Today’s project is another fun one that is great to work on with kids. It’s a finger hockey game board that I got the plans for from Jamison, the Rogue Engineer. I first saw this game at the store and it looked like a ton of fun. Let’s get to it!
- 8 foot 1×2
- I used pine for this build, but will use oak (or another hardwood) moving forward for durability
- 1/4 inch hardboard or plywood
- I used hardboard because it provides a smooth surface
- 1 1/2 inch dowel
- This will make the pucks and will take a beating. I used oak. My home center sells them in 48 inch pieces and this was plenty.
- 2 Bungee cords at least 16 inches long
- Table saw or hand saw
- Drill with bit slightly bigger in diameter than the bungee cord
- Wood glue
- Finishing nails
The plans call for a 1×2 frame, and I had some pine 1x2s laying around waiting to be used. So I got to work cutting them up. Three pieces at 15” and two pieces at 20”.
Next, I set my blade height for 3/4” and made a bunch of passes to cut the notch in the middle of the center board.
For the base, I used 1/4” hardboard from the home center. I bought a 4×8 sheet and had them cut it into 2×4 sections for easier handling. I took one of those sections and cut two bases at 16.5” wide. I then turned them at cut each one to 20” long.
For the pucks, I bought a piece of 1 1/2” oak dowel. I pulled out the cross-cut sled again and set up a stop block to cut 1/2” sections. I made sure to use a removable block to help size the cut, then took it away for the actual cut to keep that cut off section from getting pinched between the blade and the stop block, and turning into a slapshot.
I cut 20 pucks and they needed to be sanded. So I recruited a couple of my daughters to do it for me. I mean help me out. Unfortunately, they are smarter than I am and each came up with something “more important” that they had to go do. So I finished them up myself.
Next, I drilled the holes for the bungee cord to fit into.
With my daughters still occupied with some bogus “more important” thing, I got to work sanding the frame pieces. I then went the extra mile and used my chisel to clean up the notch and make it more flat.
To assemble the frame, I glued the ends of the short pieces, then used 1 1/2” finishing nails to tack them in place.
I was delighted to see one of my daughters show up again, so I put her to work helping me glue the frame to the base. This build was kind of a trial to see if we’d like the game, so I didn’t bother applying any finish. If you’re going to pretty it up, apply the finish before you glue the frame to the base. And stay tuned for our findings with this trial version of the game.
For the bungee cord launchers, I found a 2 pack of 20” bungee cords at the local hardware store. I cut one end off at 16” and took the hooks off. Then I melted the ends to keep them from fraying. I made sure to rub my fingers on a piece of wet paper towel before forming the melted ends to keep from burning my fingers in the process.
My partner in crime then helped me run the bungee cords through the holes in either side and tie it off. This was a bit of a cluster, but we pulled it off. Using a clamp or something to keep the bungee from retracting would be better than trying to hold it yourself.
Then it was time to take it for a test drive. The rules are pretty simple. Start with 8-10 pucks per side and be the first player to get all the pucks on the opponent’s side.
Here’s a protip: watch those fingers!
By the time of this recording, we’ve played this game a bunch and I can say definitively that it’s piles of frantic fun. However, we did learn a few things to tweak for the next one.
First, the plans call for the bungee holes to be 1/2” from the bottom, but this put the bungee cord too high for us. We had to redrill the holes lower to get the cord to line up with the pucks better. I’d say 1/4” ought to do it.
Second, the pine frame with the oak pucks is taking a beating. Pine is a soft wood and oak is a hard wood. So there’s always wood flakes that break off and lots of dents around the slot. For the next one, I’ll be using oak for the frame too, for a little more durability.
And for the gameplay, don’t be afraid to switch up the number of pucks in play. 8-10 to a side is crazy fun, but fewer can be just as fun with less chaos. We also tried what we called “shootout mode” with 1 or 2 pucks to a side for lightning rounds.
That’s it for this one. If you like this project, check out our other wooden game builds!.