That said: Who the heck needs a motorized desk????? When it came to spending my own money, I got an IKEA Skarsta... essentially the same desk but with a hand crank, for half the price. Yes, you can buy two sit/stand hand-crank desks with a reliable mechanism for the cost of one motorized desk with a P.O.S. controller. Or you can do what I did, use the money saved to buy the most gigantic monitor I could find, which improves my productivity much more than the difference between a motorized versus hand crank desk mechanism.
EDIT to add:
In fact, I am pretty sure you can buy just the Skarsta hand crank mechanism. The next time I do a desk for myself, I will probably buy the leg mechanism and cut a custom-shape table top from some 3/4" cabinet ply.
I've got the Skarsta at home, but I rarely crank it up because it's a lot of effort and I'll just have to crank it down again in an hour.
At work I have an electrically controlled sit/stand desk. It's great.
Works great but the cheap drill is a bit noisy. At some point I may upgrade that.
I think we have discovered how to sort sailors from power boaters :) For that matter, I use a French press instead of a Keurig.... now pardon me while I take the stairs as I step out for lunch :)
I still don't use it much, though, since I don't feel particularly productive when trying to do my work while standing.
The hand crank is quite annoying - and if you're like me you are cranking it up and down a few times a day. Every day. It takes 30 seconds to crank it up. If you have a lot on your desk (2-3 monitors, computer, etc.) it can be quite heavy. Eventually, it got so annoying I found myself just leaving it in a seated position.
Spend the extra money and get the motorized version.
The additional cost for the desk (about €200) is well within what a more luxurious desk from an Ikea competitor would cost, and I'm much more likely to push a button and stand up than to wind a crank 20 times and lose my concentration.
A motorized desk is effortless and thoughtless so it's probably a lot less likely to break your flow versus having to spend 30 seconds turning a handle.
I have terrible knees because of a sports injury. I get uncomfortable both sitting and standing for extended periods of time. A handcrank is a complete pain to switch between sitting and standing. If I'm adjusting, I feel compelled to be committed to a different position.
With a motorized desk, I can switch pretty much on a whim. I can sit for a while, stand up for 5 or 10 minutes, then get right back in my chair.
On the other hand, my Steelcase standing desk is still performing well after 7(?) years and several moves, but it was C$1500.
Sometimes months. But standing months are rare.
I wonder if spraying some lube in the works will help with the noise... Hmmm.
i would love this, but a quick google search suggests it's not true.
The guy at the store did warn me that the legs "might not work with a different top" though, whatever that could mean.
You can often order them through local office supply mom & pops IIRC -- was one of my favorite purchases.
We haven't had any problems with the ~8 that we've gotten, except one was missing a cable when it arrived and they sent a replacement. I do probably 4-5 up/down cycles a day, with 3 monitors on it, so it gets a bit of a workout.
It's expected for the likes of Buzzfeed and similar clickbait-y sites, but it's a tacky tactic that detracts from the overall premium feel here.
Myself, I have a FlexiSpot height adjustable desk and it's great. The price was 430€ (frame only) new (and I've seen it cheaper during events like Black Friday).
Will keep flexispot in mind for when I move next (should be heading towards the EU as well)
Uplift was a fantastic desk to use while I had it
Jarvis upcharges for "extended range", uplift has that by default. Uplift also has a little bit more reinforcing that makes it less prone to side-to-side sway. But only just barely. Not anything that would make me buy one over the other.
We have one of each purely for aesthetics. Uplift had what I was looking for, and jarvis had what my partner was looking for.
Right now everything is marked down, and prices are $500 - $2300, mostly towards the lower end.
If the non-marked down prices are usually real and not just a questionable advertising gimmick, $900 - $4300.
I'd really like to automate some of the windowshades in my house. My two use cases are opening bedroom shades at sunrise, and closing living-room shades at times during the day when direct sun would heat up the room too much.
Every time I've looked into it, there's a wide gap between DIY projects that are labors of love (i.e., probably not usable or repairable by anyone but the creator), or else high-end, proprietary "solutions" that have only "Get A Quote Now" buttons on their websites.
Is there something in between where I can take a commodity shade, a commodity motor, a power source, and a controller of some kind that has a community around it, and then connect Alexa or Google Home?
Still looking for the perfect heavy-duty standing desk and heavy-duty VESA arm combo. I don't want anything on my desk moving unless I am moving it myself.
