Introduction: Making a Formboard Dice Tower

Picture of Making a Formboard Dice Tower

Playing tabletop games is one of the joys in life. Sometimes the board takes up all of the table and there's nowhere to roll the dice, and sometimes your buddy has mastered the wrist action to get the roll he wants that perhaps you don't want him to get.

A dice tower is a common way of keeping the dice on the table while making the roll totally random. A blend of form and function, this instructable will show you how to make one out of a sheet of foamboard, some toothpicks, felt and glue. The tower is very sturdy and can easily take a drop or two off the table.

Build a dice tower for you next RPG or board game night then decorate however you wish. I've shown a possible spray paint option but once it's built, the sky's the limit for how it finally looks.

Here is an 8 second video of the dice tower in action. Listen to the melody of the dice hitting the steps on the way down.



Don't miss my other exciting dice themed instructable - "BIG BRASS ONES" available here

Step 1: Get Together the Tools and Materials

Picture of Get Together the Tools and Materials
You will need an open work area and a surface you can use to cut the foamboard on. I used a large cutting mat but one or two layers of cardboard would be fine.

TOOLS:

  • Metal ruler/straight edge - when cutting foamboard you have the knife riding the edge and it would dig in and cut the edge of plastic or wood rulers.
  • Sharp Knife - A utility knife, a xacto knife, a box cutter style knife, whatever you have will work, just put in a new virgin blade because foamboard wants a sharp edge and dulls it quickly.
  • Blue/non marking masking tape & pen to write on it
  • Wire cutters or large toenail clippers to cut toothpicks with
  • 10 pushpins
  • scrap piece of 2x4 or something solid about that size.
  • small hobby paint brush & cup of water to dunk it in. Cheap brushes are good - you are using this to spread the glue evenly.
  • rag/clean cloth

MATERIALS:

  • printout of the foamboard dice tower.pdf file included with this instructable. 4 pages, just plain ol' regular paper. IMPORTANT: when printing, make sure that the pages are not resized in anyway - pdf viewers always seem to want to shrink the page to fit. It should fit already, there are at least 1/2" margins all around. It needs to print at 100% size to make the templates work.
  • Standard 20" x 30" sheet of foamboard AKA foamcore. In this instructable I'm using the term foamboard but it's also known as foamcore in some areas. Foamboard is basically a thin sheet of foam sandwiched between two layers of thick paper. Total thickness is around 3/16". I had a nice sheet of white laying around and used that. If I did it again, I would pay the extra few $$ and get the black paper and black foam version, so priming it black before painting didn't take so much primer.
  • A box of rounded toothpicks. Make sure it's the rounded version, the flats won't work as well.
  • White glue - I had a bottle of the classic Elmer's
  • Sheet of felt (color of your choice) with adhesive on one side. A 9" x 12" sheet costs under $1 at craft stores/Walmart

OPTIONAL:
  • Carpenter's Glue
  • Spray Paint and/or Primer

Step 2: Cut the Pieces Out of the Foamboard

Picture of Cut the Pieces Out of the Foamboard

Layout your work area with something under the foamboard that can be cut into.

On the pdf file, the first 3 pages are for the foamboard, the last page is for the felt. Put the last page aside for now.

Take those 3 pages and using the masking tape, tape them down on the foamboard. I made sure the tape stayed off the pattern themselves, the pages were taped down just along the edges.

I put the pages along the long edge of the foamboard and then cut the foamboard sheet in half . This gave me something less awkward to work with.

When cutting foamboard with a knife and straight edge, don't try to cut it all at once. Make one medium pressure pass along the straight edge with the knife at a 90 degree angle to the foamboard. Then go back and make another pass, then another. I usually made 3 or more passes even though it normally went through the foamboard on the second. You can feel it when it hits bottom and is cutting the mat or cardboard underneath.

Most of the pieces you are cutting out are simple rectangles. The side pieces are the more complicated "L" shape.

I cut out the pieces one pdf page at a time. I would do all the horizontal lines along the page, then do all the vertical lines.

IMPORTANT: The grey boxes on the left and right side templates are the locations of the dice steps. Top, Middle and Lower. We need to transfer the locations of those onto the foamboard. To do this, lightly score the top of the foamboard where the edges of the grey boxes are but DO NOT cut all the way though. After the piece has been cut out of the foamboard sheet, go back and with a pen follow the light scoring marks on the side pieces. This transfers the location of the dice steps.

When you have done the final cut for a piece, the template from the pdf page will come loose. Set that to the side.

Once you have cut all the foamboard pieces out of the foamboard sheet and scored the grey box locations of the dice steps on any side pieces that you are doing at this time, match up the foamboard and paper template pieces so you know which is which.

Take the roll of masking tape and, writing on the tape, put down the name of the piece and stick it on the foamboard. You don't want to put the tape on the piece and then write it's name as that will leave an impression from the pen you might not want.

