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Thread: PROJECT: Tabletop Shuffleboard Game

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Fredericksburg, VA
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    161

    PROJECT: Tabletop Shuffleboard Game

    About a month ago, my 11 year old son and I were flipping through a couple of catalogs I had received that day. At one point, I got to a page that had a couple of "games" on it, and Nick flipped! He saw the following picture...



    It's a tabletop shuffleboard game. He really like it, as did I. What I didn't like was the price, which was over $100. Later that night, I studied the picture some more, and told myself, "...you can do that!"

    So, that's what I'm doing.

    The overall dimensions for the game are 48"L x 18"W. I liked the way the darker wood looked as trim and accents, so I decided to use some of the walnut I had on hand. For the shuffleboard itself, I started with a 48"x18" piece of birch ply. I laid out dimensions for a groove down the middle of the board for the center bumper, and for the "gutter" at the end of the scoring area. At that point, I slapped a straight bit in the router, and went to work. Here is the result of that bit of work...



    Now that the initial routering was done, I started looking at the trim details. I figured that I'd go with a 3/4" wide trim piece around the perimeter of the board, as well as the center bumper. A couple of much thinner pieces of walnut are going to be used at the far end of board, and the facing of the gutter. Here is the collective molding and trim, all ready for final sanding...



    So at that point, I had all of the major components of this shuffleboard table ready to go. Here is a picture of the dry-fit. Ultimately, I'm going to use a piece of green felt in the gutter. I didn't like the way the straight bit left the rough gutter, feeling that you would see the humps and bumps after the felt was applied. So I'm going to use a piece of 1/4" hardboard as a substrate for the felt. Even though it raises the gutter 1/4", it should look pretty good...



    Here are a few other pictures, showing some of the details of the board. Keep in mind...at this point, I've done no sanding, so you still see the saw marks where I nibbled away at the walnut trim...



    Another...


    ...and finally...


    The pucks for this game are actually what almost stopped me from tackling this project. I had no idea what I was going to use, or where I was going to get them. The problem was solved with the very first stop I made on the 'net. I found these at everybody's favorite online auction site...



    They are 3/4" wide, and 1/2" high. They're perfect for this application, and at $5.99/set, a decent deal. I bought two sets, because what are the chances an 11 year old and his buddies aren't going to lose a puck or two?

    I will definitely keep this up to date as I progress. I've got a bunch of finishing questions to ask, but will save them until I am ready. At this point, I am most likely going to make another of these boards for my nephew. He'll love it....

    Thanks!!

    Keith

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Constantine, MI
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    7,892
    Very cool project! Can't wait to see it finished.
    Host of the 2017 Family Woodworking Gathering - Sunken Wood

    “We all die. The goal isn't to live forever; the goal is to create something that will.” - Chuck Palahniuk
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  3. #3
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    Dec 2006
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    Lakeport NY and/or the nearest hotel
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    so you get duluth traders too huh?

    very nice execution, especially finding the game pieces!
    -Ned

  4. #4
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    Jul 2007
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    DSM, IA
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    My uncle had a shuffleboard game in his basement and I loved to play with him and my brother. This looks really cool, what catalog was it in?
    A man is rich in proportion to the number of things he can afford to let alone. -Henry David Thoreau
    My Website


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
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    Fredericksburg, VA
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    161
    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Bower View Post
    My uncle had a shuffleboard game in his basement and I loved to play with him and my brother. This looks really cool, what catalog was it in?
    As Ned indicated, we saw it in Duluth Trading. I'm pretty sure it was the holiday edition.
    "Listen, here's the thing. If you can't spot the sucker in the first half hour at the table, then you ARE the sucker. "

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
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    Fredericksburg, VA
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    161
    Update: Saturday, November 17

    ---------------------

    Before I talk about what I did today, I want to talk about a decision I made early this morning regarding the angle of deflection at the end of the board. I laid out this angle at what turned out to be 110 degrees. This was a result of what I thought "looked good", and not necessarily any thought toward a puck coming off the rubber band correctly. There was a question as to whether that angle was going to be too much, giving an undesirable bounce. Well, this morning, I grabbed a scrap piece of ply and laid out a 90 degree angle. After looking at this scrap on the board, comparing it the "inspiration picture", and imagining how the puck would come off at that angle, I made the executive decision to keep my original 110 degrees. Hopefully that won't bite me in the butt later.

