I spent a week making a Windsor rocking chair – from a tree!

I was on a course with the highly talented Peter Wood from Greenwood Days – if you fancy spending time in a forest making things, then that website is worth checking out.

Here is a pictorial diary of the course …

We used ash wood. Here it is – recently felled.

Using an axe to make a split log into a somewhat round shape.

Larger view of pole lathe. The stick at the top has string attached which, via a foot “pedal” you pump up and down, turns the lathe

The rounded wood was then put on the pole lathe – to become chair legs.

After a lot of effort, the legs began to take shape.

Ouch. “Do not wave a sharp chisel around” we were warned. This is why.

“Make a 2m length of tree one inch square using a draw knife” – on a shave horse.

Steam Bending Apparatus

More info on the Steam Bending Apparatus  on Instagram: https://instagram.com/p/BVpEOZ9ALVv/  via  @GreenwoodDays.

A small amount of splitting is not a problem – but sounds awful!

String and clamps hold the arm bow while it cools.

Follow the grain – long spindle making

Following the grain – gives “naturally curved” spindles.

Cutting out the seat using a template – it was trimmed on a bandsaw.

Using an adze – video by @GreenwoodDays on Instagram: 

Slow progress …

More progress …

With shape of seat defined, time to drill the spindle holes  …

Using a posh pencil sharpener (rounder plane) to make the spindle tenons.

Three spindles drilled and inserted …

When the holes are drilled put the spindle in place!

Dismantle everything again …

Glueing the legs and spindles into place needed at least seven hands – no photos taken!

Wedges and glue to hold the spindles in place. Only glue one side of the wedge – for movement of wood.

Mahogany wedge for contrast in the end of the arms.

Oak rockers – hard wearing wood.

*drool* look at that grain!

And then we were done …

The course members with their chairs.

Now it’s home, there is some minor finishing (sanding) to do, then I plan to oil it, probably with linseed oil.

Many thanks to Peter Wood from Greenwood Days and the other members of the course – you made the week great fun – you all rock!