My latest rocking chair project

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Project by woodsmithshop posted 07-28-2009 06:28 PM 2425 views 2 times favorited 17 comments Add to Favorites Watch

this project was taken from plans in the May 2008 issue of Wood magazine, I made a few modifications of my own the main one being that I used 5/8” Shaker Tape for the seat, instead of wood, it makes it more comfortable I turned 1” spindles for the seat stretchers, to accommidate the Shaker Tape, I did make the narrow rockers for this chair, the other rocker I made has the wider rockers on it, and I have found that they rock better on carpet than the narrow rockers, so if I make any more I think I will laminate and bend the rockers, also I think the bent lamination provides a stronger rocker. they may not be historically correct, but, I go more for comfort anyway. it takes about 75 yards of 5/8 Shaker Tape for a chair this size, the seat is about 19” X 17”, it would take around 36 yards if using 1” tape. this is only the second rocking chair I have made, but most likely not the last. this one was made from Red Oak, I used Zar Brazilian Cherry stain, and Titebond III, the only metal in it, is the staples to hold the start of the Shaker Tape. I have enough mistakes in this that I will have to keep it for myself.
now two of my grandaugthers are fighting over it.
any comments good or bad will be appreciate it.

-- Smitty!!!

17 comments so far

View hootr's profile


183 posts in 3344 days

#1 posted 07-28-2009 06:50 PM

fine job
i kinda drooled over this in the mag
i think the soft seat’s a good idea

if you laminate the rockers would you make them in one bend and then split it to be sure they spring back the same? i’ve done quite a bit of bent laminating and still have trouble making two exact mates

-- Ron, Missouri

View Jamie's profile


172 posts in 3258 days

#2 posted 07-28-2009 07:49 PM

Looks grea!
I have always been intimidated by chairs. This one looks like it may be a good project to cut my teeth on.

-- "Preach the gospel always. If necessary use words" -St Francis of Assisi

View jockmike2's profile


10635 posts in 4244 days

#3 posted 07-28-2009 07:52 PM

Nice rocker, looks very comfortable, I saw this in the mag too. I too thought about building it.

-- (You just have to please the man in the Mirror) Mike from Michigan -

View daveintexas's profile


365 posts in 3873 days

#4 posted 07-28-2009 07:56 PM

You did a great job on the rocking chair.

Thanks for posting

View woodsmithshop's profile


1319 posts in 3543 days

#5 posted 07-28-2009 08:50 PM

hootr, I make a double wide laminate, then split it on the band saw, I have had very little trouble with spring back, I usually make as many pieces as I can as thin as I can. I have made other rockers to repair other peoples chairs. they bring the chair, and want one rocker repaired, but in order to keep them balanced, I feel that two must be made.
thanks for the comments.

-- Smitty!!!

View degoose's profile


7233 posts in 3352 days

#6 posted 07-28-2009 10:49 PM

Looks way comfy mate.

-- Don't drink and use power tools @

View hootr's profile


183 posts in 3344 days

#7 posted 07-29-2009 01:48 AM

thanks for the reply
thats kinda what i thought

-- Ron, Missouri

View Ben Kahmann's profile

Ben Kahmann

231 posts in 3269 days

#8 posted 07-29-2009 02:24 AM

Great looking chair and seat design

-- Ben Kahmann Dayton, OH

View Don K.'s profile

Don K.

1075 posts in 3324 days

#9 posted 07-29-2009 03:38 AM

I would be fighting the Grandfathers over it myself…lol…Fine job !!!! I LOVE rocking chairs but have never made one. If I ever get caught up I may try and tackle one.

-- Don S.E. OK

View Innovator's profile


3584 posts in 3411 days

#10 posted 07-29-2009 04:36 AM

Would go great on my porch

-- Whether You Think You Can or You Think You Can't, YOU ARE RIGHT!!!

View kolwdwrkr's profile


2821 posts in 3587 days

#11 posted 07-29-2009 05:38 AM

They look great. Thanks for sharing

-- ~ Inspiring those who inspire me ~

View woodsmithshop's profile


1319 posts in 3543 days

#12 posted 07-29-2009 07:10 AM

to those that want to try making a rocking chair, this plan is on the simple side, there are no complex angles, everything is set at a 90 degree angle, it is easy to adjust the size of the seat to suit your own ideas, the arms could be made narrower if you like, the legs can be round, as could be the arms, plywood could be used for the seat,( not that I would want to) there are no limits to what you can do to adjust these plans, the plans in WOOD mag. MAY 2008, can be used as a basis for whatever you want to do with it. I did not follow the plan exactly, I just used it as a starting point, you can do the same, I happen to enjoy weaving seats with Shaker Tape, so I changed things a little, nothing complicated, the next one I make will be different, I am sure. I would suggest that the angle for the backrest be set back to recline a little more, but that is the way I like to sit in a rocking chair. try it, it is not that hard.

-- Smitty!!!

View woodsmithshop's profile


1319 posts in 3543 days

#13 posted 07-29-2009 07:13 AM

Larry, you need one of these sitting in front of that blue fridge, the back is high enough to rest your head on while you sleep, oops, I mean dream up another cutting board. lol

-- Smitty!!!

View Ron Berneburg's profile

Ron Berneburg

28 posts in 3236 days

#14 posted 08-08-2009 03:46 AM

We are, our own toughest critic. The flaws are most likely only seen,and known by you. With that said ,the rocker looks great. I looked at your other projects, must say you do nice work. Your relatives have to love having you around

-- Ron - Would Make It 4 You

View woodsmithshop's profile


1319 posts in 3543 days

#15 posted 08-08-2009 04:57 PM

thanks Ron, the mistake was, I drilled a couple of holes for the stretchers in the wrong place, then I had to fill them with plugs, it was one of those *&^%$#@, moments, I hate to waste wood, so I kept it for myself, so far no one has seen the error, but I can.

-- Smitty!!!

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