    So today, I decided that I was going to try and tackle something new to me, that being inlaying. I've watched a bunch of online videos and read a lot more threads on this subject, and since these were only going to be straight lines, figured that I could do it. I needed to layout and cut a total of five grooves; one for a "Foul" line, and four scoring cells. I was kinda fired-up to put into use a far underused tool, which was my Dremel. I cranked down a spiral straight bit, clamped down a straight edge, and went to town...



    It went really smoothly at first. Then my concentration slipped for only a second, and I let the Dremel come away from the edge for a split second. It wasn't a HUGE deal, but was going to cause me to make the inlayed walnut line 1/16th wider than I planned it. Oh well. The process of plowing out all five grooves took about 20 minutes, only because I was trying to be as careful as possible. In the end, it looked like this...



    At this point, I got to "milling" the inlay material. To match the trim, I used scraps of walnut. It was a little tricky, and it didn't take me long at ALL to make sure LOML knew that a perfect stocking stuffer for me this year would be a good set of exacto knives. I did my best with the knives I had, and even managed not to slice into a major vein in my hand. After a test fit, I glued them in, making sure that I used enough pressure on the 2x4 cauls I grabbed. After the glue set, I grabbed a 1/2" chisel and cleaned up the inlay a bit...



    I managed to keep the number of times that I got over-zealous with the downward pressure, thereby slightly gouging the plywood, to one! BONUS!

    After cleaning up all of the inlays, I gave the playing surface a sanding, taking it through 120, 150, 180, and 220 on the ROS. The sanding process, and subsequent pressurized air I used to clean it off, showed me that I still have a lot to learn as far as inlaying, but overall...I'm OK with the way it looks.




    I am going to stain the game surface with a light colored stain, and then apply several coats of poly. For the walnut trim, however, I would like to use BLO. I love the way it brings out the richness in the wood. At this point, I'd like to get opinions as to final assembly and finishing. I'm definitely going to stain the plywood before I attach all of the walnut trim, but should I also apply the BLO previous to assembly, too? I'm concerned with messing up one or the other if I wait until after final assembly to finish it all. I'd really appreciate any comments or opinions.

    Thanks for looking!!

    - Keith
    "Listen, here's the thing. If you can't spot the sucker in the first half hour at the table, then you ARE the sucker. "

  7. #7
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    Nov 2006
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    Mountain Home, Arkansas
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    Wonderful projet. Sumptin' about kids. It would have been easier to spend the $100.00 but you are buidling a treasure.
    BTW, what, exactly, are the 'pucks'?
    "Folks is funny critters."

    Think for yourselves and let others enjoy the privilege to do so, too. ~Voltaire

  8. #8
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    Dec 2006
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    Fredericksburg, VA
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Fusco View Post
    Wonderful projet. Sumptin' about kids. It would have been easier to spend the $100.00 but you are buidling a treasure.
    BTW, what, exactly, are the 'pucks'?

    Thanks, Frank!

    If you look at the last picture in my original post, you'll see a picture of the pucks. They're basically a ball bearing fitted inside a hard plastic ring. The bearing is fitted such that it is able to roll as it is pushed. I remember using them for different things when I was a kid.

    - Keith
    "Listen, here's the thing. If you can't spot the sucker in the first half hour at the table, then you ARE the sucker. "

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Southeast Pa
    Posts
    2,019
    I like this project. It seems perfect for the kid in all of us!.
    Garry


    PS
    My Saturday project this week was finishing an air cannon and shooting it with my grandkids yesterday. Yes real serious stuff.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
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    Catalunya
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    4,632
    Great project! I can imagine myself making one as well, I can't wait to see it finished!

    Please let us know the results on the 110º angle, as well as the rest!
    Best regards,
    Toni

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