I would like to make my first rocking horse

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Forum topic by baboon posted 07-22-2007 03:30 PM 2023 views 0 times favorited 7 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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4 posts in 3955 days

07-22-2007 03:30 PM


my name is Astrid Viktil and I’m a 25 year old girl from Oslo. I had an idea some time ago and I can’t really let it go, so I found out that I have to at least try. I want to make a rocking horse, but since it’s my first time I could really need some advice. I hope it’s ok that I ask you?

What kind of wood would be best to use? Something that’s strong, not so hard to work with, and something not too expensive of course. I was thinking of oak, what do you think?
The construction must be very solid, lasting and bare the weight of a child. I was thinking of making it hollow and making an X inside, if you understand what I mean?
Does anyone have a tip for how big the swing on the bottom should be? If it’s short and very bended it could get dangerous I suppose.
How thin can the legs be? Maybe I have to consider it while constructing it, so I’m sure that the weight will be equally divided on all four legs?

I’m sure it’s a lot harder than I think, it always is. But I would really appreciate any tip or advice I can get, about wood, construction, tools or anything else you might think of.

I hope this is the right place for these questions, and I hope you don’t mind me asking.

Best regards,
Astrid Viktil

7 replies so far

View WayneC's profile


13754 posts in 4091 days

#1 posted 07-22-2007 03:33 PM

Dan blogged about making one.

-- We must guard our enthusiasm as we would our life - James Krenov

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18615 posts in 4154 days

#2 posted 07-22-2007 04:06 PM

“harder than I think, it always is”.. isn’t that the truth.
But you have to do it… you just have to.

when you get “stuck” everyone will be here to offer advice.. and support when advice won’t help.

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (

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4 posts in 3955 days

#3 posted 07-22-2007 04:09 PM

Thank you :)
I will probably have lots of questions, but as you said: I just have to do it.

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Dan Lyke

1520 posts in 4119 days

#4 posted 07-23-2007 10:52 PM

Hi, Astrid! As Wayne mentioned, I built one, you can start at the link he gave and go forward through those entries. And here's more on my experiences building my first rocking horse on my own web pages, it was both easier and harder than I’d expected.

As soon as I find the time, I want to do my second horse, and I think I’m going to do the plans roughly from at half-size out of 1” nominal redwood. That should be great for a 2-3 year old. The full-sized version out of 2” fir (which, after shrinkage and saw kerfs and all of that comes out to be about 3.8cm thick for you Europeans) was large enough that adults could ride it. But it was also pretty darned sturdy.

And, yes, fir is cheap and soft, but hopefully the kid is going to beat the living daylights out of it, otherwise it’s not really a toy. On the other hand, I’m sure you can do something beautiful with oak.

-- Dan Lyke, Petaluma California,

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Dan Lyke

1520 posts in 4119 days

#5 posted 07-23-2007 11:08 PM

Oh, and there have been a number of other rocking horses here on LumberJocks:

Don's rocking horse uses a hanging pendulum rather than rockers, Al's design and Allen's design look similar to the style I used, Randy's rocking horse looks fairly simple to build, as does Kev's rocking horse.

-- Dan Lyke, Petaluma California,

View canton's profile


2 posts in 3952 days

#6 posted 07-25-2007 09:02 PM

And here’s something we can all strive for—top of the class kind of stuff:

Gorgeous hardwood work, see every muscle, real horse hair, etc…

View baboon's profile


4 posts in 3955 days

#7 posted 07-27-2007 02:16 PM

Thanks guys!
I’m trying to draw it now, making a plan of how I should build it. It’s difficult. If I get hold of a scanner, I’ll scan some of my drawings so you can tell me what you think I’m doing right and wrong.

Back to the drawing board! :)

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