How to Build a Folding Drafting Table

Lynn Rademacher

Drafting tables are used to create drawings of blueprints and to review large documents. Drafting tables are valuable tools for engineers and artists, but can often consume valuable space. A folding drafting table allows the user the space they need when working with drawings, but can then be stored out of the way while it isn't in use. Students who need drafting tables for school work can benefit from a folding drafting table since it won't take up valuable floor space.

Drafting tables are used for architectural drafting and a variety of artwork.
  1. Use a circular saw to cut two pieces of one-by-four to 42 inches and two pieces to 29 inches. Position the shorter pieces so they are flush against the side of the longer pieces and use wood screws to secure them together. This is the frame for the drafting table top. The top will measure 42 inches by 31 inches.

  2. Cut the top of the drafting table out of 1/2-inch plywood. The plywood should measure 42 inches by 31 inches.

  3. Position the cut plywood on top of the drafting table frame and secure it into place with wood screws through the top of the plywood and into the one-by-four frame. Use sandpaper to smooth down any rough edges and wipe the dust off with a rag.

  4. Spread laminate adhesive across the top of the 1/2-inch plywood and position a piece of counter top laminate into place. Press down on the laminate firmly on the adhesive until it begins to set up. Use a utility knife to cut off any excess laminate and use sandpaper to smooth the edge of the laminate as necessary. Allow the adhesive to dry over night.

  5. Measure four feet from the floor and use a stud finder to locate the studs in the wall and mark them with a pencil. Use a level to position a piece of two-by-four at the marked location and secure the two-by-four into place with wood screws inserted diagonally through the two-by-four and into the studs in the wall.

  6. Secure the hinges to the mounted two-by-four so that they are positioned four inches in from either side of the drafting table.

  7. Use 1/4-inch PVC pipe to create the folding legs. Cut the back legs to 48 inches long and the front legs to 40 inches.

  8. Use a drill to drill a hole through the PVC hinges and secure two to the stud on each side of the desk. These hinges will support the back leg of the desk while it is in use.

  9. Slide two PVC T-joints down the front and back leg pieces and connect the back and front legs together with two pieces of PVC pipe that is 31 inches long. Repeat this process for the other side of the desk. Snap the back legs into the secured PVC hinges and fold the legs out of the way, under the mounted two-by-four.

  10. Attach the top of the desk to the hinges on the two-by-four support mounted to the wall. Have an assistant hold the desk up high enough so that the hinges can be positioned on the back of the desk and secured with screws.

  11. Unfold the PVC legs and rest the top of the desk on top of the front legs. The desk will have an eight-inch drop from the rear to the front for easier use.