How to Build a Desk: Start to Finish

What You'll Need
Pre-made smooth hard core door
Wood screws
Small finish nails
Miter saw
Narrow wood trim
4 Pre-assembled furniture legs
Paint or stain
Saw horses

Building a desk is one way to accommodate your specific needs and desires for furniture. Building your own furniture need not be complicated or difficult and it is a great way to save money.

Take the time to read through the instructions carefully before you begin your desk making project.

Step 1

Measure space for desk.

Step 2

Purchase hard core (solid) door with no handle holes cut into it. This will serve as your desk top. If you prefer a thinner desk top, you can buy a solid piece of oak or pine and finish it. The solid wood door is a less expensive, solid alternative. Cut the door or piece of wood to size.

Step 3

Purchase narrow molding to serve as the trim on outside edge of the door. Make sure that you measure the width of the outside edges of the door so that you can buy trim that will fit easily along the edge. If you do not have the tools to cut the trim, have the trim cut to size at your home improvement center.

Miter cut the ends of the trim at 45 degree angle so that they will easily fit together when they are attached to the outside edge of the door. Sometimes they will mitre cut the corners for you at the home improvement center.

Step 4

Purchase four pre-made furniture legs. Make sure that they are the correct desired height for your desk. Look for legs that have angled screw holes at the top so that you can easily attach the legs to the desktop.

If you cannot find pre-drilled legs, then drill pilot holes at a 45 degree angle from two adjoining sides of the leg on each of the four legs.

If you are planning on using your desk for computer work, you will need to makes sure that the furniture legs are shorter in order to accommodate keyboarding tasks and be ergonomically sound. The standard height for ergonomic computer desks is 25 to 29 inches, with the keyboard approximately 1 to 2 inches higher than your thighs when sitting down.

Step 5

Place door on saw horses, face (desk top) side down.

Carefully measure where each leg should be attached, making sure that they line up with the other legs. Holding the legs carefully, draw a pencil line to help you keep the legs aligned as you attach each one.

Attach each leg to the corner of the door using 2 wood screws approximately 1 ¼ inches long for each leg. Make sure the screws are long enough to go securely into the desktop without extending through the top of the desk.

Step 6

Attach trim to outside edge of door with small finish nails.

Step 7

Paint or stain desktop, molding and furniture legs.