Wall-Mounted Desk

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buildsomething added on 12/13/2018

Create a handy workspace anywhere with this wall-mounted desk. The flip-top design allows you to keep everything corralled inside, and it keeps dust and dirt from getting to everything. That makes it perfect for creating a desk in your shop, so you can keep your project information organized.


Follow the steps below to complete this project.


Make the Bottom

Because the Desk Bottom and two Sides are the same depth, rip all three in a single pass from 3/4" x 48" x 96" plywood, as shown in the cutting diagram. Crosscut the Desk Bottom to final length and set the other parts to the side for the moment. Set your Kreg pocket-hole jig for 3/4" thick material, and then drill pocket holes in the underside of the Bottom at the locations shown. Mark the location for the power cord hole and carefully drill it using a 2" hole saw.

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Cut the Sides

Cut squares for the Sides to the final dimension of 17 1/4" x 17 1/4". Next, mark out the location of the angle cuts. Most plywood has one better-looking face, and a face that’s less attractive. Make sure each Side is oriented the correct way, so the good face will be at the outside of the desk. Cut each Side to separate the Lid Side. Drill two pocket holes on each Lid Side—placing them on the less-attractive side—as shown. Then set those parts aside for a later step.


Attach the Sides and Bottom

Align each Side, good side out, with the Bottom, making sure the pocket holes in the Bottom face downward and the cord hole is at the back. Connect the parts with glue and 1 1/4" coarse-thread Kreg Screws as shown.

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Make the Desk Top

Now you can cut the Desk Top to size, as shown in the cutting diagram. Drill pocket holes at the ends of the Top, as shown. These holes go in the underside.


Add the Desk Top

Position the Desk Top between the Sides so that it’s flush at the top and along the rear edges of the Sides as shown. Attach the Desk Top to the Sides using glue and 1 1/4" Kreg Screws.

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Make the Cleat

Cut the Cleat to width and length as shown in the cutting diagram. Drill pocket holes at the locations shown.


Install the Cleat

The Cleat is what will bear the weight of the desk. Apply glue to all three mating edges of the Cleat, and then position it under the Top and between the Sides. Make sure the pocket holes face toward the outside. Secure the Cleat to the desk using 1 1/4" Kreg Screws.


Make the Lid top

Cut the Lid Top to width and length as shown in the cutting diagram. Drill pocket holes at the locations shown.


Attach the Lid Top

Now position the Lid Sides you cut earlier where shown, and then secure them to the Lid Top with glue and 1 1/4" Kreg screws.


Cut and Attach the Front

Cut the Front to size as shown in the cutting diagram. Apply glue to the edges of the Lid Sides and the Top, and secure the Front using 1 1/4" Kreg Screws.


Mount the Lid to the Desk

Flip the Lid to the “open” position on top of the Desk Top. Lay out the hinge locations on the Lid so the long edge of the hinge is flush with the long edge of the Lid. Predrill the screw holes on each hinge and mount them to the Lid. Next, align the hinge so the loose side now aligns with the long edge of the Desk Top. This should cause a gap between the Lid and the Desk Top. Now predrill mounting holes for the second side of the hinges, and then secure each one to the Desk Top. Once the hinges are secured, open and close the lid to make sure the hinges aren’t binding. Finally, cut a small block of scrap about 3/4" square and 1" long and glue it to the edge of the lid to act as a pull.


Sand and Finish

Do any touch-up sanding that’s needed on the desk and wipe away dust, then apply your favorite finish. We used a natural oil to give the plywood a nice warm color. After the oil dried according to the manufacturer’s recommendations, we applied two coats of satin wipe-on polyurethane. This makes it easy to wipe away dust from the outside of the desk.

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Mount the Desk

To mount the desk to the wall, it’s best to make sure it is secured to the wall studs. Once the studs are located and the position is finalized, drill pilot holes through the cleat. Secure the desk to the wall with heavy-duty cabinet screws like the ones we’ve inked to materials list. Finally, to help seal the desk from messy shop dust, or to keep unwanted pests going after your cookies, apply weather stripping on the gaps between the lid assembly and the desk.

Tools Used:

Materials Required:

Wood Products:

(1) 3/4" Thick, Full Sheet, Plywood  


(1) 100-count box 1 1/4" coarse-thread Kreg pocket-hole screws Shop Online
(1) wood glue Shop Online
(2) 2 1/2" butt hinges (3 hinges needed) Shop Online
(1) foam weather stripping Shop Online
(1) 2" hole saw Shop Online
(1) cabinet screws Shop Online

Parts/Cut List:

(1) Desk Bottom, 3/4" x 17 1/4" x 42"  
(1) Desk Top, 3/4" x 9" x 42"  
(2) Desk Side, 3/4" x 17 1/4" x 17 1/4"  
(1) Cleat, 3/4" x 4" x 42"  
(1) Lid Top, 3/4" x 8 1/8" x 42"  
(2) Lid Sides, 3/4" x 8 1/8" x 11"  
(1) Front, 3/4" x 17 1/4" x 43 1/2"  


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