A Method of Replication
By Stephen Francis Wyley
This method is based on the "Lund" Viking stool which dates from the 11th century (Kulturen, Lund, Sweden, KM53. 436). The remains of the stool only consists of the birch seat which forms the shape of a "D" and is perforated by three holes for the legs. Two of the leg holes are situated in opposite corners of the straight side, while the third hole is set in the middle of the curved side. The three holes form a triangle. See figure 1.
It has been suggested that this stool with it's legs in place would be similar in appearance to a 'milking stool' which are still in use today. See figure 2.
Using the information that can be gleaned from the remains and the proposition that when complete the stool has modern counterparts it can be easily made by following the suggested method. I have assumed some carpentry skill upon the part of those attempting this endeavour.
The method of replication of the 'Lund' Viking stool I recommend is as follows:
The Seat, timber plank, 40 X 20 cm,
3 Legs, timber dowel, 25 X 35mm or suitable tree limbs,
and Glue, Aquadhere™ is recommended.
Tools; Pencil and ruler, Jigsaw or Coping saw, Hole cutter, Hand saw, Rasp or knife, A range of sandpapers, and Linseed or Danish oil.
1. Select a suitable piece of timber for the seat. Birch if possible or some equivalent wood.
2. Mark out timber as per plan using a pencil. Make sure to avoid cutting through knots. See figure 3.
3. Cut timber to shape using coping saw or jigsaw.
4. Cut leg holes 32mm wide in the appropriate places on the seat. Angle holes at 20° from the horizontal plane of the seat. Additionally, splay the front legs away from each other to form the base of a three dimensional prism. See figure 4.
5. Cut three lengths of 35mm dowel in 25cm lengths (longer legs could be used (for tall people) but I recommend a maximum of 50cm for reasons of stability). Cut ends at a 20° angle to match the seat and the ground. See figure 5.
Figure 5. A diagram indicating the slant
on the legs.
6. Rebate the tops of the legs to fit into the holes in the seat. The legs must be a snug fit or they will make the stool unstable. See figure 6. Remove excess leg if poking up through the hole.
Figure 6. Diagram indicating the rebating on the end of the leg fitted into the seat.
a. Side view.
b. Top view.
7. When legs are a snug fit smear wood glue around top of leg and force into place.
8. Clean off the excess glue and allow to dry.
9. Sand and clean up stool.
10. Apply Linseed oil or Danish oil to finish stool.
11. Place name and group on bottom of seat.
Notes: Please note that these drawings are not to scale and I apoligize for any misunderstanding on the part of the reader, I am no draftsmen. Also remember to firmly clamp work when using any tools and wear appropriate safety gear where applicable. Safety is your responsibility.
Also for the taller of us (I am 6ft 2") I recommend making the stool with legs at least 40 cm long.
Stephen Francis Wyley
Almgren, et al., The Viking, New York, 1991.
Arwidsson, G. & Berg, G., The Mästermyr Find, A Viking Age Tool Chest from Gotland, Stockholm, 1983.
Graham-Campbell, The Viking World, USA, 1980.
Graham-Campbell & Kidd, The Vikings, London, 1980.
Roesdahl & Wilson, Eds, Viking to Crusader, The Scandinavians and Europe 800 -1200, Sweden, 1992.
Wilson,D., Ed., The Northern World, London, 1980.
There are another two extant stools dating from the 10th century found at the Fishamble Street, Dublin, Ireland. They are now stored at the National Museum of Ireland, Dublin, ref no. E172 : 11974. One of the stools is illustrated in Viking to Crusader and shows the remains of a six legged stool. I believe three legs were situated at either end of the rectangular seat.
A Collation of Viking Names
A Replica Viking Chest, based on the Mästermyr Find
How to make a replica of a Viking Toy Horse
The Gjermundbu Mail Shirt (The only extant Viking Mail Shirt)
‘Lund’ Viking Stool. A Method of Replication
Kulturen i Lund
|Copyright © Stephen Francis Wyley 1997 - 2001