Paul’s stripper pole, I mean desk
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Paul’s stripper pole, I mean desk

posted in: Fulltime RV, Tips | 7

You have a work from home job, but you need a more comfortable and flexible desk space. Do you enjoying standing, sitting or somewhere in between? Want a sit stand desk, but don’t like your options?

Many people have seen my desk either in person or in photos and are curious about it. It took me lots of research time to come up with this solution. Thankfully, I was able to use it in my sticks and bricks before we hit the road.

Read on for my sit stand desk solution.

Sit Stand Desk for Home or RV

While still in a sticks and bricks home, I started thinking through downsizing. Being a software engineer I wasn’t willing to do without my nice 28″ monitor and I knew I wanted a sit stand desk that would transfer well to the RV. While there are a large number of sit stand solutions on the market, most of them are too big for an RV.

Searching for a complete solution to this problem presented a number of options. While most are intended to be used along with a desk, I figured I could create my own. Here’s what I did. 

The Arms

I use 3 arms. One for the keyboard, the monitor and the laptop. Total cost $450.

You’ll also need the mounts to attach the arms to the “stripper” pole. Total cost $30.

3 x OmniMount Play25x Full Motion Mount with Extension for 19-Inch to 37-Inch TVs

3 x Ergotron Pole Collar/Mount

The Mounts

These attach to the arms to hold your equipment. Total cost $45.

Monitor

The monitor gets mounted directly to the standard VESA mount that comes with the arm. No special equipment needed.

Laptop

The laptop needs a tray that will keep it from falling and put it at a good working angle. Luckily this is a common enough mounting task there’s even an amazon basics model that mounts to your arms VESA plate.

1 x AmazonBasics Notebook Arm Mount Tray

Keyboard and Trackpad

For the keyboard and mouse/trackpad I wanted a tray that was long enough for both the keyboard and mouse yet wide enough that my wrists could comfortable rest below the keyboard. When you adjust the pressure for you keyboard arm you’ll want to go more than you think so there is enough resistance when you have your hands on the keyboard. Otherwise working becomes a game of chasing your keyboard.

1 x VIVO Computer Keyboard and Mouse Tray Holder for VESA Mount Stand / Fits 100mm Plate Holes (STAND-KB1)

The Pole

Next you’ll need to install a pole somewhere in the RV. Put it wherever you like. This is definitely personal preference.

Since we have a toy hauler, mine is mounted in the garage giving me a separate space as an office. I had to cut it to fit the height. Measure carefully here to get your exact size to fit your space. Total cost $58.25.

1 x 1-1/2″ OD 304/304L Stainless Steel Tubing, Welded, 16 Gauge (.065) – 7′ Length

Sitting and Leaning

Lastly, I added a leaning seat for myself. This way I have the option to stand, lean or sit. It varies my day and is quite comfortable once you get used to the lean. Plus, it folds up nicely for travel days. Total cost $85.

1 x Active Collection FKS-1000-RD Mogo Stand-up Leaning Seat , Chili Pepper

I also use a chair from our dining set when I feel like sitting. It’s great that the arms are flexible enough for me to be standing at 6′ or sitting in a chair comfortably. They adjust positions easily and without much effort at all.

All together the sit stand desk cost me about $600 which I think is totally worth it for my health and comfort. I’ve loved using this desk since mid 2016 and wouldn’t go back to a stationary desk. Plus, it’s a business expense.

What are your desk solutions?

  • Floyd Fernandez

    Oh I really thought you got a real stripper pole to hang your gear from! Lol!

    • It’s close, but not quite, I guess it could be used for that and is cheaper than commercial stripper poles. When I started researching the only poles I could find with the right outside diameter were stripper poles then I figured out 1-1/2″ O.D. 16 Gauge would work.

      • Floyd Fernandez

        So it really did start with a stripper pole brilliant!

  • Teresa Rosche Ott

    Sweet setup, Paul. I’ve been trying to come up with an ergonomic setup that would allow me to work between our dinette desk and an adjacent reclining sofa (sitting/standing with feet down for too long becomes uncomfortable).

    Thought of the arm mount part of it, but hubby didn’t think it’d be long enough to accommodate extending to the sofa and swiveling around to face the opposite direction. A pole might make it doable.

    “Honey, can you order me a stripper pole next time you’re shopping on Amazon?” 😅

    Thanks for sharing what’s working for you. Good ideas.

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  • Kaylee Morrow

    Hello, we don’t really have anything to mount to in my 5th wheel as it’s not a toy hauler. Any suggestions for a type of stand to use? Thanks!

    • Paul Ryan

      Hi Kaylee,

      The arms mount either to a flat surface with heavy bolts (you can see it mounted to the wall in my sticks and bricks on the third picture) or to a pole like I have. I’ve found in RV’s the best surfaces for the poll seems to be the floor and ceiling so I’d recommend something that spans if you can find a place, otherwise they do make clamp style poles for these sorts of arms like you find at https://www.ergotron.com/en-us/products/product-details/45-248#/.