Ironically she came up with the idea because her brother is into board games and as soon as I saw it I knew I wanted to make it for my brothers one day. Board games must just be one of those sibling nostalgia things.
I had put the idea away because I didn’t have any of the tools or anything to make it, but when I ended up going home for Christmas I thought it would be the perfect chance to finally do it! My dad has a woodworking shop, and the abilities to do all the math (another thing I’m lacking. Ha!), and I was there a whole week before Christmas so it looked like the stars were aligning.
I quickly read through the Almost Makes Perfect tutorial and then decided it would be super easy to do and we could just make it up as we went. And that we would be done in a day. Ummm nope. Definitely should’ve read all the mistakes that she made instead of making them ourselves. So my advice if you want to make your own: don’t make our mistakes! And plan for this to take you 2-3 days longer then you expect ;)
What you need:
- 2 1/4″ plywood boards that are 13-5/8 x 17″ (my dad tells me that we used baltic birch). I’m told that if you buy a sheet of wood at Home Depot they will cut it down to size for you, so you might be able to skip the power saw portion of this project! However I don’t think they would agree to cutting out the other 48 rectangles that you need haha
- 48 2″ x 3″ wood pieces out of the same plywood
- 48 small hinges. Ours were 1″ x 3/4″ and we got them from Small Box Hardware
- 96 tiny screws that fit the hinges you get
- super glue
- 2 1/2″ dowels
- paint, if you want to paint the pieces like in the other DIY
- 2-3 sheets of cardstock for card backing and card box
- 3 sets of 24 printed photos that are 2″ x 3″ each
- super strong double sided tape
- card box template (download here)
- ruler or measuring tape
- scissors or straight craft cutter
- power drill
- some sort of power saw that will cut through 1/4″ plywood
- sand paper
Start by figuring out who you want to have in your game and then feel super creepy finding photos of each person on Facebook ;)
Use Photoshop to put them all on white backgrounds and add their names underneath. Make sure you leave extra room underneath the name for where the hinge will go. I didn’t do this and ended up having to put the photo over top of the hinge and then it didn’t sit flat. Ugh.
If you don’t have Photoshop you could print them and cut them out by hand, but this would take quite a while. Find a friend with it, bake them some cookies, and ask them to do it for you :)
I printed them 3 at a time on regular 4×6 photo paper and then just had to cut them apart and trim down the bottom to make them each 2×3″. You’ll need 3 matching sets of 24 photos.
Cut cardstock into 24 2×3″ pieces and use the double sided tape to stick them to the backs of one of the photo sets. Trim any overhang if needed.
To make the card box, download the template, print it, and cut it out. Trace it onto a piece of cardstock and cut/crease as shown on the template. Use the double sided tape to stick it together as shown. You can use stamps or Sharpie to write on the front of the box if you want.
Okay, now onto the hard part: power tools. I can’t take credit for any of this because my wonderful dad did all the measuring, cutting, hinging.. I was basically there for creative direction and holding things. I think I did my job pretty well.
If your plywood boards aren’t cut down to size yet do that. And then cut out those 48 little blocks. Give the edges a quick sand with sand paper if needed.
If you want to paint the backs of the pieces do that now.
Use the double sided tape to stick a photo to each piece.
We had to put the hinges on first because I didn’t leave enough room on my photos and the hinges would’ve covered the names. Oops.
Line up a bunch of the pieces so you can start the hinge assembly line. Screw a hinge to the bottom of each piece making sure to leave enough overhang for it to sit straight on the board and to let it open and close. Make sure you test the first one, making sure it’s facing the right way, so you know that you’re doing it right before finding out something disastrous after you do 48 of them….
OH! So another thing that messed up our plan was not thinking about the thickness of the screws. If we screwed the hinge onto the piece and the board the screws would touch when we tried to fold it down and it wouldn’t lay flat.
So since we made a version for both of my brothers we tried it two different ways – screws and super glue. My verdict? The screws were way more durable, but like I said the pieces wouldn’t lay flat so storage was a bit of a problem. I liked the look of the super glued one more, however I ended up having to go back and re-glue a bunch of pieces in the following days. So basically, just make sure you get flat screws that will let the hinge close all the way and you will have the best of both worlds.
Next up, get your handy measuring tape and pencil out and make some marks on your board. Lucky for you my dad did all the tricky calculating already so if you just follow what we did it should all work out.
Starting at the top of your board measure 1-1/4″ down and 1/8″ from the outside edge. This will be where the first hinge goes. Then just keeping screwing the pieces in down the row always keeping 1/8″ between each piece. I found it was a good idea to try flipping each piece all the way down as we went just to make sure they did. If you don’t screw them in straight the pieces will touch when you try and fold them down.
Also, I made this for those visual people like me:
For your second row measure 4-1/16″ from the top row hinge down. This is where your second row will start. Again, just keep checking that each piece folds down all the way as you go.
Repeat same measurements for the third and fourth rows.
Congratulations! You have screwed in 96 teeny tiny screws and are only halfway done ;)
Get the 1/2″ dowel and sand down the bottom a bit so it will sit flat on the board. Cut a 1/8″ slot into the middle of it. This is where a card will sit.
Use the super glue to stick it the the front, middle of the board.
This peanut butter tin has been in my dad’s shop as long as I can remember – even though he’s moved a few times it somehow keeps moving with him. I love it.
*no one was harmed in the making of the above photo. Pretty sure we took it and then I immediately gave the saw back for safety’s sake. Always ask for your parents help before operating scary things, kids. Even if you’re almost 30 years old ;)
Repeat all of the above for the second board. Make sure you switch up where the people are so that they’re not in the same spots on each board.
And 3 days later you’re done! haha. But if you get pre-cut pieces, and learn from our mistakes this shouldn’t take you nearly as long as it did us. Also, that math being done for you automatically saves you at least an hour, amirite?