LumberJocks

Cornhole Boards (Maple Ply, Purpleheart, Curly Maple)

  • Advertise with us
Project by nashvillenative posted 04-16-2020 06:28 PM 2022 views 2 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch

My first actual paid commission was a set of fraternity cornhole boards from a coworker. He had wanted some “fancy” cornhole boards. Fancy to me meant actual joinery, a hand painted design and exotic woods. I have yet to deliver these boards but I am sure he will be floored. I am definitely not making any money off of this project but instead, over the 8+ months it took me to make them, I look at this commission as a learning exercise. Things I learned include, measuring WAY more than twice, shellac is NOT suited for a wide surface area, making sure something is square is a big deal, general finishes makes great products, and clevis pins are not cheap.

I decided on the wood selection before he had given me any inkling on what he would want on the tops. Purpleheart is one of most exotics wood I have a surplus of so I decided to make it an accent to the curly maple. Had I known the color scheme, crimson and cream, before I more than likely would have went with Padauk. Nonetheless, I am satisfied with the overall look of the frames.

For the joinery for the frames, I used a box joint on the corners and connected the tops with pocket hole screws. Not just because it was easy but because it made the tops replaceable. I drilled the holes for the screws before I assembled them and accidentally turned one of the Purpleheart pieces and didn’t notice until after the glue had cured so I had to redrill the holes and cut a veneer from one of the scraps to go over the unsightly holes. I made holes for the handles using a circle cutter, jig saw, and flush trim bit on my router. You can tell from the first pic that I misaligned the holes, but they are large enough to allow them to be picked up. One of my “learning” moments there.

For the legs and supports I used the Kreg drill bit to bore the holes through the 5/8” cross pieces and used the Kreg plug cutter to make my own curly maple dowels. Super snug fit, really happy with those results. Before fixing the cross pieces to the legs I routed the Greek letters into the back of them with a 1/8” bit on my Shapeoko 3. He has no clue that his boards will include custom CNC work. I was using this project as a portfolio, learning piece so what better way to showcase ans test my skills than to literally use every tool in my “shop”? For the pins that hold the rubber feet and legs to the base I used 2” clevis bolts and pins with #6 stoppers counter-bored to accept a washer and nut. I also added some rare earth magnets to the legs and the backs of the tops to make sure the legs stay where they’re supposed to stay.

These boards are heavy, like inordinately heavy for cornhole boards, so I ordered rifle strap bolts and attached them to each corner of the board. Still heavy, but more palatable to carry.

For the tops, I freehanded the design on one board, traced it with parchment paper and transferred the same design to its brother. I trimmed the design with 1/8” inch pinstriping, (nerve wracking) and stained (I hate using stain because wood is beautiful without it in most cases) but since this was just your run of the mill maple ply, it was okay to concede to using oil based stain. Before staining them I made ANOTHER mistake, or learning opportunity, and desided ton use dewaxed shellac. Never again. I had to use a trick I learned by soaking paper towels in denatured alcohol to remove it. It worked, thank god. I applied several coats of the oil based stain and applied 7 coats (yes, 7) of General Finishes Arm-R-Seal to make sure the pinstriping wouldn’t come up and protect the tops from the beating they would undoubtedly receive. Side note, I LOVE the ambering effect Arm-R-Seal has on maple. So pretty.

All in all, I am proud of this project. I’m super thankful for the opportunity my coworker gave me and his patience with how long it has taken to build them. I learned a lot, mostly what NOT to do and how to expedite the results I want by being patient, and measuring MULTIPLE times and only cutting when I can’t measure.

I am open to all criticism, constructive or other, because I want to get better. Thanks for viewing!

Dimensions: 24”W x 48”L x 4”T
Materials: Purpleheart, Curly Maple, Maple Ply
Finish: General Finishes Arm-R-Seal
Tools: Table Saw, Router, Planer, Kreg Jig, Drill Press, Bandsaw, Jig Saw, CNC Router
Time to Build: Close to 8 months (Intermittently)

-- "any dog under 50 pounds is a cat, and cats are useless"





8 comments so far

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

118322 posts in 5036 days


#1 posted 04-16-2020 06:36 PM

Impressive work Nashville.

-- https://www.artisticwoodstudio.com/videos

View pottz's profile (online now)

pottz

25822 posts in 2444 days


#2 posted 04-16-2020 06:46 PM

no criticism those are some sweet looking corn boards,he’s gonna love those.

-- working with my hands is a joy,it gives me a sense of fulfillment,somthing so many seek and so few find.-SAM MALOOF.

View therealSteveN's profile

therealSteveN

9990 posts in 2033 days


#3 posted 04-16-2020 07:15 PM

Awesome boards.

-- Think safe, be safe

View James Frederick's profile

James Frederick

307 posts in 5180 days


#4 posted 04-18-2020 09:48 AM

Those are wonderful looking boards, curious on what you charged for them.

Very well done.

-- No matter where you go, there ya are!l

View Ken90712's profile

Ken90712

18113 posts in 4648 days


#5 posted 04-18-2020 08:53 PM

Wow im just finishing my first set. nothing like these though. Well done! I’m in Lebanon just east of Nashville!

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

View nashvillenative's profile

nashvillenative

50 posts in 1182 days


#6 posted 04-19-2020 12:15 AM

Nice! I’m in Donelson, not too far from Lebanon, or “Lebnin’” as we call it.


Wow im just finishing my first set. nothing like these though. Well done! I m in Lebanon just east of Nashville!

- Ken90712


-- "any dog under 50 pounds is a cat, and cats are useless"

View nashvillenative's profile

nashvillenative

50 posts in 1182 days


#7 posted 04-19-2020 12:17 AM

Thanks! I’m charging him $250, if I make some this again, it’s gonna be $400-$500


Those are wonderful looking boards, curious on what you charged for them.

Very well done.

- James Frederick


-- "any dog under 50 pounds is a cat, and cats are useless"

View pottz's profile (online now)

pottz

25822 posts in 2444 days


#8 posted 04-19-2020 12:45 AM



Thanks! I m charging him $250, if I make some this again, it s gonna be $400-$500

Those are wonderful looking boards, curious on what you charged for them.

Very well done.

- James Frederick

- nashvillenative

i agree for a custom set of boards like that no less then 400 or tell em to get the crappie ones for 150.you get what you pay for!

-- working with my hands is a joy,it gives me a sense of fulfillment,somthing so many seek and so few find.-SAM MALOOF.

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics

HomeRefurbers.com