Red Oak Crib #1: Red Oak Crib

  • Advertise with us
Blog entry by Ehren posted 03-23-2012 06:41 PM 2617 reads 2 times favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of Red Oak Crib series Part 2: Completed Crib »

I started this project when we found out we were expecting our first kid. After shopping and not finding anything I liked for the money so I set out to design my own. I wanted a crib that could be broke down and stored when not in use. I bought roughsawn red oak from a local mill an hour from my house.

There were a couple things I tried in this project I have never tried before design wise. After trying them, some of those expiriments will not happen again. I tried to make it all part of the learing process. If you have any coments that I could have done better please let me know. Good or bad, I am almost done, but I will definately incorporate any feedback into my future projects.

Here are the initial concept sketchs:

The basis of the design is four pannels, front, back and 2 side pieces that would break down.
The side pannels insert into the front and back by tennon joints and screws.
The corner pieces were lock mitered and support the cross bars that were also mortised.

Expiriment 1: Instead of mortising a slot for each slat I though it might be easier if the upper and lower cross bars were two pieces each and then I routed a cut out for each slat. I didn’t have a good mortise set up. The idea had its bonuses, but I don’t think I will do this again. For one I don’t think the integrity is there if the bar ever decides to split. Secondly even through I didn’t have to clean and fit each slat, It was a little difficult to glue the back piece of the bar on. I hope the pictures explain this.

Routing the top and bottom cross bar with a homemade jig. It will keep consistent and adjustable width, depth, and length of cuts.

All the pre cut pieces

Clamping the slats into the cross bars, another piece would be glued over this ‘sandwiching’ the slats, again, probably wouldn’t have done this in hind-sight

The feet may have been the easiest to build. Their design is a chopped off pyramid with a cove cut and squared bottom. Here is a good place to get the angles right, that may have been the trickiest bit:

The feet were made of the four pieces, one shown on my table saw with a poor mans cove jig.

The pieces were glued together, I inserted a cap in the top and squared the bottom on the table saw.

The most detail probably went into running the rail and moulding along the front and back. I tried a few methods and finally settled on the one below for mounting the bend moulding to the crib.

The Rails were steam bent then clamped straigt to the front and back curves, cured for a week then trimmed to fit. I also used small biscuits to help with durability. I can see some kid hanging off of it in the future.


For the Moulding, I wanted single pieces, didn’t want to carve and wanted to bend it in hopes of preserving the look of the grain. The problem I was facing was having to bend the moulding laterally.
To star I matched my desired profile (shown right) with two wider pieces that when matched up and trimmed will be identical to my moulding.

These pieces were steam bent and placed in moulds. I made these moulds a bit more extreme than my desired curve to account for spring back and because of the ‘S’ type turn.

Then they were trimmed to match the profile:

Here are the final pieces before I finish them:


And the front being sprayed, I have one more coat and will post finished pictures when done (probably a week out, something about work being in the way)

9 comments so far

View kaschimer's profile


89 posts in 3848 days

#1 posted 03-23-2012 07:18 PM

Another great build! That baby is lucky

-- Steve, Michigan - "Every piece of work is a self portrait of the person who accomplished it - autograph your work with excellence!" - Author unknown

View Bearpie's profile


2601 posts in 4477 days

#2 posted 03-23-2012 10:05 PM

A number 1 job! You done did good!

-- Erwin, Jacksonville, FL

View Eagle1's profile


2066 posts in 4523 days

#3 posted 03-23-2012 10:22 PM

WOW!! Beautiful job..

-- Tim, Missouri ....Inside every older person is a younger person wondering what the heck happened

View Philip's profile


1277 posts in 3998 days

#4 posted 03-23-2012 11:26 PM

That looks fantastic- now you need to put a lift in it so you don’t break your back getting the baby in and out…

-- I never finish anyth

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 4149 days

#5 posted 03-24-2012 01:05 AM

I think you did a GREAT job on this crib! You have some serious woodworking skills.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View Bluepine38's profile


3393 posts in 4544 days

#6 posted 03-24-2012 02:49 PM

Beautiful crib, what type of mattress support are you going to use, and how will you attach it? Thank you
for sharing.

-- As ever, Gus-the 83 yr young apprentice carpenter

View Ehren's profile


27 posts in 3714 days

#7 posted 03-25-2012 04:36 AM

I orderd a matress and matress frame online. The frame has supports that will bolt into threaded inserts that I set along the corner. I will try to get a better picture when I’m done laying down the finish. Other kits come with other hardware sets but I wanted minimal hardware to be seen. I found a few places that sell hardware kits but eventually went with

View Todd_S's profile


6 posts in 3424 days

#8 posted 03-07-2013 08:24 PM

How was your experience with the steam bending? Looking at doing the same and didn’t know which would be better steam bending or bent lamination?

-- Todd, Ohio

View Ehren's profile


27 posts in 3714 days

#9 posted 03-28-2013 03:52 PM

The steam bending went well. That was my first go at it, a year later and new climate and everything is where it should be, no cracks. For some tighter bends try a combination. For the moulding I split it and bent basically two sections. Just make extra and have the mold and clamps ready.

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics