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Project Information

I finally finished! I started this project 9 months ago after seeing an almost finished rocker in a friends garage. I immediately knew I had to make one. I hope the pictures do it justice…it looks and feels amazing in person.

My friend and mentor has made 13 rockers in his life and I was very fortunate to have his guidance on some of the more complicated parts. He made some templates from some 1970's fine woodworking magazine articles and I went off of those as best I could. The rasp was my favorite weapon, although a 1/2 inch gouge was not far behind. I visited the Maloof residence about a month ago as the final inspiration to finally finish this monster, and after that, I worked about 30 minutes every day until I finished. At one point making the seat, while drilling holes to establish the depth I had to carve to, the depth stop on the drill press gave way and one of the holes went about 3/4 inch too deep. I thought about plugging it, but opted to carve to a deeper seat. In carving a deeper seat, I actually hit one of the biscuits I had put in when joining the boards!! I almost cried. Fortunately, I hadn't shaped the seat yet so I was able to cut out a strip, and replace it with another. I used some sapwood to remind me that an error is just an opportunity and that's why you can see a lighter stripe through the middle of the seat. I can't wait to get started on a set of low back chairs for my enclosed patio.

It is made entirely of walnut, with some ebony plugs for accents. I used mostly Titebond 2 and 3, except for the laminated rockers, where I used Dap Weldwood plastic resin glue. It is sanded to 320 and finished with 4 coats of Daly's Seafin Teak Oil.

Thank you Sam Maloof for the inspiration. Thank you Ed Smet for the education. And thank you Lumber Jocks for the community that understands what I'm feeling right now.

Gallery

Comments

· In Loving Memory
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10,077 Posts
You did a beautiful job on this rocker. I think I'm the only LJ that hasn't attempted/done a Maloof rocker! I just need more confidence. I can only hope mine is half as nice as yours. I don't own a rasp or a gouge so better put those on the list. I guess all power tools won't work! LOL
 

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8,101 Posts
Jeepers, that's awesome. A Maloof chair is on my bucket list. I don't have the skill to pull that off as of yet.
 

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177 Posts
Good wood selection and the headrest has some very nice figure to it.
 

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215 Posts
Beautiful rocker. It looks great. I know how you feel when carving a seat and carving into the biscuits. I've been there to.
 

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392 Posts
Quite the journey, a very beautiful rocker. I am giving my first one a go, in between projects. Thanks for the insperation, thanks for sharing, Bob
 

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35 Posts
That is an awesome chair. I think your reasoning for using the sapwood is great. Good job!
 

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19,689 Posts
Beautiful chair ,great job.
 

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0 Posts
Awesome job. I have always admired the craftsmanship of those who are able to make that rocker.
 

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1,398 Posts
You did an amazing work and produced a beautifull rocker.
The joint in the picture is almost invisible.
 

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681 Posts
Beautiful job on the rocker! I'm impressed!
 

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908 Posts
Outstanding work. Love the wood too. Is there some english walnut in it?

I had a similar experience in my first rocker except my leopardwood headboard broke in half when I was glueing it between the back legs. UGH! It took me about as long to repair it as make a new one.

I have some spalted walnut that I'm using on my current rocker seat. I put wood hardener in the soft areas but when i hit it with the grinder/ it cut to deep. Not sure what I'll do to fix it yet.

Which chairs are you making?
 

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351 Posts
Sweet!
 
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