Again, On the left and right side pieces - take the pen and write on the lines you scored for the grey boxes. The side you are writing on is on the inside of the tower and these marks won't be visible. This transfers the dice step location info onto the foamboard.

FYI - on the left and right sides, the long skinny part of the "L" is the bottom.

Once all the pieces have been cut out of the foamboard, labeled, and the location of the dice steps marked on the side pieces, it's time to start putting this sucker together.

Step 3: Putting in the Dice Steps on One Side

Picture of Putting in the Dice Steps on One Side

The next thing to do is punch holes with pushpins where the dice steps go.

Lay the left side piece flat with a scrap piece of foamboard under the mark of where the top dice step goes.

Take a push pin and punch a hole inside the dice step marks. This hole needs to go all the way though the side piece, and that's why we have some scrap foamboard underneath. The marks for the dice steps should be a short and wide rectangle at an angle. You want the hole to be a bit in from the left/right edge (about 1/4") and centered in the smaller, up down sides. Once you have punched the hole on one side of the rectangle, punch it on the other, again a bit inside the edge. Then punch a hole in the middle. See the first picture for an illustration.

You want to do this for all the dice step marks on both sides, left and right. So each side has nine holes punched in it, three per dice step.

Now we need to line up the top dice step. Lay it flat on a piece of scrap 2x4. Then take the left side, turn it so the bottom is facing up, put that against the 2x4 and line up the mark for the top dice step with the dice step on the wood block. Make the two pieces, left side and top dice step, at a right angle. Line up the edge of the dice step with the mark on the side piece.

Holding the dice step and side piece in place with one hand (by pushing against the 2x4), take a push pin and push it though the existing hole in the side piece and into the edge of the dice step. This is putting holes in the edge of the dice step where we will use the toothpicks to give it strength. Leave the pushpin in, grab another, then do the next hole and then the next. So now the dice step is attached to the side piece with pushpins.

Do this for all the dice steps. So in the end you have 3 dice steps that have been lined with with the marks on the side piece and holes punched in the edge that line up with the existing holes in that side.

TIP: When putting in the dice steps, you want to be consistant on which side (up or down) the masking tape label is. This helps you keep track of which way the step goes when you glue it to the side piece. In my example, all masking tape labels are facing down.

Now for the toothpicks. Take 5 or 6 toothpicks and cut them in half with the wire cutters.

Take out all the pushpins from the left side and set aside the dice steps.

Grab the bottle of white glue and run a bead along the mark for the top dice step on the side piece. Grab the top dice step and run a bead on the side that has holes punched in it. Then take your small hobby brush and spread the glue out evenly on both pieces, trying not to have it overflow the marks on the side piece or the edge on the dice step.

Once both pieces have been glued up, take a toothpick half and push from the outside in on the dice step mark of the side piece. Push it in far enough that about 1/4" sticks out. Do this for all three holes on the side piece for the top dice step.

Once you have all 3 holes with toothpicks sticking out a bit, line up the dice step edge and it's holes in the end with the toothpicks. Push it flat into the side piece. So the glue joint is joined.

Taking each toothpick half sticking out of the side piece, push it in further into the edge of the dice step. This is what gives the tower it's strength - the edges are not just glued but also "pinned" with toothpicks. The foam in the dice step will give to the toothpick but has enough bite to make it a tight fit. You may have to rotate the toothpick halfs to have them go in easier.

I pushed the toothpicks in until about 3/8" was left poking out. YMMV on this, but you want it far enough in that the fatest part of the toothpick is into the edge of the dice step.

Push in all the toothpicks into the dice step. Then take your wire cutters and cut off any part still sticking out. This might leave a little nubbin of the toothpick still proud of the side piece - take the dice cutters again and using any flat part, push down and drive that last little bit into the dice step so the toothpick is flush with the side piece.

So now you have the top dice step pushed up hard and glued against the side piece, with toothpicks driven deep into it holding it in place. Excellent.

But the reward for work is more work, so we have to do this for the remaining two dice steps. Once all the dice steps have been glued and pinned and all toothpick ends have been flattened out, it's time to add the other side.

Step 4: Add in the Other Side

Picture of Add in the Other Side

Now that we have the dice steps attached to one side, it's time to do the other side.

Basically hold it in place against the dice steps that are sticking out, eyeballing where the steps line up on the marks.

The steps have a little flex to them, line them up with the marks and drive in the pushpins into the existing holes on the side. Do this for all three dice steps.

Now it's time for glue and toothpicks. Again, cut about five toothpicks in half so you have those ready when needed.

Remove the pushpins, put a bead of glue on the side where the marks are and a bead of glue on the edges of the dice steps.

Put all nine toothpicks in the side in, just sticking out a little. Then working the steps from the bottom up, line with the edge of the dice step to the toothpicks coming out of the side and push them together.

