All-weather Morris Chair


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I thought I'd post a couple photos of a chair I'm working on based on a free plan from Popular Woodworking (link below). I made a couple changes. One was I used red oak instead of pine since I had some left over from another project. It's not a great choice for outdoor furniture, but it was free and what I had. I tried to be careful to seal all the end grain as I assembled it. I haven't finished it yet, but I plan on using a marine/spar varnish. Also, I added a curve to the front stretcher and plugged all the holes with walnut to dress it up a little. I'll try to post some more photos as I finish it up. I can say it is very comfortable in the reclined position.



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I was able to get one coat of varnish on it this weekend. It really makes the plugs pop. By the way, if you dislike plugs for any reason this project may not be for you. I decided to count and there were a total of 122. 94 walnut and 28 oak in unseen areas. Oh, and there were also two more oops plugs.




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  • 5 weeks later...

I just thought of something I forgot to mention. The plan calls for the seat back upper and lower rails to share support with the slats on a single 3/4" cross piece leaving 3/8" for a plugged screw hole. This means the plugs at the top and bottom of the back slats would be right at the edge. Visually I didn't think it would look right since my plugs would be seen in the final piece, and structurally it would be very prone to blow out, especially in pine. To fix this problem I doubled the cross pieces at the top and bottom of the back slats. This allows a full 3/4" for both the slats and upper and lower rails.

If it's going to be painted you could also drill the holes in the slats before they are cut to final length which would prevent blowout. This was suggested to me on twitter by @thegravedigger. He did a complete write up on his build of the painted version on his website Check it out.

It really is a very easy project. The hardest part is the finishing because there are so many small surfaces to cover. Patience is required especially considering how quickly the build goes.


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