Projects - DIY Desk







First, using the STARTplanner FREE project planner download, figure out the dimensions, materials and budget of your project so that you can have everything shopped and ready before you get started. 




Get a live oak slab that fits the dimensions you need. Make sure it is kiln-dried. We had a local source for this. A lot of local sawmills have this. For us the dimensions were was a four-foot-long table by 28 inches deep. We went with 28 deep to fit right over the filing cabinet. Next, you will want to find any decent 2 drawer filing cabinet which we located on Facebook Marketplace for $5! The other leg we found on amazon. It is just a metal leg and it came in a set of two and of course, we only used on the leg. Metal Leg Link


Sand down the live oak slab to your preferred smoothness. Fill in any large cracks with wood filler. Let the wood filler harden for at least 3 hrs before sanding again. Also, make sure you sand down the live edge as most times the live edge has a lot of loose pieces that are just waiting to fall out. It also usually has a good bit of dirt on it. You will want to make sure you remove that. Once it's hardened you can finish sanding down the rest of the slab. Once your wood is nice and soft or to your liking you can start staining.
You will want to make sure to put on gloves while dealing with the stain. Get a staining pad and dunk it into your stain. You want to make sure the pad has enough stain but not too much where it's dripping all over. Take the pad and start wiping the wood thoroughly with it. Make sure you even it out so the stain is the same color on all parts of the wood. Make sure to also stain the live edge, once that's done you will let it dry for a few hours. I would let it dry for at least 5 hrs. Once the 5 hours is up, you should be able to tell if you need another coat or not. Basically, if you want it darker then do another coat. If you're okay with the color then you can start with the poly.
Using a new staining pad add the same amount of poly like you did with the stain and wipe it generously over it. Make sure you make it as even as possible and there are no streaks. Once this is done let dry again for about 5 hours. After you let dry do this at least 2xs. You can do more if you like it also just depends on how shiny or not shiny you want it.  After you get it to where you want it there then you're done with the table part.



Filing Cabinet- Sand down the filing cabinet with a 500 grit sandpaper. If the filing cabinet already has paint on it just try and remove as much as possible. Next, you're going to want to use a Brillo pad and denatured alcohol. Take the denatured alcohol and apply it to your Brillo pad and wipe down the entire filing cabinet, be sure to add more denatured alcohol as needed for complete cleaning. The more the better, you will want to make sure to get any contaminants off the filing cabinet before painting. Once you have done this, let it dry for about 25 mins. Take a clean rag and just wipe off one last time before priming.



Get your primer and cover the entire filing cabinet. One or two coats should be sufficient. Give it about 20 mins in between coats of primer. After it is primed then you can get your paint. Like the primer wait about 20 mins in between coats. Once this is done let dry and get ready to assemble!


Keep separated and build the desk in the location you're going to want it.  You may also want to find a helper to assemble (makes your life way easier haha). Once you have everything in the desired location put the filing cabinet in the location that you will want it.  Then take your live edge slab, and put it on top of it if the filing cabinet. With your helper have them hold the other side of the live oak so you can add the leg to the other side. You will need 8-10 screws and washers on the leg from Amazon, and once you have that leg secured then you are in the home stretch! Take the 3 self-drilling screws and put them throughout the inside of the filing cabinet up through the bottom of the wood. 



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