June is quickly approaching, and I wanted to show a glimpse of what I am planning for my chair build this year.
I briefly entertained an idea to use for a seat blank a piece of 8/4 walnut I have had flying about for some time. Then, I decided to make a couple of staked and painted outdoor patio chairs.
Those ideas all went out the window when I had the opportunity to buy this board from a friend:
|A chair or two.|
We looked at some really cool, really wide oak, ash and maple, but my heart stopped when he said he had some appropriately sized zebrano, or zebra wood (Microberlinia brazzavillensis).
He had three pieces like this, and I'm pretty sure he didn't want to let any of them go, despite the fact that they have been waiting in his shop for three years or so (no judgements here - I have wood in my shop that has been there much longer than that).
I am certain that this wood is going to be a royal pain in the neck to turn into chairs, but if I am successful, there will be nothing out there like them.
|It is a pretty big board. 45mm (8/4) x 30 cm (12 in) x 215 cm (7 ft).|
I cut three 45 cm (18") blocks from one end of the board. This left a hunk about 30" long for a table top.
Amusing aside - I decided to list the measurements of this board in metric, as it came from a German cabinetmaker's shop. It's how he measured it. But, now that I have made some cuts on it, I can discuss it purely in proper inches.
12 inches in width isn't quite wide enough to get a seat blank without a glue up. I also noted that I have three blocks, and if I rip one in half I can get two seat blanks from these three pieces. I am pretty sure I will be able to come up with a glue line that is hardly visible.
It turns out there was a big challenge with this, as the end of the board checked, and there is a massive crack straight down the middle of one of the boards. This one will have to be ripped and used to widen the other two.
I think I have come up with a pleasing layout.
|The center will be ripped and the glue up will yield two chair blanks.|