Rocker Lamination Tips

Advice on hardwood lamination thickness for rocking chair rockers, and tips for cutting the laminations. February 12, 2007

I am about ready to build a jig for bent lamination of rocker skids. The inside radius will be 40", outside radius 42". Total length will be 45-48" (to allow for shaping). Skid width will be 1 3/4". I use walnut, maple, red oak, cherry, and white oak. How thick can I go on the lams to minimize the number of lams? Initially, I will be cutting the lams with a thin kerf blade on my table saw until I get confidence (and find the right blade) to do them on my bandsaw.

Forum Responses
(Furniture Making Forum)
From contributor F:
I would use either 1/4 or 3/8". Don't think I'd go any thicker.

From contributor J:
Ditto what contributor F posted. Additionally, I would say go get confidence in your bandsaw; it is the better machine for the job. I would recommend 1/2" (or bigger depending on your machine) resaw blade. You'll have much less waste, and after you cut the strips, a quick pass through the planer will have you ready to go. And it's really no more dangerous than a t.s.

From contributor M:
Try Lenox Diemaster II blades. I have a 14" bs with riser and use a 1/2", 6-tooth blade and use it for resawing constantly. Just an hour ago I sliced up some 3/32" slabs of zebrano that were nine inches tall and 24 inches long. Consistent thickness throughout - you can lay the slices next to each other and there's no dishing. Beats the pants off of Timberwolf in quality of cut - and I've done the Timberwolf routine and wasn't impressed. As long as you set the blade correctly on the crown of your bs wheels and set the fence correctly for the drift the Lenox blade is, extremely hard to beat. It'll do exactly what you describe and then salute and say sir yessir when done.

From the original questioner:
Thanks. I'll get a Lenox blade for my Jet 18". I have had success with the1/2" WoodSlicer from Highland Hardware when cutting the solid wood rockers. There was some roughness of the cut that would require planing and that is pretty wasteful of nice cherry or walnut. So the jig making.