Lasercut Ball-stool Bar Stool

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Introduction: Lasercut Ball-stool Bar Stool

We need some stools for our little makerspace to be. It seemed like a cool lasercut project. Thinking about a design, I came up with this (I think) really cool design. There are a couple of spare footballs in my garage, so getting the seats is no problem.

The idea behind sitting on a ball is an active sit, so sitting and standing and leaning.

The design is the maximum size that I can cut in my Trotec Speedy 300 lasercutter. I was afraid it would be a little low, but it is actually even a bit high.

***You will need a lasercutter that can cut 15 mm 73 cm x 42 cm ply*** (or a cnc)

Step 1: You Will Need

Materials:

  • Football
  • 15 mm plywood
  • 12 x 80 mm M8 slot bolts with washers and nuts
  • 3 small bouncing balls

Tools:

  • 13 mm spanner
  • lasercutter
  • wood-glue
  • sanding paper
  • optional: router
  • optional: paint and brushes

Step 2: Lasercutting

The design will fit on 2 and a half 73 cm x 42 cm boards.

My drawing will engrave the IMDIB logo on the foot stand. If you don't want that, you can remove it from the design, or simply turn the ring with the logo on it, upside down when you glue the stool together.

The files are Adobe Illustrator files.

Step 3: Collect the Parts

Take all the parts out of the boards.

You should have one board with all the round parts, one with seven legs, and one half board with two legs and two extra curved parts.

Sand all the burned sides of the lasered parts so they won't mark your clothes and paint might hold (if you want to paint)

Step 4: Test Fit

The coolest part is always the test fit (unless it doesn't fit).

Try to put all the parts together. It should fit very nicely.

  • Put the six slotted arcs in the slotted triangle.
  • Put the ring with six slots on top of the arcs.
  • Push the nine legs in the two rings with nine slots. Make sure to put the IMDIB logo on top if you want to see it and upside down if you don't want to show it. Add one leg with square holes on the outside to every stag of three legs and a leg with an arc cut out the bottom in the middle.
  • Put the round seat part on top of the legs.
  • Push the small spacer parts in between the legs.
  • Push the three arcs without slots in between the two rings.

Step 5: Fit the Balls

See if your football fits on top of the stool. You might need to inflate or deflate it to fit nicely.

The arcs in the spacers at the bottom are a little smaller than the arc in the middle leg. This is to keep the bouncing balls nicely in place.

The balls should fit snugly.

Step 6: Optional Routing the Corners

You could just bolt and glue it all together now but.....

..... I didn't. To make it look a little nicer, I used a hollow router bit to round off the front of the six outer legs, the outside of the top of the upper ring and the inside and outside of the top of the ring with the IMDIB logo.

Now glue the two bottom rings and the spacer arcs together.

Step 7: Optional Paint

Now you could bolt and glue it together, but.....

.... I didn't.

I painted the stool grey, except for the spacers in between the legs and the foot-ring. I painted those red to color coördinate with the ball.

Step 8: Bolt and Glue It Together

Now I glued the seat part together.

I bolted the leg stags together: one leg with square holes, one spacer, one leg with an arc at the bottom, one spacer, and one leg with round holes.

Glue the legs into the foot rings and bold them on the seat part while the glue is still wet, so you still have a little movement to get it to fit.

Step 9: Finished Stool

The finished stool is remarkably high. With the ball a little bit deflated it sits great. The bouncing balls are less stable than I expected, but you could do without and just put glue-on rubber feet on the bottom.

I'm really pleased with the result and will make a couple more for our makerspace. The painting was much more work than I expected and although I like the result I might keep the other ones in bare wood. I will also try a little shorter legs for the next one. For me this is a great size, but for children this might be a bit to high.

Without the routing and the painting this is a really easy and fast build.

Step 10: Smaller Version

After finishing this Ible, I made a smaller stool without paint and with only the inner ball of the football. This is the perfect size for children to work on the table in our makerspace.

The black color of the inner ball looks nice with the wood color and is a little softer to sit on. I took this inner ball from a worn down football that had a small leak.

I like the look of the painted version better, but it is just to much work.

I added the files and a picture here.

The files are called '61 cm' because that is the length of the material where it is cut from: 61 cm x 40.5 cm (full sheets are 122 cm x 244 cm in The Netherlands)

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    5 Comments

    Hi, a very nice project indeed, just curious about the laser wattage, Can I cut a 15mm wood on a 80 watts laser ? Thanks for any info..

    Hi Jerry, Not all lasers are created equal. A 80 watt 'cheap' laser has less power than a 60 watt 'high end' laser. I used a 60 watt 'high end' Trotec laser cutter with a 2.5" lens. (a longer lens is better for thicker materials) The 'normal' lens on this laser cutter is 1.5". Best way to find out is to try it!

    Very clever and cool...... I think

    Thank you...... I think :P