I recently moved into a new apartment with a second bedroom that will work as my home office. One of the main walls has a “cut out” section that instantly gave me the idea for a custom workbench. My first project in this new home office has been set in motion. Below is a sketch of how I picture the workbench fitting into the wall.

Mounting a piece of wood into the area isn’t really that difficult. The wall has three studs that I could drill corner brackets into and rest the workbench on those, but as you can see in the sketch I had a more custom idea in mind. I hate the problem of cables getting everywhere, so a big part of my ideal workbench is having a nested housing for surge protectors and cables to be stored in. The “power moat” as I’m calling it, would need to have covers on the top and the ability to open up underneath. My thought process here is for future proofing as time goes on. If a surge protector dies or I want to add another, I need to easily be able to open up the “moat” and change things out.

Due to the workbench being pretty custom, I was nervous about just ordering custom cut boards based off my drawings and measurements. Rather than make a scale foam core model of my idea for the workbench, I used this as an excuse to learn and play around with SketchUp. After messing around awhile, I got a decent 3D model of how I thought the workbench should look and function. Below is the result of that endeavor:

I decided to take a simpler route with the power moat and just have it open from the top with a large enough hole on the bottom for power to be fed into. Creating the SketchUp model and showing friends actually resulted in catching a problem with the “hinged-covers” that close over the power moat. (In short, the pegboard on the wall would end up preventing the back hinged door from being able to open all the way due to the pegboard coming out from the wall about an inch) Tweaking the design of the actual power moat’s cover shouldn’t be too hard and it gives me something to do while waiting for the rain in Orange County to settle down and take a trip to the lumberyard around the corner. Next week the pegboard should be cut and installed in the space. More details on the progress in the coming weeks!