When I first read about Chris Wong’s shop stool build off, http://flairwoodworks.com/blog/, my interest was piqued. I’ve had an idea for a bent lamination piece floating around in my head and this was a perfect excuse to build it. It also provides me with the opportunity to introduce myself, so to speak, to the larger Internet woodworking world. I’ve even went as far as to start a twitter account, so I could join in on the fun. This is especially amusing to my wife and friends, because I don’t own or use cell phones. Let me add, this was not made in a day. I used free moments in my schedule to complete it, figuring something is better than nothing.
Enough about me, lets talk about this stool.
It is made from ash, because I have a bunch in my shed and not all of it can be used for hand planes. The design is Danish Modernish. I added a metal substructure to counter balance the splay of the legs, which naturally occurs from sitting weight atop 3 pieces of bent wood. Three eye bolts are attached to a welded steel ring, then bolted thru the bottom of each leg, sharing the load so to speak. Quick mention about the back drop. This is part of a cabinet job sitting in my shop right now. Figure it’s nicer than seeing all the mess.
Each of the 1″ thick laminations ends in a point, 30° angle each side.
So here is how I made my stool, more or less. I often forget to take progress photos along the way. Bring the camera in the shop, then never pick it up. What I do have, I think, paints a pretty clear picture. It starts with a bending jig. This one was made from construction ply because it’s what I had in the shop. Four blanks, 12″ x36″, were template routed to make the two piece form.
After trying to dry bend some strips, it became obvious a two piece design was too restrictive to make the tight radius I was after. I added a pivot, making a lever at the apex of the curve. This made bending the 1/8″ strips of wood doable.
Three days later, I’ve got three legs.
The top end of each leg needs to be cut with the same angle. This was done with a router, a template and a top bearing bit. I could have cut these angles with a handsaw, but I wanted it to look nice and actually fit, sometime this year. The jig I used for the bending was used once again for the routing. The legs were attached to the jig and template with screws, positioned where the bolts for the substructure and the bolts for the set were going to end up.
Had some serious blow out on one leg, not going to point it out to close.
Floating tenons were used for the joinery but you’ll have to take my word since I didn’t get pictures. I did take a pic of the glue up of the base. I used small c-clamps at the top of the bends to catch a strap clamp. A second strap clamp was used at the base to hold in the splay.
Cut a circle from a wide board and called it a seat top.
This is my stool for SSBO and how it was made. I want to congratulate Chris on not only having the idea but actually pulling it together. I look forward to the next excuse to build something.