Despite having a few shop stools in my workshop I very rarely use them to sit and work. There is no reason why I shouldn’t but I never do. Although a seat that’s fixed to the bench and swings out, appealed to me as it may actually get some use. And could be easily stored away when finished with. I decided to give it a go and make one. I’m glad I did as I’m now sitting at the workbench to do my work more than I ever thought I would.
Working out the dimensions was the first task. This needs to be correct as the seat will be useless if it isn’t positioned well, doesn’t stow away or is uncomfortable. I did this by making a template out of cardboard to visualise the finished frame.
The frame, welded together out of 10mm thick steel is rock solid and doesn’t deflect at all when weight is put on. After some deliberation I decided to carve a saddle style seat from a piece of Camphor Laurel. The seat and frame turned out great in every way, it is comfortable and a pleasure to use. The time spent determining the dimensions was worth it.
After using it for a week I decided to make a plywood version that didn’t need any metalworking. I knew it would be a challenge from the outset but a challenge is what I enjoy. I had a good idea how to make the frame and was confident it would be strong enough, I wasn’t so confident about the hinge.
A small amount of metal working (not involving any welding) would’ve been helpful to make the hinge. But the challenge was no metal working. The plywood hinge took a little working out. But building up several pieces together with glue and a couple of dowels, it was pretty strong and capable of supporting my weight (I’m 80kg ish). There are some improvements I can think of but haven’t had chance to tackle those yet. When I do I will keep you updated.
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