Folding Cedar Lawn Chair




Introduction: Folding Cedar Lawn Chair

About: I started woodworking with my grandfather as a young boy. I continued woodworking through high school, and started woodturning after seeing a turned project in a friends shop. Some of my fondest memories are...

I just uploaded this video on YouTube on how to make this Cedar chair. Here's some more detailed instructions if you would like to build it. It's a pretty easy project.

Step 1: Choosing the Right Lumber

I chose Cedar for this project, it's a great outdoor wood that holds up well.

Step 2: Cut List for the Project

I picked out 3 pieces 8' x 3 1/2" x 1" and 1 piece 8' x 5 1/2" x 1 1/4" Cedar.

The 8' x 3 1/2" piece needs to be ripped down to 1 1/2" on the table saw. The 8' x 5 1/2" x 1 1/4" needs to be ripped down to 1" on the table saw.

After you have them down to width, they need to be cut to length with a chop saw.

You will need:

(11) 1 1/2" x 1" x 6"

(2) 1 1/2" x 1" x 40"

(2) 5 1/2" x 1" x 24"

(2) 1 1/2" x 1" x 2"

(8) 1 1/2" x 1" x 12"

(8) 1 1/2" x 1" x 27 1 /2"

Step 3: Hardware

You need a total of 8' of threaded rod #8

8 #8 washers

8 #8 nuts

8 #8 cap nuts

Step 4: Drilling the Holes

You need to dill holes in all the pieces, use a drill press. Setup a stop block, and fence.

The 6" and 27 1/2" the holes need to 3/4" in from the ends on both ends.

12" pieces need holes 3/4" from one end and 2 1/8" from the other.

The 40" pieces need holes drilled 3/4" in from one end, and 13 1/2" from the other end.

The 24" pieces need holes drilled 3/4" in from the top, and 10" in on the same the end.

Step 5: Assembly

You can put the first threaded rod in by hand, this is the top of the back. The easiest way to put in the other rods, is to hook them into a drill. They will feed themselves in, and makes this part of the assembly very easy. After the rods come out the other side, put the washer and two nuts on each piece. Use a hacksaw to cut off the excess rod. Put the remaining washers and nuts on. The final step in assembly is to install the stop blocks, these are the 2" pieces. On the top of the 24" pieces (rear legs), come in 10" and glue the stop blocks. When the chair is open the 27 1/2" pieces will rest on these.

Step 6: Applying a Finish

Choose a durable finish, I used General Finishes Arm-R-Seal, and applied it with a brush.

Step 7: Time to Enjoy

Grab a nice tall glass of your favorite beverage, and enjoy summer!!

6 People Made This Project!


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59 Discussions

Hi Carl,

great vid! Just one thing, if you thread all the pieces BEFORE tensioning, then you don't need the drill to make the rod go through.

I want to make it bigger, what measurements did you come up with that worked well for sitting..?

Once again, thanks!

Hey carl, i made it! I confess it was a bit hard for me (im a beginer) here's the photo you asked, im making another one for my wife. Oh i forgot to say last time, i used pine. Thanks again!


Hey Carl thanks for the tutorial, im brazillian and im starting it tomorrow, here the total cost was 60 reais, which would be about 20 dollars. Keep up the great work!!!

1 reply

Thank you very much! Please share some pictures when you're done.


2 years ago

I got wood at Home depot today, all thread rods, nylok nuts, acorn nuts, washers, i am working on the Kentucky stick chair tomorrow, my cost was also about $45, thanks very much for the tut, i have to find the stain/finish you were using..

jack g

You are the best. I never turned wood before but since I retired I have found this to be very rewarding and I love it. I have learned a lot watching your videos and thank you so much. I can't wait for you to get your robust lathe

I'm definitely going to make some of these, brilliant design

Carl, May I ask how tall you are? You said in the video that the chair back was a little too short for you. Thanks.

1 reply

Most Instructables are clever or interesting, but not something attractive enough that I'd actually want it in my own home. But this chair is truly beautiful! Well done!

2 replies

Thinking about doing this with pallet-parts. Will have to sand and protect the wood properly of course....

2 replies

Hey this is a very cool idea!. Used to build pretty nice adirondacks out of skids years ago but these are lightyears more awesome. Not looking forward to a layoff this summer so with nothing to lose I may as well bring home a pile of skids from work and make a bunch see if they sell. I am thinking of 1/4 plain rod and running a die on the ends- Woodchuckchuck

Great chair, looks really fantastic.

I just have a litte Problem - I'm used to the metric system. I tried to figure out what diameter a threaded rod #8 is but I had no success. Can you help me out?