I Can Do That: Skansen Bench


Based on a Swedish antique, this bench uses through-tenons made with just a jigsaw.
By Christopher Schwarz
Pages: 24-25

From the April 2010 issue #182
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I’ve always liked things that are Swedish, impossibly overbuilt and yet somehow graceful. For example, my beloved Volvo 240DL, a certain foreign exchange student in high school and this bench from the Skansen living history museum in Stockholm.

This bench is from the Älvros Farmstead, a group of buildings from the 16th and 17th centuries that were moved to Skansen. I first spied this bench in the book “Making Swedish Country Furniture & Household Things” (Hartley & Marks). For this version I proportioned the parts so it could be built with dimensional pine – one 12′-long 2×12 and one 8′-long 2×8. Total cost: About $22.

At first glance, this might not look like an “I Can Do That” project, with its laminated top and wedged through-tenons in the seat. But I assure you, it can be built with basic tools.

Online Extras

* Download the complete SketchUp model of the Skansen Bench.

* Read a tutorial on leveling Skansen Bench feet.

* Visit Skansen’s web site.

* Download the free plan for an “I Can Do That” step stool.


From the April 2010 issue #182
Buy this issue now