Custom Jigsaw Puzzle

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Project by GnarlyErik posted 06-17-2017 08:09 PM 1633 views 1 time favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Kids have so many toys these days, it’s very hard for a grandpa to know what to get for a five-year-old’s birthday. My solution is to make something for my grandchildren, and give them a little cash along with that so they can buy whatever toy they might want.

This year the gift is a jigsaw puzzle for my grandson’s fifth birthday. He’s really into dinosaurs, so I found a nice dinosaur picture online. Fortuitously, his mom had recently sent me a beach picture showing him running away from the breaking surf. I was able to photoshop that into the dinosaur picture, and the result turned out great for my needs. This was printed out on two sheets of glossy photo paper which was glued to two pieces of 1/4” ply, which was then lapped together and sawn as one to make the join. I used a squiggly line for the join cut so there wasn’t an obvious straight line cut showing in the end result. The scroll saw then made random squiggly cuts for the puzzle itself. I made sure it ended up being a ‘25 piece jigsaw puzzle’ so a young child can manage it. (I first made a different 100 piece puzzle, and when I tried to put it together myself, it took well over an hour – not suitable for a small child!, so I am sending that one to my grandson’s mom!)

There was a little futzing around to get the alignment just right, but all in all it turned out well in the end. The finished puzzle is 10” x 15” and has a coat of clear lacquer applied for protection. There’s also a simple frame and backing for it so my grandson can keep everything lined up and not get too frustrated when putting it together. I look on it as a learning tool for him.

It’s amazing how much you can learn by making something simple like this.

-- "Never let your dogma be run over by your karma!"

6 comments so far

View johnstoneb's profile


3224 posts in 3670 days

#1 posted 06-17-2017 08:14 PM

That is fantastic. Kids love puzzles and to have his picture in one will probably over the top for him.

-- Bruce, Boise, ID

View GnarlyErik's profile


367 posts in 3632 days

#2 posted 06-17-2017 08:17 PM

Thanks Bruce. I hope that’s the case!

-- "Never let your dogma be run over by your karma!"

View Rich's profile (online now)


8319 posts in 2087 days

#3 posted 06-17-2017 08:36 PM

What a great gift. And cash to boot. You’re an awesome grandfather.

-- Half of what we read or hear about finishing is right. We just don’t know which half! — Bob Flexner

View doubleDD's profile


11386 posts in 3541 days

#4 posted 06-18-2017 02:08 AM

That is really a cool gift. My grandson is in to dinosaurs big time. He would love it. Great thinking.

-- Dave, Downers Grove, Il. -------- When you run out of ideas, start building your dreams.

View ralbuck's profile


6808 posts in 3764 days

#5 posted 06-18-2017 04:05 PM

Well thought out and well made project.

-- Wood rescue is good for the environment and me! just rjR

View helluvawreck's profile


32122 posts in 4364 days

#6 posted 06-18-2017 04:49 PM

You did a really nice job on this jigsaw puzzle.

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

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