Guide to a DIY Butcher Block Desk in Minutes

Your office space is about to get an upgrade!  Butcher Block is for more than just the kitchen countertops.

Here’s our simple, beginner-friendly tutorial to help you finish your DIY desk project. Use one of our prefinished 30″ desk depths in 4′ and 5′ lengths for a simple DIY project that you’ll be able to do in limited space, a few tools, and minimal time!


Tools & Supplies You’ll Need

Step 1 – Size up your desk

Measure and cut your desktop to the appropriate size for your space. See the “Cutting Your Butcher Block” tutorial for more information.

When making cuts, be sure to protect the finish. Lay down a few strips of painter’s tape to avoid marks left by the base plate of the saw or any other tools you may use.

PRO TIP: If you cut your prefinished desktop, be sure to seal the cut edge with polyurethane. See helpful information on the “Finishing your Butcher Block” tutorial.

The desk depth of the Hardwood Reflections products are 30”. Check out the details for the Birch 4’x30” piece that’s prefinished for easy use on your desk HERE or the finished 5’x30” Maple butcher block HERE.

Step 2 – Attach the legs

For this build, we chose Hairpin Legs from the Home Depot website that are 28 inches long. This will bring the desktop height to 29½ inches.

PRO TIP: Standard desk height is 28-30 inches in height.

DIY Butcher Block Desk in Minutes

Lay your desk, top side down, on a soft surface like a rug or towel.

Position each leg in the corner of the desktop allowing at least an inch of clearance on either edge to help avoid splitting the wood. Use a speed square to make sure the legs are square to the desktop.

Mark the hole positions and drill a pilot hole for each.

PRO TIP: A pilot hole should be slightly smaller than the screw. About the size of the shank. Imagine the screw without the threads.

SUPER PRO TIP: A pilot hole is the best way to prevent wood from cracking when securing your legs to the desktop, just be sure you don’t drill all the way through the block. Half way is good enough for screws.

Secure each leg using the included screws. If screws were not provided, you can ask your local Home Depot or hardware store for suggestions.

Step 3 – Installing a desk grommet

Measure and mark where you would like to position the hole for the desk grommet. Think of where you want your cords to go through to an outlet below.

First, drill a pilot hole all the way through the block. Then align your Forstner bit or hole saw bit with the pilot hole to cut your large hole. WAIT…Check out Pro Tip below before you continue.

PRO TIP: Using the pilot hole as a guide, drill up slightly from the bottom of your “soon to be larger hole”. This will help avoid tear out when drilling through your desktop.

Patiently drill through your desktop and insert the desk grommet in the hole.

PRO TIP: Slow and steady wins the nicely drilled hole here. Take your time and ensure your drill’s clutch is in the “drill” position. This will allow for maximum torque to power through this beech desktop.

Step 4 – Clean up & Enjoy

After cleaning up all that sawdust, set up your workstation, and bask in the beauty of your new desk. You’ll enjoy it even more knowing that you put it together.

Check out the additional Butcher Block Desktop Sizes available in prefinished and unfinished butcher block:

4′ long by 30″ wide Prefinished Beech Butcher Block
4′ long by 30″ wide Hevea Butcher Block in UV Stain

Hevea Desktop Butcher Block 5’x30″ Unfinished for DIY Desk Projects

Beech Desktop Butcher Block 5’x30″ Unfinished for DIY Desk Projects

Gel Stains for Butcher Block Customization

With six colors to choose from you can easily customize your Butcher Block Countertop with your favorite stain color. Hardwood Reflections Gel Stains are designed specifically for butcher block or other interior wood products that require a very high-end finish for an area of heavy use.

Build an Acacia LIVE EDGE Butcher Block Kitchen Island

Learn how to add a unique look to your kitchen countertop or island with Hardwood Reflections Acacia LIVE EDGE Butcher Block. Live Edge means the characteristics of the outside of the tree are on the edge of the butcher block and will go in and out up to a half of an inch. In this video, you will learn how to turn our Acacia Island Top Butcher Block into a DIY table by utilizing pre-drilled holes for legs, and finish with mineral oil to make a food safe DIY Table Top. These also work great in the kitchen and can be made into beautiful Food Safe Grade Butcher Block Counter Tops!

New Hevea Desktop Sizes Now Available!
Finished & Unfinished Options

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