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Nightstand with Pull-Out Writing Tray and Charging Station

  • July 26, 2016


This nightstand has a pullout writing tray with a charging station hidden in the top drawer. The pullout shelf holds nighttime necessities while three drawers beneath provide generous storage.

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  1. Project Steps

    1. Step: 1

      Large 13f1ad43 b37d 48e4 88c8 c8dde83e299a

      How to build a nightstand with pull-out writing tray and charging station.

    2. Step: 2

      Large 18906fe5 d5f1 41ab aabd fc37ddab9c12

      Materials List

    3. Step: 3

      Large 04416694 af94 4bc1 8e2a ef6fba79caa6

      Cut List

    4. Step: 4

      Large cb5d382b d091 4ba7 8e62 5b82c90f7895

      Plywood Cut Layout

    5. Step: 5

      Large 6804565e 9176 4101 8f80 eb949f6a8685

      Using the cut list above, cut the base. You may choose to attach the furniture feet at this step or do so later in the build. Attach metal corner brackets to the corners of the base and screw in the furniture feet.

    6. Step: 6

      Large 80e5a88f 79d0 44d3 9ad8 bb02f283dcf3

      Drill ¾-inch pocket holes into the plywood sides along the top and bottom edge and attach side panels to the base with 1 ¼-inch pocket hole screws and wood glue.

    7. Step: 7

      Large f98e601d 8210 4265 af15 e1a63cccf978

      Attach the supports. Drill ¾-inch pocket holes into the ends of the 1x2 supports and attach to the side panels with 1 ¼-inch pocket hole screws and wood glue.

    8. Step: 8

      Large b067accb 62d3 43e2 b120 79abff50b8d1

      Attach the top. Using the pocket holes you drilled into the side panels, attach the top with 1 ¼-inch pocket hole screws and wood glue.

    9. Step: 9

      Large 99556fa8 371e 4b9f 913c 9cf3088bd76f

      Attach top rails. Drill ¾-inch pocket holes into the ends of the 1x2 rails and attach to the carcass with 1 ¼-inch pocket hole screws and wood glue. You can also shoot 1 ¼-inch brad nails from underneath to attach the supports to the top.

    10. Step: 10

      Large 92b3c9ab 0a20 41ba 9a23 c54c3ba87c3f

      Attach the writing tray support. Drill ¾-inch pocket holes into the writing tray support and attach to the carcass with 1 ¼-inch pocket hole screws and wood glue. Ensure that there is enough space for the writing tray to slide in place easily. Iron-on ¾-inch veneer edge banding to the front of the tray support to hide the raw plywood edge.

    11. Step: 11

      Large 39bf800e afe7 498f 8094 eb53abc0aea6

      Cut the pull-out writing tray to size. Iron on ¾-inch veneer edge banding to the front of the tray to hide the raw plywood edge. Check to ensure the tray will fit and slide in easily. Measure the mid-point on the front edge and pre-drill a pilot hole for the knob. Screw in the knob.

    12. Step: 12

      Large b36495f9 8bdb 4c56 9a86 0fb743dba7dd

      Prepare the drawer components. Cut the drawer components according to the cut list. Then, using a router fitted with a ¼-inch channel bit, route a ¼-inch wide x ¼-inch deep groove into the drawer sides and front. This is so that the drawer bottom "floats" in the drawer. Alternately, you could also nail and glue the bottom panel onto the drawer box, but creating a groove for the bottom to slide into is an extra detail that makes for a more professional-looking drawer box.

    13. Step: 13

      Large 897b99bb a056 4361 bd96 0352e5c91b9c

      Build the drawer box. Using a table saw, rip the back board of the drawer down to 3 inches wide. Using a ½-inch drill bit, drill a hole into the top drawer back (this will be for the charging station cord). Cut the bottom plywood panel. Drill ¾-inch pocket holes into the drawer front and back. Construct three sides (front and sides) of the drawer box by attaching with 1 ¼-inch pocket hole screws and wood glue. Slide the bottom panel into place (using the grooves) and add the drawer back. Attach the drawer back to the drawer box with 1 ¼-inch pocket hole screws and wood glue. Use a stapler or brad nailer and wood glue to attach the bottom panel onto the drawer back.

