In the days leading up to and surrounding the holidays, I started to focus my thinking and daydreaming on the design for my new shop stool. I cast a wide net and pulled in several ideas. I tried to explain the process of elimination in my post HERE. Until I realized I was looking for inspiration inside the "box" labeled Stool . . .
____________(insert your own fecal matter joke here) ___________!
. . . . and I find good design comes from (cliche) outside the box thinking.
So after looking at hundreds of Google Search images of stools, I backed off and rethought my approach. I was trying to cram a stool design I liked into my shop, but why not take a shop design I like and cram it into a stool instead. . . .
I wanted something iconic and recognisable. Of late, especially on the internet, there is nothing more iconic and recognisable that the Roubo Workbench. Slab built, laminated split top, leg vise or plane stop, whatever flavor you like 'em, they are the hot, must have shop accessory for the new generation. To be honest, there are times I'd like to upgrade my bench to one too.
Even more than all the choices of top and work holding, there is one thing I think of that seems to consistently have that "Roubo" feel for me when it comes to looking at Roubo benches. The iconic touch is the through double tenon.
|This picture was borrowed from Chris Schwarz's blog at Lost Art Press, The original post is found HERE.|
The outer tenon is flush with the outside edge and dovetailed. To me, this joint is what says, "I'm a Roubo workbench" This joint was the jumping off point for my sketchbook.
I'm still playing with details, so there are some things about the sketch that will make it into the final product and some that won't. The real refinement of an idea comes at the bench. I realize there will be some issues with grain direction and the through dovetailed tenons, but I plan to work that out based on what the stock gives me when I cut for the seat.
Most likely the stool will be built from white oak. There is an off chance I will make the seat and the lower stretchers from walnut.
What I like about the design on paper. I like the through tenons in the top and in the legs. I like the idea of drawbore pining those tenons with an accent wood. And I like the idea that the design says I was built for a woodworking studio, (at least to me).
What I have to work on. I don't care for the cross-junction I sketched for the lower stretchers, and I think these will need to be finessed well to look correct. Both in their height versus the thickness of the seat and legs and in their proportional placement between the floor and the seat top. Not too high, not too low, definitely not in the middle.
There's a snapshot of my process. Now I can only hope that January 25th will be a mild enough winter day that my little kerosene heater can make the shop comfortable to work in.
I would really, really like to see as many people as possible join in on this project. big numbers will only make it better. As I build on the 25th I will be posting regular updates throughout the day on my Facebook page (which counter posts on twitter) and less frequently throughout the day, here on the blog. (I'm going to try and keep it to no more than four posts here that day.)
I'd like to find a way to live stream video from in the shop. Mostly because that's new and uncharted tech territory for me. I wouldn't hold your breath on that one though.
But, please consider joining in on the fun, and make sure you head over to Chris Wong's event page and register.
Ratione et Passionis