Adirondack Chair & Table #5: Brackets and Arms

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Blog entry by jcontract posted 01-18-2010 04:52 AM 2649 reads 0 times favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 4: Leg Assembly...Finally Part 5 of Adirondack Chair & Table series Part 6: The Back Goes On »

A wet and rainy day gave me the perfect excuse to get out and work on the chair. I’ve reached the crucial step in assembly, which is to install the bracket, arms, and upper cross-piece. These pieces need to be installed with care to get the proper proportions for the back slats.

So here we go. First, I installed the brackets which are used to support the arms.

The top gets an 1 5/8” stainless screw, and you have to be careful with the bottom screw. There’s not a lot of material left when counterboring for an 1 1/4” screw. I took my time and all went well.

Next it was on to the long awaited arms of the chair. Norm recommends doing the rounding over on the arms after attaching it. I just didnt feel comfortable doing ths because I didn’t want to risk putting any weight on the arms. So I did this prior to installing, and I’m glad I did, because I went slightly deep with the 3/8” roundover on one spot on the arm. It was easier to make the adjustments before it was installed. Here are the arms prior to rounding over.

Next comes the fun part. You need to install the arms so that the arm has a 1 1/8” overhang from front leg and 3/4” from the inside of the front leg. So I tried something different. I flippped the chair over, and lined up the arms where the needed to be and traced the leg and bracket outline on the bottom of the arm. From there I drilled a small pilot from the back of the arm so that I know where the holes would be on the top. From here I drilled the counterbore for the screws that will attach the arm to the leg and bracket.

With that completed, I attached the arm to the leg with one screw so that I could make adjustments to each arm such that the width between the arms stays 20 1/2”. Once that it done I dry fit the upper rear cross piece (clamped in place) to ensure all was in order.

A front view

Rear view

Top View – It’s starting to feel like a chair finally.

My best helper, Julia, came out and was the very first person to sit in the chair. I put one of the seat slats down.

I ran into an issue though. The silicon bronze carriage bolts that I bought are too short for attaching the arms to the upper cross piece. I bought 1/4”- 20- 2”, and they do grab about half of the bolt. However, I’m not about to settle for this. I’ll need to order the 2 1/2” length. Only issue is the cost. 4 bolts cost $7 from bolt depot, and the shipping is $9. Does anyone know where I can get the bronze bolts for cheaper?

So all and all, a good weekend. The hardest parts are over. Next week it’s on to the back slats.

5 comments so far

View a1Jim's profile


118297 posts in 4866 days

#1 posted 01-18-2010 05:00 AM

Great progress a super looking chair.


View jtash's profile


30 posts in 4372 days

#2 posted 01-18-2010 05:06 AM

Looking great. Nice progress.

View jcontract's profile


86 posts in 4376 days

#3 posted 01-18-2010 05:09 AM

Did you notice chair #1 in the last shot? I can’t believe I let that one slip past.

View zlatanv's profile


691 posts in 4523 days

#4 posted 01-18-2010 06:01 AM

The mahogany chairs are going to look awesome, i did some from cypress a few years ago, wanted to make some in mahogany also but haven’t got to it yet. Maybe this year. Nice job!

-- Z, Rockwall, TX

View LucasinBC's profile


62 posts in 4360 days

#5 posted 01-19-2010 02:26 AM

Looks really nice! Wish I had that kind of skill!

-- Making mistakes is essential in learning woodworking.

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