So I’ve decided to write this post because wanted to share my recent project to build myself a new office desk, and kind of wanted to brag a little about the results and of course inspire other people to do the same 🙂
The idea for me to build a desk came about because I simply couldn’t find one I liked, that was in my budget. I had a clear idea of what I wanted, the legs had to be cast iron (ideally from a old sewing machine), and some old reclaimed wood for the top. So the hunt began to find what I needed.
Legs found – £20
It took a while but I eventually found the type of legs I wanted, the only problem was they still had the top attached to it. This was easily fixed by removing it and donating to a friend.
Please note: not everyone will be as lucky as I was to find table legs at this price, and reason i donated the top was because the friend in question helped me find the legs and it’s was a quality piece of Mahogany on top.
Prepping the legs – Free
The next step is to prep the legs ready for re-sealing. Cast iron can take a lot of looking after if you’re not careful, as it can rust really easily and rust leads to holes. First thing I did was sand off any unwanted old paint to make the surface smooth, although in most cases you can just go over them with a wire brush and make sure there is no dirt on them. Then I gave the legs a quick wash with some water, to get any dust off. DRY THEM STRAIGHT AFTER TO AVOID RUST!
Repainting the legs – £10
Once the legs were dried it was time to paint them. Try do this as quickly as possible, as this stage is where you seal the cast iron from weather damage. For this I used Hammerite Smooth black paint. I also bought some cheap brushes at Hammerite stains and can be difficult to wash off, also once it’s dried it’s like hard as rock. If you use Hammerite you don’t need an undercoat either 🙂
The Table Top – £25
Now the legs were sorted I moved on to the top. I went to one place where they can make tops for you, and they had the exact look I wanted. However, they quoted me £180 pound! So I said no thanks and went back to the idea of making my own.
I looked around a couple of wood yards, before my dad spotted some old scaffold boards for sale. After going to look at them, I decided to buy as they were just what I wanted. At $6 each they were a bargain and and the extra money was made up of the nuts and bolts to fix it all together.
In order to get the wood ready it had to be sanded down. I managed to borrow a belt sander from a friend for this, and my dad already had the trestles. Where ever possible try and borrow what you can to keep costs down.
Waxing the Table – £10
The next task was to wax the wood, in order to seal it. I had to buy some specialist wax for this, but any furniture shop should sell it.
I’m sorry that some of these photos are the wrong way around. For some reason word press won’t rotate them. I’ll try and fix it at some point
A you can see from the image above waxing make the wood look completely different. There are many different types of wax you can buy, in many different shades. the one I used was easily painted on with a brush.
Now I had all the pieces of the puzzle it was time for the final build. With some makeshift clamping and some extra woof we had lying around, we joined the three scaffold boards together. A little bit of maths had to be used here, to make sure the table top sat in the middle of the legs.
Once they were all joined together, we put the top in place and drilled the wholes where the top would be connected to the legs. Due to the size and shape of the table when pieced together we didn’t officially fix it up until it was in my room, by taking it up in two piece.
Once it was all joined together I gave it one final wax 🙂 There you have it. A desk is born!
I don’t know about you but i think it looks pretty good. And all for less than £50