Giant Garden Games
Crediting Alan Goodsell and Randall Maxey’s new book titled Outdoor Woodworking Games, we detail how to make the ever-popular Dominoes game in giant form. For simplicity, only basic woodworking tools and equipment are needed, which makes this giant garden games project accessible to all.
The comprehensive, step-by-step instructions are based on standard sizes. This means the pieces of wood just need to be cut to length with some basic shaping. All accessories required are readily available, making the project as straightforward as possible to create.
What you'll need
Tools & equipment
- Mitre saw
- Handsaw (as an alternative to a mitre saw)
- Drill press
- Portable drill (as an alternative to a drill press)
- 25mm (1") dia. Forstner-type bit or spade bit
- 6mm (1/4") roundover bit
- Handplane (as an alternative to a router)
- Powered sander
- Sanding block (as an alternative to a powered sander)
- Small paintbrush
- Bright coloured paint
- 4 x lengths of timber - 25mm x 203mm x 2.44m (1" x 8" x 8ft) - we will be making 28 x planed wood tiles at 150mm x 305mm (6" x 12") each
- Poster board or cardboard - 150mm (6") square (for use as a template for marking pip locations)
Making the dominoes
The game of dominoes consists of 28 tiles. The planed size of the timber required is 184mm x 2.44m (7 ¼” x 8ft). The final tile dimensions will be 150 x 305mm (6 x 12″)
Place a stop block on the mitre saw to ensure that all the tiles are cut to the same length. Cut all 28 tiles, making sure the end of each tile is tight against the stop block before making the cut.
Set the position of the rip fence to trim each tile to final width. With one of the long edges of the tiles against the rip fence, rip each tile to final width.
Set up the table saw to make a shallow cut across each tile.
We scorched the timber using a blowtorch to add a burned effect to the grain.
A template makes quick work of marking consistent locations for the pips on the tiles.
Drill a shallow hole to represent each of the pips. If you have a drill press, you can set the depth stop to ensure a consistent depth.
Use a roundover bit and sandpaper to smooth all the sharp edges on both faces of each tile.
Paint the pips a bright colour to make them stand out.
Playing the Game
Designed for up 2-4 players. In the most popular ‘double-six’ version of this game, the goal is for each player to place their tile adjacent to a previously played tile, matching the number of pips on the end of each tile. The first player to play all their tiles wins the game.
- Lay all the domino pieces face down. Randomly ‘shuffle’ them. Each player selects one tile. The player with the highest-scoring domino starts first.
- Reshuffle the dominoes. Each player must then randomly select seven dominoes.
- Stack the dominoes so that opponents cannot see them.
- Player one places their chosen domino face up and draws another from the face-down domino tiles.
- Player two places a domino down next to the first one, ensuring that the ends that touch have the same number. A double-numbered domino is placed crosswise to the existing one.
- Players take turns to lay down dominoes, matching the number of pips to the previous one. If a player cannot go, they forfeit their turn. The first player to use up all their dominoes is the winner.
Want to make more giant garden games? Pop into any of our Axminster stores and pick up a copy of Outdoor Woodworking Games. This exciting new book is jam packed with 20 fun projects designed with the beginner woodworker in mind. Projects include: Skittles, Limbo, Giant Chess, Croquet, Lawn Darts, Giant Dominoes, Quoits, Noughts and Crosses.
We also have several other woodworking projects for you to explore. Try something new with our selection of indoor and outdoor projects. Come rain or shine, why not get creative and learn how to make a birdhouse or make a fidget spinner?
Get in touch!
If you’ve made any giant garden games, we’d love to hear from you. Comment below or send us a photograph and tell us all about your new creation.
Alternatively, get in touch via our social media platforms. Find us on Facebook, send us a tweet using #giantgardengames to @AxminsterTools or use the hashtag #axminstertools on Instagram.
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