Ice Cream Truck Play Table or Desk

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A desk that looks like an ice cream truck (or bus or fire truck!) that you can build with free simple, step by step plans that anyone can follow. Do it yourself and save money on wood furniture.

We are thrilled to be working with 3M to promote the Couple Speak Campaign!

Dimensions are shown above. Standard table height (so would work great with chairs or table height stools).


Shopping List

1 - 8 foot long x 20" wide x 3/4" thick project panel or shelf (referred to as a 1x20 in this plan)
2 - 1x10 @ 10 feet long
1 - 1x2 @ 8 feet long
1x6, 1x4 and 1x2 boards for decoration
2" and 4" rounds for decroation

Common Materials
1 1/4 inch screws
2 inch screws
1 1/4 inch finish nails
2 inch finish nails
120 grit sandpaper
paint brush
Cut List

2 - 1x20 @ 26 1/2" (Front/Back)
1 - 1x20 @ 44" (Top)
4 - 1x10 @ 26 1/2" (Sides)
4 - 1x10 @ 18 1/2" (Shelves)
2 - 1x2 @ 44" (Side Trim)
4 - 1x10 @ 9 1/4" (Wheels, cut to rounds)
4 - 1x4 @ 9 1/4" (Wheel supports)
Optional trim and accessories

Tape Measure
Speed Square
Safety Glasses
Hearing Protection
Circular Saw
Brad Nailer
Power Sander
Drill Bit Set
General Instructions

Please read through the entire plan and all comments before beginning this project. It is also advisable to review the Getting Started Section. Take all necessary precautions to build safely and smartly. Work on a clean level surface, free of imperfections or debris. Always use straight boards. Check for square after each step. Always predrill holes before attaching with screws. Use glue with finish nails for a stronger hold. Wipe excess glue off bare wood for stained projects, as dried glue will not take stain. Be safe, have fun, and ask for help if you need it. Good luck!


Step 1

Start by carefully marking and cutting the windshield/back out of the front/back panels as shown above. Round corners gently with a jigsaw.

Step 2

Now do the same for the windows in the sides, and then attach front/back to sides as shown above. Use glue and check for square.

Step 3

Now add shelves as you see fit. The shelf on the windshield side should be just below the window opening, the other at seat height (don't forget, we'll be adding wheels too!).

Step 4

These aren't entirely necessary (you could use some 1x2s here to save money and just buy 8 foot 1x10s) but they give you something stable on the top to screw your top too. Screw or nail in place with glue.

Step 5

Step 6

And here's the back. It may make more sense to paint everything separately.

Step 7

Once the front and back are done (you may wish to move into your room at this point depending on doorways) attach top through underside of front and back with 1 1/4" screws. I left a 2" overhang to fronts and backs in the diagrams.

Step 8

Now trim the edges out with 1x2s as shown above.

Step 9

Cut the wheels out from 1x10 squares into a circle with a jigsaw. Then cut a half circle shape to match from the 1x4 as shown above and attach to the wheel. Use 1 1/4" finish nails and wood glue.

Step 10

Attach wheels to base of front/back as shown above and screw in place with 1 1/4" screws and glue.

Step 11

It doesn't have to be an ice cream truck!

Step 12

And here's a simple 18" high stool, top made from a 1x12 square . . . fits pretty nice under there!

Finishing Instructions
Preparation Instructions
Fill all holes with wood filler and let dry. Apply additional coats of wood filler as needed. When wood filler is completely dry, sand the project in the direction of the wood grain with 120 grit sandpaper. Vacuum sanded project to remove sanding residue. Remove all sanding residue on work surfaces as well. Wipe project clean with damp cloth.

It is always recommended to apply a test coat on a hidden area or scrap piece to ensure color evenness and adhesion. Use primer or wood conditioner as needed.


Bambi.hulse@gm… (not verified)

Sat, 03/24/2012 - 22:29


Abby (not verified)

Thu, 11/15/2012 - 11:21

I am making this for my daughters room for christmas. I am also trying make the loft bed also. I will send pics if I am successful. I absolutely love you plans!! Thanks so much!