Smoothing curved legs on rocking chair

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Forum topic by yellowtruck75 posted 04-08-2010 11:07 PM 3246 views 0 times favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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469 posts in 3630 days

04-08-2010 11:07 PM

I am making my first attempt at a Scott Morrison traditional rocking chair. I cut the 2 inch thick cherry legs out on the band saw last night. The issue I am having is that I am still kinda new to my saw and not to great at it. I had a bit of wondering with the blade and I now have to smooth out the leg curves. They are not out that must but next to each other there might be a slight 1/4 inch difference at spots. I tried using a palm sander and then my spindle sander but it was rough. What suggestions does everyone have to smooth these out?

5 replies so far

View bayspt's profile


292 posts in 4267 days

#1 posted 04-08-2010 11:45 PM

Template Routing? Not a chair guy and don’t own a bandsaw so I would jig saw close then template route to the desired shape. May work for your application.

-- Jimmy, Oklahoma "It's a dog-eat-dog world, and I'm wearing milkbone underwear!"

View Michael Murphy's profile

Michael Murphy

453 posts in 3568 days

#2 posted 04-09-2010 12:00 AM

bayspt is right, if you have the capability you could use a router template and a bit with a bearing on top to follow the pattern.

Or use an angle grinder with a flexible sanding pad like these. They work great for shaped parts. You might want to practice a bit first though because they do remove stock in a hurry. Sand a bit on something else to dull the abrasive.

A good old fashioned spokeshave could help you shape it a little better too.

-- Michael Murphy, Woodland, CA.

View yellowtruck75's profile


469 posts in 3630 days

#3 posted 04-09-2010 11:10 PM

I got a Hitachi angle grinder from Lowes and that seems to work.

View Les Casteel's profile

Les Casteel

160 posts in 3622 days

#4 posted 04-10-2010 04:51 AM

If you have a spindle sander?...then sand to the lines made from your template. If you don’t have a spindle sander then clamp the two legs together and sand them. They will match which is the point anyway. Sam Maloof once told me to stop looking at my tape measure and trust my eyes. When they look good to you they are good. Just watch the flats on the area that will be joined to the seat and arms don’t disturb those.

good luck

-- Les, Missouri,

View Tom8021's profile


73 posts in 3801 days

#5 posted 04-10-2010 11:10 PM

A draw knife and spoke shave is the way to go. It works best if the wood still has some moisture in it.

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