converting Ikea desk into height-adjustable desk
October 6, 2014 3:06 PM   Subscribe

I have this Ikea desk combination. I sit too much and want to convert it into a height-adjustable desk, without using one of the desktop models. Can I use an adjustable frame like this? Any other feedback or tips on buying an adjustable-height desk?

I'd really prefer not to use one of the desktop add-ons, for both aesthetic and practical reasons. I often have books and papers out, and don't want to have my computer on a different level from them all the time. I need to be able to write or take notes at the same time as I'm standing, and the desktop add-ons just don't look like they'd work for me.

The size of my Ikea desk is perfect - the room is long and narrow, and this desktop is just shy of 24" deep. I also use all of the drawers on the Alex drawer cabinets, and don't want one of the standing desks that seems to be legs-only, as I'd lose a ton of easy and stylish storage.

Can I get one of these electronic height-adjustable frames, and put the Ikea desktop on top? It's not a particularly thick or sturdy desktop, so I worry about it flexing in the middle, but it seems like most of the standing desks have a crossbar down the middle. The standing desk legs would probably have to be wedged between the Alex drawers (on the inside of them, not the outside) as the desktop is fairly long. The legs would stick out a bit longer than the Alex drawers, but I could live with that.

The Stand Desk looks like it would definitely work with such a shallow desktop - any feedback or experiences with it?

I'd love any other feedback or tips on which frames might work best for my situation (long, fairly shallow desktop) as well as any tips on selecting a standing desk in general.
posted by barnone to Technology (6 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
I have the Varidesk Pro at work for these exact reasons - stupid easy to sit/stand/change height, and it fits my monitor, phone, keyboard, mouse and mess of papers. Highly recommend it. It's a desktop convertible and weighs about 40 pounds. Biggest challenge was figuring out the range of clearance when putting it in up on my desk. It was 300 bucks, new.

Also: when initially transitioning to a standing desk, resign to the fact that you will need to do some sitting while adjusting. Also, supportive footwear (think Dansko rather than heels) and your body will thank you big time.
posted by floweredfish at 3:14 PM on October 6, 2014

At work and at home I have a standing desk that is non-adjustable. For the home desk, I used some spare wood lying around and bolted it to legs to add 18".

I use a bar stool to sit on when I get tired. You can also get chairs that are higher. I recommend having something about knee height to lean on. That way you can put one foot up to rest.

I also have this mat:
Standing Desk Mat
posted by just.good.enough at 3:51 PM on October 6, 2014

Best answer: I have a Conset 501-27 frame and a 24" desktop and they fit together very well. The legs are slightly under that depth (about 56cm) so don't stick out at all. For what it's worth, I'd highly recommend that particular frame - it's stable despite the slightly shorter-than-usual feet, motor is excellent, very good height range, construction quality seems extremely solid. They're a Danish firm and I'm in the UK, but there seems to be US distribution.

Desktop length might be slightly trickier. It looks like those Alex drawer units are 36cm each, so on a 200cm desktop, I assume you'd need a frame of 128cm or less. It looks like there is a 129cm variant of that frame, so I'd guess that could fit okay with a tiny amount of overlap.

How well an overhang of that size on each side would work on a frame that wide I don't know, especially given that Ikea desktop isn't going to be that sturdy (through, yes, there is a crossbar on the frame and it does a good job). I have about 20cm overhang each side on my desk (which is the smaller 84cm frame) and it could certainly cope with more (with a desktop that is probably similar material to the Ikea one), but difficult to say how much.
posted by Temagami at 4:51 PM on October 6, 2014

Take a look at the IKEA Finnvard trestles. You might need to adjust the height if you are on the taller side. You can use this thread for guidance. Easy to do. Or just add blocks below the table top.
I am happy with mine.
posted by PickeringPete at 5:18 PM on October 6, 2014

I use a Linnmon top with these Gerton adjustable legs for my standing desk at home.

Should I ever decide I don't dig on the standing desk thing, I always know I'm just a few minutes away from a standard desk.
posted by sourwookie at 6:08 PM on October 6, 2014

Response by poster: Thanks for the thoughts so far. Just to clarify, I am not looking for a table-top solution like the Varidesk, and I don't want a fixed-height standing desk. I am really only looking for an entire desktop which can be raised and lowered throughout the day.

The Conset looks like a decent option, thanks!
posted by barnone at 7:14 PM on October 6, 2014

« Older Conversation-heavy movie/show/video in French or...   |   The one book to pack Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.