Woodworking Design©

The Cape Cod'r | Tiffany Breeze Adirondack | The Fan Back Classic Adirondack
Ottoman | Side Table | Garden Bench |Kid's Cape Cod'r | Kid's Tiffany | Kid's Fan Back


50 linear feet of 5/4 x 6” Western Red Cedar

6 ft of 4x4 cedar post (fewest knots)

80 - #8 – 1 5/8” long (or 1½” to 1 ¾”) flat-head stainless steel screws (may substitute with galvanized)

1 - tube of polyurethane type glue


Lumber Store Cuts:  For hauling, segments may be cut into 5 or 8 foot lengths.

Cedar: Western Red Cedar is recommended.  5/4” thick stock is net 1” after factory planing (commonly available as decking material). Substituting with 1” stock leaves only ¾” thick after planing - too little strength given the wood’s structure.  To minimize splitting, store on end with air circulation in shop for a few days first.

Cedar Alternatives: Other outdoor woods: treated lumber, teak, cypress, redwood, and mahogany. Thickness may be reduced to 1” (net ¾” after factory planing) if using teak, cypress, or mahogany (reduce seat notch depth to ¾” and adjust the center of all predrilled countersink holes in this plan if using net ¾” thick wood instead).

Cedar Grades:  “Clear” grade has almost no knots in the grain, but it’s expensive.  #2 grade has more knots, but generally small knots and the price is less.  #3 grades and lower are mostly undesirable.  If using #2, glue knots into place with the polyurethane glue before starting.

Stainless Steel Screws:  A box of 100 stainless steel may be available (look for the blue drawers at Lowes).  The benefit is slower reaction with the wood over time and less staining in wood from reactions.  If substituting, use outdoor treated screws or galvanized.  Buy more than 80 to allow for defects in the soft stainless steel.

Polyurethane Glue: Look for polyurethane-type glue only. One brand that may be available is Probond Polyurethane Glue; Gorilla Glue is also a polyurethane glue (don’t get polyurethane glue on your fingers, but if you do, scrub hands with vegetable oil for a few minutes, then scrub off with soapy water).

Deck Sealer: You may apply deck sealer to the finished chair, but this is not needed with Western Red Cedar.

Paint: If you plan to paint the chair, it’s best to use a wood primer before the coat of paint.



*review all safety instructions*

Required: screw driver, drill, countersink bit, 2- 1 foot-long quick release clamps, and a coping saw.

Hand (electric) jigsaw -in absence of a tablesaw, bandsaw, scrollsaw etc., and a small amount of cash on hand, this is the best choice.  A good feature to have on it is a line of cut blower, and you want the foot to be able to tilt. Buy extra blades for it because they will break often – the bimetal ones seem to break the least.

Table saw w/ miter and fence, tune and calibrate for accuracy and safety.

Bandsaw or scroll saw with tilting table -is useful, tilting feature is useful for cutting the back support. 

Hand coping saw -even if you own a bandsaw or scroll saw, you’ll need this briefly.

Sanding- hand block  Start with course, follow with medium, and finish with fine.  Using a spindle sander is not recommended on this project.

Router / router table  optional, a ¼” roundover treatment may provide good results (a ¼ inch roundover effect can be mimicked with 50 grit sandpaper, two hands, no block, and plenty of effort).

Countersink drill bit- countersink and pre-drill screw-holes in this project to avoid splitting.

Drill press -handy for pre-drilling some countersinks.

Square, Level – not required but these are helpful

Phillips driver -hand or cordless.  Cordless is good; if it’s Dewalt, start with torque 7 and adjust from there.