Jake's chair #1: sticker shock!

  • Advertise with us
Blog entry by James Alberding posted 05-25-2012 01:08 PM 2467 reads 1 time favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of Jake's chair series Part 2: making the best of a messy situation »

Holy shnikeys!

Let me start by saying that I really didn’t think that it would cost me much for materials for this chair. I thought I could get everything needed for around 100 bucks. After I was done shopping for wood, hardware, and a couple tools I need I spent $177.00. Then I went to home Depot to check thier prices and ended up buying a few more tools I will need like a speed square, router bits and clamps. After checking out I spent a little over $70.00.

So now I’ve spent way more than I thought I would, and that was just buying the cheapest wood for my first go around. But it will be well worth the cost. I’m just suprised how spendy it gets :) just wait till I make the set of chairs out of Bubinga!

So far I have printed the plans from, and drafted all of the pieces onto poster board for templates. Now I have half of them drawn onto the poplar I bought. After there all transferred to the wood I’ve gotta get a resemblance of a wood shop going in the shed. We shall see, I might do a lot of the work at my work after work and use thier band saw and sanders.

-- measure once, cut twice...

6 comments so far

View chrisstef's profile


17960 posts in 3518 days

#1 posted 05-25-2012 01:19 PM

Ya gotta pay the cost to be the boss. The first few projects will seem expensive especially when you have to buy the tools to go along with it, we’ve all been there, or are still there. Eventually you’ll be able to buy rough sawn lumber at a much cheaper price and mill it yourself. Then you’ll start upgrading tools lol.

Welcome to the gang James ….

-- Its not a crack, its a casting imperfection.

View David Craig's profile

David Craig

2137 posts in 3620 days

#2 posted 05-25-2012 01:33 PM

Welcome to LJ’s James. I gave up thinking that building my own things was the key to frugality a long time ago. :) I suppose it works out in the wash in the long term but can tell you right now that short term return on investment is minimal. As Chris already stated, though, the cost stretches out over time and it becomes less of a problem when you just need to pick up the lumber and not the tools to work it. Once I embraced the fact that this is a hobby and that I do this for relaxation and enjoyment, the cost pill was a little easier to swallow. After all, there is much worse things one can do with money :)


-- There is little that is simple when it comes to making a simple box.

View Kindlingmaker's profile


2658 posts in 4038 days

#3 posted 05-25-2012 02:33 PM

James, Seattle has some good woods up there so keep a eye out for them. Wood prices are really high on the west coast and shipping wood from the midwest and east coast is even worse. Look for some small mills take cut recycled wood, urban down trees and things like that.
Welcome to LJ’s and may the sawdust be with you…

-- Never board, always knotty, lots of growth rings

View GrandpaLen's profile


1652 posts in 2784 days

#4 posted 05-25-2012 03:40 PM


Welcome to LumberJocks , a world of advise, opinions, and experiences, all shared without judgement.

Search the Estate Auctions and Yard Sales to pick up tools and shop equipment, even lumber, these can stretch your ‘Woodworking Allowance’ budget.

Work Safely and have Fun. – Len

-- Mother Nature should be proud of what you've done with her tree. - Len ...just north of a stone's throw from the oHIo, river that is, in So. Indiana.

View James Austin's profile

James Austin

27 posts in 3692 days

#5 posted 06-18-2012 03:05 PM

One thing that you need to remember is, that other than your measuring tools, basic hand tools, and basic portable power tools, you don’t need to buy a whole shop for your first project.
And even among the basic stuff, there is no need to buy anything except what you need at the moment.
For bigger starter tools , shop estate sales.. Over the weekend I saw a nice older Craftsman 12 ” inch bandsaw for 25.00. Looked like it had been used a dozen or so times.
I appluad your initiative in choosing a Chair as a first project. Have not looked at the plans you mentioned, but chairs tend to be rather complex.

Jim A.

-- Some people have a shop so they can build things, the rest of us build things so we can have a shop...

View James Alberding's profile

James Alberding

79 posts in 2707 days

#6 posted 06-18-2012 09:14 PM

Wow! I’d love to find a deal like that. I should look into some estate sales. I agree with you, I know I don’t need a lot of stuff to get started, there is just more and more that I want haha. I just keep coming up with more projects I want to make, and keep thinking about what I can get to help me do things fast and easier.

Here is the link to the plans. It really is designed for a novice to be able to build it while still having a very advanced look.

-- measure once, cut twice...

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