    14. Step: 14

      Large 2751dcc3 8597 4d38 b04e feec74528b41

      Attach the drawer face. Once the drawer box is constructed, attach the drawer slides according to manufacturer's directions. Slide the drawer into place and measure the space for the drawer face. You'll want to have an 1/8-inch gap around the drawer face. Cut the drawer face to size, then position it into place and attach it to the drawer box with 1 ¼-inch wood screws driven from the inside of the drawer box. Measure the midpoint of the drawer face and pre-drill a pilot hole for the drawer knob. Screw in the drawer knob.

    15. Step: 15

      Large 44517259 befc 401d bc10 845c4f6c4555

      Attach the plywood back panel with 1-inch staples or brad nails and wood glue. Using a 1-inch hole saw, drill a hole into the back panel to feed the charging station cord through. Take care to position it towards the top, where the top drawer is.

    16. Step: 16

      Large 2303ce8c 50af 4c78 a1ba 12d8654cdd42

      Attach the top. Spread a generous amount of glue on the top and attach it to the nightstand, allowing for a ¾-inch overhang on the front and sides. You can secure the top by shooting a 1 ¼-inch brad nail into each corner. Use wood filler to fill your nail holes. Iron on ¾-inch veneer edge banding to conceal raw plywood edges.

    17. Step: 17

      Large a440153e abf6 4864 8b04 ffadf0782106

      Optional: measure and cut ¾-inch cove molding and attach it to the top and bottom of the nightstand with 1-inch brad nails and wood glue. It is best to measure and cut to fit, mitering the ends at a 45 degree angle.

    18. Step: 18

      Large 4a77c18d 103a 4513 9a43 afebfe17e701

      For more details, photos, and information about this DIY nightstand with charging station and pull-out writing tray, please visit http://jenwoodhouse.com/diy-nightstand-charging-station.

Comments (7)


  • I love the pull-out writing tray and charging station! Nice work House of Wood!!
    By Sunnyand79, on August 1, 2016

  • I love the tray and charging station features of this nightstand! So cool, Jen!
    By RYOBI_ROCKS, on August 17, 2016

  • What was the material cost??
    By jojo4990_1458, on August 17, 2016

  • This is a very cool project! I love the charging station and all the wires hidden. Great job Jen!
    By rchampine, on August 22, 2016

  • go idea on the charging station, will add that to my last project. lol
    By tweber0318, on October 3, 2016

  • Hello Ryobi! I would love to make this nightstand but the step by step instructions for step 2,3 and 4 are cut-off and unreadable. Can you please help? Thank you
    By dmgmrc, on March 1, 2018
    • @dmgmrc we are working to get this updated! Thanks for notifying us!
      By RYOBI NATION, on March 7, 2018

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Nightstand with Pull-Out Writing Tray and Charging Station

by The House of Wood
Jul 26, 2016
Medium 900cf459 38ba 4c15 b35d 26bbb48f209b

This nightstand has a pullout writing tray with a charging station hidden in the top drawer. The pullout shelf holds nighttime necessities while three drawers beneath provide generous storage.

Project Steps

  1. Step: 1
    Huge 13f1ad43 b37d 48e4 88c8 c8dde83e299a

    How to build a nightstand with pull-out writing tray and charging station.

  2. Step: 2
    Huge 18906fe5 d5f1 41ab aabd fc37ddab9c12

    Materials List

  3. Step: 3
    Huge 04416694 af94 4bc1 8e2a ef6fba79caa6

    Cut List

  4. Step: 4
    Huge cb5d382b d091 4ba7 8e62 5b82c90f7895

    Plywood Cut Layout

  5. Step: 5
    Huge 6804565e 9176 4101 8f80 eb949f6a8685

    Using the cut list above, cut the base. You may choose to attach the furniture feet at this step or do so later in the build. Attach metal corner brackets to the corners of the base and screw in the furniture feet.

  6. Step: 6
    Huge 80e5a88f 79d0 44d3 9ad8 bb02f283dcf3

    Drill ¾-inch pocket holes into the plywood sides along the top and bottom edge and attach side panels to the base with 1 ¼-inch pocket hole screws and wood glue.

  7. Step: 7
    Huge f98e601d 8210 4265 af15 e1a63cccf978

    Attach the supports. Drill ¾-inch pocket holes into the ends of the 1x2 supports and attach to the side panels with 1 ¼-inch pocket hole screws and wood glue.

  8. Step: 8
    Huge b067accb 62d3 43e2 b120 79abff50b8d1

    Attach the top. Using the pocket holes you drilled into the side panels, attach the top with 1 ¼-inch pocket hole screws and wood glue.

