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A DIY Studio Desk build

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Re: A DIY Studio Desk build

Postby Wonks » Wed Sep 12, 2018 10:40 pm

A single piece desktop of reasonable thickness would probably be sufficient. A bit wasteful because of all the pieces you'll neds to cut off, but aesthetically more pleasing than more external supports in the long run?
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Re: A DIY Studio Desk build

Postby MarkOne » Fri Sep 14, 2018 9:10 am

Thanks for the feedback one and all.

Having the frame on the legs, I too became concerned about the stiffness of the frame. And in line with Wonks' suggestion I have now opted to make the desktop from a single piece of 18mm MDF which will be bolted to the sections with M8 countersunk bolts into threaded inserts.

The next instalment will be all about making the top...
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Re: A DIY Studio Desk build

Postby Matt Houghton » Fri Sep 14, 2018 10:32 am

MarkOne wrote: I have now opted to make the desktop from a single piece of 18mm MDF which will be bolted to the sections with M8 countersunk bolts into threaded inserts.

I had a good carpenter here to design and construct some inbuilt shelving for me a couple of years back. It's not quite the same span as your desk, but he preferred to bond two thinner sheets (I think in this case 2 x 12mm sheets) together, rather than use a single thicker sheet. That shelving is currently bearing a considerable weight in books!
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Re: A DIY Studio Desk build

Postby MarkOne » Fri Sep 14, 2018 4:36 pm

I've just uploaded Part 6: The desktop: http://www.markonemusic.co.uk/studio-desk-part-6-the-top/

In which the desktop is cut and fixed. And yes, I can definitively say, a solid 18mm MDF top bolted to 34mm thick (68mm for the console sections) subframe creates a stiff and rigid structure. Thanks for the feedback on that one
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Re: A DIY Studio Desk build

Postby Martin Walker » Sun Sep 16, 2018 11:45 pm

Wow - this is looking ever more impressive MarkOne! :clap:

I particularly like the shallow angle on your rack cutouts, as so many studio desks have vertical rack panels, which can make it tricky to avoid early reflections from the desk.


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Re: A DIY Studio Desk build

Postby MarkOne » Mon Sep 17, 2018 2:20 pm

Over the weekend, progress was slower than I hoped.

I managed to construct the end panels for the desk and the console sections, and get all the edge veneering done.

Part 7. http://www.markonemusic.co.uk/studio-desk-part-7-end-panels/

With the help of Mrs One on varnishing duties I hope to have the desk more or less ready for final assembly later this week

This weekend I also acquired the oak for the front trim and got my brother-in-law to run the rough sawn stock through his whizzy thicknesser so that's ready for my attention too.

The end is in sight. I hope.
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Re: A DIY Studio Desk build

Postby Martin Walker » Mon Sep 17, 2018 2:40 pm

MarkOne wrote:The end is in sight. I hope.

Yes, I can see it quite plainly MarkOne! ;)

And well done for co-opting your wife on varnishing duties :clap: :clap: :clap:

Will you be giving guided tours of this wonderful creation when it's finished?


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Re: A DIY Studio Desk build

Postby Matt Houghton » Mon Sep 17, 2018 3:07 pm

Cool. Glad to hear that the design is working out and that the rigidity concerns were unfounded!
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Re: A DIY Studio Desk build

Postby Watchmaker » Tue Sep 25, 2018 1:50 am

Outstanding. I hadn't thought you'd put a full panel on top like that. You could probably sleep on that when the in laws visit. Very nice looking veneer too.
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Re: A DIY Studio Desk build

Postby MarkOne » Sun Sep 30, 2018 5:53 pm

Hi All, Been away on business all week to the far reaches of the planet - I was in Guangzhou china for a week long meeting, so progress is slow. But here are updates showing the wood finishing:

http://www.markonemusic.co.uk/studio-desk-part-8-finishing/

And then re-telling the rack rail disaster and it's final resolution.

http://www.markonemusic.co.uk/studio-desk-part-9-rack-rail-woes/

It's all starting to come together now. Unfortunately I have another week of business travel to an even more alien land (Paris!) so it will be another week before I get to get to grips with the final bits.
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Re: A DIY Studio Desk build

Postby blinddrew » Sun Sep 30, 2018 6:13 pm

Looking really good, but, and I know we've covered this, I still worry about the lack of central support.
I'm just picturing a future scenario when you and a friend are in the room and, before you can warn him, he perches his @rse on the centre of the desk, and even 18mm of ply isn't a match for 85kg of weight applied at the point of maximum cantilever.
Your slow-motion dive and every-bodyguard-movie-ever-shout of, "Noooooooooo!" will echo out to everyone who's read this thread. In the middle of our regular lives and jobs we'll suddenly stop, and feel a terrible sadness; as if a cloud had passed across a bright sun and robbed it of all warmth.
The faint tinkle of your discarded coffee mug shattering as it hits the floor, and you collapse into a physically and metaphorically broken pile with your mate and the remains of your desk, will ring out like some strange and melancholy bell.

But I might be over-dramatising. :)
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Re: A DIY Studio Desk build

Postby MarkOne » Mon Oct 01, 2018 9:10 am

LOL! I love your mind picture...

I don't really know want to say other than... "Airplane Wings"

The aluminium covering a commercial airliner can be typically as thin as 1mm. That's pretty thin and bendy. Luckily, that skin is fixed securely to a substructure, and the overall final structure is more than strong enough to haul, you, me and 200 other people, enough gin and tonic to keep us all happy, some duty free and 70,000 Kg of jet fuel aloft.

Now my desk isn't exactly a work of aeronautical engineering, but it's not a single 17mm thickness of MDF. The subframe is made up from 34mm square softwood which is screwed and glued together to form a matrix. The top is then fixed to this frame at multiple points. Then finally an oak edge 20mm thick and 100 mm deep is going to be fixed to the front.

There is a handy calculator on-line that you can put in thickness and length for various materials. (http://www.woodbin.com/calcs/sagulator/) And if you take a simple single 2m length of 17mm MDF 20cm wide supported at both ends and plop 100kg right in the middle. the deflection would indeed be a worrying 11.6cm!!! but now if you add a strip of solid oak to the front edge alone that is 10x2.2cm creating a simple L shape structure, the deflection goes down to a mere 1.1mm

Given I have the subframe and the edge strip I'm pretty confident that the final article will be friend-ar$e proof :)
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Re: A DIY Studio Desk build

Postby blinddrew » Mon Oct 01, 2018 2:59 pm

Ah, that oak front panel is reassuring. I'm sure you know what you're doing. :)
It's, ahem, at least 20 years (probably 25) since I looked at pin jointed frames and cantilevered loads. :)
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Re: A DIY Studio Desk build

Postby MarkOne » Mon Oct 08, 2018 12:52 pm

Back from Paris, and a whole weekend at home to work on the desk.

Here is the front trim construction, fixing and finish.
http://www.markonemusic.co.uk/studio-desk-part-10-the-oak-front-trim/

This entry concludes the actual desk construction phase. I still have to sort out things like cable management, power strips, an integrated USB hub, and then installation of the rack kit. So there may be another entry along in the not too distant future.

I am really happy with the way it's turned out and I'm looking forward to getting this thing fully operational soon :)

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Re: A DIY Studio Desk build

Postby Humble Bee » Mon Oct 08, 2018 2:04 pm

Top class Mark!
Jealous me! :thumbup:
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