How to Build and Make a Glass-Top Desk

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Building a home office does not need to be a costly project if you choose to build your own desk. A glass-top desk is a fairly simple piece of furniture that most homeowners are capable of constructing on their own. To complete this project you simply need to determine the ideal dimensions for your desk, construct the frame and lay down a glass tabletop. Using recycled materials or re-purposing an old desk frame can greatly reduce the cost of this project.

Things You'll Need

  • Measuring tape
  • Pencil and paper
  • 2-by-4-inch hardwood
  • Jigsaw
  • 3-inch wood screws
  • 4-by-4-inch hardwood
  • 1-by-12-inch hardwood
  • Ruler
  • 2-inch wood screws
  • Paint or wood stain
  • Clear varnish or polyurethane
  • Black felt
  • Sharp scissors
  • Craft glue
  • Sheet of tempered glass

Preparing the Desk Frame

  • Measure the space where you plan to place your glass-top desk using a measuring tape. Take the desired length, width and height dimensions of your desk and record them on a sheet of paper to reference during the building process.

  • Cut two pieces of 2-by-4-inch hardwood to the desired length of your desktop, minus four inches, using a jigsaw. Using the width measurement of the desktop minus four inches, cut two more pieces of 2-by-4-inch hardwood.

  • Arrange the four pieces of hardwood you just cut in a rectangle shape. Sandwich the shorter boards between the ends of the longer boards and align the outside edges. Secure the rectangular frame by driving 3-inch wood screws through the longer boards into the thickness of the shorter boards.

  • Cut four equal-length pieces of 4-by-4-inch hardwood using the desired height of the glass-top desk. These boards will serve as the legs for your desk.

  • Stand one of the desk legs upright inside each corner of the rectangular frame. Two sides of each leg should be flush with the inside edges of the frame at the corners. Attach the legs by driving 3-inch wood screws through the outside of the hardwood frame into the legs. For added support, drive additional screws at an angle through the legs into the inside of the frame.

  • Cut two identical 12-by-12-inch squares from a 1-by-12-inch hardwood board using the jigsaw. Lay a ruler across the flat surface of each square from one corner to the opposite corner and draw a line in pencil. Cut the squares along the pencil line to create four identical triangles.

  • Lay one of the four triangles you just cut on top of the hardwood frame in each corner. Align the outside edges of the triangle with the edges of the 2-by-4-inch pieces of hardwood. Secure the triangles in place by driving 2-inch wood screws through them down into the hardwood frame and desk legs.

Finishing and Assembling the Desk

  • Paint or stain the desk frame to match the decor scheme in your home office. Once the paint or stain has dried you may choose to apply a protective coat of clear varnish or polyurethane.

  • Cut two 12-by-12-inch pieces of black felt using a pair of sharp scissors. Using the same procedure you used to cut the wooden squares, cut the felt squares into four identical triangles.

  • Apply a generous amount of craft glue to the flat surface of each wooden triangle. Lay one of the felt triangles on top of each wooden triangle and press it firmly into the glue. The felt will create a padded surface for your glass desktop to rest on so it will not be scratched by the wooden frame.

  • Have the professionals at your local home improvement store cut you a sheet of tempered glass to the desired dimensions of your desktop. You may choose the thickness of glass but keep in mind that although thicker glass is stronger and more durable, it will also be heavier. Center the sheet of glass on top of the desk frame to complete your glass-top desk.

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