Outdoor/porch Maloof rocker

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Forum topic by yellowtruck75 posted 02-24-2011 05:49 PM 1037 views 0 times favorited 2 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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464 posts in 2486 days

02-24-2011 05:49 PM

Has anyone ever built a Maloof inspired porch rocker? The only ones that I have seen are from Gary Weeks

I know that it would depend on what type pf wood, I was thinking of using Mahogany. I know that there might also be problems with the solid seat. Would a solid 8/4 carved seat crack with changes in humidity? Looking at the rockers by Gary Weeks be uses an open seat but still carved. What about a coopered headrest like Hal Taylor uses, would that split?

I have had several requests for porch rockers and I want to get a good design that won’t fail before attempting one. I live in central Pennsylvania whcih has shifts in humidity.


2 replies so far

View Domer's profile


252 posts in 2786 days

#1 posted 02-24-2011 06:07 PM

I would not have the courage to take the time to build a Maloof rocker and then put it outdoors.

Several guys in our local Woodworkers Guild have built Maloof rockers and both took almost a year to build. I know Sam Maloof could make one in a week, but can you charge enough to make it worth while?

Maybe you could find a simplified plan.

Good luck.


View Lee Barker's profile

Lee Barker

2170 posts in 2269 days

#2 posted 02-24-2011 06:59 PM

My concern is the joinery, not the solid stock. Even though Sam used big (sheet metal!) screws, the dowel joints and glue surfaces are important. Humidity shifts result in unequal expansion of wood and that creates an ill wind that blows upon critical joints. And, since a rocking chair is a system of joints, one which becomes slightly loose telegraphs all over the dang network and pretty soon you’ve a tragic patient on your workbench.

Gary’s chairs look sound and well thought out, but I’d still be nervous even if it’s a covered porch.

And if there were any more metaphors available here, trust me, I’d mix ‘em.



-- " his brain, which is as dry as the remainder biscuit after a voyage, he hath strange places cramm'd with observation, the which he vents in mangled forms." --Shakespeare, "As You Like It"

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