DIY, Hospitality

Cornhole – DIY

May 1, 2014




Materials

Tools

  • Drill
  • Jigsaw (anything to cut a hole)
  • Saw
  • Finishing Sander
  • Stain brush
  • Foam brush for poly

This project was a lot of fun. Victoria and I have been wanting a cornhole set for a little while now and the Bohemian Party we had was the motivation I needed to get it done. Below are the steps Jimmy and I took to build the set. Hope you enjoy!

STEP 1: Sketch out the Set

Below is a diagram with general dimensions we used. Image pulled from another cornhole DIY located at the bottom of the post.

boarddimensions

I start a project by sketching out exactly what I want to do. You don’t have to do this, but it helps me think through what I want.

Cornhole - Sketch

STEP 2 – Cut the Top Boards & Glue Together

You need 32′ total of the 1×6 boards to make 2 boards, so we purchased four 8′ boards and had the guy at Home Depot cut them in half to make four 4′ boards for each cornhole board. It’s free and they’ll cut almost anything. After they were cut, we glued 4 of the 4′ boards together to create a thick bond.

Cornhole - Build 21

This is where you should use clamps to seal the glue, but we didn’t have any that were long enough for a 24″ width, so we made due with screwing in temporary mending plates (I didn’t have clamps at the time) and let each cornhole board dry for about 45 minutes. No judgement here. You do what you gotta do!

Cornhole - Build 26

STEP 3 – Cut & Build the Back Frame

While the top boards dry, get started on building the frame to go underneath. We wanted to leave a 2″ lip all around the boards to give it a different look, so we cut four 2×3 pieces at 44″ (keep in mind we’re building 2 boards so there are 4 sides pieces and 4 top/bottom pieces) and the top and bottom pieces at 16″ to fit inside the sides.

Next we pre-screwed 8 holes, 2 at each joint, into the top and bottom of the side pieces so we could connect the whole frame with the 2.5″ screws. We put glue in between the boards to help with a stronger seal.




Cornhole - Build 27

STEP 4 – Fasten the Frame to the Top Board

After the top boards have dried and the back frame is put together, set the frame on the back of the top, 2″ from all the edges, and screw the top to the frame. We used one 1-1/4″ screw in the center of each board, 4 on top and 4 on bottom, and 3 down the outsides to make sure the frame was secured well. We used 14 screws in total for each board.

Cornhole - Build 29
Cornhole - Build 33
Cornhole - Build 32

Since we didn’t use clamps, we removed the mending plates from the frame that was holding the boards together. It doesn’t have be perfect and the gap gives the boards some character, especially because you’re just tossing bags at them.

STEP 5 – Cut & Build the Feet

Use the leftover 2×3 boards to cut 11″ feet. To make them fold in and out and sit level on the ground, we cut each end at a 20 degree angle and screwed the 2″ hinges underneath so they folded inside the frame. To make sure there’s enough room when the legs fold out, put a 1″ gap between the inside of the frame and the foot.

Cornhole - Build 38
Cornhole - Build 39
Cornhole - Build 41

STEP 6 – Cut the Hole

Measure 9″ from the top and 12″ from the side (refer to the dimensions diagram at the top of the post.) This will be the center point of the 6″ hole. Mark it. From the center, measure 3″ to each side and draw a small line to map out the full circle. You can tie a 3″ piece of string around a pencil, set it on the center dot, tie another piece of string on the other end and make a full circle by tracing it, keeping the middle pencil centered on the previously made mark. We used a paint can lid to trace a circle, which just happens to be 6″ in diameter. After we traced a circle, we used a 3″ bi-metal hole saw to dig out the middle and then used a jigsaw to cut the full hole. There’s an easier way to do this, but we made it work.

Cornhole - Build 45

Now that the build part is done, we move on to the finishing.

Cornhole - Build 47
Cornhole - Build 49

STEP 7 – Sand, Stain & Poly

I started off by sanding the board with course paper to smooth out the edges, corners, splinters from the screw holes and the main hole. After that, I used light sandpaper to get a nice smooth feel all over.

Cornhole - Sand 1
Cornhole - Sand 5

After the sanding is complete, whip down the boards and apply the stain of your choice. Once the stain has dried, apply two coats of polyurethane to make sure the bean bags slide across the top easily.

cornhole 2_1927 cornhole 3_1929 cornhole 4_1930

And that’s it! I’m sure there were easier ways to do things and everybody has a different process, but this was ours and we are extremely happy with the final product! I posted some of our inspiration for the boards below. Thanks for reading!

Inspiration




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18 Comments

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  • Reply Kathy April 29, 2015 at 11:57 pm

    Nice project, looks great. Could you please tell me the size and filling of the tossing bags?
    Thanks in advance Kathy

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  • Reply Jason July 16, 2015 at 12:55 am

    Ian, great work! It looks awesome. I’ve been wanting to make a cornhole set for some time and when I saw yours, I knew that’s what I was waiting for. I like the 2″ lip around. It gives it character. I will start this project tomorrow. Wish me luck!

  • Reply Sarah August 13, 2015 at 12:53 pm

    Ian,
    What is the name of the stain that you used?
    Thank you!

    • Reply Victoria August 13, 2015 at 1:29 pm

      Hi Sarah,
      It is dark walnut by Miniwax.

  • Reply Kelsie September 14, 2015 at 9:30 pm

    Love these! Quick question – in the diagram it shows that the width is 24″ but since it is four 1×6’s across, which are only 5.5 inches wide each, wouldn’t the total width only be 22″?

    • Reply Ian September 15, 2015 at 7:40 am

      Hey Kelsey, great question. We cut our own boards to 6″ but in the materials I linked the common boards at Home Depot to make it easier. Those do run .5″ shorter but still work great.

  • Reply Brittny December 27, 2015 at 1:52 am

    Approximately how many ch did you spend for materials?

    • Reply Brittny December 27, 2015 at 1:53 am

      Sorry dang auto correct… How much did you spend on material?

    • Reply Victoria January 1, 2016 at 12:17 pm

      Hi Brittny,
      It was under $100 total.
      Thank you!

  • Reply Bill Hoffman January 30, 2016 at 11:40 pm

    Looks Good. I mounted magnets on the legs and inside the frame to hold them in place while carrying.

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  • Reply Ryan August 22, 2016 at 2:58 pm

    How much did it cost for all the materials used?

    • Reply Ian August 22, 2016 at 3:12 pm

      I can’t recall the actual number, but it was under $100 for both boards.

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