Get Woodworking 2015: Boot Jack

By Jeff Williams on Woodworking

Bevel and attach the foot

The foot is the 2″ piece that was cut off in the very first step. This props up the business end of the boot jack so that it is above the sole of your boot. This piece needs a slight bevel on it though so that it makes full contact with the ground. You could take your sand paper and sand a bevel on one edge of the foot but because it is end grain, it would take a long time. I short circuited this step by using the concrete floor in the shop like a rasp. I held the foot at the right angle and then rubbed it back and forth the long way (of the board) across the floor about 50 times and then touched it up with sand paper.

Boot Jack-8

Notice the bevel on the right side of the piece

After the bevel is done then glue and clamp the foot to the boot jack. It is set back from the notch by about an inch. It is important to note that the foot is being glued on what is called end grain. It is the weakest type of glue joint but the only force applied to that joint is compression so I’m not worried about it. Leave the clamp on over night for the glue to set. If your shop is unheated, bring the boot jack in the house for the night.Boot Jack-10


Use your new creation or add an optional finish

You can either use the boot jack as is or add a finish. A finish isn’t necessary but can really make a project pop. I used a little gel stain I had laying around. It came out really blotchy because 1.) that’s the way pine takes stain (even when preconditioned) and 2.) because I only had 220 grit sand paper in the shop at the time. The light spots are the ones sanded smooth as glass.Boot Jack-13

Boot Jack-14


About the author

Jeff Williams

Contributing Editor Jeff Williams is a carpenter for a commercial General Contractor specializing in concrete, steel, and wood buildings. Jeff comes from a long line of contractors. His parents started a commercial General Contracting firm many years ago and it has afforded him life-long, hands-on learning opportunities from rough and fine carpentry all the way to structural steel and concrete. Jeff has a Construction Management degree and loves the thrill of coordinating and successfully managing large jobs from start to finish. Inspired by the difficulties sometimes encountered to complete punch lists his motto is, "Work hard until the job is done."

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  1. Barbara says:

    Nice boot jack! Have you got a simple stool (4 legs) design?

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