Build a Maloof Inspired Rocker
with Charles Brock

Place holder for slide show

Furniture Making Series Level: Level II


"If you are like me, building a Maloof inspired rocking chair became a bucket list item when you first saw one in Fine Woodworking Magazine. The organic, sculpted lines of the chair with all of it's "S" curves looks daunting, but I have simplified building and sculpting the chair so that hundreds fine woodworkers all over the world have been able to build their very own." 

In this seven day class each student will:
  • Scoop out the deep saddle
  • Craft the unique visible seat-to-leg joinery
  • Shape, sculpt and assemble the flowing headrest, arms and back spindles
  • Laminate and carve the signature laminated rockers
  • Assemble the rocker with the proper glue, screws and plugs
  • Carve, sand and finish the chair to taste, creating a sculptured rocker with a final touch of your own artistry

Class Description

Day One

Students all start with 8/4 and 10/4 prepared walnut stock. They began by crafting coopered seats so their seat can have that “Smile”. After cutting the seat to width they cut their notches in the seat to begin the signature joinery. Each woodworker individually glues up a set of laminations to make their reverse curve rocker skids. I demonstrate spindle making using a bandsaw, patterns, rasps and scrapers of various shapes and sizes. Seven spindles have to be made for each rocker. 

Day Two

Each student rabbets the seat joints at the router table. I demonstrate the process for laying out the seat bowl and removing waste at the band saw before glue-up. While each waits their turn at the band saws more spindle carving and skid glue-ups take place. We begin shaping seat boards with an angle grinder. 

Day Three

We glue on adder blocks at the seat stems. These will be ready by afternoon for some tapering, dadoing, rounding and fitting to the seat joints. We fit the front legs to the seat joints by cutting the dados on three sides before rounding the edges over at the router table. Router planes, sanding blocks and floats fit them to the rabbeted notches. Then we band saw the profiles and turn them on a lathe. Also more spindle making and as many have said, “Back to the rasp”! other students finish their skids. After all is done, we glue up the seats!

Day Four

We started grinding the seat bowls into the signature contours that make this a wonderful rocker.. After drilling holes and driving screws we were all legged up by the end of the day. 

Day Five

Next we learn to fit, band saw and sculpt a set of arms. We worked at that for most of the day!
We also worked on seat, and leg refinements, spindle reconciling and gluing transitions. 

Day Six

Everybody works on arms, skids, spindles, and such before starting on headrests. A full catch-up day of woodworking!

Day Seven

I demo the sculpting and fairing in of every piece and of the rocker as a whole. The process for attaching legs to rocker skids is demonstrated along with steps for sanding and finishing the completed rocker. Questions are asked and answered. The rockers are separated and packed for a trip to the student's shop for finishing.


These tools will facilitate the classroom construction of your chair. Major tools will be shared. If you don’t have some of them, I will have what you need to work with during the class.
  • Woodworker’s Six Inch Dial Caliper (#465008 from Highland Woodworking)
  • 4 -12 Inch square (6” double square recommended - Starrett is my favorite)
  • Sliding bevel (Veritas Sliding Bevel is recommended) 
  • Bevel Boss or equivalent (Bevel Setter - Imperial)
  • Marking Knife (Lee Valley Striking Knife)
  • Marking gauge (wheel type preferred)
  • Router Plane (Small Lie-Nielsen or Veritas preferred)
  • ½” Chisel
  • Card Scrapers (straight and curved recommended)
  • Rasp: Auriou (Cabinet Makers 12" #10 rasp) or Nicholson (#49 Patternmakers Rasp)
  • Veritas Tenon Cutters 3/8 and ½ Inch with curved blades –Lee Valley Website Only 
  • 1X Miller Dowel Bit
  • Safety: Eye Protection, Dust Mask, Ear Plugs (Face shield is optional)
  • Pencils: Colored Pencils –White (2), red (2), black, led, pencil sharpener
Please feel free to bring the equivalents of these tools. All tools should be sharp and work ready.


The materials charge for this class includes the Build A Sculptured Rocker with Charles Brock instructional bundle (DVD and book), a complete kit of parts and pre-shaped back legs prepared by School staff. Charles is emphatic that everyone should use the kit as it ensures consistency and keeps all the students working on the same schedule. 

We will ship the instructional bundle to you when we confirm that the class has met the minimum enrollment to run (about 30-40 day before the class starts).

We expect the materials charge to be around $550 for the class but that does depend on the actual price of walnut. We will collect a materials deposit and notify you of the actual cost at the time of confirmation. Our expectation is that the materials charge should not increase by more than 10%.


It is a prerequisite that you study the Build A Sculptured Rocker with Charles Brock - an instructional bundle (watch the DVD and read the book)! Your productivity in the class will be enhanced by the bundle’s instruction.

Class Information and Registration

Class starts at 9:00am on the first day.

Please read our What to Expect page for general information about the School.

Please also read our Registration Policy.

Class size: 10
Cost: $1050
Materials Deposit: $100

Coming Classes:

When you click on the Register link you will be able to register for the class or, if the class is full, sign up for the wait list.

June 3-9, 2013
Build a Maloof Inspired Rocker


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Port Townsend School of Woodworking and Preservation Trades Copyright © 2007-2014. All rights reserved.

200 Battery Way | Fort Worden | Port Townsend, WA 98368 | (360) 344-4455 | email

The Port Townsend School of Woodworking and Preservation Trades is a registered 501(c)3 nonprofit. Any donations made to the School are tax-deductible to the extent provided by law.