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Thread: lookun for a chair maker!

  1. #1
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    lookun for a chair maker!

    the better half has decided that the old chairs are done!! so is there a familyWW member near me sorta? indiana, ohio, that either knows of someone or can lead me in the right direction. she looked at some today that were alias "amish built" and that it would take 6 to 8 weeks to get them. were are lookun for 6.. so if anyone can help out here get in touch, email or pm. or post thanks they are along the lines of mission style that she liked.
    If in Doubt, Build it Stout!
    One hand washes the other!
    Don't put off today till tomorrow!

  2. #2
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    Isn't that shop of yours done??? Why not take a shot at makin' them your self? Can't help other that to give the smart alack "you are a woodworker, aren't you" response!

  3. #3
    Chairs aren't any harder to make than anything else, once you do the first one. Pick a plan and build a prototype out of something cheap so you can get a feel for it (shop chair!!) and make sure you'd be willing to sit in it , then cut all the like parts for all the chairs at the same time.

    WOOD magazine has a nice looking chair in their Arts&Crafts collection....

    KC

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ed Nelson View Post
    Isn't that shop of yours done??? Why not take a shot at makin' them your self? Can't help other that to give the smart alack "you are a woodworker, aren't you" response!
    well someone showed fear of makin drawers a while back and well i am sittin in these chairs as is the better half and her freinds if they fellapart form the use i wouldnt have to worry about the shop no more

    Quote Originally Posted by Kirk Constable View Post
    Chairs aren't any harder to make than anything else, once you do the first one. Pick a plan and build a prototype out of something cheap so you can get a feel for it (shop chair!!) and make sure you'd be willing to sit in it , then cut all the like parts for all the chairs at the same time.

    WOOD magazine has a nice looking chair in their Arts&Crafts collection....

    KC
    well kirk,, it has crossed my mind and i asked dennis peacock about ti but he got away to fast,, he said that he has made chairs,, mentioned a tape that i could look at by someone named boggs i think,, i quess i could try it but i have never bent wood beforte and am not set up for it.. i take it you have made chairs before kirk got some pics?
    If in Doubt, Build it Stout!
    One hand washes the other!
    Don't put off today till tomorrow!

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kirk Constable View Post
    Chairs aren't any harder to make than anything else, once you do the first one. Pick a plan and build a prototype out of something cheap so you can get a feel for it (shop chair!!) and make sure you'd be willing to sit in it , then cut all the like parts for all the chairs at the same time.

    WOOD magazine has a nice looking chair in their Arts&Crafts collection....

    KC

    Kirk, I suppose your comments, like about everything here, is highly debatable. I would opine that chair making requires a certain amount of specialized knowledge and a knack, plus specialized equipment.
    My father was a professional furniture/cabinet maker. Never taught me anything, but that's another story. Over the many years he did that work he made many-many chairs. And to sit in them was a very sorry experience. Dang gumbest, most uncomfortable, back breaking things you can imagine. He could never get the angle of the wangle or curve in the butt area to feel right for the human body. From across a room, they looked OK, but to sit in one was bad news.
    As for equipment, the curved bottom requires a properly sized and shaped curved drawknife (scorp?). BTW, I wanted to make sure the scorp was the correct tool. An inshave is also correct. But, I found, amazingly, that Google was no help. Searching the word 'scorp' brought up a lot of unrelated stuff. So, scorp or inshave is the tool needed for chair bottoms.
    Last edited by Frank Fusco; 05-11-2008 at 04:53 PM.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Fusco View Post
    Kirk, I suppose your comments, like about everything here, is highly debatable. I would opine that chair making requires a certain amount of specialized knowledge and a knack, plus specialized equipment.
    My father was a professional furniture/cabinet maker. Never taught me anything, but that's another story. Over the many years he did that work he made many-many chairs. And to sit in them was a very sorry experience. Dang gumbest, most uncomfortable, back breaking things you can imagine. He could never get the angle of the wangle or curve in the butt area to feel right for the human body. From across a room, they looked OK, but to sit in one was bad news.
    As for equipment, the curved bottom requires a properly sized and shaped curved drawknife (scorp?). BTW, I wanted to make sure the scorp was the correct tool. An inshave is also correct. But, I found, amazingly, that Google was no help. Searching the word 'scorp' brought up a lot of unrelated stuff. So, scorp or inshave is the tool needed for chair bottoms.

