DIY Rocking Chair

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DIY Rocking Chair

When I found this chair in a thrift store, I knew I wanted to turn it into a rocker. I actually passed it up the first day, but thought about it more when I got home. Finding it still there the next time I went, I knew I had to have it! I turns out this chair is still available at ikea. So this post lays out the plans for this specific chair in an IKEA HACK! If you'd like to see my thought process, on how to apply this to any chair, check out my Instagram Story Highlight.

My Instagram Reel gives a 15 second look at the whole process! The key is creating a large jig so we can create some moderately rounded arcs for the legs. With this ikea Strandmon wing chair, the rocker legs need to be 42" in total width. Cut off (2) 42" lengths of a 2"x4". You'll need an additional 2"x4"x10' to attach the jig too. You'll also need approximately 10' of material to make the jig. Hardboard will work, and you can combine two pieces for longer length if needed. I used a 3/8" straight bit from this router bit set. The height is shorter than the 1.5" cut, but it shouldnt matter as the bit passes through on each plunge.

First Router Pass

Attach your 2"x"4"x10' in a T shape at the center mark of the 2"x4"x42". Use pocket holes to attach. These screws won't be in the way of our cuts. From the bottom edge of the rocker leg, measure back 9' 3 1/4" along the T, and mark this spot. This is the turning point for your jig for the first arc. It will cut the rounded line seen above.

Second Router Pass

Once the bottom edge of the rocker leg is cut, we'll need to cut the top edge. For this we will not adjust our jig, but we will move the turning point. Your new turning point needs to move further back by 1 1/2". This point now measures 9' 4 3/4" from the bottom of the arc. You may need to adjust this somewhat due to your bit diameter, so do a dry run first before you start routing. Use your plunge router and cut this inner arc line.

Here is a view from my turning point of my set-up. i'm working one side of the cut at a time because of my clamp location.

Here is a view from the side during my plunge cut.

Profile View

Once you have two arcs cut, you will make some cuts on the miter saw and assemble two of these for opposite sides.

I used the scrap left over from my arc cut for the 23" length. I flipped the interior arc scrap on it's side and turned that towards the inside, underneath the chair. Cut the corners at 50 degress miters (not the typical 45). You'll also need two legs per side cut at 50 degree angles accoring to the above dimensions. Wood glue everything together, and use brad nails to hold it. After a couple hours, wood fill. Once that's dry sand starting with a 60 grit Sand paper and moving up to 150. One smooth, stain with your favorite stain. I used this natural stain oil in Bourbon in a 3 to 1 ratio with this Accelerator.

Note: wait until your stain is completely dry before moving this to your carpet! This is about a week for the oil and accelerator above, but may be different with your stain. Flip the chair on its side and attach the legs with these wood screws. They come with a matching star bit and don't strip. I prefer them for almost every job. I've marked the image where I used screws. Now flip back over, and you're ready to enjoy this chair!