This post begins my journey into the world of sculpted rocking chairs. I've been wanting to attempt one of these for a few years but the passing of Sam Maloof last year and the release of Charles Brock's book/plan/dvd have pushed me to give it a go. I won't give a step by step instruction on what it takes to create one of these beauties such as the example of one of Mr. Brock's chair to the left, this is best left to his book/plan/DVD, instead I'll just keep you up with what I'm doing and how it's going as well as commenting on the Book itself.
I received "Build a Maloof Inspired Rocker" book/dvd/plan bundle for Christmas this year and was struck by the quality of the product, the book is well written and clear, the DVD is professionally produced and Mr. Brock does a great job showing each step in creating the rocker as well as giving helpful hint and tips throughout. The plans are full size 2x4 foot sheets that give you every template that you need to build the rocker. Mr. Brock is quick to tell you that he did not attempt to reproduce an exact replica of the Maloof rocker but was inspired by Mr. Maloof's body of work and wanted to create one himself. His methods are much easier to follow that the Hal Taylor downloadable book which I also have. After my first watching of the DVD I was confident that I could create a passable chair. I suggest that you watch the DVD all the way through and look through the book, then when you are planning your build, use the DVD and book together chapter by chapter.
The first thing that I did was to make a copy of the template plans at Staples just in case I messed up on cutting the templates, I did this also so that I could keep an archival copy of the plans for future builds.
After collecting the appropriate thicknesses of plywood and MDF plus some posterboard I cut out the templates and using artists spray adhesive adhered the paper to the wood and cut it out of the bandsaw then cleaned each up using the oscillating spindle sander and various files and sanding blocks. I also made the bending form for the rockers. The book has detailed instructions on creating each template and form and what thickness plywood to use for which template.
Following Mr. Brock's recommendation for BF I had ordered a stock of 8/4 Black Walnut and it have been acclimating in my shop for 3 months, today I cut, jointed and coopered the seat per his instruction.
I also ordered the router bits that he suggests in the book and DVD for shaping the joints for the leg/seat connection as none of the ones in my collection match in radius, this is the key to getting tight fitting joints on both the front and back legs.
This weekend I plan to rewatch the seat chapter again while following along in the book and then going to the shop to begin the joinery on the seat and start the shaping. More updates to come.
I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I needed to be.
- Douglas Adams
- Douglas Adams