Balancing Block Tower Game

Make this outdoor game in only a couple of hours — but take your time removing and restacking the blocks of your teetering tower.

Step 1: Cut the 2 x 4s [5.08 cm x 10.16 cm] into 45 pieces 10-1/2 [26.67 cm] inches long.

Good to Know: Select the straightest lumber you can find. The nine pieces you’ll get from each board leave almost no waste, so avoid trimming off any rough ends. Sand them smooth instead.

Step 2: Sand the faces, sides, and ends smooth with 120-grit sandpaper. If you plan to reuse your blocks for future parties, apply an oil finish such as Watco Danish Oil (natural) according to the label directions, let dry, and lightly sand smooth.

Good to Know: After applying penetrating oil with a rag, spread the rags out on a flat surface in open air to dry before throwing them away. To avoid a potential fire hazard, never throw soaked rags in the trash.

Step 3: On a flat surface, stack the blocks three to a layer, alternating the direction of the layers.

Step 4: To play the game, take turns removing one block from the stack and placing it on the top of the stack and perpendicular to the others to continue the alternating layers. When removing pieces, a player can tap around the structure to discover loose pieces. But once a piece is moved within the stack, it must be removed and restacked — not pushed back in place. The person whose piece makes the structure fall over loses the game.

PROJECT DETAILS

Skill Level: Beginner

Estimated Time: Few hours

Estimated Cost: $15

Tools

  • Mitre saw or mitre box and handsaw
  • Tape measure
  • 120-grit sandpaper

Materials

  • 5 – 2 x 4 x 96 [5.08 cm x 10.16 cm x 2.44 m] studs, #7001

Items may be Special Order in some stores. Product costs, availability, and item numbers may vary by market. Availability varies by market for lumber species and sizes.


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