Drifting away a bit from photography, I believe it is a dream of many of us that spend a lot of time at the computer, particularly who work at home to have an amazing workstation that fits our needs perfectly. I find it hard to work at home as it is, all the distractions! So I built myself this beast!
This is what it looked like before I started, The glass desk was my brothers and as he moved into a new place it was time to return it! The rest is just a random mix of furniture that just about stored my stuff albeit in a bit of a mess. The desk itself didn't actually leave me with much room to work as much of the surface was taken up by speakers, keyboards monitor etc. I did at one point have 2 monitors as well, but this left no room at all on the desk to do anything else!
This was my initial design. I had some restrictions that would dictate the design somewhat, firstly it's a rented apartment so I cannot puncture the walls. That meant the project had to be entirely free standing and self supporting. As you can see my measuring/ designing skills are pretty lazy! I knew what I wanted to create, I just needed a rough drawing to work out how many parts to order. PLus as it was for me I could take my time and experiment with some things. I also had a small budget. I wanted this done spending less that £250, this I failed at but it was worth a go!
After working out how much steel to order and the sizes - I went with 26.9mm diameter steel Key Clamp (Interclamp) ordered from The Metal Store online as this was by far the cheapest place for it and they will cut the steel for you for free! Although there was only a few measurements that I was sure of so I got them done and the rest 3 metre lengths.
Cut them all down to size using a small angle grinder I picked up for £30. I thought about just using my hack saw for it but for £30 I thought I'd save myself the effort and have some fun with sparks.
I used scaffolding boards that I picked up pretty cheap. Turns out scaffolders can only use the boards for so long before they have to be scrapped for health and safety reasons They were dirty as hell. I used a flap disk on my angle grinder to strip off the top layer on them. In hindsight I should have jetwashed them first to reduce the amount of builders dust everywhere. Cold fitting. Making sure the holes I made in the scaffolding were in the right places. For the desktop I used 3 boards deep on the left and 2 on the right. they are dowelled in between and glued.
I moved operations to my flat. I had made most of it but not tested it all. But travelling to my families place all the time to use their garage was wearing me out. They live 1.5/2 hours away.
These blocks were really simply assembled. I figured out the sizing of each all the same width. I dowelled and glued the 2 boards together and then once they were in the flat constructed the boxes. Pilot holes are important with dry old wood like this as it will split. Used big old coach screws with glue in the tops and bottoms to hold it all together. Waxed it all before assembling.
There is a locking collar on the underside of every hole through the wood that is clamped to the steel, this takes the weight and holds them in place once it is standing.
You can just see the wiring that is running through some of the poles, this is for some pendant lights that I want to have hanging down with old style edison squirrel cage bulbs in them.
Fitting it roughly in place. getting a feel for how it's going to look now.
All installed and assembled! Apart from the lighting. As we are in rented accommodation I had to factor in that this may not fit in my next place so this is pretty modular. The box shelving part is easily removed and made independent if needs be.
Close-up of the finish and the zig-zag (herringbone?) joint on the destop. You can really see the finish in this photo. I used Rustoleum dark wax for this, it's designed to be used on top of their paints to age them but I love to look on bare wood as it as really beautiful golden tones and dries nice and hard wearing.
Specifically designed this shelf for DVD's on the top and CD's on the bottom. It was a pain in the arse to make but it made better use of the space then having two separate shelves. It's hollow underneath so I will fit that with LED lights at some point possibly.
Lighting installed. The Anglepoise lamp you can see there was another project. I bought a broken cream one on gumtree and took it apart, stripped the paint off and restored it with the same braided brown rope cable used for the pendant lights.
Also the chair that you could see in a previous picture that was battered with some white gloss paint on it; I cleaned it up and painted it gold with a rustoleum ink blue chalky paint on top, scratched off some of the blue in places and then finished with Lacquer from the same company.
I have a charging station! this was a must. I was sick of having so many loose wires and chargers clogging up everywhere. They are velcroed on to the side of the box shelf so the take up no room. I left a ledge for the batteries as well.
Box shelves all finished. There is wiring in all three of these columns for me pendant lights, but I chose not to actually use them in the end as there is a door just to the right so they would get in the way. I've left it all in though so if we move I might be able to use them!
CLose-up of the bar going through the boxes. These did not line up with the original holes so to make them bigger I bought a drum sanding kit off Amazon, its just a rubber cylinder that with sanding sleeves that can be used with your existing drill. Brilliant bit of kit saved me from hours of sitting there with a file!
Lighting. I love these lights, they give a lovely warm glow. A future project is to make a dimmer switch using some interesting reclaimed item but for now they are just on a normal switch.
A shelf for all our camera bits! This makes life so much easier instead of having to dig around various bags looking for stuff. or dumping it somewhere when it's not needed. (Also camera bags are terrible places to leave your gear, increases mould risk).