Stool Of Elm

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Project by MattHodek posted 03-12-2017 06:31 PM 1847 views 0 times favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I want to try making chairs in the future, so I thought making a stool would be a good place to start.

The wood is Elm that I got from the MSU surplus store. I believe it came from a tree on the MSU campus, and was milled and dried by the forestry department. The two boards I used in the project were a bit rough, but for $2 a piece they just needed a little love to shine.

It is a very simple design with three turned legs, and a turned spindle in between them. I wasn’t following any plans. I just kind of figured it out as I went. All the joints are just wedged straight tenons. The legs are about 1.5 inches in diameter with a 1 inch tenon, and the spindles are a little under an inch with 5/8ths of an inch tenons. The seat is about 1.75 inches thick and about 12 inches in diameter. It sits about 20 inches tall.

I am happy with how it turned out, but it is not perfect. Glue up was a bit tense. I had broken a spindle in an early test fit. It was due to brass wood, and while the rest of the pieces didn’t show any signs of problems; I was still nervous. The other silly thing I did was to use normal wood glue, so things started getting stuck before I really had a chance to get everything where it should have been. The end result is that one of the legs is twisted off its sight line, and looks a little wonky from certain angles. I will certainly be using liquid hide glue on the next one.

I also made a video of the build that can be found here:

-- Matt, Michigan,

4 comments so far

View gsimon's profile


1325 posts in 3080 days

#1 posted 03-12-2017 08:06 PM

looks good – way to go with the hand tools
Welcome to Lumberjocks :)

-- Greg Simon

View Dave Polaschek's profile

Dave Polaschek

6631 posts in 1549 days

#2 posted 03-13-2017 09:46 AM

Nice work! Elm can be fun to work and is good looking when you’re done.

-- Dave - Santa Fe

View david38's profile


3518 posts in 3310 days

#3 posted 03-13-2017 02:58 PM

you did good

View Phil W's profile

Phil W

4 posts in 4252 days

#4 posted 03-14-2017 02:49 PM

Nice work….I was recently wondering how difficult elm would be to work with….it is a bear to cut as firewood because of the interlocking grain…..but it sounds like it planed down without a problem….

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