Made for walkin’

Okay!  New project time!  YAY!


Too enthusiastic?  Yeah, I thought so too.

But it is time for a new project.  This one could be fairly simple, all the way to egregiously ornate.  Molded plastic to silver inlay.  I’m hoping to chart a middle course.  The most common term I’ve heard for this is “bootjack”, though I’ve heard a couple of isolated regionalisms from time to time.  Essentially, it’s a device to help you get your boots off.


A caveat: this only works with boots that are slip-on.  Western boots, wellies, etc.  Doesn’t do me a whole lot of good since I have to unlace the ones I wear.  But the sister-in-law I was making this for wears cowboy cowgirl boots a lot, so it was useful for her.

I started with a piece of quartersawn white oak.  You need to pay a little attention to the environment here.  Not necessarily the whole Gaia idea, but more like the fact that the completed piece is likely to be used with muddy or wet boots, and left in a damp mudroom or on a back porch.  White oak is pretty rot resistant, especially with regard to the range of our native species, so it will hold up to those conditions for some time.  White pine, not so much.


As is my custom, I start with the most demanding, most likely to be difficult portion first.  In this case, it’s joining the leg and the back.  As it can be subjected to fairly severe racking forces, I used a housed through-mortice to join the two parts.  When everything is ready to assemble, I’ll wedge the tenons to make sure that they don’t come loose in service.