Folding Stepstool

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Project by Chainjack posted 04-12-2013 06:36 PM 3153 views 17 times favorited 16 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Here’s another bathroom stepstool I made for my boys. It had to fold because when placed in front of the sink the bottom step would have blocked the door from opening and closing. It’s made from a single 6’x14” board of 7/8” African Sapele and has a great color/shimmer when finished with polyurethane. The joints aren’t special, just dowel rods and glue.

16 comments so far

View  woodshaver Tony C   's profile

woodshaver Tony C

7220 posts in 3988 days

#1 posted 04-12-2013 07:13 PM

Very nice stool! And what a great finish! I’m guessing this stool will be in the family for a life time.

-- St Augustine FL, Experience is the sum of our mistakes!

View dragonnotes's profile


82 posts in 3667 days

#2 posted 04-12-2013 07:22 PM

Awesome. Been thinking about making a step-up stepstool for my 6 year old daughter. (After many wipeouts, as a result of her standing on various toys to get the “high up” stuff.) I love your design and finish, although mine will have to be pink!
Great job!! Thanks for sharing.

View Tim's profile


3859 posts in 2597 days

#3 posted 04-13-2013 01:37 AM

That’s great, did you work off a set of plans or just design it yourself?

View Chainjack's profile


35 posts in 2570 days

#4 posted 04-13-2013 02:59 AM

I sketched it up on paper for a while trying to get the right look, then made cardboard templates so I could figure out where the pivot should be. Then I sketched the curves and just started cutting. Most of the measurements were done on the fly or by referencing my previous stepstool design. It’s difficult to have exact plans with all the curves though I wish I had made an actual template, it would gave gone faster and smoother. My only constraints were the depth of the space between the sink and doorframe and how high it had to be for my kids to reach the sink.

View taoist's profile


124 posts in 3126 days

#5 posted 04-13-2013 11:57 AM

Very well done…I like the fact that you can’t see any fasteners at all, which begs the question “how is it held together ?”

View workerinwood's profile


2717 posts in 3703 days

#6 posted 04-13-2013 12:21 PM

Great job!! Like the design.

-- Jack, Albuquerque

View grumpy749's profile


228 posts in 3013 days

#7 posted 04-13-2013 01:09 PM

This is just what I have been thinking about for awhile now. I love the folding step resign and the project looks great. my grandson is will love it. Thanks for a very useful idea.

-- Denis in Grande Prairie. Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mistery, but today is a gift. That is why it is called the present.....Pink !

View helluvawreck's profile


32086 posts in 3502 days

#8 posted 04-13-2013 01:34 PM

That’s a wonderful bench and looks great.

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View Dusty56's profile


11856 posts in 4323 days

#9 posted 04-13-2013 02:47 PM

That really looks great. Nice design and finish : )

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View Chainjack's profile


35 posts in 2570 days

#10 posted 04-13-2013 02:52 PM

There are 4 pieces per step, plus the 3/4in oak pivot dowel. Top, sides and brace. There are two 1/4in dowels at the top of each side piece and two dowels per side on the braces. It was solid and held together before it was glued along all of the butt joints. The pivot dowel is deep in the 7/8 sapele and doubles as a second brace for the top step. If anyone has any suggestions for how they would do the joints I’d like to learn.

View chopnhack's profile


375 posts in 3030 days

#11 posted 04-13-2013 05:33 PM

Very nice CJ! Where did you find the sapele?

-- Sneaking up on the line....

View Chainjack's profile


35 posts in 2570 days

#12 posted 04-13-2013 06:47 PM

Tart lumber in Sterling VA. It’s a mill shop that’s luckily right down the road from my house :) They seem to have everything… For a price. This board was $38 for 6 ft x 14in @ 7/8in thick. A little thicker than I wanted because it’s really heavy and I don’t have a planer.

View chopnhack's profile


375 posts in 3030 days

#13 posted 04-16-2013 02:09 AM

Wow… steep indeed, but kudos to you for using it!

-- Sneaking up on the line....

View Chainjack's profile


35 posts in 2570 days

#14 posted 04-16-2013 03:49 AM

I had to be really careful when I was working with it because I only had a few small scrap pieces left when I was done. It really is beautiful but tough to work with. The grain is really tight and I had more than a few tear outs when doing the round-overs. Nothing catastrophic, just small chips but it was nerve wracking.

View Bytesabit's profile


79 posts in 2502 days

#15 posted 04-23-2013 01:18 AM

Very nice! This is perfect for in the master bedroom’s closet for my short better half! Thanks so much!

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