eHam Forums => Station Building => Topic started by: W3TW on June 24, 2019, 09:10:13 AM

Title: Desk
Post by: W3TW on June 24, 2019, 09:10:13 AM
Thanks Bill for your website post

It got me thinking of a shack reorg.

I'm looking into using a large diameter PVC pipe (waste pipe size) and PVC flanges to hold a solid core door instead of the steel pipes. Home Depot doesn't cut and thread the pipes for free by me (Long Island, NY). I'm thinking that a larger diameter PVC would suffice.

Has someone tried this? I'd like to hear from you.


Tom W3TW

Title: RE: Desk
Post by: K7MEM on June 24, 2019, 09:35:36 AM
Home Depot doesn't cut and thread the pipes for free by me (Long Island, NY).

AB4BJ does have a good idea. In my area, Home Depot is over 50 miles away, so the closest hardware store is a True Value. In the True Value, they have various standard lengths of pipe already threaded, just sitting on the shelf. Maybe they include the cost of threading into the price. But you can just pick the length(s) you need.

For myself, I use a standard desk with a 30 inch depth and 60 inches wide. Then I build a couple of shelves out of wood. Home Depot has a stock of quality 3/4 inch wood that is already cut to length. My first shelf is low, so that I can slip my keyboard, keyer, and paper work underneath. The shelf on top is taller so that I can fit my radios below and on top. This puts my radio right at eye level, when I am sitting. I usually reserve the top of the shelf for items that don't need a lot of attention. Like power supplies and tuners.

Title: RE: Desk
Post by: W3TW on June 25, 2019, 04:56:21 PM
Thanks for the input on using standard length pipes.

I did a search and found an interesting website for making a workbench :

I'm going to price out the hardware and see if it's not too expensive. I'll incorporate the solid core door into this by lengthening the center pipe. Interesting that the author found Home Depot to be a more expensive.

Tom W3TW

Title: RE: Desk
Post by: KE0ZU on June 30, 2019, 07:46:37 PM
Using pipe is a simple way to make a sturdy bench, but I'd use plywood for the top, not lumber.   I would also use Masonite as an overlay, for the desk surface simply because its easily replaced when the surface eventually becomes worn.

I would also recommend you put the bench on full swiveling castors so you can easily reach the rear of the bench for interconnect wiring, and adding new, or swapping equipment.  Bolting a 2X4 onto the bottom floor flanges will allow you to then easily mount the wheels.

This is how the radio bench started out 11 years ago...
( (

And here is how it looks today with several rigs, amplifiers, and accessories added over the years.
( (

Title: RE: Desk
Post by: WD4ELG on June 30, 2019, 09:04:09 PM
Mike, that's awesome.

On the lower right of the "current" pic, is that the back of a Johnson Viking Ranger?

Title: RE: Desk
Post by: W3TW on July 02, 2019, 08:25:26 AM
The shack looks great! I'm sharing space with the "family room". The grand-kids would love to play with all that equipment!
My station will be a lot simpler. I ordered workbench 28 inch tall ends (2) from Home Depot along with a 6 foot metal stringer.
I'll complete the setup with a 36" hardwood door. Don't know if I will stain it or paint it with an enamel.
Still need to move the antennas from one side of the house to the other and install the MFJ feedthrough panel in the window.
Thanks for the input!

Tom W3TW

Title: RE: Desk
Post by: W3TW on July 02, 2019, 08:28:47 AM
BTW found a good site to explain the differences between doors (when fabricating a desk) :

Title: RE: Desk
Post by: KB2WIG on July 02, 2019, 09:56:22 AM

When I fabricated my desk I bought a 8' sheet of  3/4 " from the Homely Despot. I had them rip 1 foot off, yielding a 3 foot wide desktop, with a nice 1foot wide shelf.  I did make up legs from 2X4, and made the desk frame from ' em too.

If I did it today, I would use carrage bolts to mount the legs to the frame; easy totake apart for moving. . I did eventually create 4x4 legs by bolting 2 2x4s,  and ran another 2x4 down the center line of the desk. Kept the boatanchors happy

Mikes pvc 'hangers' are the cats butical area. Makes things much nicer and a lot less likely to be stepped upon.


Title: RE: Desk
Post by: KD0REQ on July 02, 2019, 11:02:53 AM
when I built out the Ham Cave from a standard shed, I put a 1-foot strip of PVC lattice behind the 2-foot desk area as a cable run. one center brace, the rest supported on the back and side walls. it's not groaning under the weight. later added a bookcase-ish 3 level shelving unit of oak for test equipment, with a remote cutoff switch for the AC. now if I could keep the clutter down, we'd be sitting pretty.