Build Your Own (Affordable) Standing Desk

standing-deskRyan has been leading ProfHacker’s coverage of standing desks. If you’re curious why someone might want to want to stand at a desk, and what it’s like, you can check out his three-part series: Stand Up! (in Your Office)Stand (In the Place Where You Work): An Experiment Begins; and Stand (in the Place Where You Work): Month 2. Then Ryan reviewed the GeekDesk Max, which he liked well enough to buy for himself, and Konrad reviewed the more portable Ninja Standing Desk. I’m glad Ryan likes the GeekDesk, but the price tag is much, much more than I’d be able to pay for any desk. (Do keep in mind that I’m a grad student, so your idea of what’s expensive might differ from mine.)

So what if you want a low-cost standing desk? Colin Nederkoorn has the answer, with plans for a $22 standing desk made from parts you can buy at Ikea. The plans are pretty thorough, so I won’t describe in detail how to make this Ikea standing desk. The basic idea is that you put a coffee table on top of a work table, then add brackets and a shelf to hold the keyboard.

A standing desk

The results. (Click to enlarge)

I tried a standing desk for a week or two using boxes and books until I was sure that I wanted to work standing. Then I built a desk using the idea behind Nederkoon’s plans. You can see the results in this photo. I’m quite pleased with the functionality, even if it’s not much to look at.

There are a few downsides. First, that price assumes you have a table to put the standing part of the desk on (we did already), and the parts we bought were more expensive than the guide suggests. I’d figure on $30-35 for just the parts that make a standing desk if you already have a table, plus another $40-$50 if you don’t have a table. Second, you’ll have to make a trip to the consumer paradise hellhole that is Ikea. Third, you might need to borrow a drill from a friend. But if I can put this desk together you don’t need to be very good with tools.

Have you made your own standing desk? Do you have plans to? Please share in the comments!

[Photos taken by the author.]

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