Best drafting stool

Feb 1 '13 5 Last Comment
Feb 1, 13 9:56 am

Hello. I am looking into purchasing a drafting stool for my husband for a gift. I was watching him stand above his drafting table & asked him about it. He said they use stools in class not to sit in while working but to occasionally sit down & rest. I need advice on the best stool to buy. I don't want to ask him too much because it will spoil the surprise.. I would like to know: 1. Is a back needed on the stool? 2. Wheels? 3. Swivel? Anything else that is key or essential? Thank you! I foun this one on restoration hardware.. Good or no good?


Feb 1, 13 11:23 am

A good chair more than pays for itself.  In one office, in the late 90s, we went from the $79 office store type chair (a flimsy pad on the back, 1 or 2 adjustments, and wheels, but no armrest) and it wasn't comfortable for extended periods of time. 

There were 2 principals.  One who was older and more provincial.  The younger one was trying to "spruce up" the firm, with a new logo, new marketing materials, and even new chairs for the employees.  The new chairs were going to cost about $300, in a group sale.  I could see the older principal holding his breath.  The padding was comfortable, it had metal components instead of cheap plastic, but mostly it had armrests!  Instantly, I felt my productivity go up, because I didn't feel I was trying to balance myself on something that resembled a bar stool. 

You don't have to spend $300 if you shop, but I would say that it should have (a) a back, (b) armrests, (c) wheels which are sturdy and have a decent footprint for stability, and (d) comfortable fabric.  Good luck.

Miles JaffeMiles Jaffe
Feb 1, 13 11:28 am

Uhl (Toledo) produced these by the millions and they can be found in antique shops everywhere.  Make sure you get one that is adjustable and tall enough to work at his drafting table. Added benefit: not made in China.

Draftsmen don't use armrests.

Kevin W.Kevin W.
Feb 1, 13 12:22 pm

Get a stool sample first...

Feb 1, 13 1:47 pm

Get a stool sample first.

They (you) do a swab that you mail in from home these days for routine labs, FWIW.  How things change.

Feb 1, 13 1:54 pm

Draftsmen don't use armrests.

He may be an architect who happens to draft, as do many. The armrests come in handy when you've got an involved conversation going with a client, a consultant, or a building official.

I also disagree with the recommendation of a wood chair.  I'd go back to the $79 cheapo with a low-quality fabric seat prior to a rigid surface for 8+ hours.

Addition:  yes, it also needs to swivel.

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