Found this guy's site in some round about way. He specializes
in rocking chairs If you like Maloof's rockers you'll like
Hal's rockers. He has a set of plans for four or five size
rockers - $275 but they'd save you that much in wood wasted
doing Trial and Error.
If you like sculpted pieces check this one out. You can also
spend a week in his shop - for $800. Probably worth it.
(not affiliated in any way with Hal Taylor).
But I'd be willing to bet a grand or two that none of his chairs
are going to end up in a dump, garage sale or thrift shop - at
least not on purpose. Regardless of its price tag, I'm sure
if something broke or turned loose it would be repaired - not
so for most of what you find in a furniture store.
Read the rest of his website. He hasn't made a career of this, he was
an engineer who used to make musical instruments as a hobby. I am
guessing that his rocking chair making grew from his woodworking in
Let see, 200+ chairs at $5000 and up equals a cool 1 million plus.
Add 100+ plans at $275, selling workshop time, etc, he probably made
another 50G pocket change. Nice hobby!
Just this past weekend, at a seminar in Atlanta, Sam Maloof clearly
stated that he is irritated by those that make money using his
designs. He prefers not to waste time tracking down the violators, but
it bothers him just the same.
So, although I was also impressed with haltaylor.com, I won't be
spending any money there. I'll do what Sam did -- keep trying
something new, until I come up with something that works.
I can see some resemblance but I don't think that anyone has a "lock" on
"a rocking chair with flairs and sweeping curves...". I see Maloof's
inspiration there but not an outright copy. there are several different
styles and many sizes. If I could work wood that well or as well as Mr.
Maloof, I too would quit my day job.
Anyone buy Hal's set of plans for five different sizes of
his rocker? The samples of pages of the plans don't
really give much of a feel for the level of detail in
the plans. If they include methods for making the joints
along with full size patterns for $55/chair plans seems
like a good deal. Could save a lot of trial and error
and be a very valuable source of specialized techniques.
As for the similarity to Sam Maloof rockers, the former's
rockers are "s" shaped, Hal's aren't. Hal's front legs/
armrest supports are inward "c's", Maloof's are straighter.
Maloof's seats are very low, Hal's are at a more traditional
I'm sure Hal utilizes some of the joinery Sam Maloof used.
If you study oriental furniture joinery you'll see that
Maloof didn't invent the joining methods he uses.
Bottom line, we all build on the knowledge developed by
others. Occassionaly we think we "create" something new
but a little researching usually shows it's been done
many times before. There is very little new under the
This is true, but how close is too close? Maloof or Nakashima or
Krenov all have their look. Which of course is based on learning from
what's been done before. A summing up of the lessons they learned and
a bit of their own contribution.
So when others imitate the Maloof or Krenov style, how close is too
close? I think when the imitation causes one to be confused to the
point of thinking "is it live or Memorex?", that's too close. That
is, the imitator who offers things for sale should add enough of
themselves to avoid the confusion.
If, on the other hand, you want a Maloof rocker for yourself and
you'll only build that one, then sure, knock yourself out. Go for a
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