Porch Glider

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Blog series by Jimi_C updated 07-22-2012 07:49 PM 12 parts 65136 reads 17 comments total

Part 1: First entry, not exactly just starting out...

12-28-2011 09:31 AM by Jimi_C | 3 comments »

A little over a year ago, I started this project with the intention of it being my in-laws Christmas gift. I was slightly overly optimistic on the time it would take me to complete it… The sad thing is I’m still only about 50% complete on it, with lots of little life issues getting in the way. In the 13+ months since I’ve started, I have probably only put 100 hours into it, if that. It is starting to come together though, so I thought I’d start posting some updates in ...

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Part 2: Seat Done

01-05-2012 06:49 AM by Jimi_C | 1 comment »

Spent the week drilling and countersinking the holes for the seat slats. I used my drill press instead of my hand drill this time to ensure a nice consistent depth for the holes, since these are very visible. I did have one screw break off, but I was able to extract it successfully using this extractor and a dowel to fill in the hole. Just follow the instructions in the comments about making a jig and going super slow when extracting and it works fine. Since the patch is getting covered up by...

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Part 3: Starting Seat Back

01-15-2012 05:41 AM by Jimi_C | 0 comments »

Started work on the seat back today. I had the wood milled up to thickness, but it was all still oversized in width (and some pieces still have a live edge on them from the rough lumber) so I ran it through the tablesaw again to get it a close as I like and then broke out the hand planes to finish them off. Here’s a shot of a pair of the back slats showing the burn and blade marks (I really need a new rip blade…): And here’s the after: As you can see, I gang...

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Part 4: More Seat Back Progress

01-16-2012 09:30 PM by Jimi_C | 0 comments »

Got all the curves cut on one half of the slats, and then used a Microplane rotary shaper with a follower bearing to duplicate the patter on the second half of the slats. I prefer the Microplane over a standard router, since this is end grain and would have been a major PITA to do without blowout. I misread the plan, and ended up cutting one of the slats too short by about half an inch, so I improvised the curve pattern on the tops of the slats. I think it came out pretty well,...

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Part 5: Back Building

03-11-2012 07:19 PM by Jimi_C | 0 comments »

Progress on a rainy Sunday. Got all the back slats cut and sanded, including the middle one. I’m not particularly happy about the center piece, as I had to buy a new board for it. The one I thought would work was so cupped I wouldn’t have been able to keep it thick enough at 7” wide. As a result, it is a slightly different color. At the same time, the color difference between the seat slats and the back slats is pretty major two unfortunately – the seat is much more re...

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Part 6: Momentum

03-13-2012 03:05 AM by Jimi_C | 2 comments »

It’s nice having some momentum going on this, with my third night in a row in the shop after spending nearly a month not working on the glider. I actually got a lot of this done last night, and finished up attaching the upper brace when I got home from work tonight. The upper brace attached: I rounded off the end of the upper brace. The plan didn’t call for this, but I thought it’d look much better. I still need to sand this brace, so it’s going to have to co...

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Part 7: Look Ma, No Clamps!

03-17-2012 08:12 PM by Jimi_C | 1 comment »

Shaped and sanded the top back slat, and permanently attached the back to the seat frame. Once the back was attached, I cut the angled piece to size and flushed it up with my hand plane. Next up is attaching the end pieces – something I am kind of nervous about. The reason why is illustrated in these sketchup pics: The back/side of the seat frame are about 1 3/4” tall, and each of the existing screws is 1/2” from the top/bottom of the piece. That me...

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Part 8: Stressful!

03-22-2012 01:48 AM by Jimi_C | 0 comments »

Sides are attached, and I need a beer (or something stronger)... Here’s an in-progress shot, where 3 of the 4 corners are screwed. The far one is clamped in this picture, as I was checking to make sure I had it flat and level before attaching the final corner. The seat slats are off to allow a better drilling angle, plus they needed a final sanding anyway which is easier with them off. Three screws hold the front (even though the plan only called for two). I eyeballed center, ...

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Part 9: Metal Working

04-01-2012 09:01 AM by Jimi_C | 3 comments »

Eventful two weeks. I ordered a 6’ bar of 1/8” x 1” of 304 steel for the swing arms and angle braces, as this plan calls out making all parts yourself and not using anything pre-bought. McMaster Carr got the steel here fast, as in 2 days, which really surprised me. I also ordered the flanged bearings from them, which got here a couple of days later. I had originally planned on doing all the metal working myself, but after drilling a single 3/16” hole in a test piece...

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Part 10: Schwing

04-15-2012 03:23 PM by Jimi_C | 5 comments »

Finished drilling the holes in the seat ends and in the base, and assembled the swing arms to see how it works. Amazingly, it swings very well and is very level with the base (one rear corner is 1/32” higher than the other 3 – I’ll call that level). Here’s a quick video to show how well (and quietly) it swings. You can hear me stepping on hand plane shavings very clearly but the glider makes zero noise (I haven’t even WD-40’d the bearings). Still wo...

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Part 11: The Home Stretch

05-06-2012 03:25 AM by Jimi_C | 2 comments »

As of writing this, the porch glider is 100% assembled – no more wood to cut, no more screws to screw. Just a lot of detail work and then the outdoor oil goes on. First up, views of the armrests and the brace that ties them together across the back. I left the piece of wood to the left in order to give me something to brace against when gluing up. I used two wood shims to force the wood up against the shoulder of the other piece, ensuring a perfect 90 degree angle. Once the glue drie...

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Part 12: Starting the Finish

07-22-2012 07:49 PM by Jimi_C | 0 comments »

Took me a while to get the finish sanding complete (didn’t touch it for a month or so), but the last piece was sanded to 150 yesterday. I decided to take the bench back apart, to ensure that every crevice got sanded and finish on it to make sure water didn’t touch any parts that weren’t glued – that definitely contributed to the time delay a bit. So yesterday/this morning I started applying the General Finishes Outdoor Oil: I’m hanging the pieces us...

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