Hal Taylor Rocking Chair #9: Rockers shaped and attached...

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Blog entry by NY_Rocking_Chairs posted 06-13-2009 10:50 PM 5723 reads 0 times favorited 3 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 8: Week 6 - Back Braces and Head Rest Part 9 of Hal Taylor Rocking Chair series Part 10: New book and toys, err I mean tools »

So today is the last day of assembly. After the epoxy sets up overnight, the leg/rocker joints gets sanded and then the chair gets final sanded and finished…

Starting out I took my belt sander to the top of the back legs to give them the same slope as the head rest:
Head Rest Carved

After that I proceeded to sand the head rest through to 500-grit along with the tops of the back legs.

For the rockers, the rockers are placed in their position on the legs and we mark where the legs hit the rockers. Then we glue on stack pieces that will give us the transition from rocker to legs:
Stack Glueup

So after both rockers have their stacks glued on we then take a final measurement and trace where the legs hit the rockers. We draw lines that tell us the angles the screws will take through the rockers into the legs. The rockers then get drilled out on the drill press and the bottoms get touched with a countersink. Then we mark the curves on the rocker stacks and band saw the transitions:
Rocker Band Sawn

After that the rockers go through the router to round over both the top and bottom. The bottoms need to be rounded over so that as the chair rocks on a hard surface the rockers are not splitting and cracking. Then the tips get cut to profile on the band saw. Then I sand the rockers through to 500-grit.

Next we clamp the rockers to the bottom of the chair and drill the screw holes into the legs, when the drills get done a piece of stock is actually clamped to the rockers to “pull” them flat to mimic them rocking on a flat surface:
Rockers Clamped

After that comes the trial fit to the chair. The rockers are set on the table and the chair is set to rest on the rockers. At this point the leg to rocker joints need to be made perfect. Hal’s book talks about passing a sheet of sandpaper between the leg and rocker to sand the legs til they are perfectly flat and matched to the rockers. Personally I am able to use the ROS and in about one to two minutes per joint achieve a perfect match-up, this is the joint with the chair just resting on the rocker:
Chair to Rocker Joint Perfected

So after I am satisfied with all 4 joints we flip the chair over on the work surface. I mix some epoxy and “prime” the leg joints. Being end-grain they tend to suck up the epoxy. I keep the legs well epoxied for about 15-20 minutes, then scrape off the excess. I then let the chair rest for an hour while the epoxy starts to cure. Then I mix some fresh epoxy, apply some to the joints and drive the 4” screws through the rockers and into the legs:
Rockers Glued

After the epoxy sets up over night I will use the ROS to finish sanding out the leg to rocker joints and then final sand the whole chair and apply the first coat of finish. I use Deft Danish Oil, the first application I use paper towels and apply liberal amounts to the chair, keeping the whole thing looking wet for about 15 minutes, then I wipe it down with fresh paper towels. I let the chair rest a week and then hit it once with a 1000-grit sanding and then do a quick wipe wet and wipe dry with paper towels. After the second application the chair is done.

Thanks for reading and I will post another entry with the final chair pics after the finish process is done next weekend.

Here is the project link for the completed chair.

-- Rich, anybody want a peanut?

3 comments so far

View jsulman's profile


3 posts in 4692 days

#1 posted 11-06-2009 08:30 PM

Unbelievable rocker Rich. I’ve been wanting to build one of these for the last few years but want to get a few more projects under my belt for the experience. Plus I need to get a band saw.

I have a quick question about the finish. Is there a reason you use Deft Danish oil as apposed to Watco?

Thank you.

View NY_Rocking_Chairs's profile


533 posts in 4843 days

#2 posted 11-08-2009 12:00 AM

Hal Taylor recommended it and not having anything better at the time I tried it. I am addicted to it and have not yet tried Watco. DDO is getting harder and harder to come by and the last gallon I ordered actually had to come from a basket supply place.

-- Rich, anybody want a peanut?

View Taigert's profile


593 posts in 5086 days

#3 posted 01-03-2010 10:45 AM

Bill try this


-- Taigert - Milan, IN

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