But it has some design flaws. It's pretty big, and kind of cumbersome to use, and it took just a little too much time to get in and out of. What I really wanted was the comfort of a reclining desk with the convenience and compactness of a conventional desk.
In this post, I detail the design and build process that led to my latest DIY reclining desk (V3). I had a few simple design goals:
- Easy to use (e.g. getting in and out quickly, minimal adjustments needed to use, etc.)
- Compact size
- Fewer materials (and thus less expensive)
This design largely achieved my goals. Having both the monitor and keyboard mounted to the left of the chair makes it very easy and fast to get into the chair and likewise very simple to move the monitor and keyboard into position for use. The form factor is quite compact, and it can work with a number of different types of reclining chairs (though I still really like the simple and affordable zero gravity chair). Finally, the bill of materials is quite modest. Compared to my previous version (V2), this design achieves a 760% reduction in the amount of 2x6 wood used (from 220" to 29") and a 176% reduction in the amount of steel piping used (from 185" to 105").
How I Built It
In my first prototype of this frame I made a critical error. Originally I tried to use a single piece of pipe to extend the frame legs so that they would sit off to the right of the reclining chair (left photo), that way all you add to do to adjust the desk to a different chair was change the length of the center pipe. Unfortunately, this design creates two rotation points about which the whole monitor mount can come crashing down on you! Fortunately the flanges on the floor created enough resistance to prevent a crash in my case, but the realization forced me to redesign the frame into it's current (and much more stable) form (right photo).
Overall I'm much happier with this design over the previous one. I no longer have to use clamps to hold the keyboard tray in place, and it is far easier to get in and out of. It's also a much more flexible design that could be used with a wide variety of recliners.