Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Dice Tower part I


I recently found some fairly straight forward instructions for creating a foamboard dice tower. Basically, you need a sheet of foamboard, some Elmer's glue, toothpicks, wire cutters, and push pins (I used nails - whatever). I pretty much followed the instructions, except that I didn't bother brushing on the glue - I just drew a bead on the edge of the stuff and went about construction. The picture on the left shows the "completed" tower before finishing. Now, at this point I decided that I was going to spray it with this faux rock spray paint. First though I wanted to smooth out the edges. As you can see, in a few spaces, the foam tore out of the board (if you do this project, be sure you heed only a single piece of advice - use a super new and super sharp blade). I also had the holes to patch - which of course inspired me to just use dry wall spackle. After mostly leveling everything off and painting the result came out pretty decently. So, what do I think about this project? Well, its pretty simple to put together both time and effort wise. Does it work? It works great - for about 5 dice. I think I'm going to go back and redo the templates at about 50% larger size. The other thing I'm considering is eliminating the dice catcher. I have a tray from a Yahtzee Deluxe game (which I bought from a thrift store solely for the dice tray). I may try and figure out a good way to have the tower sit on the lip of the tray - this should allow for more dice in addition to the the bigger size. I'd also at the very least like to find a way to make the "mouth" look better. I like the way this one looks, but I'm not keen on the idea of trying that in foamboard. The other thing I'm considering is trying this out using boards like you can get at craft stores - 3/8 (3/16?) thick boards that are easy to cut with hand tools or small power tools. If my template works out well in foam, I may progress to wood next...

To Be Continued (someday)...

** Update - I found this on eBay: a guy selling these towers for $20. Sheesh.

5 comments:

Red October said...

now you need to come up with your own design for a shogun dice tower...now THAT is something you could sell!!

Tatsu said...

I was looking to make this to sell (though if I make another I might trade my little one).

Jaybird said...

Pardon me while I digress a bit, but your dice tower reminded me of a game that I have recently become enamored with--Tumblin' Dice. Ever played it? It seems pretty simple, but man, with the right crowd, I can see it being quite a bit of fun.

It seems to me that it is easy to capitalize on what people want combined with their laziness. Most people'd rather buy something that make it. This is the second bit that I have seen you make Charles, and it is pretty impressive to see someone trying to make something that just takes a little time and patience, but can provide enhanced entertainment. Look at a Tumblin' Dice board--is there anything more simple than that? Heck, I bet all they use is MDF with a black band around the edges. And they turn around and charge in the neighborhood of $60 for the setup. I say, give me a maple board! Give me Tumblin' Dice made of Walnut, or quartersawn oak, or (imagine this) birdseye maple with wenge! Any knucklehead with a router, a working knowledge of geometry, and a humble shop could make a game of Tumblin' Dice that would be much more fun (and rewarding) than that POJ they sell at Thoughthammer.

Now, if I could only take my words, and your example....

Red October said...

i can see it now, a little dice tower sweatshop in charles' basement. :)

McClaud said...

You know, I playtest for a company that makes cardstock terrain and dice towers. It's called WorldWork Games - check it out sometime.

Holy cow, another Omaha, Nebraska gamer on the web (found your webpage through the BBG). Let me know where you play and maybe we can meet up and play sometime.