Trash to Treasure: Rubber Hose Chair

Build a modern and inviting rubber hose chair with reclaimed materials.

| February 14, 2014

  • This rubber hose chair can be made primarily with found or reclaimed materials.
    Photo by Will Holman
  • Cutting diagram.
    Technical drawing by Peter Sherratt
  • Side view diagram.
    Technical drawing by Peter Sherratt
  • "PlyDesign" by Philip Schmidt offers 73 distinctive and inexpensive DIY designs for all living spaces, ages and levels of craftsmen.
    Cover courtesy Storey Publishing

Anyone looking for versatile, modern and inexpensive furniture has to look no further than PlyDesign (Storey Publishing, 2012) by Philip Schmidt. Schmidt, a former carpenter, offers toys, games and furnishings suited for everyone. Each design is crafted using plywood, or a number of other readily available sheet materials. The following excerpt is an upcycle of reclaimed materials into this rubber hose chair.

Buy this book from the MOTHER EARTH NEWS store: PlyDesign.

Rubber Hose Chair

Designed by Will Holman

This piece comes from an architect and designer who makes a lot of great stuff with junk — things like chairs fashioned from road signs, lighting using traffic cones, and tables constructed with cardboard tubes and greenhouse glazing. All are perfectly functional, human-scaled pieces, but none seems more inviting than the Rubber Hose Chair. “It’s like sitting on a bed of rubber bands,” says its creator. Like many of his other works, this chair can be made primarily with found or reclaimed materials. Just hit up any carpenter, mechanic, or tool hound you know for an old air hose to upcycle, and you’re halfway there.


• One 2 x 2-foot piece 3/4” plywood
• Wood glue
• Sixteen 1 1/4” coarse-thread drywall screws or deck screws
• Polyurethane
• Four 24" lengths 3/4” zinc-plated all-thread rod
• Sixteen 3/4” zinc washers
• Sixteen 3/4" zinc nuts
• One 40-foot (or longer) length 3/4" (outside diam.) rubber air hose
• Two #10 zinc washers
• Two 1" coarse-thread drywall screws or deck screws

2/28/2014 10:57:24 AM

Great idea. The rub is finding someone willing to part with 40 or 50' of 3/4" rubber air hose that costs about $130 new with fittings, probably $100 without. Rubber garden hose would be easier to find or cheaper to buy...any reason it wouldn't work?

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