Adding a "wrist rest" edge profile to a computer desk

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Forum topic by ryanjg117 posted 05-22-2015 06:46 AM 602 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View ryanjg117's profile


8 posts in 521 days

05-22-2015 06:46 AM

I’m in the process of building a rather cool computer workstation based on schedule 40 galvanized steel pipe, kee klamp fittings, and wood. Since the work surface is rather thick (about 1.75” thick), my plan was to add an edge profile to make it more comfortable to rest the wrists on, for extended period of computing.

However, I’m not quite sure the best way to make this contour. I have a router table, but I don’t think they make bits large enough or with the right profile for what I’m trying to accomplish. I’d imaging a large handplane could do the trick, but my hand planing skills are level zero, so I’m not sure it would be very precise. Of course, I could always sand any imperfections out in finishing. Here are some pictures:

How would you accomplish this? Thanks!

6 replies so far

View TheWoodenOyster's profile


1275 posts in 1354 days

#1 posted 05-22-2015 12:05 PM

Definitely don’t try it with a router, that looks like a job for an industrial shaper, but you probably don’t have that. If you have a table saw, you could tilt the blade a little to cut the bulk of the material off just like a raised panel for a frame and panel door. This isn’t the easiet or safest cut, so be careful. Skip to 2:28 How to do this

Then just shape the rest with a file or rasp or handplane if you feel like learning.

As a side note, handplanes really are great tools and are irreplaceable in my mind. This would be a good time to learn and then you’ll know how to do it forevermore.

-- The Wood Is Your Oyster

View Crank50's profile


170 posts in 995 days

#2 posted 05-22-2015 12:06 PM

Make a profile template out of thin hard material, then start to work with a hand plane.
You don’t have to have a full assortment of planes to do that.
A number 5 would probably be what I would use to rapidly hog off the bulk of the material.
Then a number 4 to smooth it while checking the shape against the template every few strokes.

But, if I didn’t have any thing but a simple block plane I’d just use that.
A block plane might not be the fastest tool in the shop for this job but it would certainly work, and everybody needs to have a block plane and learn how to use it.

View SirIrb's profile


1239 posts in 649 days

#3 posted 05-22-2015 01:03 PM

take a old hand saw blade and cut the profile in it. mark out your top and side lines and plane close. Then use the profiled saw blade to scrape it.

-- Don't blame me, I voted for no one.

View BroncoBrian's profile


435 posts in 1377 days

#4 posted 05-22-2015 04:05 PM

Make a profile template out of thin hard material, then start to work with a hand plane.

- Crank50

Smart option. I think you could take 80% of the material off with a table saw, maybe more if you are patient and treat like like a dado cut with a standard blade, adjust the height as you make each pass, then get the sander out to clean it up. I imagine this is a 45 min job at most.

-- Bigfoot tries to take pictures of me

View ryanjg117's profile


8 posts in 521 days

#5 posted 05-22-2015 04:21 PM

Thanks all. I believe my dad left me an old plane, so I should learn how to use it, but that would also mean I’d have to sharpen the blade (easy, I know).

I like the idea of printing out the template and transferring it to the edges. I also have a track saw, so though it would be time consuming, I could make about 25 different cuts and less-and-less plunge depth and then sand or plane out the fuzz.

One thing I’ve learned about woodworking: there are a million different ways to skin a cat. It’s all about how much free time you have. :-)

View HerbC's profile


1567 posts in 2278 days

#6 posted 05-22-2015 05:47 PM


One thing I ve learned about woodworking: there are a million different ways to skin a cat. ...
- ryanjg117

And I hear that cat doesn’t seem to like any of them…


-- Herb, Florida - Here's why I close most messages with "Be Careful!"

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