    True, but he could make upholstered seats and avoid the need for the scorp. A chair may be the next thing on my list, once I finish the hall table.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Fusco View Post
    .
    As for equipment, the curved bottom requires a properly sized and shaped curved drawknife (scorp?). BTW, I wanted to make sure the scorp was the correct tool. An inshave is also correct. But, I found, amazingly, that Google was no help. Searching the word 'scorp' brought up a lot of unrelated stuff. So, scorp or inshave is the tool needed for chair bottoms.
    There are many ways to make a sculpted seat - and I've probably tried most of them. I find the easiest way is to take a large carving gouge, maybe a #5/30 and gouge out the major part (using a mallet to hit the gouge). I then come back with a ROS and coarse sandpaper to smooth out the wood. The trick is to make both sides of the seat the same and to get the wood smooth (no ripples as you run your hand over it), but that's a problem no matter what tool you use.

    A chairmaker's plane can also be used but it's a bit slower (but you'll make less mistakes than with a carving gouge). The scorp is really only good on softwood. It's slow and hard to use on hardwood - at least it is for me.

    As far as making the chair comfortable, I find that the shape and angle of the back has the most to do with it. I can't tell you how to do it (I could show you) but the most comfortable is with shaped backslats that provide support for the back. I laminate bend my back slats.

    A lot of what Brian Boggs teaches is what I call "country chairs" which is a lot different in technique than what I'd call "city chairs". Both are good but you have to decide which you want to make because the techniques are different.

    Chairs ARE NOT that difficult to make. As someone suggested, make your first one from cheap wood and learn from that. If it's not comfortable, ask yourself why and make another one. Ask for help here and many people will offer advice. You *will* learn and improve. Most people are afraid of making chairs until they make one - then they wonder why they were afraid.

    Mike
    Ancora imparo
    Go into the world and do well. But more importantly, go into the world and do good.

  8. #8
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    Papa Bear couldn't help you out? I know you were asking questions to him about where he used to get his chairs. I'm pretty sure Keith has made some chairs to go with his tables, maybe he'd have a answer or two....might be a guarded secret though. Seems like there was a place called Adams that had table parts, maybe they have chair parts too.....how about using some milk crates, cheap, readily available and can have other uses as well.

    Okay, so the milk crates might not be such a good idea.
    A very wise man once said.......
    "I'll take my chances with Misseurs Smith and Wesson. "

  9. #9
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    well boss i would got them through papp bear if he had some but he said that he gave up on the idea,, and i AINTY GONNA ask yur brother for info!!!!

    mike you got a couple pics showing the city chair vrs the country chair? the better half has one picked out that i havnt seen so could show here what your refering too.. i had thought about it sometime just not there yet i dont think.. how long does it take to make 6 chairs in mission style sorta,,,finished as well...
    If in Doubt, Build it Stout!
    One hand washes the other!
    Don't put off today till tomorrow!

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by larry merlau View Post
    mike you got a couple pics showing the city chair vrs the country chair? the better half has one picked out that i havnt seen so could show here what your refering too.. i had thought about it sometime just not there yet i dont think.. how long does it take to make 6 chairs in mission style sorta,,,finished as well...
    Take a look at Brian Boggs site. The ladder backs are what I would consider "country chairs". Also Windsor chairs.

    City chairs are more like what you'll see in a furniture store. A few examples are shown in the attached pictures.

    Mission is one of the easier styles to make because it generally doesn't have any "sculpted" work on it - it's generally made from straight wood. Sculpting takes time because there's a lot of hand work required to do it.

    If I was going to make six mission style chairs (I assume dining room chairs), I'd make one out of poplar (or some other cheap wood) and keep patterns of the major parts (like the shape of the back legs/back). I might even bring that chair into my home and use it for a few weeks to make sure that it "fits". Then, I'd make all six at one time using the prototype as a guide.

    Pick up a copy of "Chairmaking and Design" by Miller. It'll give you some good advice and maybe some ideas. Most of the chairs in that book are what I'd call "city chairs".

    As to how long it'll take to make six of them, that depends on too many variables for me to give you an estimate. A well made chair will last over 100 years so the time to make them is just a blip in their life span.

    Mike

    [Regarding finishing, you have a lot of choices. I usually shoot my chairs with lacquer because it last a long time. You can use a wipe on poly (the rocker in the picture is done in wipe on poly - picture taken before rub out). If you use wipe on poly, you'll probably have to rub them out to get the roughness out of the finish. I use either very fine steel wool with mineral oil, or very fine wet/dry sandpaper (600 to 1,000) with mineral oil. Use wax after the rub out. Wipe on poly doesn't last as long as lacquer but it looks great when rubbed out and waxed. And you generally have to rub out lacquer, also, to get a really nice finish.]
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Dos Equis Chair (530 x 726).jpg   Norma's-rocker-1-small.jpg   Rose's-chairs-002.jpg  
    Last edited by Mike Henderson; 05-12-2008 at 04:04 PM.
    Ancora imparo
    Go into the world and do well. But more importantly, go into the world and do good.

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