Blog Post

Today I’m finishing up the guitar foot stool I started last week.

The quarter inch brass rod I bought was a little too large for the thin inner legs. I needed to run the rod through the center of each one. Unfortunately, the hardware store had already closed for the evening so I had to improvise.

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My plan was to turn my drill press into a small, inverted, lathe. I drilled a stopped hole into a piece of scrap plywood.

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I cut off a piece of the brass rod longer than I needed and chucked it up on the machine.

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I made sure it was plum, and then clamped the scrap wood down.

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I used a file to slowly grind down the brass rod. I know this is not incredibly precise, but it doesn’t have to be. The rod just needs to be small enough to get epoxied into the holes.

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Eventually, it was small enough so and I smoothed and buffed the brass.

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This is exactly what I needed.

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I cut off the ends with some oil and a hack saw.

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On the grinding wheel, I flattened the edge and rounded the burs off.

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I needed to make a whole in the same spot on both legs, so I taped the two together, marked the locations, and took them to the drill press.

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This drill bit was the same diameter as the milled down rod I had just made.

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Once the holes were drilled I could remove the tape.

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The rods were a little snug, so I chucked them into a drill and slowly bored them out.

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With a sharpie, I marked how long they needed to be.

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Back on the vise, I used the hack saw to cut the rod to length and cleaned up the end.

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Once I finished one side, I did the exact same thing with the other.

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This is how the stool rises, but the legs were binding a bit on the body.

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I used the shoulder plane to round down those edges to clear the legs.

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With the entire piece clamped together, I sanded it down with the random orbit sander. I went through 120 and 220 grits.

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Now that it was totally smooth, I wiped all the pieces down with a damp rag to remove any dust.

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I applied a couple coats of Danish Oil. First applying a fairly thick coat, waiting about 15 minutes, and then wiping off any excess. I also got the oil down into all the grooves and holes.

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Once the pieces had dried for a couple days, I applied two coats of spray polyurethane.

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After waiting another day, it was time for final assembly. I used epoxy to secure the rods on the joints that didn’t need to rotate. Using a toothpick, I packed epoxy into the holes, inserted the rods, and then cleanup up the excess.

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I used an old ball-peen hammer I got from my father-in-law to peen over the two rods that held in the outer legs. These needed to be able to rotate freely. I put another piece of rod in the vice and used that to pound against.

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The last thing to do was epoxy in the rod to connect the two outer legs. This rod also sits in the wooden grooves to lock the stool at different heights.

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Playing on a bench at this height is uncomfortable for more than a couple minutes and the guitar keeps wanting to slide down my leg.

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With the foot stool, it brings my posture back upright and keeps the guitar up close to my chest. It makes it much easier to reach notes and chords in the higher frets.

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My Project Tools

HACK SAW

DRILL PRESS

FILE

BENCH GRINDER

DRILL

HAMMER

SHOULDER PLANE

 

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