Amazing pipe organ desk features secret compartments and an all-wood logic board


Feeling pretty good after putting together your brand new standing computer desk? Step aside please, [Kagen Schaefer] has something he’d like to show you.

His Pipe Organ Desk is undoubtedly one of the coolest pieces of furniture we have seen in a long time. The project took [Kagen] over three years to complete, which sounds about right once you see how much attention was put into every last detail.

This desk is amazing in several ways. First off, the entire desk was constructed solely from wood. The drawers, the supports, knobs, screws, and even the air valves – all wood. Secondly, when one of the desk’s drawers are pushed in, air is directed to the organ pipes at the front of the desk, which plays a note.

A small portion of the air is also directed into the desk’s pneumatic logic board, which keeps track of each note that has been played. When someone manages to play the correct tune, a secret compartment is unlocked. The pneumatic logic board is an unbelievable creation, consisting of well over 100 wooden screws which can be tuned to recognize any number of “secret tunes”.

Sure a well-placed axe can open the compartment too, but who would destroy such a fine piece of work?

[via Make]


  1. Squintz says:

    Here is a video:

  2. andar_b says:

    Wow, this looks like something I’d expect to see in a RPG game or something, just…wow.

  3. 1000100 1000001 1010110 1000101 says:


  4. asheets says:

    Dunno why, but this reminds me of the Cheers episode where Rebecca destroys an antique desk looking for a hidden gift, not realizing that the desk itself was the gift.

  5. Rob says:

    “FEED the organ and watch the floor”.

  6. ha_lol says:

    asheets, I seem to remember that episode as well but I don’t remember anything about a gift.

    I heard Kirste Alley was just hungry and someone had left a slice of pizza in one of the drawers!

  7. YS says:

    Well, that’s really cool! What a great patience to be working on it for years!

    By the way, what a strange video by link above, nothing interesting about the subject.

  8. third says:

    Wooden Air-Powered Programmable Computer. In a desk. That’s also a pipe organ. And a puzzle.

    That man went above and beyond the call of awesome.

  9. scholarch says:

    I would expect to see Atrus sitting at that desk.

  10. PocketBrain says:

    Ruh roh, Rob!
    Yeah, my first thought was that old episode of SD.

  11. Stendall says:

    This guy it’s a genius when it comes to work with wood.
    Have you seen the other works he have?

  12. At the risk of sounding fairly ignorant…

    Holy Fuck! You just blew my mind Kagen Schaefer.

  13. Michael says:

    Wow. This is one of those things that
    A.) Id like to do but never have the time/energy for
    B.) Would be really cool in your house/office
    C.) Is a reference to a simpler time, when it would be more useful/effective. Nowadays you could probably just take a picture of it, send it to the Google machine, and itll send back the solution.

  14. D_ says:

    @YS Of course what’s interesting can be relative. After what may looks to to be the video creator’s stock intro footage plays, the builder, and the desk are very much the topic. No it’s not Norm or Roy showing the entire build, but it’s additional information non the less.

    The exterior finish of the wooden pipes most likely has no bearing on the function of pipes. I guess they paying client is willing to pay just to know that what they can’t see looks great.

  15. mark g says:

    Reminds me of Goonies.

  16. KiDD says:

    I think I saw this desk in MYST

  17. Amos says:

    @YS in fact, what you learn from the video is that what the “pipe organ computer” unlocks is actually a puzzle that you then have to solve to open the middle drawer on the desk, which is the real “secret compartment.”

    That is an amazing piece of engineering, as well as a beautiful piece of art. I wonder who his “patron” (or matron, as the case may be) is and how much he/she is paying for it. Whatever it is, it’s not enough!

  18. Hirudinea says:

    Carpentry becomes magic.

  19. Jonathan Wilson says:

    This has to be one of the most amazing pieces of furniture ever made.
    The fact that the guy has produced such a fancy machine using nothing but wood is extremely EPIC.

  20. Spork says:

    Truly amazing piece of work. functionality, creativity, artistic expression, all amazing in this piece. Bravo.

  21. echodelta says:

    Digital came first. Wood and leather penumatic digital to analogue converters in 1913. The Duo Art system. Digital pipe organs in 1500, 1600’s in this universe. What’s old is new.

  22. Lingnau says:

    I’d really like to see a vid.

  23. dombeef says:

    @KiDD You just made my day, atleast someone online remembers MYST :D

  24. wernicke says:

    you gotta give @scholarch credit for that one. Don’t you remember Atrus?

  25. well says:

    +1 on all the myst references.

    This guys got my vote to help write Myst VI

  26. Hunter says:

    Truly amazing. I’m quite in awe right now.

  27. Person says:

    Am I the only one that notices that the top is made from a single slab? That hunk of wood alone is well over $1000.

  28. audiophil says:

    That, is a work of art.

  29. Godd says:

    Did anyone else notice that, on top of the screws, he even made wooden washers?

  30. jim says:

    Honey, if you want your heart pills, you’re going to have to learn the five note alien communication from Close Encounters.

  31. Otacon2k says:

    that’s awesome. Period.

  32. fartface says:

    Utterly Epic, at least 500X levels higher than any of the noids that post here… yes me included.

  33. Grey Loki says:

    This is neat, but some of the other stuff this guy has made is even cooler –

    The quality of his workmanship is just supreme; i’ve never seen woodworking like it.

  34. JamieWho says:

    Wow. +1 to all the Myst references as well.

    Also, at the end of the video, he says there are probably between 10 and 20 puzzles like that in the whole desk. So, he didn’t even start to show all the cool stuff in that desk.

    Yeah, this guy is a serious puzzle maker.

  35. sourcetonuts says:

    Very nice! Do you think the sound helps one remember what drawer one put something in?

  36. Here’s a nice write-up all about Kagen’s origins and The Desk!

    I hope he releases more video of his “wildest imagination” soon!

  37. Amazing!

    In the video Squintz posted does Kagen Schaefer remind anyone else of Seth Rogan? :)

    @Kagen, If you see this, “Hoe. Lee. Shit! Nice work!”

  38. IJ Dee-Vo says:

    Awesome, love the air logic!

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