Western Red Cedar Warrior Rocker

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Project by BRAVOGOLFTANGO posted 01-29-2013 06:31 AM 2716 views 5 times favorited 14 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Built this from western red rough cut cedar using my Kreg jig for the fastners. Asked my Son Nov of 2012 what he wanted for his college graduation gift the following month in Dec. He half-heartedly told me “Dad I want a handbuilt beastly rocking chair made by my Dad”...challenge accepted.

Designed this on Sketchup, built it in a week and while I wanted to use mortise & tenon joinery, I just wasn’t ready equipment wise, so used the Kreg system and the sea-trials involved my best friend 6-4” 320 lbs (former football player) sitting in it and rocking without a creak. I hand-sanded it down to 320 and rubbed it with cherry danish oil, slick as bambi on ice.

The funnest part of the build was making the 1/4” cedar rocker runner strips, the template for that and laminating them together with Tightbond II woodglue.

The best part of the project was my Son’s delight in a built-by-Dad beastly Warrior Rocker, he absolutely loves it. I really am proud of his earning a bachelors of science in Environmental Science, he had a job waiting the following Mon after graduation :).

14 comments so far

View a1Jim's profile


117328 posts in 3775 days

#1 posted 01-29-2013 06:47 AM

Very nice chair great job.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes



280 posts in 2201 days

#2 posted 01-29-2013 06:48 AM

Thank you Jim, fun project and got me hooked on rockers now. My next one will be of walnut and mortise & tenon joints.

View schroeder's profile


702 posts in 4323 days

#3 posted 01-29-2013 12:36 PM

What a great piece and great story! there is nothing more satisfying than building an heirloom for someone who appreciates it! – Congrats on a beautiful, well designed and crafted piece! – If you post the Sketchup plans – I will gladly STEAL them!


-- The Gnarly Wood Shoppe

View helluvawreck's profile


32087 posts in 3064 days

#4 posted 01-29-2013 01:18 PM

That rocker is so nice. You did s fine job on it.

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View 489tad's profile


3469 posts in 3209 days

#5 posted 01-29-2013 01:52 PM

That is a sharp looking rocker and a gerat story.

-- Dan, Naperville IL, I.G.N.



280 posts in 2201 days

#6 posted 01-29-2013 02:18 PM

Thank you everyone :)

Schroeder I have some Sketchup plans, give me a little time to do an as-built dimension tweak from the actual rocker and back into Sketchup and I’ll gladly share the drawing with you.

Almost posted them asis but the truth is, my original design on Sketchup changed mid-stream of the project prior making the back curved rocker runner vertical supports. I purchased a Grizzly G0555LX bandsaw and that’s the only reason the rear runner vertical supports are shaped. In fact the runner template and seat curved pieces were (start laughing now) built with a Hitachi reciprocating saw (sawzall). The original plan had straight pieces (work with what you have for tools kinda thing). The rear back horizontal (upper & lower) are bi-laterally curvatured but I was out of time to make each of the back splats curvatured to match the verticals. While the back splats are straight, they are very comfortable, in fact the chair is a delight to sit in. But I do know that when procuring a rocker you want curved splats, since our backs are curved. Original design also called for a couple of throw cushions for the seat & back since it’s so oversized, but I didn’t put in the pic since I was showing the woodwork.

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

30050 posts in 2536 days

#7 posted 01-29-2013 05:04 PM

Very beautiful

-- Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View Fishinbo's profile


11362 posts in 2373 days

#8 posted 01-29-2013 05:45 PM

Fantastic, sturdy and comfy rocking chair. A great piece to be proud of and will be enjoyed for many years.


View MonteCristo's profile


2099 posts in 2386 days

#9 posted 01-29-2013 07:41 PM

Beautiful rocker. I’m assuming, being WRC, it’s intended for outdoor use. I have built a number of benches from WRC and they stand up well outside, as long as they don’t get bumped too hard ! The wood is pretty easy to crush.

-- Dwight - "Free legal advice available - contact Dewey, Cheetam & Howe""



280 posts in 2201 days

#10 posted 01-29-2013 08:19 PM

Thank you Monte, it’s definitely an indoor rocker by design, of course WRC can be used outside, but it’s done in a very fine hand-rubbed finish, along with a brass Handmade by plaque attached in the back. My son puts it on his patio to relax at times but keeps it inside.

I went through about 50 timbers to find the 6 purple WRC heartwoods I wanted to build it, just a tad harder cut. I chose WRC based on it’s density, low shrinkage, resistance to warping and twisting. I don’t find WRC easy to crush, ableit it’s a softwood, at least the handpicked batch I ended up with wasn’t easy to crush. The other factor in choosing to use WRC was my Son and I decided it would have character with the bumps and dings over time.

View Eli Akin's profile

Eli Akin

25 posts in 2147 days

#11 posted 01-29-2013 08:37 PM

Wow, this is amazing!

-- Eli Akin,

View Woodbridge's profile


3591 posts in 2616 days

#12 posted 01-29-2013 11:32 PM

great looking rocking chair.

-- Peter, Woodbridge, Ontario

View MonteCristo's profile


2099 posts in 2386 days

#13 posted 01-30-2013 03:49 AM

BRAVOGOLFTANGO I guess I should have said it is easy to dent. But, on the plus side, it weighs a lot less than white oak, teak or other rot resistant woods. On the downside, some say the dust is pretty nasty. I think I have developed a bit of a reaction to it after having build 4 sheds and a bunch of other stuff out of it. Also, it appears to be fairly hard on cutting edges. Still, here on Vancouver Island it’s plentiful, although the second growth stuff is nothing like the old growth stuff.

-- Dwight - "Free legal advice available - contact Dewey, Cheetam & Howe""



280 posts in 2201 days

#14 posted 01-30-2013 03:37 PM

Monte – oh yeah that’s what I meant to say was the denting is easy, but my Son thought that part was cool. Walnut rocker project is just around the corner, soon as I finish my pantorouter project for mortise & tenons.

You are spot on with the WRC dust, it tore me up and I have no allergies, but you wouldn’t have thought so. I wear a respirator 75% of the time, but it’s not enough wiith cedar.

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