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Looking for some thoughts and ideas on a floating desk

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Forum topic by Kevin Tunis posted 10-15-2010 01:18 AM 9496 views 0 times favorited 23 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Kevin Tunis

21 posts in 2248 days


10-15-2010 01:18 AM

I am looking for some thoughts and ideas on a floating desk. I’m not new to woodworking but my engineering skills, I need some help on. I have built a desk top out of 1 ½ stock the dimensions are 27” wide by a 147” long.

If I use 1” x 2” metal tubing and run it long ways 147” and fasten the metal bracket on both sides into the wall: will that provide enough support?

I estimate the desk to be around 200 pounds and I will be putting computers and such on it. I also know that occasionally people lean up against desk or sit on them and this should be taken into account also.

-- Kevin Tunis


23 replies so far

View Don Butler's profile

Don Butler

1086 posts in 2862 days


#1 posted 10-15-2010 01:39 PM

Kevin, I’d like to get a better idea of the installation site.
Are there walls on both sides 147” apart?
What kind of metal tubing are we talking about? Is it aluminum, steel, or what?
Do you mean to use the tubing to support thr front edge of the desktop or how will it be positioned under the desktop?
147” long is rather long, indeed. It might need some additional support in the middle to keep from sagging.
Please fill us in on the details.
Kindest regards,
ddwwb

-- No trees were damaged in posting this message, but thousands of electrons were seriously inconvenienced.

View Moron's profile

Moron

5032 posts in 3360 days


#2 posted 10-15-2010 02:03 PM

Just my opinion but “no way”. You might consider fabricating brackets every 4’ that are shallow

-- "Good artists borrow, great artists steal”…..Picasso

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Gregn

1642 posts in 2450 days


#3 posted 10-15-2010 02:12 PM

Hi Kevin,
At 12’ 3” the stress’s that this desk would be enduring during use will be great. To give it a floating appearance to some degree you might be further ahead to engineer some L brackets with gussets to support the top. While this isn’t a true floating design, unlike floating shelves that hang higher on the wall. The desk does sit lower on the wall and the L brackets would be almost invisible to the view and give the appearance of floating. I would want to space the brackets about 3’ apart for equalized support to carry the weight of everything on it and the stress’s during use. While this might not be the answer your looking for I think it would be a safer alternative to use for this application. Hope this is some help to you.

-- I don't make mistakes, I have great learning lessons, Greg

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Kevin Tunis

21 posts in 2248 days


#4 posted 11-04-2010 02:11 AM

Sorry I did not get back to you guys as fast as you answered my post. Still looking at idea because of the weight I think that maybe I should just put legs under the desk. If I use a wood bracket from the wall I am afraid that it might pull out. Mounting it to the walls on both sides using a welded metal bracket it seems it would sag in the middle. Anyway I just started using Google Sketchup about a month ago and decided to include the drawing of the desk here.

-- Kevin Tunis

View Jack_T's profile

Jack_T

623 posts in 2498 days


#5 posted 11-08-2010 08:03 PM

I can’t resist. Why not just put the desk on a house boat.

I have no idea how to do this but have added this thread to my watch list so that I can learn something. Sorry for the poor joke. Sometimes, I just can’t help myself.

-- Jack T, John 3:16 "For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life."

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Kevin Tunis

21 posts in 2248 days


#6 posted 11-09-2010 10:21 PM

Jack_T yea I thought about that but this part of Kansas is dry :-). Used the floating desk terminology in retrospect to the floating shelves.

-- Kevin Tunis

View dakremer's profile

dakremer

2583 posts in 2558 days


#7 posted 11-09-2010 10:37 PM

I’ve seen this done before…..probably too much work though – but if its drywall behind it, you could….

1. take drywall off
2. cut dados in bottom of desk top for a (large) bracket of some sort. attach bracket to the studs so they are completely hidden – you are gonna need some HUGE brackets to hold that weight – no better way than hiding them in the studs.
3. re-drywall around the desk to cover everything back up

can’t remember exactly where i saw it done this way, but i did – so it does work. haha….

hopefully that gives you some ideas…

-- Hey you dang woodchucks, quit chucking my wood!!!!

View chrisstef's profile

chrisstef

15676 posts in 2473 days


#8 posted 11-09-2010 10:39 PM

Heres my thought …. when i build floating shleves i leave a hollowed out portion in the back of the shelf, then attach a board to the wall studs, insert the floating shelf over the attached board screew the 2 together and it floats.

What if you opened up the drywall and attached something to the studs which coudl withstand the weight of the desk, using the attachments like outriggers to support the bottom of the desk. Im not sure if its feasible but my 2 cents.

-- rock, chalk, jayhawk

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chrisstef

15676 posts in 2473 days


#9 posted 11-09-2010 10:43 PM

i probably should have read dak’s remarks … were thinkin on the same lines here

-- rock, chalk, jayhawk

View Kevin Tunis's profile

Kevin Tunis

21 posts in 2248 days


#10 posted 11-09-2010 11:07 PM

I have been testing some ideas.
1. Angle bracket made from 1 by 3 – seems to work still feels like a lot of weight in the front pushing the bracket down and apart.
2. Thought about a 1×2 1/4 inch plate with 1/2 dowels and sliding the desk like a shelf – ruled this out as I feel it would just pull out of the wall.
3. Using a ledger on the wall building it out like a deck and making it look like a stretcher on a table. This looks way to bulking for me.
4 Just building it like a trestle table with a 2×4 stretcher against the bottom. This would probably give me the most support but I don’t get the floating look I am after.

-- Kevin Tunis

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Kevin Tunis

21 posts in 2248 days


#11 posted 11-09-2010 11:11 PM

dakremer – thought about that and I feel that it gives the most support and the look that it is floating but I have already finished my walls with American Clay

-- Kevin Tunis

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dakremer

2583 posts in 2558 days


#12 posted 11-09-2010 11:12 PM

Here is what I was thinking, Kevin…..

would be really cool if you could make it out of black metal! mixing black metal and wood looks great!!.....

or some way to hide it completely in the wood desktop you already made….hope this helps…

-- Hey you dang woodchucks, quit chucking my wood!!!!

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dakremer

2583 posts in 2558 days


#13 posted 11-09-2010 11:14 PM

oh, posted this too late! too bad about the already finished clay wall! This really would probably be the best way. I will try and think of some other ways.

Can we get a pic of what the finished desktop looks like?

-- Hey you dang woodchucks, quit chucking my wood!!!!

View Kevin Tunis's profile

Kevin Tunis

21 posts in 2248 days


#14 posted 11-09-2010 11:57 PM

Dak I like the black metal to. Took a picture with my phone waiting for it to upload.

-- Kevin Tunis

View traupmann's profile

traupmann

124 posts in 2254 days


#15 posted 11-10-2010 12:02 AM

I have a suggestion that will mean minor damage to your wall.
1. scribe line of desk top
2. find all studs in wall
3. cut hole on either side of stud large enough to work in, but stay below the line.
4. Using Simpson T mark the holes
5. drill the 4 holes through studs
6. bolt 2 simpson Ts with stud between.
Now the wall will come down before the T will fail
7 Tie the horizontal members with bolts
8 build the desk.

You may taper the horizontal members from 3 1/2 to 1 to make the desk not look so thick. The top of the desk should cover any damage to the wall, and a minor repair below won’t detract much.

-- chas -- looking for Serta sponsorship to go Pro...

showing 1 through 15 of 23 replies

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