RV Renovation – Slide Out Desk


When we moved to our smaller home in April 2016, we owned an ultra light 5th wheel RV. Part of our downsizing plan was to travel more and take extended trips in the 5th wheel. After we took it out on a couple longer trips, we realized that this RV was not the one we would be living in part-time.

Earlier this year, we traded in our ultra-light for a model that is better suited for our purposes, a Grand Design Solitude 379FLS. You have seen pictures of the outside in a few of our posts, most recently the Solar Eclipse 2017. We have made small changes inside to make it our own. This post will highlight the most recent change we made.

We have always had a home office. One of the ‘spare’ bedrooms in our homes has held our desks, computers, printers, camera equipment, important papers, etc. Being out on the road for an extended amount of time, we both felt that a desk or work space would be needed.

We follow the blog, Camper Chronicles and liked how they used their slide out to build a desk. We used that as our model, with a few changes of our own. Thanks Lee and Tracy!

After deciding which slide out would hold the desk, Andy removed the 8 screws and 2 90 degree brackets holding the sofa in place. It is not overly heavy, but would be awkward getting it through the camper door. Youngest son Brian came over to help.

Rather than using file cabinets or back legs for support, the desktop will rest on cleats that are attached to the walls with drywall screws. We will be adding a couple of legs to the front for additional support.

This is the slide with the sofa removed and the cleats attached.sofa gone

For the desk top, we purchased a door from Habitat for Humanity Restore. It was the right depth, 27 inches, and just needed to be trimmed down to 77 inches, the inside width of the slide.

We sanded off the varnish and prepped it for staining. You don’t see it from this side, but the door had a recessed pull handle. Andy removed it and drilled the hole all the way through the door. sanding door

We now had a hole for the electrical cords. We used a stain we already had, Minwax Provincial 211, and set it out to dry for several hours.cord hole in desk

stained and drying

Several days and coats of polyurethane later, the desktop was ready for install. Unfortunately, the trim around the slide got in the way and Andy had to notch it out. A little wood glue will put it back in place. A keyboard tray was installed and it is ready to add our computers. We also added a rug to cover the cable on the slide and the exposed wires. We will post an update when the front legs are attached.desk done

The sofa that was removed fit perfectly on the sun porch. Since it has no legs, Andy built a platform, similar to the slide, for it to rest on. Here it is getting a final fitting.platform for sofa

Resting on the platform.sofa on platform

sofa on sun porch
RV sofa on the Sun Porch

We are excited to get our ‘mobile office’ set up. Next month, we travel south for awhile. But before we go, we are rushing to get other projects completed, both on the house and RV.






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