Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Designing the chair bottom

The chair backs are now glued, partially sanded, and awaiting some inspiration for how to carve the concave detail. Here is my design for the chair bottom:

From the front, you will only see two layers - the chair back and the chair bottom. The chair back, I reasoned, must be assembled as a laminate of many small strips in order to maintain its strength after it had been carved. The chair bottom has the opposite design problem. A laminate to match the chair back would be aesthetically pleasing (because it will match the top) but someone has to SIT on the bottom and this sort of laminate would be extremely weak. Basically it would snap in two pieces if sat on by a heavy person. The solution? Hide a piece of nice strong plywood underneath the bottom section. So the bottom piece will now consist of laminated strips glued to each other but also glued to a plywood underlayment. The plywood will be completely concealed by the side leg-panels. I think it will be both attractive and strong. It might even be easier to build than the tops were because I can just lay them on top of the plywood for their glue-up instead of trying to make sure each piece is even.

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