Wednesday, June 19, 2013


Oh, the sackback. The chair that started it all for me many years ago. I have made more of this chair than I can recall. It's a great chair to learn windsor technique. The bendings are simple, the seat is simple to carve, and assembly is straight forward. It still has it's challenges and I still like making this chair. It has a comforting look of purity and American history that draws me to it even now. I think this may be the perfect first chair for beginners.

 This version with double bobbin legs is a great choice if you want to do your own turnings and don't feel comfortable turning the ballaster style. This natural finished chair is white oak with an elm seat.
 This week I am working on a set of 4 sackbacks for a couple in Nashville. This is the page in my chair book that keeps me on track to make them all the same. See if you can make since of these numbers.
 I have the first one complete. I always build them one at a time even though I might turn everything at once. Tomorrow I will be splitting more oak for bending arms and backs.
 Other things around the shop lately. We just returned from the Braves game in Atlanta. They beat the Giants on Sunday 3-0. It was fun spending time with Kim and Logan.
 My student Fell just completed this musician's perch. The box stretcher with four legs works nice hooking your heel while playing a guitar. I like his design and deep carvings. I am going to make him do his turnings on the next one himself. He should have no trouble.
 This is the chair we demo'd the rocker jig at Kelly Mehler's a while back. I finished the chair at home using the new "Real Milk Paint" and shellac technique that Pete Galbert just blogged about. We played around with that at Kelly's. It works great and is very durable. I highly recommend trying this finish.
 The red really shows under two coats of black. Very little elbow grease involved in this process.


  1. Hi Greg. Really enjoy your blog. You have an amazing shop there and make beautiful Windsors.
    I was able to decipher everything on your notes page other than:

    Arm post depth to score mark front seat is 4 1/8"

    Leg depth to 2" score mark front seat 6 1/2"

    Thanks for posting such great information.

  2. Thanks Jamie, those measurements are simply the depth that I ream the arm post and legs. I do this so that they are reamed in all the same. Any number of ways can be measured to do this and these numbers only apply to my neurotic method. Thanks again.

  3. Greg am I seeing the Perch correctly? Does the leg pierce the pommel? If so why? I have my suspicions but would like to know the builders reasons.

  4. Hey Ray,
    Great observation. The builder wanted to position himself to play guitar while resting his foot on the stretchers so rotating the legs and stretchers while sitting forward makes it happen. Some perches have 3 legs with one legin the pommel too.
    BTW, thanks again for dinner last Tuesday. Don't you just love Curtis' stories?