Convert an Oak Desk to Rolling File Cabinets

4 Materials
2 Days

Over the course of the last year, I bought Hubs a couple of standing desks since he works at home full time and did not have the most ergonomic workspace. We waited to assemble the standing desks until we had remodeled our home office. The only issue with the standing desks is that they have no drawers, and Hubs has quite a few office supplies and IT supplies that he had stored in his old desk. So, I decided to convert Hubs' old oak executive desk into DIY rolling file cabinets that Hubs could then roll under his new standing desks and store all his stuff.

Here is an abbreviated description for how I converted the desk to rolling file cabinets. For more details and pictures, please visit my blog post here.

Here's a pic of the desk before I began disassembling it (minus the drawers, forgot to get a picture before taking those out).

First, I removed the desk top.

Once the top had been removed, I removed the center back board that holds the two drawer units together.

Once, the drawer units were separated, it was time to build a top for the two individual units. I used spare cabinet grade plywood and 1x3 boards to build a top for each unit.

I then attached the tops to each drawer unit.

Once the tops were on, I placed the drawer units on their sides and attached support boards on the inside bottom of each unit to attach casters to. I then attached the casters.

Next, time to paint. I painted the cabinets and drawers black to match the standing desks.

Once the paint was dry, I reinstalled the drawers and move the cabinets to the office. Now hubs can store all his office supplies again!

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  • Constance Drimones Constance Drimones on Jun 05, 2022

    Could you have used the old top and cut it to fit? Also if the file drawers are to be beside each other, could it have been possible to make them permanently side by side and then used the old top and trim the excess off? I’m thinking I would like to do this to my desk but I’d like them to be double files together.

  • Bluejacaranda Bluejacaranda on Jun 06, 2022

    You started this project with only 2x 3xdrawer cabinets but finished with 2x4drawer ones. How did you manage to get an extra drawer in each cabinet??

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