A Challenging Bench to Build
DIY Plans to Build a Curved Seat Bench
Like a challenge? Me, too! The DIY plans to build a Curved Seat Bench really shouldn’t be too difficult but it will put your skills to the test! The bench features a curved seat and back, and will fit well around a round table. The seat can be made using plywood or 1x material in planks. In all honesty, this bench can probably be built in a weekend!
I have included a printable template for the back pieces. This is new for me, so please bear with me while I get all of the kinks worked out! The printed sheets have registration marks on them so that the pages can be matched up and taped together with ease. The back pieces can be cut from 1x for 3/4″ wide pieces or 2x stock for 1-1/2″ wide pieces (whichever you feel comfortable with as the back). If using a bandsaw, the pieces can be stacked so that multiples are cut out at once, and 4 pieces should fit on one 1×8 or 2×8 at 3′ long.
- 2-1/2″ pocket hole screws
- 2″ screws
- 1-1/4″ brad nails (or 1-1/2″ screws to secure the seat)
- Edge banding, optional
- Wood glue
- Sandpaper (100, 150, 220 grits)
- Finishing supplies (primer & paint, or stain, sealer)
- 1 – 1×8 at 8′ or 1 – 2×8 at 6′ (for the back pieces)
- 4 – 2×4 at 8′
- 1 – 4′ x 8′ sheet of 3/4″ plywood or 5 – 1×6 at 6′ (for the seat)
- 3 – 2×4 at 17-1/4″ – Front Legs
- 3 – 2×4 at 13″ – Side Stretchers
- 3 – 2×4 at 32″ – Back Legs
- 4 – 2×4 at 23-5/8″ – Front & Back Stretchers
- 3 – 1×8 at 36″ – Back OR
- 2 – 2×8 at 36″ – Back
- 1 – 3/4″ plywood at 22″ x 51″ – Seat OR
- 5 – 1×6 at 51″ – Seat
Click on the drawings for a larger view!
Cut the pieces for the front legs, the back legs, and the side stretchers. Cut an angle in each side of each leg as shown using a jigsaw, a bandsaw, or a tapering jig on the table saw.
Set the pocket hole jig for 1-1/2″ material and drill pocket holes in each end of the stretcher pieces. Secure the stretchers to the front and back legs using glue and 2-1/2″ pocket hole screws. On at least two of the assemblies, the pocket holes will face opposite of the remaining assembly so that no pocket holes will be visible on either side.
Cut the pieces for the front and back stretchers. A 14° angle will be cut on one side (where the stretchers will be attached to the center leg) and a 15° angle will be cut on the other side (where the stretchers will attach to the outer legs). Stand the leg assemblies on a flat surface, then position the stretchers as they will be secured to the legs. Mark the position of the pocket holes, staggering them so they won’t interfere with the adjoining piece, especially at the center leg. Secure the stretchers to the legs using glue and 2-1/2″ pocket hole screws.
The back stretchers will be flush with the ends of the side stretchers. The front stretchers will be positioned 1-1/2″ back from the front edge of the legs.
Print the template for the back pieces. Line up the registration marks and tape the sheets together. It may be easier to transfer the template to a scrap piece of 1/4″ plywood, using the plywood piece as the template. There should be enough room to trace four back pieces on a 1×8 or 2×8 piece of material.
Cut out the back pieces using a jigsaw or a bandsaw. If using a bandsaw, the pieces can be stacked (secured by screws) then cut. The holes made by the screws can later be filled.
Pre-drill the holes in the ends of the back pieces to prevent splitting before securing the pieces to the back legs. Secure the back pieces to the legs using glue and 2″ screws.
Cut the piece for the seat. If using planks for the seat, secure the planks to each other by drilling a series of pocket holes along one long edge of each piece and securing with 1-1/4″ pocket hole screws. Draw the curves on the seat material according to the drawing, maintaining the 2″ at the sides (for the legs and 1/2″ overhang).
Secure the seat to the frame using glue and 1-1/2″ screws or 1-1/4″ brad nails.
Finish as desired.
If anyone tackles this bench before I get a chance to do so, please let me know how the templates work out. I am planning on including templates for future plans. Have any questions about the DIY plans to build a Curved Seat Bench? Leave a comment below!