Slotted Folding Chair #1: Plans For Building

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Blog entry by DarrylF posted 12-20-2011 03:57 AM 11817 reads 23 times favorited 11 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of Slotted Folding Chair series no next part

Hello everyone, a few people have asked me for plans on how to build the folded slotted chair I made so I decided to give it my best shot to measure the pieces and give a description on how it was done, so here we go.

Wood Used: Ash

Parts List:
1 1/2” x 3/4” x 48”: 2
1 1/2” x 3/4” x 38”: 2
1 1/2” x 3/4” x 36”: 7
1 1/2” x 3/4” x 34”: 2
1 1/2” x 3/4” x 15 3/4”: 9
1 1/2” x 3/4” x 6”: 12

1/8” Metal Wire: 100” (About 56” are used when said and done but you need a lot of slack to put tension on and to make stringing easy.)

1.) Cut and plane all pieces to dimension.
2.) Route all four sides of each piece with a round over bit. After routing, round over the ends of each piece using a belt sander.
3.) Drill 1/8” (or slightly larger to accommodate 1/8” wire) holes 1” from one end of all of the pieces except for the 6” pieces, drill holes 1” from both sides of the 6” pieces (a jig on a drill press makes this a lot easier). On the 48”, 36”, and 34” pieces, drill holes 32 1/2” from the same end you measured the 1” holes from. On the 15 3/4” and the 38” pieces, drill holes 13 1/2” from the same end you measured the 1” holes from.
4.) Sand and stain all of your pieces, I used an outdoor stain.
5.) Lay out your pieces roughly according to the diagram and pictures below. (It was hard to draw a diagram depicting the 6” pieces as well, but along with the photographs they should be pretty easy to arrange.)

6.) Take the outside pieces, the pieces that you would see wire coming out of holes on in other words and countersink to drill holes with a 3/4” hole. You will also need to make plugs for these holes.
7.) Cut 4 pieces of 1/8” wire approximately 25” long or more (I’d always lean to more, I don’t remember exactly how long I cut them). Make a small hook on one end of each wire that is about 1/3” or less, it needs to fit in your countersink; do this by putting the wire in a vise and bend of over the vise with a hammer which makes a nice square hook (on the vise I used at least) which is what you’re going for. Then cut off the excess wire at an angle so the wire has a point to it, the part of the hook should be between 1/8-1/4” because it is going to be hammered into the wood to secure the assembly.
8.) Again arrange your pieces and string them with the 1/8” wire; it is easiest to start at the outside 6” piece and go one by one, if you arrange them all and try to feed the wire through you’ll be trying all day.
9.) After your chair is strung together, hammer the hooks you made on the wire into the countersink holes with a chisel or something similar. Now comes the hard part, pull each wire through as much as possible getting each piece of wood as tight as possible and cut the wire so that you can bend in over inside the countersink holes with the hammer and chisel to lock the chair together.
10.) Now you should have a chair that opens and closes, if you do you’re ready to put the countersink plugs in. Glue and hammer them in and saw off the remaining protruding plug to make a nice flush surface.
11.) Do finish sanding and staining and you have a chair!

I hope you all could understand my instructions and you are successful in building your own, they really are very comfortable and convenient!
Have fun,

-- Darryl

11 comments so far

View Chips's profile


199 posts in 4761 days

#1 posted 12-20-2011 04:22 AM

I favored this for a future project. Thanks for the information.

-- Make every day the best day of your life. Chips, Mississippi

View lightweightladylefty's profile


3615 posts in 4761 days

#2 posted 12-20-2011 04:59 AM


Thank you so much for all the information. We know it’s a lot of work to reconstruct a project once it’s done and you’ve done a great job with the details.


-- “Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.” Benjamin Franklin -- Jesus is the ONLY reason for ANY season.

View gul's profile


400 posts in 4011 days

#3 posted 12-20-2011 07:56 AM

Thank you so much for the instructions.

View gul's profile


400 posts in 4011 days

#4 posted 12-20-2011 08:00 AM

One question,can we use dowels instead of the wire?

View DarrylF's profile


21 posts in 3504 days

#5 posted 12-20-2011 09:31 AM

Glad it helps!

Gul: No you’ll need wire because it needs to be able to bend due to the natural curve of the seat and folding.

-- Darryl

View gul's profile


400 posts in 4011 days

#6 posted 12-21-2011 06:22 PM

Okay thanks Darrylf :)

View anforte's profile


157 posts in 4393 days

#7 posted 12-22-2011 05:34 PM

Very clever and elegant design.

Love to make one.



-- Anforte NJ

View randomray's profile


111 posts in 4073 days

#8 posted 12-29-2011 03:16 AM

Thanks for sharing this , I saw one of these about 25 years ago and hadn’t seen them sense then . I had been kicking myself for not getting one . Great job .

-- Anybody can break something it takes skill to make or repair stuff .

View Mark Shymanski's profile

Mark Shymanski

5623 posts in 4762 days

#9 posted 01-10-2012 05:55 AM

Thanks for this posting, that’s a great looking chair!

-- "Checking for square? What madness is this! The cabinet is square because I will it to be so!" Jeremy Greiner LJ Topic#20953 2011 Feb 2

View zoopmitty's profile


14 posts in 2121 days

#10 posted 06-20-2015 07:35 AM

i’ve made several of these using cables, wires, and manila ropes. Of the three types i’ve used i like the rope the best.

View doodlings3D's profile


1 post in 1074 days

#11 posted 05-02-2018 06:45 AM

Hi Darry,

This is my dream chair. I’ve to make this.

I got the wood. Actually it’s bamboo. I didn’t want to spend so much on wood. And I got the wire.

From point no 6 onwards, I cannot understand that what am I supposed to do! Is there any video? I don’t know how to use countersink with wires!

Trying so hard to understand…phewww!

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