The Step Stool Project

DSWalker

David
Corporate Member
If you have any grandkids, these are a must!

I also love the QS oak version. Very nice.
 

build4fun

New User
Brian
If you have any grandkids, these are a must!

I also love the QS oak version. Very nice.
I agree. I built these for several years and it was almost always a new mom that was looking for one. Always surprised they are not given as a baby shower gift.
 

build4fun

New User
Brian
Why didn't you center the leg tenon instead of offsetting it?
Now that is an interesting and good question. I have a reasonable, albeit imperfect, answer (some observation, but no hard science). In my first iteration of the design I did center the tenon as a first instinct. But after tinkering with multiple prototypes, I then felt like anything but a perfect mortise/tenon made the connection between the top and ends wobbly. While attaching the rails did help, it also seemed to me that the stress at the rail/end connection would be higher with a centered tenon since as it was more prone to lateral movement (although I did not measure the stress at the connection with strain gauges or similar). By offsetting the tenons, I found it improved lateral stability - I could even stand on the step stool without any rails or glue. It seemed more stable and thus I thought the rail/end connection would have less stress and thus a longer life.
 

Henry W

HenryW
Senior User
I have now made more of these step stools for others than I can count. ....
In Dutch these are called 'bunkies' (sp?) and there were many bunkies around our place growing up - I descend from a long line of short people, (at average height, I am the tallest one in my nuclear family (parents/siblings); my children are generally taller than either of us). THe point being that these 'height enhancers' were essential in our house, and they weren't just for kids.
The version I have seen most often includes a ellipse (oval?) cutout centered in the top as a quick hand-hold. I think once you try that, you'll never go back; it makes it an easy one hand grab without needing much grip strength.
 

build4fun

New User
Brian
In Dutch these are called 'bunkies' (sp?) and there were many bunkies around our place growing up - I descend from a long line of short people, (at average height, I am the tallest one in my nuclear family (parents/siblings); my children are generally taller than either of us). THe point being that these 'height enhancers' were essential in our house, and they weren't just for kids.
The version I have seen most often includes a ellipse (oval?) cutout centered in the top as a quick hand-hold. I think once you try that, you'll never go back; it makes it an easy one hand grab without needing much grip strength.
I am not so tall either and need one of these around the house as well :) For the one in the picture, it is a quick one-hand grab as well - grab the side rail with thumb on the top step. However, I have seen pictures of rectangular step stools with a hand hole, but have not tried them. I also have not seen many examples that have an oval step. Would you mind sending me a picture of one that you think looks nice? I am just curious more than anything.
 

Henry W

HenryW
Senior User
... I also have not seen many examples that have an oval step. Would you mind sending me a picture of one that you think looks nice? I am just curious more than anything. ....
Me too. The hand hole is rounded/oval/ellipse/whatever in the version I am familiar with; the top is rectangular. So you likely have seen the version I am trying to describe.
 

Grimmy2016

Board of Directors, Development Director
Scott
Staff member
Corporate Member
@build4fun fun Mind if we share this on our own social media pages such as FB, YT and Insta?
 

Mike Davis

Mike
Corporate Member
For sure, yes, please do share. I would also like to share the written plans for free as well, so let me know if you have a good idea for that as well.
You can convert to PDF and upload to the resources section here.
Thanks for contributing to the community.
 

Mike Davis

Mike
Corporate Member
Here is a link to the written plans that I added to NCwoodworker as a free resource. How to Make a Strong Wood Step Stool - DIY Woodworker Weekend Project
Perfect!
People always ask me ’Do you have plans for that?’ And I always say ‘yeah, I plan to use it.’
I don’t think I have ever built anything from plans, I did finally draw some rough plans for a shave horse after so many asked. I took drafting in high school and know how to do some computer drafting but it seems like a waste of time for me. I really don’t understand why people can’t just look at something and build it. But, I am learning all people are different and think differently, have to do things in their own way.
 
Last edited:

build4fun

New User
Brian
Perfect!
People always ask me ’Do you have plans for that?’ And I always say ‘yeah, I plan to use it.’
I don’t think I have ever built anything from plans, I did finally draw some rough plans for a shave horse after so many asked. I took drafting in high school and know how to do some computer drafting but it seems like a waste of time for me. I really don’t understand why people can’t just look at something and build it. But, I am learning all people are different and think differently, have to do things in their own way.
I love your comment ... 'I plan to use it'... I mostly built things from plans when I started, but can now do it from a picture, a napkin sketch, or cardboard mockup. But that definitely takes time and everyone learns differently.... so there seems to be a need for videos and written plans. But writing detailed plans and making videos often requires different skill sets than building ... and a lot more time and effort.
 

Our Sponsors

LATEST FOR SALE LISTINGS

Top