Download Plans for the Staked High Stool

Several people have asked to purchase plans for the staked high stool design I’ve been refining for the expanded “The Anarchist’s Design Book.”

My answer: No, I won’t sell you the plans, but you can have them for nothing.

Here are the rules: You can download these. Build as many stools as you like. Feel free to sell the stools you build. Here’s what you cannot do with these plans: Sell them or represent them as your own. In other words, don’t be a deT and we’ll be cool.

The sheets were drawn up by reader Josh Cook, who also make this nice 3D render you can play with.

Here’s the cutting list:

1 Seat: 1-3/8” x 11” x 20”
3 Legs: 1-3/8” x 1-3/8” x 25”
1 Front stretcher: 1-3/8” x 1-3/8” x 20-1/2” (cut it long and trim to fit the front legs)
1 Mid stretcher: 1-3/8” x 1-3/8” x 14-3/4” (cut it long and trim to fit)

The resultant angle for the front legs is: 13°. The resultant for the rear leg is: 22°.

The sheets can be downloaded in pdf format here:


My stools are made using Southern yellow pine (a 2x12x8’ will make two stools). For the finish, I charred the parts before assembly using a MAP gas torch then brushed away the charred earlywood with a stiff acid brush. After assembly, I touched up the joints with the torch and applied two coats of a beeswax and linseed oil concoction (make your own using this recipe).

The techniques for building these stools are covered in detail in “The Anarchist’s Design Book.” So if you’re confused by talk of resultant angles, you might pick up that book or Peter Galbert’s “Chairmaker’s Notebook,” which also explains the geometry.

— Christopher Schwarz

About Lost Art Press

Publisher of woodworking books and videos specializing in hand tool techniques.
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12 Responses to Download Plans for the Staked High Stool

  1. dodies says:

    This is SO great! Thank you. I just finished the saw bench, and this is the perfect follow up. Thanks for being so generous!

  2. Josh Cook says:

    Glad to help. For all you CAD junkies, you can download a STEP file of the model to play around with at this link.

  3. jayedcoins says:

    This is great, thanks so much for sharing. I could use one of these to sit on in my shop area, and we could also use one for our bedroom/master bath.

    Untreated SYP isn’t readily available at the home centers up here. It’s all knotty and wound SPF, or Douglas Fir. Would Douglas Fir work well for this? Or maybe just spend a little more for poplar? It would be painted and I know from experience poplar takes paint well.

    • Derek Long says:

      My experience with Doug Fir and staked furniture hasn’t been great. I find it too splintery. Chips out a lot when drilling the holes and when driving in the tenons. Maybe my local supply is just terrible stuff.

      • Yellow pine is the same way.

        I get around its limitations by running up the speed on my electric drill to full throttle before easing into the cut. Otherwise, things blow up.

        Also, I put a hard chamfer on the ends of the tenons, which helps prevent the tenon from chunking out the top of the seat.

        I haven’t made this stool in fir, so there’s a chance it’s even more difficult than SYP for some reason. But I have worked a lot with fir in the past on other projects. The above strategies work, as does getting stuff that is as dry as possible. The wet stuff is stringy and is like planing and boring wet toilet paper.

      • jayedcoins says:

        Thanks for the info. I was afraid of that… I’ve only ever tinkered with Douglas Fir, and used it for other rough applications around the house, and thought it was pretty prone to chipping.

        Poplar isn’t too expensive around here, even for full 8/4 for the seat, so I might give that a try.

        • steveschafer says:

          Not knowing where “up here” is, I can’t be sure, but you might find untreated SYP if you go to a real lumber yard, as it is a favorite for floor joists.

          • jayedcoins says:

            Hi Steve,

            I am in SE MI. There are in fact some lumber yards that have untreated SYP but the price + distance to travel to get them isn’t super hot unless I was planning on making a whole bunch of things out of SYP (and I’m a hobbyist for lack of a better word). I did recently hear that a Menard’s in the area may have started occasionally stocking it. I’ll have to check it out.

  4. marcsitkin says:

    Thanks for sharing this, looks like a great project.

  5. laterthanuthink says:

    Thanks Chris for the plans and other info. I especially love the finish. Burn it and wax it! Have you used this on other types of furniture, like a dresser or headboard?

    • This is the largest piece to date. I’ve used it a lot on tool handles and other small stuff. But the sky is the limit. A pizza restaurant called “Pi” in downtown Cincinnati is entirely clad on the inside with charred siding.

  6. jayedcoins says:

    I have some 3/4 curly maple I’d like to use for legs on this stool. Am I crazy to face glue two boards together? Will I get boned by this approach when I get to tapering and planing the octagonal shape?

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