Mahogany Glider

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Other than a tall glass of iced tea, nothing complements a summer day better than a comfortable seat. This attractive outdoor glider fits the bill. Unlike standard benches or chairs, this two-seater hangs on long swing arms mounted on heavy-duty bearings that allow it to sway with the gentlest push.

Despite its complex appearance, this project isn’t that difficult when you break it down to its subassemblies. As you’ll see, I used biscuits and screws where I could and reserved the mortises and tenons for the spots requiring more substantial joinery. A plunge router equipped with an edge guide can make quick work of the larger mortises in the front and back legs. To rout the narrow back rails for the splats, I devised a simple, stable jig that guarantees straight, centered slots.

This project would look good in a variety of exterior-grade hardwoods, including teak or white oak. I chose mahogany because of its reputation for standing up to rough weather, and I applied several coats of marine varnish for a finish befitting a wooden boat. (To prevent your project from turning grey prematurely, I recommend setting it out of direct sunlight and covering it or bringing it indoors when the cold weather sets in.) Paint will hide the grain, but it would offer better protection and permit you to use a less expensive wood, such as cedar or cypress.

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