125: Log cabin furniture!

Recently, readers of this blog may have noticed a trend toward BBQ and away from cabin-building.  Actually, they don't have to be mutually exclusive subjects.  During Burning Pig Festival, held at the Coldholler Log Cabin, roving bands of kids used the cabin as a fort and destination to play and escape adult supervision.  While I smoked chicken for the NPS, I needed a tailgate project and made two heavy, simple, plank chairs that offer the angled comfort of adirondack sitting.  And last week, while several racks of ribs took their time at low temperatures, I crafted two benches.

Both the chairs and the benches are constructed from rough-sawn, full-dimension, 2"x14" white pine boards cut special by Ralph Morgan.  A 10' board like that weighs many pounds.  A couple of them, joined to make a chair or a bench, are enough to hurt a man.

The benches fold out to double their width.  Folded out, they're each 80" long by 29" wide, offering plenty of room for a single sleeper.  Rolled on their 300 pound caster wheels and latched together, they form a platform designed to hold a conventional double-bed mattress.  A rolled-up futon mattress could be stored in a plastic bin beneath the cabin.  

Here are some pictures of Sloan, the boys, and their grandparents, checking out the new furniture.  Enjoy!

Abel makes a mouse ladder

Abel:  "Come on!  See the benches!"

Abel hard at work

Abel gathering sticks

Momomma Mary Sue Despeaux and Dodaddy Mike, sitting

Dodaddy:  "Whatcha thinkin, Momomma?"

Sloan:  "Angus, we can see you!"  Notice the bench is folded out.

"We like it, Michael" 
Testing out the bed -- see how the benches come together?

The boys and their Dodaddy, on an unfolded bench.  Amazing how two benches like that fold up into a solid platform, full-sized, double bed!

"It's sturdy, Dad!"

Mid-air Abel:  "COWABUNGA!"


  1. Love to see something like a design/sketch of just how that bench works. I have a rough sense of it, but only enough to be tantalized.

  2. I'd love to see something like a design sketch for how that bench works. I get a rough sense from what you say and the pictures, but only enough to tantalize me.

  3. Thanks Stephen! In a few days or a week or so, maybe next weekend, I'll take some up-close photos and write a post with those and some specs. It's a simple concept, but a couple of building steps should be replicated. What could be done in 1000 better ways would be the support concept for the up-folding leafs -- actually, I did each differently and am not 100% pleased with either....


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I use this blog to chronicle certain aspects of my life near the Smokies. I'm building a cabin. I kayak. Sometimes I bike.