How-To Geek

Mod an IKEA Filing Cabinet into an Inexpensive Standing Desk

If you’re looking to set up a standing desk without breaking the bank, this attractive IKEA mod provides budget-friendly standing desk benefits.

Tom Borowski wanted a dual workstation–he wasn’t ready to switch to standing all day but he didn’t want to continue sitting at his desk. His solution combines a variety of IKEA parks including the EFFEKTIV filing cabinet, some IKEA table legs to raise the surface, and other clever recombinations of materials from IKEA.

Hit up the link below for a detailed list of parts and tips on constructing a part-time standing desk.

DIY Standing Desk via IKEAHackers

Jason Fitzpatrick is a warranty-voiding DIYer who spends his days cracking opening cases and wrestling with code so you don't have to. If it can be modded, optimized, repurposed, or torn apart for fun he's interested (and probably already at the workbench taking it apart). You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 05/23/11

Comments (5)

  1. Rick

    To me, a standing desk is the first step in progressing to a treadmill desk. This design is a good one but it doesn’t seem to be the best thing for a treadmill. The Jerker desk continues to be the best IKEA product for doing this.

    IKEA had discontinued the Jerker but they can easily be found on Craigslist. I bought mine and modified it a little so that it would easily handle a treadmill.

  2. Jozi

    This desk is really looking great, thanks for sharing.


    Is a treadmill desk really a good thing? I like the idea, but can’t imagine how to pay attention to anything or type, while walking on it. How is your experience with it?

  3. Rick


    Treadmill desks have been around for a little while. It is actually quite easy to work and type while walking at 1mph. You can work at faster speeds with practice. I’m actually walking right now as I type this. The idea is that since you burn about 100 calories an hour at 1mph.

    I’m 6’2″ so I walk faster than most folks (1.5mph) but when web surfing I walk at 2.5mph. I walk even faster (3mph) if I’m on a conference call that doesn’t require my direct participation.

    After one month I went from 206lbs to 198lbs with absolutely no dieting. I was still eating fast food and sodas. However my walking is burning between 800 and 1500 calories a day (I walk all day long). I’m now adjusting my diet a bit (cutting out fast food and sodas) and hope to see that weight decline accelerate.

  4. Jozi


    Thank you for your answer, i might try it out one day, it just seemed weird at first.. :)

  5. DearWebby

    A bit of exercise while working long hours not only burns calories, it will let you recover from heartattacks, and if you have diabetes, it will reduce problems with your legs.

    The Ikea “Jerker” is definitely by far the best furniture to start out with. Even with it’s extremely stooopid name, they probably sold Millions of that! When supplemented with a horse-shoe table top made to go into a corner, it can carry three big monitors. You can raise the table top for standing work, and just use a chair, that extends to bar stool height for sit-down work.

    You CAN use a treadmill with it, but I prefer the motorized “Easy Cycle” pedal machine. Unlike treadmills, they are quiet, and you don’t have to take a hand off the keyboard to change the load setting. You simply pedal a bit faster. You do need a chair with it. Ideal is one with a firm back bucket like for a recumbent bicycle.

    You can hang the “Easy Cycle” onto the side of any standard file cabinet or wall, and use it for arm / upper body / lung exercise.

    Have FUN!

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