Contemporary Desk

Editor's Choice - Nov 02, 2017

I’ve been away for a while… building Rocking Chairs, primarily, but other pieces as requested.

This is a personal project – one that I’ve mentally fussed-over for a year or more – never getting the design quite right in my head. One day I started building, and this design settled-in. I toured Google, Bing, and Firefox Images, and just couldn’t find something specific.

By design, this is not a computer desk; though, it works well in computer mode. I wanted a writing desk, that would accommodate the monitors, keyboard, and mouse of my computer life, when I was doing paperwork.

Legs are European Beech; Desktop & Shelf are Walnut; the ‘Risers’ supporting the Shelf are Walnut; though, my wife thinks I should have used the Beech – she’s right, as usual.

All legs are identical, and M&Ts are used both top & bottom; and I’ve included a tenoned spacer/bracer in the back; as well as pegging the side legs (at their crossover); to ensure rigidity. The risers (MYT, as well) are angled toward the sitting position, except for the side-ends, which are 90 degrees to the sitter.

The arcs (front, back, and sides) for the Base, Desktop, & Shelf are formed by a 93" radius template; and the Shelf is inset from the back & sides by 3/4" (Risers are inset an additional 1/4", to sit recessed underneath the Shelf).

About 20 hours of build-time.

The finish is Deft Tint-base oil-based stain, only. While I prefer Deft products, I should have used a grain-filler on the Walnut; and if I were to build another, my current thinking is: grain-filler on the Walnut, Seal-Coat, and Deft’s Acrylic (water-borne).

I’m documenting the build; and if anyone is interested in additional details, please let me know.


Woods: walnut european beech

Tools: ts bs domino

Lead By Example; Make a Difference


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a1jim ...

That’s one Amazing design and build MJ outstanding workmanship.
It would be great to see the build.

MJCD ...

High, High Praise – coming from you. Thanks. Documenting the build is a current project… something I do after each new piece. The second piece is always better – fewer mistakes, and shortcuts that can be safely taken. Layout is the critical step; and ensuring exact replicas of the Legs.

Thanks, again.

Jack ...

Beautiful design and workmanship. I’m a big fan of constrasting woods and I would love to see the build. Thank you.

Wheaties - Bruce A Wheatcroft ( BAW Woodworking) ...

Very unique piece , fantastic job .

MJCD ...

Jack, Wheaties:

Thanks for the comments. This is a very build-able piece – the glue-up was interesting…


Moment ...

Great curvilinear design !

oldrivers ...

Beautiful design, materials and workmanship.

Dandy ...

Absolutely beautiful!!!

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Contemporary Desk