since they participate in the curvature.

Here are most of the base parts when only the two sides were assembled:

The drawers hang on side-mounted runners. I like this technique a lot. In the end, the locations of the runners also set the stop for the drawers.

Here is the first drawer side that I attached to one of the outside drawer fronts. As you can see, this is not at a right angle – it’s off by about 9 degrees:

Here are the three drawers. The fronts were cut to final shape on the bandsaw.

Finally, here is a peek under the hood:

I finished this with Danish Oil.

-- “That it will never come again / Is what makes life so sweet. ” ― Emily Dickinson

26 comments so far

View Marcus's profile


1047 posts in 674 days

#1 posted 03-11-2013 06:03 PM

Great craftmanship. I’m sure you’ll get years and years of use out of that desk.

View bonobo's profile


234 posts in 711 days

#2 posted 03-11-2013 07:25 PM

Brilliant! Great photos too, by the way.

-- “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 Porchfish's profile


574 posts in 1187 days

#3 posted 03-11-2013 07:36 PM

Very nicely done, a new family heirloom ! Thanks for sharing

-- If it smells good, eat it ! The pig caught under the fence is the one doing all thesquealing

View david38's profile


1070 posts in 998 days

#4 posted 03-11-2013 08:44 PM

real nice job

View daltxguy's profile


1373 posts in 2569 days

#5 posted 03-11-2013 08:52 PM

I would have finished with a fifth of rum! That’s some wonky drawer and you dovetailed it! Whoah!
Nice work. You must be running out of that cherry by now.

-- If you can't joint it, bead it!

View ChuckV's profile


2420 posts in 2182 days

#6 posted 03-11-2013 09:17 PM

Thanks for the kind comments.

I could only handle so many of those dovetails before having to take a break to recover from the vertigo. And you are exactly right about the cherry. The load that I bought from a single tree is pretty much gone. In fact, the legs of this desk are from another source.

-- “That it will never come again / Is what makes life so sweet. ” ― Emily Dickinson

View Billp's profile


784 posts in 2855 days

#7 posted 03-11-2013 09:43 PM

Chuck that’s one great looking desk.the curve had to be a real challenge.the Cherry looks so nice. Great job.

-- Billp

View iminmyshop's profile


114 posts in 649 days

#8 posted 03-12-2013 12:42 AM

Beautiful work. Really, really nice.

View Woodbridge's profile


2723 posts in 1073 days

#9 posted 03-12-2013 02:45 AM

beautiful desk. You done a great job, very nice craftsmanship.

-- Peter, Woodbridge, Ontario

View Natalie 's profile


366 posts in 621 days

#10 posted 03-12-2013 03:21 AM

Very nice job! A hard project, done very well.

-- Natalie - My mind is like a bad neighborhood, I don't like to go there alone.

View exelectrician's profile


1563 posts in 1082 days

#11 posted 03-12-2013 03:38 AM

You have made the curved front desk and very well done too!

I have the book with the plans and dont know how many times I have thought about building that desk. But all those dovetail joints with the curves thrown into the mix made me think twice.

-- Love thy neighbour as thyself

View djwong's profile


133 posts in 1874 days

#12 posted 03-12-2013 08:45 AM

Looks really great. Thanks for the photo “deconstruction”. This is on my build list as well. How did you finish the cherry?

-- David W. Cupertino, CA

View ChuckV's profile


2420 posts in 2182 days

#13 posted 03-12-2013 10:18 AM


I used Danish Oil and some wax on the top surface. On earlier pieces I also used polyurethane. I am curious to see how this holds up. If I need to, I will add some poly later.

-- “That it will never come again / Is what makes life so sweet. ” ― Emily Dickinson

View PurpLev's profile


8476 posts in 2303 days

#14 posted 03-12-2013 10:39 AM

That is a beauty Chuck. very elegant build, good grain matching and the finish is balanced well.

Where is this one going to?

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View ChuckV's profile


2420 posts in 2182 days

#15 posted 03-12-2013 10:53 AM


Thank you.

There is a bedroom upstairs that we are converting into a reading room. This has been a great opportunity to make some furniture. This desk and the coffee table I made before this are heading for that room. I still need some bookcases.

-- “That it will never come again / Is what makes life so sweet. ” ― Emily Dickinson

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