DIY Cornhole Set

Another perfect minion project was brought to life for this years #HunkiedorieHarvestParty. I knew that the party really needed some yard games to get things going. I borrowed a bocce set from my roommate, and Giant Jenga from my friend Danielle. It was about time that I had a cornhole set (a midwest staple) so I put in the request to my minion and he made it happen! Below are his instructions for creating your own set.

Materials:

  • (2) 24″ x 48″ pieces of 1/2″ pressure-treated plywood for the surface
    • You can also use a lighter weight plywood
      • Pressure Treated is very heavy
      • You can purchase these pieces already cut to length
  • (4) 2×4 x 48″ for the frame
    • 1×4 Pine  if you want a lighter set
  • (4) 2×4 x 21″ for the frame
    • or 1×4 Pine
  • (4) 2×4 x 11-1/2″ for the legs
    • Or 1×4 Pine
  • 1-lb. box of 1-5/8″ deck screws
  • (4) 4X1/4″ carriage bolts with (4) washers and (4) wing nuts
  • wood putty
  • (2) Hook Door Locks
  • String
  • Nylon strapping or drawer handles
  • 4 Latches

 

Constructing

Frame & Board Deck:

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  1. Lay out your frame:
    I have used 2×4 and 1×4 Pine for the frame and legs. The Pine set is much lighter and easier to carry.
  2. Make sure to square this up by measure across from corner to the opposite corner.
  3. Screw the frame together. I suggest drilling pilot holes to prevent the deck and frame from splitting
  4. You may also just lay out the sides of the frame under the decking and secure in a couple of places with screws. This makes it much easier to insure that the frame fits the deck board properly.
  5. Screws should be placed every 6-8 inches and screwed down just below the surface.
  6. Fill all screw holes with wood putty

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Cutting the holes:

  1. Mark the center of the holes by measuring down 9” from the top and 12” from the sides.
  2. Using a ½” drill bit, drill a pilot hole in the center of your hole.
  3. Using a 6” hole saw attached to a drill, place the drill bit in the pilot hole. This makes for a perfect hole.
    IMG_2302
  4. Take your time when cutting out your hole!
  5. Smooth out the edges of the hole with sandpaper.
  6. After the wood putty has dried, use a palm sander smooth out the decking and the sides of your frame.

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Installing the legs

  1. Round off the top edges of the legs. These are the 11 ½” pieces you cut earlier.
  2. Cut off excess material and use a sander to round off the edges.
  3. Flip over the Cornhole deck place the legs in the top corners of the decking.
  4. Make sure that the placement allows the legs to fold smoothly underneath the decking.
    IMG_2301
  5. Using a ½” drill bit drill a hole through the framing and through the legs.
  6. Using a clamp to hold the leg in place makes this a much easier process
  7. Insert the carriage bolt through the hole and make sure the leg folds into the decking.
  8. Make sure the legs are flush to the framing when folded in. You may have to round the tops off a bit more for a smooth fit.
  9. Once you have the legs fit properly secure in place with the washer and wing nut. Wing nuts make it much easier to tighten and loosen for playing and storage
  10. Using a speed square draw a level line from the front of the leg to the back so the leg will sit flush on the ground.
  11. Cut this off using skill or jig saw. The bottom of the leg should now sit flat on the ground.
  12. Measure from the top end of the deck to the ground. This should now measure 12” to the top of the game deck. If not, measure and cut the bottom of the leg as needed.

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Installing the latches:

  • This is for storage and transporting your game.
  • You can store the bags and optional set up line inside the game boards.
  1. Lay the two game decks on top of each other. The bottom of the frames facing each other
  2. Position the latches in each corner of the frames
  3. Mark and drill pilot holes and secure the latches to the framing. Insure that they close together tightly. This will hold the two game deck pieces together

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 Handles:

  • Use either nylon strapping (my preference) of drawer handles
  • If you are using Nylon strapping: cut 6-8”.
  1. Leaving the game boards latched together flip them on their long side.
  2. Lay the straps or handles in the center of the framing. If using handles mark the holes.
  3. Drill pilot hole and then secure to the framing using screws
    If using the nylon strapping:
  4. I suggest using a material punch to make a hole in strapping.
  5. Melt this just a bit with a lighter to prevent any ripping or fraying.
  6. Place a strap on each game deck.
  7. Screw one end of the strapping to the frame. I also use grommets for extra strength and this helps prevent the nylon strapping from ripping & fraying.
  8. Lift up on the strap to make for a comfortable handle and mark the other end where the strap should be secured.
  9. Repeat the process.

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Optional-Line for Game Set Up:

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  1. Using the door hooks.
  2. Pry open the eyelet and remove the hook from the eyelet.
  3. Make sure to close the eyelet backup with a pair of pliers.
  4. Screw the eyelet into the front of the frame.
  5. Measure out 27’ of string. Make sure to leave a little extra for tying the string to the hooks.
  6. Tie the string to the hooks.
  7. You now have the regulation length that the boards are to be placed from each other.

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Decorate as you desire:

I used my Cricut to cut out my logo and used a combination of stain, spray paint and poly to achieve the look I wanted.

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Screen Shot 2017-10-12 at 10.49.03 PM

Making the bean bags:

  1. First you need to pick two colors of fabric; I recommend buying Duck Cloth (it’s a type of fabric) or another heavy duty external fabric.  To make one set of corn hole bags you will make 4 bags of each color.  Most of the home decor fabrics are 56″ wide so you will need 0.5 yards of each color – if your fabric is less than 56″ wide (some are 52″ and some are 44″) then you should buy 0.75 yards.
  2. Cut (8) 7″ x 7″ squares of each color (a rotary cutter and ruler are very helpful but scissors will work just fine).
    IMG_2686
  3. Take two squares and put the right sides together (the back of the fabric should be facing you).
  4. Sew a 1/4″ seam around three full sides (and all four corners). You will want to leave a small opening in the fourth edge.
    IMG_2687
  5. Clip your corners (to make the corners less bulky when we turn it) and snip your threads close to the fabric.
  6. Flip the bag inside out so that the right side of the fabric (the side with the designs) is facing you.  Use a pen/pencil or your fingers to push out the corners of the bag.
  7. Treat your bags with a heavy duty water repellent to help protect them from stains, water and mold.
    img_2690.jpg
  8. Fill your bags.  You will need a digital kitchen scale, a container to set on the scale and a scoop.  To fill the bags, I recommend feed corn.  I bought mine at Fleet Farm.
  9. Each bag should weigh 16oz including the bag and the corn.  Weigh the empty bags first, mine weighed 0.6oz (I weighed a few to be sure).  Set your container on the scale (I used a 2 cup measuring cup), turn on the scale and zero it.  Add corn until you get to 15.4oz (or 16oz minus the weight of your cornhole bags you made).
    IMG_2695
  10. Pour the corn into a bag. I used a funnel to do this and it made my life so easy!
  11. Stitch close to the edge.

 

Everyone should have their own corn hole set. It’s a blast at any outdoor event and easy enough that everyone can play.

Building this set got the whole family involved and I had so much fun making it. Special thanks to my minion and Grandma for really bringing this project to life and teaching me along the way!

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