Materials: Already owned Galant right-corner desk (currently $160.00) Galant right-corner desk frame ($40.00) Hardware – ~$14.00 8 8″ 5/16 hex head bolts 8 5/16 hex nuts 16 5/16 washers 1 length of 1″ PVC (Home Depot only sells this in 10′ lengths) Lumber – ~$14.00 2 Rationell Variera monitor stands – $20
Description: I had bought a Galant desk about 6 years ago because it had adjustable legs and I wanted to try a stand-up desk. Unfortunately when i got it put together did I realize that the legs only extended to 38″ (it helps to read the description on the IKEA website before buying). Since I am 6′ tall, having a desk surface that is only 39″ tall would not work, so I set the legs at proper sitting height and forgot about it.
The past year or so I had been reading a ton of articles about the health benefits of standing while working. I looked all over for standing solutions. I found several on IKEA hacks and almost tried the Utby bar table solution. But I liked my current desk so I gave my Galant a second look. The solution I came up with turned out to be incredibly simple (no drilling or structural modification required) and easy to put together.
To get the desk work surface to the recommended 43-44″ all I needed was to create an 7-8″ extension on top of the existing work surface. This was done by elevating another frame – the part that the legs are screwed into and the desktop is mounted on – above the existing one. Eight 8″ hex bolts were inserted through the bottom of the existing frame (in factory drilled holes. A length of PVC pipe surrounding each of the bolt is what supports the top frame and the bolts are tightened down with a nut at the top. Then the tabletop is attached to the top frame normally.
This modification also allowed me to create a “sub desk” on the lower, original frame providing a space for routers, power supplies extra hard drives, etc. this was done simply with two lengths of lumber cut to the same length and width of the frame. (Home Depot allows for 2 free cuts on lumber, so you could probably just buy 1 8′ sheet of wood and have them rip it to size to allow for a sold sub-desk). I just lined up the lumber on the frame and drilled holes for the hex-bolts to pass through.
Another small hack to go with my new desk was the monitor stands. OSHA recommends that the tops of your monitors should be fairly even with your eyeline. So, I needed some fairly tall monitor stands or spring for expensive monitor arms. The simple and cheap solution I found were the Rationell Variera 7.5″ plate holders. I flipped the metal brackets upside-down, making a wider base and set the monitors on top of the wooden part. This brought my monitors up a little over 6.5″ and directly into my eyeline. I was concerned they would be wobbly, but was really surprised at how sturdy they are.
So, for less than 90 bucks, I now have a great stand-up desk. Standing while working has been a blessing. Everything that’s been said about it is true. I’ve added a GelPro Plush anti-fatigue mat which is like standing on air. I find I constantly stand “Captain Morgan” style, resting a foot on a small footstool underneath the desk.
~ Steev Kelly, United States