DIY Furniture Projects: Build a Rocking Chair

Construct a cheap rocking chair and find ideas for other ways to make your own furniture from recycled materials.
By Eric Jarvis
March/April 1974
Add to My MSN

This easy DIY project recycles old telephone and electric cabling spools into a simple rocking chair.
ILLUSTRATION: ERIC JARVIS
Slideshow


Content Tools

Related Content

Tuesday Video: Make a Cardboard Chair

Put those big pieces of cardboard to work by turning them into furniture. This entertaining tutorial...

DIY Whiskey Barrel Chairs

You can make these outdoor chairs for less than $80 by recycling a whiskey barrel and using a few ot...

Instructables Makes it Easier to Find DIY Projects

Instructables is a great website for finding DIY projects, and recently site administrators have reo...

Why Not & Why Bother to Build Your Own House?

Everything you need to know about avoiding problems when you build or remodel your own house - learn...

I made the rocking chair you see here two years ago, out of one of those discarded spools you can get free from your local electric or telephone company. I've used it quite a bit in that time, and it's stood up well through treatment.

The chair's construction was relatively easy. I cut out six of the cow slats, fastened one on the inside of the central drum so I'd have something to nail to and secured the other five to it to make the seat. A piece of plywood formed the back, and two 2-by-4s the rockers (or rather, the stops that control the spool's built-in rocking action). The placement of those crosspieces is a matter of individual comfort. If you want a fancier piece of furniture, you can cut the rocker bars out of some other material . . . or saw the sides of the chair into arms and cover the whole thing with fabric.

Another idea along the same lines is to cut out a few core slats and put rocker bars on the spool ends. Then pad the center with foam and blankets, and you've got a baby cradle.

The smaller cable drums also have their uses. If you put a Lazy Susan bearing between two of them, for instance, the result is a revolving bookcase, television stand or whatever. In fact -once you start working with these handy spools- there's no end to the inspirations you'll come up with!.








Post a comment below.

 








Subscribe Today - Pay Now & Save 66% Off the Cover Price

First Name: *
Last Name: *
Address: *
City: *
State/Province: *
Zip/Postal Code:*
Country:
Email:*
(* indicates a required item)
Canadian subs: 1 year, (includes postage & GST). Foreign subs: 1 year, . U.S. funds.
Canadian Subscribers - Click Here
Non US and Canadian Subscribers - Click Here

Lighten the Strain on the Earth and Your Budget

MOTHER EARTH NEWS is the guide to living — as one reader stated — “with little money and abundant happiness.” Every issue is an invaluable guide to leading a more sustainable life, covering ideas from fighting rising energy costs and protecting the environment to avoiding unnecessary spending on processed food. You’ll find tips for slashing heating bills; growing fresh, natural produce at home; and more. MOTHER EARTH NEWS helps you cut costs without sacrificing modern luxuries.

At MOTHER EARTH NEWS, we are dedicated to conserving our planet’s natural resources while helping you conserve your financial resources. That’s why we want you to save money and trees by subscribing through our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. By paying with a credit card, you save an additional $5 and get 6 issues of MOTHER EARTH NEWS for only $12.00 (USA only).

You may also use the Bill Me option and pay $17.00 for 6 issues.