Make a Three Legged Stool: Create Circles for Accurate Legs

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Have you ever wondered how to make a three legged stool so that the leg spacing is perfectly even? As part of teaching you how to make a three legged stool, George shares a simple foolproof method for dividing a circle into three or six even increments, which gives you the fundamental skill needed for proper leg placement. When laying out a stool or any other project that requires even spacing around the circumference of a circle, many woodworkers have become intimidated and frustrated. The technique that George demonstrates takes all of the guesswork out of the process, allowing for precision and repeatability. By utilizing this technique, you will be able to divide a circle into six even increments, and for a stool application you would simply utilize every other point for leg placement.

Legs are the Critical Part
As you learn how to make a three legged stool, you will find that placement of the legs is the most critical element. Once you establish proper placement and alignment the project comes together quite nicely. Of course, as part of the overall project it will be important to learn how to make a stool seat with contour as well. Because the seat is the primary interface between the user and the object, you will want to take your time and do a good job there. And, as an important background, it will be important to know the fundamentals of how to build furniture in general before taking on the stool project.

Beam Compass
The key to segmenting a circle into six even increments is to use a layout tool called a beam compass. This device serves the same purpose as a traditional compass, but it utilizes trammel points that slide on a beam, allowing it to work on much larger circles.