I Can Do That: Folding Stool
by Chad Stanton
This simple project made from two pieces of dimensional pine can help solve seating shortages at your next gathering – and it folds neatly away for the next get-together.
All you need is a 4′ 1×8, an 8′ 1×4, some 3⁄8″ x 11⁄4″ bolts and 3⁄8″ nuts and washers, and a basic set of tools – all from the home center.
Begin by marking a centerline along the length of the 1×4, then rip it in half for the legs, seat cleats, handle and brace.
This cut is a quick and easy task for a table saw, however, the jigsaw can do the job, too. Set the jigsaw blade for no orbit (for the cleanest cut), then take your time and go slow to cut a straight line as you make the cut. (You can also clamp a straightedge parallel to the cutline, offset the width of the jigsaw’s shoe, then keep the shoe tight to the straightedge as you make the cut. But don’t be afraid to give it a go freehand.) Once the piece is ripped in half, use a block plane to smooth and clean up the saw marks. Each half will be approximately 13⁄4″ wide.
Using a miter saw, cut the four leg pieces to length. (Go ahead and cut the four cleats, handle and brace to length, too, and set them aside for now.)
The next step is the placement for the bolts for the stool to be able to pivot open and closed. Find the center (both length and width) of each leg and cleat and mark an “X.” Also mark 3⁄4″ in from one end of each piece and place another centered “X.” Make these marks on both sides of the legs and cleats. Decide now which end is up.
Plan: Download a free SketchUp model for this folding stool, and for the matching table shown in the opening photo.
Articles: All the “I Can Do That” articles are free online.
Video: The online “I Can Do That” video on which Chad Stanton builds this project will be free online for one month beginning Nov. 14. You’ll find it, and all the free ICDT articles, at popularwoodworking.com/icandothat.
From the November 2015 issue