How I Made This Shop Chair Using Chain and Scrapwood

4,997

78

21

Introduction: How I Made This Shop Chair Using Chain and Scrapwood

About: My name is Blake, I make things for a living. I love experimenting with new materials to create sculptures, furniture and everything in between.

I made a one-of-a-kind industrial shop chair using Chain link and scrap wood. I welded the legs and backrest of the chair with my tig welder. I wanted to make sure the seat swiveled, as it is a necessity in my shop. To do this, I added a Large bolt with matching nut. For the seat, I took a "chaotic cutting board" style approach. I used Walnut, Ipe, White oak and Redwood. I love builds like this because I get to incorporate my metalworking and woodworking skills into once piece. The chair is now a center point in my shop and will be used day in and day out. Let me know what you think!

Step 1: Check Out the Full in Depth Build!

Step 2: Weld Together Chainlink.

First, you have to find un-galvanized/ zinc coated chain. I was lucky enough to find raw steel chain at my local Tractor supply store. Next, use a template to hang the chain on so you can use gravity to an advantage for welding. I used my existing shop stool as a template to hang my chain over, creating the four leg portions of the chair.

Step 3: Weld Support Circle / Backrest and Finish All the Welds.

Using the same technique, I welded the circular leg support as well as the backrest. At this point, I only tack welded everything together. That way if I need to manipulate the legs I can easily break/bend the chain. I used a Large Nut in the center of my 4 leg connection points. I will be adding the matching bolt to the seat, that way I have a swivel seat. Once all the tacks are complete and everything is flush and how you want, finish the welds and make sure to cover all sides of the chainlink.

Step 4: Chaotic Cutting Board Style Seat

I used Walnut, Ipe, White Oak and Redwood scraps to create this seat. I first ripped them all to the same dimension, and did two separate glue ups creating two pieces of the same size.

Step 5: Woodworking

I proceeded to cut one of the two pieces into random lengths, then rotating them around and re-gluing. This gives you this design you see in the first picture. Once dry, I then glued one piece directly on top of the other and ran it through my bandsaw with a random design. Once cut, separate the two pieces and you will have multiple "book matched" ends to play around with. I then wanted even more of a chaotic design so I cut both panels in half creating 4 different squares. I can then arrange the squares in a aesthetically pleasing orientation before gluing up one final time.

Step 6: Cut Out the Circle

Using a Jasper circle router jig, I cut out a perfect circle.

Step 7: Add Metal Border Around Seat

I added a 1/8" metal border around my wooden seat. In order to do this, I cut out another slightly smaller circle and glued it directly to the bottom of the seat. I then used brute strength to bend the 1/8" steel bar around the plywood. This took a lot of hammering/ clamping to get right. Once it was fit appropriately I welded the ends together creating the perfect metal circle.

Step 8: Swivel Seat

I welded on the matching bolt to a 1/8" thick flat iron. This flat iron was welded to the circular steel on the bottom of the seat, and anchored by 8 wood screws. Next I tested the bolt and screw to make sure it swiveled appropriately.

Step 9: Weld on the Backrest and Apply Finish

I welded on the backrest directly to the circular 1/8" steel. I then finish sanded the seat and gave it its final finish.

Step 10: Check Out the Full Video for the Full in Depth Build!

Thanks for reading / watching my instructable!

Furniture Contest

Runner Up in the
Furniture Contest

Be the First to Share

    Recommendations

    • Pets Challenge

      Pets Challenge
    • Meatless Challenge

      Meatless Challenge
    • Stone Concrete Cement Contest

      Stone Concrete Cement Contest

    21 Comments

    0
    AJK07734
    AJK07734

    1 year ago

    Really Cool Design, and Nice work, One minor thing though, I couldn't tell if that chain or the bole were Raw or Galvanized. If Galvanizes you need to be EXTREMELY Cautious when Welding it. Zinc fumes can be Deadly. ll too often, Welders or Amateur Blacksmiths end up causing themselves major Injuries (Or Dying) from Metal Fume Fever. All In all, I really enjoy your stuff.

    0
    AnandM54
    AnandM54

    1 year ago

    Wow, it's an amazing work bro.. brilliant idea too,,

    0
    Phil B
    Phil B

    1 year ago

    I appreciate the subtle humor you wove into your video. We have the same swivel chairs you replaced as our breakfast nook chairs. We have been using them three times a day for almost four years, and I have had to do some welding on the lazy Susan swivel mechanism to make the chairs more solid. Occasionally screws work their way out and I should add some Loktite.
    I have made a wine bottle holder with chain. (The wine bottle is horizontal and appears to float in the air with the chain hanging off of it.) I did not find ungalvinized chain and did the best I could with a flux core welder. The zinc coating was not as much of a problem as occasional joints that appeared to be properly welded, but were weak and broke too easily. After the welding was done I used a MAP gas torch to burn the zinc off as best I could so the chain would take black spray paint.
    I am thinking about a lower shop stool on three larger casters. I would like to use a steel tractor seat. Prices are a little high, and I am contemplating welding up my own tractor seat.
    Thank you for your Instructable.

    0
    BMsculptures
    BMsculptures

    Reply 1 year ago

    Thank you Phil. I would love to see the wine bottle you made! I think I got extremely lucky to find ungalvanized chain. None of the big box stores had any, but surprisingly my local tractor supply store had some.
    Thank you for viewing my intractable!

    0
    Phil B
    Phil B

    Reply 1 year ago

    Thank you for your response. The photo shows the wine bottle holder I made from chain. The design is not original with me, but I saw it somewhere on the Internet. You can actually buy wine bottle holders like this fairly economically at Amazon, but it is also fun to make your own. I eventually made a form I wrap the chain around and weld most of the links together on it. The coil of chain around the neck of the bottle almost needs to angle downward a little because the bottle tends to sag. You can adjust the look of the bottle a little by how far the neck goes into the chain coil around the neck. I tried to make sturdy welds, but also keep them from showing. The curved area under the bottle needs to be planned carefully so the stand does not fall over when the bottle is removed and so the bottle is stable when it is inserted into the chain stand.

    0
    BMsculptures
    BMsculptures

    Reply 1 year ago

    hm I cant seem to see the photo?

    0
    Phil B
    Phil B

    Reply 1 year ago

    I apologize. I had copied and pasted the photo. It worked when I did it and was still there later. This time I followed the usual process for adding a photo.
    BE9C6319-4230-47AE-842B-3FCB433700CF.png
    0
    JodyH13
    JodyH13

    Question 1 year ago on Step 1

    What size chain and how long??

    0
    BMsculptures
    BMsculptures

    Answer 1 year ago

    Each link is roughly 1" or so. I am not sure about the thickness or gauge.

    0
    JodyH13
    JodyH13

    Reply 1 year ago

    Thanks.

    0
    BMsculptures
    BMsculptures

    Reply 1 year ago

    Thank you!

    0
    BMsculptures
    BMsculptures

    Reply 1 year ago

    Thank you so much!

    0
    WUVIE
    WUVIE

    1 year ago

    Whoah! This is beyond awesome. Fabulous Instructable, amazing chair. Kudos, many kudos to your hard work.

    0
    seamster
    seamster

    1 year ago

    I like it, nicely done! You can't beat the combo of wood + metal. : )

    0
    BMsculptures
    BMsculptures

    Reply 1 year ago

    Thank you!

    0
    Penolopy Bulnick
    Penolopy Bulnick

    1 year ago

    This is an impressive chair!

    You should consider entering this in the Furniture Contest :)