To put it this way: if a desk is $500 and wobbles slightly (meaning if I touch the desk or type, my coffee jiggles and waves are seen) or is $1000 and the desk does not transmit any energy from my keyboard into anything else ... I will pay the extra $500 without even batting an eye.
They offer the option to buy JUST the legs, and you can mount your own top. I went that route. Bought the legs with the strongest motor (can support 300lbs) and put a nice heavy desktop on there with a vesa mounted 34" curved monitor.
It's pretty damn sturdy. I never notice any wobble with normal use and I usually have it pretty high up.
When assembling I did feel that the actual attachment of the surface/board was a bit cheap. They used plastic positive tension pokey... things. Not sure what you call those. I suspect if you have to disassemble / reassemble it a few times they may wear out and the top may wobble independently of the base.
I get minimal wobbling of the desk surface at full height, but my monitors do still wobble a bit. At normal desk height there's no wobble. I think most of the wobble comes from the cheaper VESA mount, if I'd gotten a more rigid one it would be better but I wanted more flexibility in arranging the monitors.
My monitor does also wobble a bit with the cheap vesa mount I have (it's also a ultra-wide). I'm still researching a proper arm to mount.
At home, I customized my Skarsta a bit. Bigger top (200CM wide versus 160CM, 70CM deep) in order to fit 2*27" LG5K and two monitor speakers. And a sliding shelf hanging below the frame, just deep enough to fit a master keyboard. Works fine! :)
Oh, not motorized. No problem. 30 secs of light excercise :)
Solid, stable, no wobble.
There are a number of designs that require minimal skill and tools. The first one I built used parts from Ikea and only required a drill and some hand tools. It looked great, had a ton of storage, and cost under $400.
The stool not providing enough comfort is a plus for me, as it naturally makes me to switch between standing and sitting throughout the day.
Additionally, the stool doesn't provide any back support, which has been great for me to force a better posture and get rid of back pain. (I probably still end up sitting 70% to 80% of my day, but that's good enough for me :)
On top of that I also have a 42" TV on a monitor arm and an attached keyboard tray, and still no wobble.
If there's a wobbling problem push it against the wall, with Patrull corner protectors or similar.
Mobility issues may still prevent someone from hoisting themselves up onto a high seat, so your point still stands.
And if it's simply that it can't fetch overwhelmed sites any better than we can, then could we help it by pinging it automatically for any link submitted to HN, enabling it to populate its cache before the hordes arrive?
Reddit link: https://www.reddit.com/r/arduino/comments/87cqz9/megadesk_a_...
Github link: https://github.com/gcormier/megadesk
I've had my Bekant for a while now, I find it very sturdy, and I have a 27" monitor on an Ergotron LX arm and no issues with wobbling. Sure, there is movement when moving up and down... but I am also on hardwood, I can't imagine it would be great on carpet.
I got a standing desk frame in 2014 and added my own desktop and monitor stands. You can see what I did here:
I've found it to be really good for me. I tend to sit most of the time, but stand while working for an hour in the morning, and an hour in the afternoon. (Little "Stand" and "Sit" reminders pop-up on my computer to keep my on schedule.)
It would be nice to have position memory like the controller in the post offers, but is not a big issue (given this is not a shared desk). A nice-to-have but not a deal-breaker.
If you are going to adjust the height regularly, motorized is the way to go. You want to eliminate any disincentive that makes it that little bit harder and makes you think, "I wont bother today." Cranking a handle included.
A standing desk with a "tall chair" isn't that ergonomically friendly as your feet are either hanging or on the little foot stand of the chair (if there is one). I like to be able to vary my position more than that to remain comfortable.
Side-note: I also have a presence sensor on my desk - https://www.michevan.id.au/posts/are-you-there/ - which includes a switch to tell if the desk is in sitting position or not. In theory I could collect data on how much time I spend at my desk and in what configurations, but I still haven't got around to properly setting up my MQTT server and such.
> We have 8 of these desk in our office. At first they were used a lot of standing, the use has lessen some, but the problem is the power source that allows them to go up and down has gone out on 6 of them. Ikea has replaced them, but not sure what will happen when the 365 days warranties expire. I would recommend a standing desk just not this brand.
edit: just looking at the uplift desk, I think it was the same manufacturer they use, as my frame looks exactly the same, and the weight loadings are the same.
I dig that they're a B corp too.
Does this project fix any of the underlying issues.
> Why are there so many negative reviews for the BEKANT sit/stand desks?
