Dragon Claw Stool

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Project by bondogaposis posted 09-03-2014 03:26 PM 4237 views 16 times favorited 17 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This project was really challenging. It looks really simple just three legs and three stretchers, what could go wrong?. It gets complicated fast because all of the joints are angled and the three joints where the stretchers join the legs are angled tenons w/ compound angled shoulders. Another factor is that the only point of reference is an imaginary line through the center of the stool. Well if you take measurements from an imaginary line, accuracy will also be imaginary. So you need to create a model on something tangible, I used a piece of MDF. You can see it in the last picture. I’m used to taking my measurements directly from my projects as I go, but in this case there nothing to work from. It was quite a leap of faith to measure from the lines on the MDF cut the joints and pray they fit. As you can see it worked, no one will be more amazed than me. I did screw up one leg and had to redo it. Another aspect of this project is that the joints have to be loose fitting. You can’t put it together if the joints are too tight. You have to wedge the gaps during final glue up, it’s the only way. I couldn’t have built this project w/o the help of the video Build a Puzzle Stool by Bob Lang. If you want to challenge your self w/ some complicated joinery this is it. I highly recommend the video.

-- Bondo Gaposis

17 comments so far

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

25485 posts in 4021 days

#1 posted 09-03-2014 03:29 PM

Very nice stool. Great joints!! That looks like a very accurate fit on all the joints.

I like how you design and build!!

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View calisdad's profile


334 posts in 2425 days

#2 posted 09-03-2014 05:40 PM

Well worth the effort.

Nice color on the seat. What kind of wood/finish?

-- Groveland, CA.

View bondogaposis's profile


5891 posts in 3267 days

#3 posted 09-03-2014 05:46 PM

The seat is purple heart and the base is walnut. I used Danish oil on the base and wipe on poly on the seat.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View BobLang's profile


177 posts in 4316 days

#4 posted 09-03-2014 06:50 PM

Nice work!

-- Bob Lang,

View CL810's profile (online now)


4069 posts in 3903 days

#5 posted 09-03-2014 08:55 PM

Very nice work Bondo. What, no pose???

-- "The only limits to our realization of tomorrow will be our doubts of today." - FDR

View grizzman's profile


7836 posts in 4219 days

#6 posted 09-03-2014 09:04 PM

bondo, what a beautiful stool, i love the joinery its right on, maybe i missed it, but what wood did you use for the seat and legs….

-- GRIZZMAN ...[''''']

View bondogaposis's profile


5891 posts in 3267 days

#7 posted 09-03-2014 09:40 PM

Grizzman, the seat is purpleheart and the legs are walnut. I posted some more photos and some other step by step info over on the Furniture Makers Forum.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View TexasWonder's profile


12 posts in 2277 days

#8 posted 09-03-2014 11:43 PM

Woah, seriously cool, well worth the effort!

View siavosh's profile


674 posts in 2786 days

#9 posted 09-04-2014 12:11 AM

Love the joinery, nice work.

-- -- Discover the most interesting woodworking blogs from around the world

View Mean_Dean's profile


7057 posts in 4063 days

#10 posted 09-04-2014 12:40 AM

Boy that joinery really looks complicated! And yea, I’d have a little trouble taking a leap of faith on the measurements, too, but it looks like it worked out for you!

Great looking stool!

-- Dean -- "Don't give up the ship -- fight her 'till she sinks!" Capt James Lawrence USN

View HillbillyShooter's profile


5811 posts in 3208 days

#11 posted 09-04-2014 12:44 AM

Great job—beautiful joinery and wood choices.

-- John C. -- "Firearms are second only to the Constitution in importance; they are the peoples' liberty's teeth." George Washington

View CFrye's profile


11105 posts in 2755 days

#12 posted 09-04-2014 12:59 AM

Beautiful! Are you going to make a set or is this a one timer?
Thanks for sharing.

-- God bless, Candy

View Pezking7p's profile


3359 posts in 2567 days

#13 posted 09-04-2014 02:28 AM


-- -Dan

View stefang's profile


17040 posts in 4250 days

#14 posted 09-04-2014 08:36 AM

Love this, great work!

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


19827 posts in 4591 days

#15 posted 09-05-2014 02:36 AM

Looks fantastic from here!

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

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