Here’s how to give the KALLAX and INLÄGG a smooth integrated desk transition.
IKEA offers this KALLAX desk combination BUT the Z brackets are mounted on the desk top. This not only looks very poor but means the connecting surface isn’t smooth. I wanted a smooth connection between the 2 units for my son’s LEGO builds.
LEGOs aside, a smooth desk surface would also be useful for a craft and sewing table. And is generally a neater-looking workstation.
To be honest, I probably wouldn’t have bought this combo if I realized how they were connected. Nonetheless, I made it work with this KALLAX desk attachment hack.
This is how it looks if we follow IKEA’s instructions. The hardware is visible on top of the desk.
How to attach a desk to the KALLAX? (The IKEA method)
You can attach a desk to the KALLAX shelf unit via a connector hardware called the INLÄGG, also available from IKEA. The Z bracket from the INLÄGG attaches from the underside of the desktop to the top ledge of the KALLAX shelf. It needs to be fastened with screws. Depending on whether you are attaching to the KALLAX shelf in a horizontal or vertical position, you may or may not need to use the INLÄGG bars. These bars serve to reinforce the thinner shelf (when connecting the desk to the IKEA KALLAX in a vertical position). However, the hardware will be visible on the tabletop, which leads to this attachment hack.
PPE for drilling and improvised vice
Clamp for drilling
How to attach and hide the IKEA INLÄGG desk connector
Mount INLÄGG Z bracket upside down on the underside of the LINNMON desk top.
Enlarge left- and right-hand holes in both INLÄGG attachment brackets. I used a 6mm HSS drill bit to allow screws to pass through the brackets
Select large chipboard screws which tap directly into existing holes within KALLAX.
Mount both the 2 INLÄGG bars inside the KALLAX unit using short large chipboard screws.
Mark the location of the mounting hole in the KALLAX center bar and drill a hole.
Feed the provided conduit through left-hand INLÄGG, KALLAX center bar, and right-hand INLÄGG.
Secure the conduit using the provided thin mating bolt.
Mark on both INLÄGG bars where the existing holes in the Z bracket appear.
Reassemble. The desk is now attached to the KALLAX without the visible brackets on top.
The result is a smooth table top for play, spanning the KALLAX unit and LINNMON desk.
With the bar across the cube, you may not be able to use certain KALLAX inserts and bins that need the full height and depth of the cube, like the door inserts and drawer inserts. Shelves should fit in with no problems.
How long and how much did it cost?
About an hour and a few spare screws.
What do you like most about the hack?
Gives a smooth connection between the desk and the KALLAX shelving unit.
What was the hardest part about this hack?
Measuring the holes for drilling carefully. That’s what you need to pay attention to make this work. Other than that, it was all good.
Jules Yap started IKEAHackers.net in 2006 as a personal blog to showcase the most impressive IKEA hacks from all over the world. Since then, she has learned a lot more about power tools and DIY. Her site has helped thousands modify IKEA furniture with step-by-step tutorials, craft projects and home styling.