> In 2016, IKEA identified a batch of BEKANT sit/stand desk Power Supply Units and underframes that stopped working after some time. The faults were related to a production flaw. This problem has since been addressed and fixed, so all new BEKANT sit/stand desks and underframes will not have this issue.
So they claim the issue is fixed.
I'd rather just spend the money for some desk made with Linak actuators.
EDIT: link - https://www.costco.ca/Tresanti-Adjustable-Desk.product.10042...
A few weeks after purchase, I waited at Costco for new tire installation and worked on my laptop for a few hours. I evangelized standing desks and this product many times while there.
It has very high build quality, especially for the price. The glass is nice and strong, the metal is sturdy, and it doesn't wobble. The setup was super easy, the three integrated charging USB ports are very handy -- too bad no USB-C though. It has presets and a nice little integrated LED. I put my 75 pound kid on it moving up and down with no problem. I have not cracked open the controller and open-sourced the breakdown.
I used an Uplift for many years; it was nice too and good wood and a bit larger at ~$750. But if you like the modern look, the product and the price is great.
My wife has the Skarsta, which is a good size, though it doesn't have a motor. I've heard the Becant has problems with the motor, so I didn't get that.
I'm still in the market for a decent, reasonably priced (under $500 preferably) motorized desk, but it needs to be serviceable (I want to be able to replace the motor or desk top without sending it in).
- Let's say you work in a shared office environment with a hot desk policy. Storing the configurations on the board will become unwieldy once more than one person stores her configuration on the board.
- I personally would love to automate my desk to move to a specific position at preset intervals. This would be mostly to force me to change positions throughout the day. I tend to forget to do that.
I'm sure people would come with all kinds of different use cases you and I can't think of right now.
EDIT: Wait I meant from 5v, nevermind!
> Also that's peak current from the radio, which for IOT things is generally very short.
this is the interesting bit, though.
if you're releasing an open source board design, to have customizable firmware dropped on to it, what do you really know about the radio usage when you're designing the circuit/board?
safest is to spec it for maximum draw on any controller/radio. write the BOM to call for one of the three-terminal drop-in switching regulators ($5), and if somebody knows what they're doing they can put in the original linear part and save $4.50.
Of course, with a new housing, the sky is the limit :) But that wasn't the main design goal.
Regardless, really cool project. Thanks for putting it on github!
Rather than being motorized or cranked, the desk's weight is counterbalanced with springs/pneumatics, similar to a garage door. Adjusting the desk is faster and easier than either a motorized or hand-cranked solution, and is completely non-electronic.
The particular desk I linked is quite expensive, there may exist cheaper knockoffs that I'm unaware of. I'm surprised I don't see more counterbalance type sit-stand desks, they're significantly more convenient.
Its the dual motor seen on amazon here https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00YET9M84/
I put a different top on it though (a bamboo one)
Cranking ur desk up and down multiple times a day every day gets old fast.
You can download a mobile app that can control the motor via Bluetooth, and it has three memory settings.
By far the most frequent complaint that came up in our research about cheaper standing desks is their tendency to wobble, along both the front-back axis as well as the side-to-side axis.
Generally, there are four reasons a standing desk will wobble:
1) Frame materials: I'd highly recommend a steel frame for stability. You trade off against weight and some added complexity in assembly, but the desktop will be way more stable across both axes.
2) Lift columns. A three-stage lift is more stable than a two stage lift for a given height--the stages overlap and support each other through a greater portion of the length.
3) Fasteners. The frame-to-feet connectors are most critical, and DIY installations are often under-torqued here. If you're building a standing desk yourself, tighten that bolt as much as you can.
4) Adjustable feet: Most floors are slightly uneven. A quality standing desk will let you screw the feet up and down to compensate for your floor.
We sell our standing desk for $850. Def more expensive than many of the options discussed here, but the incremental cost flows through directly to design, materials and ultimately stability, which we felt was a trade worth making.
Beyond our line, we're big fans of the Herman Miller Renew, which is unfortunately priced well beyond reach for most but a really great piece of furniture. If you have any questions about choosing a standing desk, feel free to DM me.
Last year, I played around with the BEKANT standing desk on display at the IKEA store and (in my perception) it wobbled. It's the same type of wobble that a youtuber demonstrated. There are others in this thread that complain about wobble.
And yet some people say there's no wobble -- and I believe them.
My attempted explanation to reconcile the Schrodinger's Cat dual reality is that people must have a different threshold for sensing a noticeable wobble.
