Build a Classic Bowback Windsor
Green woodworking lends its strength to this classic chair design.
Synopsis: Harriet Hodges explains how she builds a bowback Windsor chair. She starts with green wood, in whole log form. She explains how to split, square, and round blanks for the parts and then moves on to drilling and shaping the seat, preparing the legs and stretchers, and assembling the undercarriage. Detailed photos and drawings show how to lay out and drill the seat. Then she tackles the back assembly; she bores the spindle holes with a 3/8-in. auger bit. She explains how she put it all together and finish the piece.
The rewards of building Windsor chairs are sweet indeed. From logs, I create objects of beauty and utility, strong but graceful, steeped in tradition and destined to last generations (see the photo at right). The process isn’t difficult as long as you take it step by step.
Before you start to make a bowback (or any…