About this project
Update, 3/28/14: Just three days left to back the project, and we're so grateful to all of our backers! Please share with anybody who you think might benefit from a standing desk (that is, everybody!)
Thanks for all of your support and all the positive feedback on KS and on Twitter, and to the blogs below for their glowing coverage.
Think on your feet,
Sam & Mikey
The UpStanding Desk, as seen on:
Lots of research shows that sitting all day is bad for us. One of the best ways to improve your health is to work at a standing desk, but most of the options out there are expensive, bulky, ugly, or all three.
Introducing the UpStanding Desk – an affordable solution to get you thinking on your feet.
We created the UpStanding Desk to democratize access to the health and productivity benefits of standing desks by by making it easier and less expensive to improve the ergonomics of your workspace.
- The UpStanding Desk is designed to be placed on top of any existing desk or table. Hold on to your furniture, if you already have it you probably like it!
- Each desk has two levels: one for your keyboard/mouse or laptop, and the other for your screen. Each level is independently adjustable in 1" increments, which will let you tailor the height perfectly to your own body, workspace and computer.
- The desks are made up of five pieces of premium plywood that lock snugly together and can be assembled in less than a minute. There are no fasteners needed thanks to the precise, computer-guided manufacturing process.
- Our shelves also have slots for cable management and a perfectly-sized groove for any smartphone or tablet, along with pass-through slots for power cables.
When I worked a full-time job, I asked nicely for a standing desk. They're very expensive, so I had to prove a need for it (I'm 6'3", which helped). When the $1800 desk came, it was pretty great! Sure, it looked a bit like hospital furniture, but it had a nifty electric motor to raise it up and down whenever I wanted.
But then it broke. And I was left with a very expensive, very normal desk.
When I got to SVA I was hoping to buy a standing desk for our workshop, but I saw that it contained permanent work benches. I realized that I'd need to design something that could turn my normal desk into a standing desk.
Thus the UpStanding Desk was born.
I jotted down some early ideas, focused exclusively on something that would work for my specific needs. However, I had no idea how to get my concept from my sketchbook and onto a sheet of plywood!
Luckily Mikey Chen, my classmate in the Interaction Design program, has an extensive Industrial Design and manufacturing background. We decided to pair up to bring my idea to fruition. In less than an hour, he'd whipped my sketchy idea into something we could make that day, and helped to improve it as we went.
Since that day, we've gone through four iterations of the original design, finding better materials and finishes, adding in features, and testing the desks all the while.
Now we're ready to share it with you.
Other standing desks on the market require you to either move or get rid of your existing office furniture. They're also expensive and hard to assemble and move.
In creating the UpStanding Desk, our goal was to build a more sustainable, portable, risk-free standing desk for anybody who was curious about the health benefits of standing but didn't want to invest so much time and money in the solution.
The Upstanding Desk weighs less than ten pounds and packs flat for easy transport. Each piece locks neatly into the other, creating an extremely stable and rigid platform for you to work on.
To assemble, lock the rear section together with the left and right vertical supports, then slide the top and bottom shelf into the slots that work best for you. With just a bit of practice you can do it in less than a minute. Disassembly is just as easy!
Each desk has a 1/2" channel that accommodates most smartphones and tablets. We’ve included multiple cable pass-throughs so you can charge or sync your devices while you work.
Our desks also have four "cable management" slots to hold your monitor, keyboard, and power cables.
- The Standard Desk
- Built for users 5ft 2in-6ft 2in and has a width of 29in, a depth of 25in, and a height of 27in.
- The Standard Tall Desk
- For users 6ft-6ft 8in and has a width of 29in, a depth of 25in, and a height of 33in.
- The Double-Wide Desk
- Adds 11" of width to the shelving, permitting for dual monitors on the upper level. For users 5ft 2in-6ft 2in and has a width of 38in, a depth of 25in, and a height of 27in.
- The Double-Wide Tall Desk
- Also made for dual monitors but fits individuals from 6ft to 6ft 8in tall. Has a width of 38in, a depth of 25in, and a height of 33in.
Materials: Unless otherwise specified, our desks are made from high-quality, Canadian Birch plywood and hand-sanded for a soft finish.
Assembly: The UpStanding Desk has five pieces that lock together without fasteners and can be assembled and disassembled in just a few minutes. It packs flat for easy transport.
Capacity: As you can see below, each shelf on our desk can comfortably support up to 200lbs. Not that you'll need it.
Manufacturing: Our desks are made on a CNC robotic milling machine. The cutting process is entirely automated, efficient, and perfectly precise. After cutting, each desk is sanded by hand for a smooth finish.
Production Plan: Besides the awesome community, one of the reasons we wanted to put this project on Kickstarter was to understand what the demand for the desk could be and to identify manufacturers who could handle it. With that in mind, we've found two shops in the area. One can accommodate a small run of up to 100 desks. If demand is greater, we've found another that is better suited to larger quantities. Based on your support we'll know exactly which is the best choice.
We really wanted to find local providers because it means we can personally check the desks during the production cycle to ensure that each one is up to the same standards (or better!) as the ones that we've made in our school workshop.
March 11-April 1: Kickstarter funding round
April 1-April 14: Kickstarter-mandated fund collection and distribution period (if successfully funded)
April 14-May 16: Manufacturing: depending on how many desks are ordered, we will do our best to ship desks as they're ready
May 16-July 16: Shipping First then Second Editions!
Uncertainty is annoying, so we'll be sure to keep you informed on exactly when to expect your own UpStanding Desk.
Thanks so much for your support,
-Sam & Mikey
For more information, contact info, and hi-res images and GIFs, please click here: http://www.theupstandingdesk.com/blogs/news/12824277-media
Risks and challenges
As with all manufacturing (especially using a natural material like wood) it's always possible that there will be delays because of issues with the material or finishing. We're working with people who make stuff like this as their job, so that probably won't happen!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
We solicited a lot of advice around shipping abroad and decided that the complexity and cost were too much for our first launch. If the project takes off we will definitely look into it!
If you want an UpStanding Desk but live somewhere outside of the US, just back the $25 reward and we'll send you files that you can take to a fabrication shop with a CNC router. They're a lot more common than you might think!
For the Standard Desk, the keyboard shelf has a range of 4-14in above the existing surface, and the monitor shelf has a range of 14-25in above the surface.
For the Tall Desk, the keyboard shelf has a range of 10-20in above the existing surface, and the monitor shelf has a range of 20-31in above the surface.
We decided initially to focus on getting a really good, well-sanded base material that backers could refinish however they want! It's really tricky to match existing colors over the internet, so we didn't think we could do it satisfactorily.
However, if there's a color or stain that you really want to see, please let us know! We'll keep track of popular options and if we do add color options you can always change your pledge later on.
Coming on April 1st!
Kickstarter surveys go out to backers when the funding round is closed. Til then just try to remember if you want Normal or Tall!
You'll get plans for all 4 desk variants for your $25 pledge!
We're planning to send out .dxf, .ai, and .sbp files, which should be acceptable or adaptable for most digital fabrication platforms.
Each model of our desk is designed to be cut from one 4x8ft sheet of 3/4in material (in our case, furniture-grade plywood). Feel free to bring your own materials to the party!
If you want to cut it from a different thickness, you'll have to make a few modifications to the files! That's where the "Hack it" part comes in.
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