Laser Cut Plywood - Desk design

One of the VEX teams that I’m mentoring has a Shopbot 2, a laser cutting machine. It can cut full sheets of plywood.

As a “build stuff in plywood” builder, I’m on the far side of thrilled.

So here is my problem. I’m a ham radio operator (Hi! I’m K3FXS) and I have a need for a new operating setup. I’ve been scouting around for a new desk, but with the Shopbot, I have a new opportunity.

The students have built this desk and it would sort of work.

I’m looking for an updated design. So the requirements list is:

  • Pull out shelf / operating position at sitting height. (Desk in the link is standing)
  • Shelf at near the floor to hold the 12 volt battery (why yes, it is the same size as an FRC robot) and charger. (Battery is so that this all works when the street power is off)
  • Shelf about 8" above the operating position. (So I can stack radios)
  • Shelf about 12 under the operating position for the amplifiers.
  • Doors to cover the front (Grand munchkin on the loose)
  • Something to cover the top (wood strips with a fabric back? (Grand munchkin again)
  • Needs to be buildable / cutout by a Shopbot.

I’m going to buy cherry veneer plywood to build this, so stain and a few coats of poly sealer will be applied. I’m looking at 5 layer 1/2", but can go with 7 layer 3/4"

This is a once and done project, so the ability to take it apart is cool, but not a key feature.

I can mung the 100K project to work, but with 50,000 roboteers I figured most of you would be better at designing this.

No cash and prizes, but I will wood burn “Designed by <your name>” on the side. So in the middle of my robot lab you will be well known.


What you need is a Taddbench. Google it. KA2DEW designed it. I have 2.

Sadly, you don’t need a laser cutter or a shopbot to make it.

Yikes!! They are huge. I only have two transceivers, a small computer (monitor, keyboard, mouse) and power supply. Something 30" wide would be more than enough.

But I can see a team building these things as an assembly workbench.