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Power carving a wood chair seat

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Forum topic by Slowpoke posted 04-02-2016 10:05 PM 793 views 1 time favorited 9 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Slowpoke

26 posts in 250 days


04-02-2016 10:05 PM

Hello, new to this forum. I am a retired building contractor, by trade a carpenter, with a lifelong side interest in building furniture. I’m starting a cherry dining room set which will include a set of 6 wood chairs. Looking for a repeatable mechanical (not by hand) method. Made a test seat using the table saw jig by (I think) Mario Rodriguez as posted on YouTube, but the profile it produces isn’t all that comfortable, as it it largely flat.

I have come up with a contraption that uses a router to produce a repeatable result that I am currently testing and tweaking, but I wonder if this subject has been covered elsewhere. My contraption suspends the router over the seat blank and the resulting profile requires minimal sanding to be completed.

I’m interested to hear what others have done on this topic.


9 replies so far

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Slowpoke

26 posts in 250 days


#1 posted 04-03-2016 02:38 PM

Here are some photos of the prototype setup- this was a quick-and-dirty effort to test the method, and it’s encouraging enough to pursue it.

The router hangs in a cradle from a piece of steel tubing and the seat blank clamps to the bench. A ΒΌ” shim strip attached to the underside rear edge of the blank produces a graduated depth of cut, deeper toward the rear. In operation, the cradle is swung back and forth on the pipe, with an appropriate bit, depth settings, etc, while the blank is relocated and clamped appropriately. When the process is further refined, I’ll post more details.

The first step is to cut the quarter-circle sections of the saddle, the rear “corners”. The blank needs to pivot in place, under the router, which for this step is restrained from moving along the pipe by stops (not shown) clamped on the pipe. The blank pivots on a wood dowel in either of two holes in the back of the blank that anchor in a hole in the bench directly under the router bit. As the blank is rotated and re-clamped, with a pass of the router each time, opposing quarter-round plows are created.

This stage is somewhat tedious, as the cuts should not be too aggressive, so the blank rotates in smallish increments. Once the two corners are cut, the blank is clamped with, in turn, the back edge and the two sides parallel to the pipe and, with the stops removed, the router is swung back and forth, advancing along the pipe until the cuts are complete. This is the first test blank after cutting was complete. Sanding with a DA produced a smooth saddle which is easily repeatable.

DISCLAIMER- This setup is somewhat crude and I’ll be building a more substantial one with some safety features and other refinements. Please use common sense and use safety precautions if you try this. There are more nuanced steps to the process which I have not explained. I’ll do a more complete writeup once the setup is sufficiently improved, if there is any interest here.

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Texcaster

1140 posts in 1139 days


#2 posted 04-03-2016 10:30 PM

Tool exploitation is the name of the game, well done!

A post like your seat carving is better archived in the “Blogs” section, it just gets lost in “Forums”.

Welcome to the site.

-- Mama calls me Texcaster but my real name is Mr. Earl.

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Slowpoke

26 posts in 250 days


#3 posted 04-04-2016 12:07 PM



Tool exploitation is the name of the game, well done!

A post like your seat carving is better archived in the “Blogs” section, it just gets lost in “Forums”.

Welcome to the site.

- Texcaster

Thanks for the kind words. As one who doesn’t really participate in social media, I’m not sure just what a blog is- but I do have several other shop-built contrivances that, as you say, exploit the equipment. For example, I have an adjustable oval-cutting widget that cuts tabletops or the like with a router, and a means for cutting very accurate tenons on a tablesaw.

Maybe others would like to see them.

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Texcaster

1140 posts in 1139 days


#4 posted 04-05-2016 12:03 AM

At the top of every page here you’ll see … Projects, Blogs, Reviews, Forums, etc. Click Blogs, your blogs will be archived on your home page as Blogs, just under your Projects

I’m sure others would like to see different ways of doing things. Actually, I would like to see more on your seat carving.

-- Mama calls me Texcaster but my real name is Mr. Earl.

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Redoak49

1951 posts in 1454 days


#5 posted 04-05-2016 12:14 AM

Very interesting and well done.

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Slowpoke

26 posts in 250 days


#6 posted 04-05-2016 12:06 PM


I m sure others would like to see different ways of doing things. Actually, I would like to see more on your seat carving.

- Texcaster


As mentioned, I’ll be refining and improving this setup. When that version is ready, I’ll take a series of photos showing the various stages of the operation. A router is just about the most versatile tool in the shop.

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Slowpoke

26 posts in 250 days


#7 posted 04-09-2016 09:52 PM

Made improved version of this contraption, set of 6 seats all cut. Actually worked out well

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Slowpoke

26 posts in 250 days


#8 posted 04-11-2016 05:46 PM

I have just posted a writeup of the step by step procedure for this procedure on my blog. It’s not as complicated as it looks; any questions cheerfully answered!

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ShogunJimi

37 posts in 362 days


#9 posted 04-11-2016 06:35 PM

Hang around here and you-tube and you will see a lot of tool exploitation. Always post anything you think is worthy. Even if you post something that has already been done – maybe you have done it in a slightly and hopefully better way.

-- Only a woodworker will value a good screw-up

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