Easy Cheap DIY Chair From a 2x4

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Introduction: Easy Cheap DIY Chair From a 2x4

About: Maker in weekends.

I tried to make a chair with 1 2x4, and some scrap 1x6 for the bottom slats (you can use any scrap wood or even bamboo).

This project was inspired from a chair that grandpa did since more than 30 years ago, and till date this chair is still rock solid and comfortable. Grandpa was a skilled woodworker, he made it with mortise and tenon, with some curves on the back. We will keep our project simple with pocket hole joinery.

This is the first instructable of a series where i will show you many ways of doing the chair with different joinery technique , and adding more details to the chair like tilt back, and concave seat and backrest, with each video we should acquire new skill .

I used 2x4 wood , since it is widely available, and cheap. i tried making it with hand tools, to show you that you can start your woodworking journey, with basic tools, and no you don't need expensive tools to start.

Supplies

Lumber:

1 2x4 : real size (width x thickness) 4.5 x 9.5 cm (1.8" x 3.8") , length : 250cm (8 feet)

Cut List for the 2x4:

  • Backlegs : 1 x 75 cm (29.5") - you need to rip cut it in half to have 2 legs out of this
  • Frontlegs : 1 x 45 cm (17.7") - you need to rip cut it in half to have 2 legs out of this
  • Z Stretchers : 2 x 34.50 cm (13.5") - cut each one of them so you get 4 stretchers
  • X Stretchers : 1 x 32 cm (12.5") - you need to rip cut it in half to have 2 stretchers
  • Backrest : 1 x 32 cm (12.5")

    For the Bottom slats : you can use any scrap wood, straps, bamboo .. i used 2 1x6 cut at 32 cm (12.5")

Supplies :

Step 1: Cut Wood to Length

I started cutting the 2x4 wood to length , we will start by doing the crosscuts , cutting across the grain . After that we will do the Rip cuts, cuting along the grain, and splitting each part in half, to give us 2 identical parts.

In case you were able to find some 2x2, you will save some time with those long ripping cuts. Thank god those Japanese saws make the job easier .

  • Backlegs : 1 x 75 cm (29.5") - you need to rip cut it in half to have 2 legs out of this
  • Frontlegs : 1 x 45 cm (17.7") - you need to rip cut it in half to have 2 legs out of this
  • Z Stretchers : 2 x 34.50 cm (13.5") - cut each one of them so you get 4 stretchers
  • X Stretchers : 1 x 32 cm (12.5") - you need to rip cut it in half to have 2 stretchers
  • Backrest : 1 x 32 cm (12.5")

You need to cut the slats also if you are going to use wood for the bottom slats, or if you want you can use bamboo, or straps...

Step 2: PLANE WOOD

clean the saw marks and rough surface with a hand plane. This will make sanding easier later

Step 3: Assemble the Legs

We will start by joining the front leg to the back leg with two stretchers. Keeping the build as easy as it can be we will use pocket hole joinery.

Make sure you use ST4-38 screws since the material thickness is 4.5 centimetres or 1.7 inch , i used my pocket hole jig to drill the holes. Make sure you set it for the correct wood thickness

I start attaching the upper stretcher making sure everything is square ,clamping a speed square makes the process easier

After attaching the upper stretcher, i can attach the lower one.

And of course you need to make two legs.

Step 4: Connecting All Together

Next we'll connect the stretchers that connect the previously made legs, together.

We will use the same process of drilling pocket holes and driving screws.

The drill is the only power tool that we will use in this project.

We will start connecting the 1x6 bottom slats I wanted to show a reveal that's why I used those nuts as spacers.

Make sure you use the correct pocket hope screw size and to adjust the pocket hole jig since we are connecting the 1x6's , and they have a real thickness after planing of around 19mm (3/4 inch)

Step 5: Finish

Roll a sandpaper on a block of wood and start sanding the surface, i started with 100 grit since the surface was scraped smooth with the planer, and finished with 150 grits.

Make sure you tackle any edge to make the chair more ergonomic.

I applied later a coat of clear glossy varnish.

Step 6: Beauty Shots

Hope you liked this project

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4 Comments

1
Penolopy Bulnick
Penolopy Bulnick

1 year ago

Very nice chair and your outside (all the flowers and such) looks like a nice backdrop for photos :)

0
open-diy
open-diy

Reply 1 year ago

thank you, yes that is going to be the backdrop for all the projects that i will do during spring

1
tercero
tercero

1 year ago

About 30 years ago when I first graduated university and was starting a life with my new wife, we didn't have very much money.
To furnish our apartment we went Ikea...and purchased a dining set with 4 chairs and a table. Something like a hundred bucks Canadian back then.
The chairs you show look exactly like the chairs from that first set I bought.
Very cool and nostalgic for me. Thanks.

0
open-diy
open-diy

Reply 1 year ago

:) thank you