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Oak Dining Room Chair

author-gravatar nqnewlin Sep 08, 2018

I built oak dining chairs.

Mostly finished chair. Still have to upholster the back of the chair and complete the other 7 chairs.

I built a dining table earlier this month. We had some old chairs that needed replacing. Decided to make 8 new chairs.

My wife and I could not agree on the style of chair to make. I wanted to make a more classic style and she wanted something modern. She kept finding pictures on Pinterest that looked good, but I could not think of any way to make something similar. This is a chair she found that we agreed on. I thought I could make it completely out of wood.

Early plans to get an idea of dimensions and angles

Another drawing

Earlier this year I bought a bunch of oak off of craigslist. I used some to make the table and used the same wood for the chairs.

One of my helpers.


Pieces rough cut to length needing to be milled for the leg pieces.

All 144 pieces for the legs milled to thickness and cut to width.

Pile of sawdust on my driveway from milling all the wood.

gluing the legs together. I laminated three pieces together to form bridle joints to glue the legs together as I didn't have any wood thick enough to make the legs out of one piece.

Testing the fit of one bridle joint.

Cut the template out of MDF for the form to make the backs.

Drew the template for the curved piece.

Testing out the bent lamination form on scraps

Test piece.

Gluing the first bent lamination piece. For each piece I glued together 7 - 1/8in thick strips then ran them through the planer to get the edges smooth and the proper thickness.

For the back of the chair I needed to bend pieces that were roughly 2 1/2 inches wide. I didn't want to cut that many thin pieces that wide on my table saw and I don't have a band saw. I decided to cut one piece at 3/16 thick and a wider piece I would kerf cut to bend. Cutting pieces like this on the table saw was not very fun. I went very slow in multiple passes but still was nervous.

The wider piece after kerf cutting and the thin piece lying on top.

Back rest piece in the for gluing. I left a lip on one side to attach the cross pieces to.

One set of legs glued together and rounded corners cut.

Testing the fit of the curved piece through the leg.

Hand cut mortise for the rails connecting the two leg assemblies.    

Cut the tenon on the table saw

Testing the fit

Dry fit of all the pieces

Stained the main chair to match the table and ebonized the curved rails with vinegar/steel wool. Gluing them together.

After applying polyurethane.

Last thing to do is upholster the 3 gaps in the back of the chair. 

Front leg

Back leg. Thank you for looking.


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