Is the dress blue or white? Does the BEKANT desk wobble or not wobble? Depends on the observer.
 deep link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n3sYS0xUq1E&t=230
They may not be identical but I think subjective detection/annoyance of a wobble is the most likely difference because of the physics of how the desk is assembled.
If you're not familiar with the BEKANT desk, this video shows what the underside looks like. (Please note this is showing the BEKANT version that is motorized to adjust the standing positions.)
You'll see there's not enough support mass, nor enough surface area of metal cross bracing, etc to prevent it from wobbling -- especially at extended heights of 39+ inches. Also notice that the braces are attached to the table top using plastic push pins and not metal lag bolts.
To eliminate perceivable wobble would require increasing the 2 'T' posts to 4 corner posts -- or keeping 2 posts but make them more massive, etc.
But IKEA didn't have to do any of those more expensive engineering designs because a significant number of buyers already praise it as having "no wobble." This makes sense to me.
Some other possibilities for the conflicting observations:
(1) It's possible that some self-reports of "no wobble" are mainly using the desk at sitting height instead of standing height.
(2) Maybe some users have it extended at standing desk but put in a corner so there are 2 walls that stabilize it.
(3) They may be using the BEKANT version that's non-motorized and sitting-height only. (That one has a different underside bracing geometry and also more mass for more rigidity. I wouldn't expect this desk to wobble.)
This thread happens to be about "standing desks" and the comment people are replying to is also talking about "standing desks". Therefore, I discounted the 3rd possibility.
 deep link: https://youtu.be/lZ9VmpyXk6g?t=187
you'd need to prove that all desks, when assembled by random people, have largely similar wobble characteristics (or the much harder proof that wobble varies with the perceptive tolerances of the observer). however, as you allude, the engineers were constrained by ikea's affordability (cheap), assembly (easy), and distribution (flat-pack) goals rather than precision around wobble.
as for the engineering, it's not support mass or surface area you need (read up on i-beams if this doesn't make immediate sense), but torsional rigidity at the joints, particularly tighter tolerances around the connectors when assembled by random people. torsional rigiditity in the spanning members is needed too, but that's less likely to be the issue since it's a steel frame.
this is a simpler explanation for the observed phenomena (apply occam's razor here). certainly more than one explanation might conjointly apply, but yours is the more complicated explanation and thus implores more observation and measurement.
And I thought Occam's Razor as guidance made the basic physics of the joints making wobbling unavoidable was the simpler explanation. I think we have different exposure to this product. I actually examined this desk at the store. If you look at the pdf of the assembly, you'll notice 2 bolts that attach the pedestal to the posts. It doesn't matter how much one tightens the bolts because when you extend the desk past 40 inches with a heavy weight on the top (20+ pounds), that T joint will flex and deform. (See 1st video I cited for example).
As analogy, here's example of unstable weight distribution on the end of a joint (car and trailer): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6mW_gzdh6to
One doesn't need to examine 1000 different cars towing a heavy weight on the back to determine that it's unstable and will fishtail. The basic physics of the configuration will make it fishtail. That's the type of Occam's Razor I'm using. Yes, there will be variances in how the trailer hitches were installed to the vehicle, and also variances in the trailer ball diameter -- but those are not the dominant factors. To continue the analogy, some drivers with misconfigured weight distribution may not notice any fishtailing because they drove slower than 40 mph, or they didn't make any sudden steering overcorrections etc. Same situation with some desk users reporting no wobble by using it a shorter height, or placing it against the wall, or just not subjectively noticing it.
If one makes a desk that lets people put 20+ pounds at the end of a 40-inch extended pole that's attached to 2 bolts -- without triangle stiffeners, or welds, or cross-bracing, or whatever, ...it's going to wobble at least little bit. Based on hands-on experience with the desk, I contend the underlying physics of the assembly design overwhelms any deviations in manufacturing tolerances. Or put another way, if we consider the entire Gaussian distribution of manufacturing variances, all of the desk samples will still exhibit wobble to some degree as shown in the 1st Youtube video. Some may wobble less; some may wobble more. E.g. the telescoping cylinders (not CNC milled) that the users do not assemble may have variances that add to the total wobble.
I noticed others in this thread mentioned that the newer IKEA model IDASEN "solves" the wobble. (Or minimizes it.) If we look at its alternative design, lo and behold, we see that desk has added diagonal bars on the legs for extra support. Yes, it makes sense that structural triangles are stronger and stiffer than just 2 bolts fastening a T joint of the BEKANT.