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Episode 022: Take a Seat

By: Chris Fitch & Dillon Baker
CNC Basecamp welcomes special guest, Dillon Baker, as he builds several stylish, plywood seating projects for his upcoming book.

We have a celebrity guest host for this episode of CNC basecamp – our very own Dillon Baker. Dillon is an editor, designer, and builder for the Woodsmith team. Aside from wowing us with great projects for Woodsmith and ShopNotes Magazines, Dillon has been working on a special interest publication focused on stylish and contemporary seating designs made of plywood. This episode of CNC Basecamp features 3 of his original designs, a lounge chair, a round top stool, and a reading bench.

Seating is one of the most challenging of woodworking projects. There are always many objectives to satisfy... Seating must be well engineered to be strong and resilient. All three of the projects feature mortise and tenon joints and are made of tough, durable plywood.

A well thought out seating project should be efficient in its use of materials and that means the sizes of the required parts should fit neatly within standard sized sheet goods. Plus, a good project should allow for the substitution of different types of materials. Dillon’s projects are shown in Baltic Birch plywood, but they would look awesome in a hardwood plywood such as Walnut or Cherry. MDF, MDO, or OSB can also be used to make great furniture projects with a variety of different finishes - think colors!

Construction methods need to be practical, and the building needs to be done in a reasonable amount of time. We are not going to worry about those silly distinctions of CNC, power tool, and hand tool woodworking. The tools that do the job well and get the job done are going to be used.

Seating must be aesthetically pleasing as well as comfortable. These projects have a clean, refreshing, and stylish design that that will look great in any room. Finally, if the seat is not comfortable it will just become a coat rack, laundry sorting station, or pet bed – but not seating.

Dillon’s special interest book of plywood seating will feature at least a dozen designs, so there is a lot to look forward to – and a lot of work ahead for Dillon. For now, enjoy the building insights and design expertise of these first three projects.

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Published: July 4, 2023
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