Tired of that old computer desk? Looking for some PIZZAZZ???? Join us as we turn an old table or desk into a computer friendly desk. The main difference between the desks we grew up with and todays computer desk is a lowered area for the keyboard. Computer desks with PIZZAZZ have a sliding keyboard section.

 

Materials Needed For Slide-out Keyboard

Our sliding keyboard tray is universal and can be mounted under any horizontal surface. The unit is designed to be mounted 2 " below the bottom of the desk surface. TIP: Your 2 " space needs to be from the lowest front trim on your table or desk. The side legs may need to be longer than 3 inches shown, to compensate. If the front trim of your existing table or desk drops more than 1 inch below the underside of the top, you will need to cut an opening the width of your keyboard tray, so it can slide through.

For the sliding keyboard tray we use 5/4, nosed stair tread. Stair tread is readily available in 4 ft. lengths in oak and poplar at home centers such as Lowe's. (item # 17739 for poplar and #17720 for oak)  The sliding rails are called "Center Under Mount Drawer Slide". Purchase the 16" size, which slides out 11". We purchased ours at a home center such as Lowe's in the  cabinet knobs and specialty hardware section. You will also need 2x4s for the side supports. (Were calling them legs for this project)

Assembled unit ready to install

Cut the stair tread to the width desired. This should be between 28" to 36" depending on the space you have available. A keyboard and mouse pad will need at least 28" in width.

Cut the side "legs" from 2x4 or 5/4" wood ( "Lumber" in Terms and Definitions if any questions) depending on how thick you want the end of the leg to look on your finished product. The assembled photo shows how thick the end of the legs will look using a 2x4 to support the sides of the keyboard tray. The legs are cut 16" long.  If 5/4" is used, it needs to be cut to 3 " x 16" long. 

Sand and apply desired finish coats to 3 pieces (tray and 2 side supports) of the unit before assembling. To assemble the unit fasten "drawer member" of slide device to each end of keyboard tray, and "cabinet member" to bottom side of "leg". Photo shows assembled unit ready to install. To install assembled keyboard tray, place in final location and fasten to underside of desktop with finish screws from the top of the desk, countersinking the screw heads. Fill screw holes in the top with wood filler or wood putty and touch up finish to match. An alternative installation is to screw 3 - Stanley 2" double wide angle brackets (Lowe's Stock #75-5685) to outside of each leg. Fasten the other side of the bracket to the top (from underneath) with short screws that do not penetrate top. This keyboard tray is designed to hold up to 35lbs. Now youre ready to start surfing!

  2000 UBuild.com