Mission Oak Office Desk Center from leftovers
What to make with 3- 4×8 sheets of rift oak plywood, 2 metal file cabinets, 2 left over 30×16 dovetailed maple drawers, and 2 old base drawer cabinets?
As a cabinet maker, my office was always an embarrassment to me. For the last 15 years, I used this ugly white Formica L shaped office desk with chrome legs that we inherited from my wife’s old office.
Can’t complain, I know. It was free and we needed a desk.
I have a good friend who is a union carpenter and his job is to assemble office partitions and set up desks in downtown Chicago.
When he saw the old desk he laughed at it and said: “Dude! We throw sh..t better than that out in the dumpster everyday. Let me set you up with a nicer one.”
But I said: “No, no………. I’m going to make one.”
He said: “Yea right, with all your projects?……I won’t hold my breath.”
I knew if I had just replaced it with another better looking wood grained Formica metal desk that it would mean that I was giving up on my “mission”. My mind was set. The ugly white desk stays.
It will become a daily, ugly reminder of that mission to build a proper desk. Nothing too elaborate, practical, modular, and adjustable to be 2 desks if needed. Built by me.
15 years later, we finally finished installing the recycled 1/4 sawn oak flooring throughout the house and had them sanded and finished. This meant we had to empty the house including the much loved white desk.
4 days later, as we brought everything back in the house, we looked at the old white desk and we just couldn’t bring it back in. So, we sat it on the side of the driveway and within minutes, a nice young family pulled up with a minivan full of kids and I helped them load it up.
I’m gonna miss that old desk.
Recycling old components should invoke the same feelings and have the same effect on you as a handmade dovetailed drawer. Extend the carbon footprint. It's just the right thing to do.
The C top is big enough for full size blue prints or my wife's jewelry making supplies.
Nice place for the paper shedder.
You would never guess this was originally a white melamine plywood drawer cabinet from a 1980s contemporary entertainment center covered with mirrors. I rebuilt the base, replaced the drawer fronts, and skinned it in oak.
As you can see the drawer fronts are just an illusuon.
The used drawers are baltic birch. I replaced the drawer slides so they're self closing.
I cut the old metal legs and mounted them on this 5/4 x 5" x 21" oak. The big paper cutter fit nicely underneath.