The figure, color, and character displayed in the rocking chair seats are prominent in the final composition of the chairs. We laminate each seat from seven pieces selected, cut, and organized from the same larger board or tree. The laminating makes the seats stronger and more stable. The selecting and organizing make the figure, color, and character of the seats more interesting and lively.
We study the growth rings to predict what figure will be later revealed by the scoop.
We flatten and true the seat boards and bore holes in their edges for the dowels that align them when gluing them together.
Before jointing and gluing we cut some wood out of individual seat boards at the band saw to define the scoop.
We carefully prepare the mating surfaces of the seats (jointing) for a continuous and uniform glue bond and for a seamless fit. We spread a uniform, continuous layer of glue on the edges of the seat boards, clamp them flat, and leave them overnight.
After the seat is glued up, it is dimensioned on the wide belt sander, cut square, notched to interlock with the legs (photo below), mortised for the splats, cut to shape, edged, and sanded to fit the notches of the leg . . . among many other things.
With the disc grinder and coarse abrasive, we "true up" the scoop. This work is not for the inexperienced or the unskilled. Less than impeccable workmanship will leave ripples and waves in the contours of the chair scoop. You could see and feel these anomalies in the finished chair seats . . . if they were there.