  9. Step: 9
    Huge 99556fa8 371e 4b9f 913c 9cf3088bd76f

    Attach top rails. Drill ¾-inch pocket holes into the ends of the 1x2 rails and attach to the carcass with 1 ¼-inch pocket hole screws and wood glue. You can also shoot 1 ¼-inch brad nails from underneath to attach the supports to the top.

  10. Step: 10
    Huge 92b3c9ab 0a20 41ba 9a23 c54c3ba87c3f

    Attach the writing tray support. Drill ¾-inch pocket holes into the writing tray support and attach to the carcass with 1 ¼-inch pocket hole screws and wood glue. Ensure that there is enough space for the writing tray to slide in place easily. Iron-on ¾-inch veneer edge banding to the front of the tray support to hide the raw plywood edge.

  11. Step: 11
    Huge 39bf800e afe7 498f 8094 eb53abc0aea6

    Cut the pull-out writing tray to size. Iron on ¾-inch veneer edge banding to the front of the tray to hide the raw plywood edge. Check to ensure the tray will fit and slide in easily. Measure the mid-point on the front edge and pre-drill a pilot hole for the knob. Screw in the knob.

  12. Step: 12
    Huge b36495f9 8bdb 4c56 9a86 0fb743dba7dd

    Prepare the drawer components. Cut the drawer components according to the cut list. Then, using a router fitted with a ¼-inch channel bit, route a ¼-inch wide x ¼-inch deep groove into the drawer sides and front. This is so that the drawer bottom "floats" in the drawer. Alternately, you could also nail and glue the bottom panel onto the drawer box, but creating a groove for the bottom to slide into is an extra detail that makes for a more professional-looking drawer box.

  13. Step: 13
    Huge 897b99bb a056 4361 bd96 0352e5c91b9c

    Build the drawer box. Using a table saw, rip the back board of the drawer down to 3 inches wide. Using a ½-inch drill bit, drill a hole into the top drawer back (this will be for the charging station cord). Cut the bottom plywood panel. Drill ¾-inch pocket holes into the drawer front and back. Construct three sides (front and sides) of the drawer box by attaching with 1 ¼-inch pocket hole screws and wood glue. Slide the bottom panel into place (using the grooves) and add the drawer back. Attach the drawer back to the drawer box with 1 ¼-inch pocket hole screws and wood glue. Use a stapler or brad nailer and wood glue to attach the bottom panel onto the drawer back.

  14. Step: 14
    Huge 2751dcc3 8597 4d38 b04e feec74528b41

    Attach the drawer face. Once the drawer box is constructed, attach the drawer slides according to manufacturer's directions. Slide the drawer into place and measure the space for the drawer face. You'll want to have an 1/8-inch gap around the drawer face. Cut the drawer face to size, then position it into place and attach it to the drawer box with 1 ¼-inch wood screws driven from the inside of the drawer box. Measure the midpoint of the drawer face and pre-drill a pilot hole for the drawer knob. Screw in the drawer knob.

  15. Step: 15
    Huge 44517259 befc 401d bc10 845c4f6c4555

    Attach the plywood back panel with 1-inch staples or brad nails and wood glue. Using a 1-inch hole saw, drill a hole into the back panel to feed the charging station cord through. Take care to position it towards the top, where the top drawer is.

  16. Step: 16
    Huge 2303ce8c 50af 4c78 a1ba 12d8654cdd42

    Attach the top. Spread a generous amount of glue on the top and attach it to the nightstand, allowing for a ¾-inch overhang on the front and sides. You can secure the top by shooting a 1 ¼-inch brad nail into each corner. Use wood filler to fill your nail holes. Iron on ¾-inch veneer edge banding to conceal raw plywood edges.

  17. Step: 17
    Huge a440153e abf6 4864 8b04 ffadf0782106

    Optional: measure and cut ¾-inch cove molding and attach it to the top and bottom of the nightstand with 1-inch brad nails and wood glue. It is best to measure and cut to fit, mitering the ends at a 45 degree angle.

  18. Step: 18
    Huge 4a77c18d 103a 4513 9a43 afebfe17e701

    For more details, photos, and information about this DIY nightstand with charging station and pull-out writing tray, please visit http://jenwoodhouse.com/diy-nightstand-charging-station.