Looking for the last finishing touch to your porch that will make it just perfect? Adirondack chairs are excellent additions to any porch, deck, or lawn, and their comfort and style are undeniable. Better still, Adirondack chairs can be built surprisingly easily, if you have even modest woodworking experience.
The traditional Adirondack chair design features a curved backrest and wide armrests that provide superior comfort. Beyond this basic design, you actually have a lot of leeway with regard to size and wood material. Cedar is a great choice for Adirondack chairs, due to its light weight and resistance to rot. If you want maximum strength, 1” stock is a good choice. For most uses however, ¾” is more than sufficient.
To hold the individual components together, use 1½-inch wood or drywall screws. Countersinking the screws makes for a more elegant and professional look, and plugging the holes with cedar plugs glued into place will further ensure a seamless finish. You might also want to look into carriage bolts (¼” diameter bolts will work best) to secure the slanted legs to the vertical legs and also to set the armrests into place.
If this is your first time attempting a project of this scope, it is a good idea to cut out a pattern on paper first and assembling a prototype. This is a much less risky approach than cutting out your sections according to a list, as it will enable you to keep a close eye on how each piece fits as you build.
Cut the two vertical and two slanted legs first of all. The first cut out of each pattern should be used as the pattern for the second cut. This will ensure that all the legs are identical. Take the vertical legs and attach them to the front of the slant legs with the use of screws or carriage bolts. The armrest support knees should be attached to the outer edge of the vertical legs using two screws for each leg. The legal assembly can now be attached to the bottom of the backrest with the use of two additional screws for each side.
Next, cut out the support section for the backrest and attach the armrests to it with the use of two screws. You will also need to cut out five pieces for the back support, and six pieces for the bottom. The center backrest connects to the top and bottom section of the backrest. The armrests can now be attached to the vertical legs and the support knee of the armrest. Now is also the time to ensure that the armrests are perfectly angled.
After the armrests are positioned, you can affix the pieces of the vertical backrest to the support section of the backrest, keeping an equal distance between each slat. The bottom pieces of the chair should be spaced equally as well. At this point, you can connect the front trim panel to the slant legs’ front edge. By now, you should see the classic form of the Adirondack chair, at which point you can simply disassemble the chair and sand the pieces down for maximum smoothness.