Architect's Desk with chair

  • Advertise with us
Project by TimN posted 05-12-2014 01:00 AM 4569 views 13 times favorited 17 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is the architect’s desk from “The Unplugged Workshop” by Tom Fidgen. I did not make it unplugged though, electrons were used in the crafting of it. I run a blended workshop, so I use both power and hand tools. I did alter the design a bit.

Top is hard maple, three boards glued to get the proper width, just under 24”. Is in edges on all sides with koa I brought back from a vacation on Maui. There is a sliding parallel that is made from a spalted exotic and cocbolo and walnut. A t track on the underside left edge of the top allow me to lock this in place. Walnut was used for the base, with Brazilian walnut for the supports and circular guides. I gave the base several coats of shellac. The top got Tru Oil and several coats of wax.

The chair is my own design. I looked at many chairs and bar stools and took the elements I liked and came up with this design. The back legs have a slight set back and are a continuous piece from the leg to the back support. They are inset in spacing, narrower than the front legs. The front legs are almost to the edges of the seat. The stretchers are doweled as are the legs. The rear of the seat is set into a shallow notch in both the seat and the leg. Danish Oil and wax for the finish.

17 comments so far

View Robsshop's profile


923 posts in 3945 days

#1 posted 05-12-2014 02:08 AM

Tim this is a beautiful looking drafting table! I like the design and the combo of woods used through out! I am in the process of designing and hopefully building one much like Yours someday in the near future. I have researched several antique designs and will add this one to my files of potential designs. Thanks for sharing and also nice work on the stool, it compliments the desk nicely!

-- Rob,Gaithersburg,MD,One mans trash is another mans wood shop treasure ! ;-)

View DaleHunt's profile


38 posts in 2552 days

#2 posted 05-12-2014 02:10 AM

I want one! Very nice indeed!

-- Dale

View siavosh's profile


674 posts in 2841 days

#3 posted 05-12-2014 03:18 AM

Look great! I was wondering when I’d start seeing the first one of these..

-- -- Discover the most interesting woodworking blogs from around the world

View TysonK's profile


154 posts in 2772 days

#4 posted 05-12-2014 04:36 AM

Beautiful! The table is great, and the parallel bar such a nice addition, and just gorgeous wood throughout.

-- -- Tyson

View buck_cpa's profile


150 posts in 2857 days

#5 posted 05-12-2014 05:47 PM

awesome table. How long did the construction take on the table? Also, did you segment the circular guides like he suggests in the book? I’ve been wanting to build this table but I’m stuck on these two questions.

View kaerlighedsbamsen's profile


1354 posts in 2683 days

#6 posted 05-12-2014 06:36 PM

Great work. Thanks for sharing!

-- "Do or Do not. There is no try." - Yoda

View TimN's profile


12 posts in 4432 days

#7 posted 05-12-2014 07:49 PM

Thanks guys. buck_cpa, I did not keep track of the hours. I work 2-3 hours at a stretch and several days in a row if I can. But then life gets in the way and you miss a few days in the shop. So maybe 40-50 hours? Yes the circular guides are segmented. Not really that hard. Make good templates and sneak up on the fit of the bridle joints. Also, the book does not really state that your pivot point should be in the center of the circle. Seems obvious, but the drawings seem to show the pivot being offset higher than the center. But this throws off the opening in the leg and makes the guide travel in an ellipse and the opening then has to be larger. All in all, I really enjoyed this one. Lots of stuff I had never done before, which I always enjoy. I like trying to problem solve and figure out how to do new things.

View AspiringWoodworker's profile


72 posts in 3275 days

#8 posted 05-12-2014 08:54 PM

The table looks great Tim. I like the wood selection and the seat looks awesome.

-- Jeff W., Boston, MA area,

View cdaniels's profile


1320 posts in 2471 days

#9 posted 05-13-2014 12:03 AM


-- Jesus was a carpenter... I'm just saying

View Richard's profile


11310 posts in 4003 days

#10 posted 05-13-2014 01:21 AM

Very Nice Project Indeed Tim! Thank For Posting!

-- Richard (Ontario, CANADA)

View BarbS's profile


2434 posts in 5055 days

#11 posted 05-13-2014 04:02 AM

This is Wonderful! I think you’ll enjoy Designing more than Building when you can work at such a fine table.


View hotncold's profile


788 posts in 2514 days

#12 posted 05-13-2014 03:34 PM

Really beautiful work!

-- Dennie - Tennessee

View oldrivers's profile


2423 posts in 2536 days

#13 posted 05-14-2014 02:06 AM

A beautiful work I Like the style, materials and workmanship, Congratulations.

-- Soli Deo gloria!

View mcoyfrog's profile


4757 posts in 4564 days

#14 posted 05-15-2014 06:47 PM

Dude I love it, i’m a drafter and actually started out using a table and t-square many a year ago…..

soooooooooooo cool mann

-- Wood and Glass they kick (well you know) Have a great day - Dug

View TimN's profile


12 posts in 4432 days

#15 posted 05-16-2014 03:40 PM

Thanks for the kind words. The most difficult part was getting the parallel to slide smoothly and not bind yet have no play. After much trial and error I got it right. But in the future, the easiest way to do it would be to use that super slick plastic in a very thin strip on the upper and lower surface and reduce the contact area. I did not do this and relied on perfect fit and super smooth surface sanding. After much fitting, I ended up with a reduced contact area anyway as I filed and sanded to reduce the friction and binding. Two small strips at each end on both top and bottom surfaces would have made life much easier!

showing 1 through 15 of 17 comments

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics