Breeding Shave Horses

If I want to be a REAL chair maker, I’ll need a shaving horse.  What’s a shaving horse? Well, it’s basically a specialized bench for clamping and working with chair parts; specifically, spindles, crests, anything you’d be using your drawknife or spokeshave on.

Didn’t I just build a sweet bench with awesome vises though?  Yes, yes I did.  And I could technically do everything with a regular vise that I’ll do with the shave horse, but it would take waaaay longer, and be super annoying.

Here’s a good video on what a shavehorse is used for:

In fact, that whole series is fantastic, and Curtis Buchannan is like the Mozart of windsor chairs, so I’d recommend watching all of them if you’ve got time on your hands.

Anyways, I drove up to Greg’s yesterday, and bought a couple big pieces of cherry.  I whipped out my circular saw and started cutting some of the pieces down to size…

And, eventually I go them both cut out, and jointed and planed…

I’m building a Brian Boggs style shaving horse.. The main difference between his and others (that I can gather) is that he doesn’t have open sides on the head.  Well, since his style is the only kind I’ve ever used, I figure I may as well stick with what I know. Like usual, I’ve got the plans within view;

Those plans don’t have all the lengths listed, so I was having somewhat of a difficult time figuring out dimensions based on angles and heights. You know, basic geometry that I’ve long forgotten. So, I thought, why not just draw this thing out on the floor?  I don’t really care about pencil marks on the concrete, so I drew out some of the full size dimensions and it made things much easier to figure things out.

So, I got the front leg cut, and also the correct bevel on the main body. Tomorrow, I’m hoping to get some legs cut, and also the rocker sides.  Hopefully this project will go pretty quickly, I’ve got a few other things I’d like to finish before the end of the year..

Thanks for reading!

– Matt

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