Once that's done, finish pushing the toothpicks into the dice steps, clip off the ends, then push in the little bit still sticking out. At this point you should have a tower that stands on it's own. Wipe off any excess glue you can reach and take the blue masking tape labels off the dice steps - they are where they need to be.





Step 5: Add the Tower Back and Front

Picture of Add the Tower Back and Front

Now that the tower sides and dice steps have been put together, the hard work has been done. Now it's just adding the rectangles that we have left.

First, the tower back. As shown in the picture, it goes in the back of the tower from top to bottom. It should lay on the edges of the dice steps to just fit inside the left and right tower sides.

If it's uneven in length to the tower sides, you want the bottom edge to line up. The top edge will just be wherever it winds up.

Put it on the back of the tower, then do the general procedure of gluing and toothpickin'.

Poke holes into it with pushpins. Because of the length, I used four holes per side.
Cut toothpicks in half
Remove pushpins, add glue to the sides and the edge of the tower back.
Put back in place
Push toothpicks into holes punched by the pushpins
Clip off ends of the toothpicks
Push any little bit of the toothpicks sticking out flat with the sides, using something wide and flat to level it out.

Now that the back's done, it's time for the front.

Line up the top edge with the top of the tower sides. Start the entire glue and toothpick routine again like the back part, except I only did three holes per side.

Once this is done, you actually now have a functional dice tower. Try it out and see the magic!

OK, enough of that. Time to finish the basic construction.




Step 6: Add the Bottom Piece

Picture of Add the Bottom Piece

Turn the tower on it's side and test fit the bottom piece.

Without pinning it yet, turn the tower right side up and test fit the tray front piece.

On mine, the bottom was a little long and the tray front didn't fit all the way. So I took off the bottom piece and trimmed it about 1/8". That let the tray front piece fit snuggly.

Once everything fits snugly, start with the gluing and toothpickin' on the bottom. On the bottom piece, do four toothpicks on the sides and two each on the front and back. All four sides need to be pinned.

Don't glue and pin the tray front piece yet, we want to test fit the felt first. It's a lot easier to work with the felt without the tray front piece in place.

Step 7: Cut and Install the Felt and Then the Tray Front Piece

Picture of Cut and Install the Felt and Then the Tray Front Piece

Take the last sheet from the pdf template file and tape it down on the felt. I put it on the adhesive side because tape and felt are not the best of mixes. Cut out the rectangle with your straight edge and sharp knife. Take as many passes as it needs, don't try and cut it all in one shot.

Once you have the felt piece, test fit it in the dice tower. It might be long. If so, mark how far it sticks over the edge of the bottom and then cut that off with the straight edge. It doesn't have to be a perfect fit but try to make it look decent because the felt draws the eye and if it's way off people will notice.

Now that the felt is sized correctly, peel off the backing of the adhesive and put it in the tower. Push firm to set the sticky side. You might want to test the tower with some dice to see if all the hard work has paid off.




If you are going to spray paint the tower afterwards like I did, now would be a good time to mask the felt, before you put on the tray front piece. That's why the felt is covered with masking tape in my pictures.



OK, the felt is installed and all that's left is the tray front piece. By this time you are a master of the glue/pushpin/toothpick action. Do what needs to be done, pinning the two sides and the front of the tray front piece into the bottom piece. Two holes each side should do it.

It's done! If you don't choose to paint or modify the dice tower, you are finished. Show it off to your friends and roll a handful at a time. See how many dice work for you at once. For the smaller 12mm or so, I normally could get a dozen to roll without problems.





Step 8: Optional: Prep the Tower for Painting

Picture of Optional: Prep the Tower for Painting

Now that the tower is done, it's time to seal the edges and fill any gaps in the foam.

If I had some wood filler I would have used it now to fill in the gaps on the edges and the toothpick holes. I didn't have wood filler handy so skipped that step.

An old trick picked up from the tabletop terrain builders out there is to seal foam with a mixture of carpenter's glue and water. You want about a 4:1 ratio of glue to water. Enough to thin the glue and make it flow smoother, but not too thin.

The glue painted over the foam edges seals the foam so it takes paint well and looks like an even surface, not a bunch of little craters. White glue would work for this but for sealing foam, I like carpenter's glue.

Once the glue is painted on the edges and dry, take a look and perhaps do another coat. I did two coats on the tower top and tray top, because those are the most visible edges and would get a closer look than the others.

When that's all done and dry, it's time to paint!

Step 9: Prime and Paint the Tower

Picture of Prime and Paint the Tower

I used spray paint but you can use whatever you want on this part.

I had a spare can of Rustoleum textured paint I wanted to try out. It needed a black undercoat, so first I had to prime the tower black.

When painting the tower, be sure to get the entrance and exit holes. You'll have to tilt the tower a bit and aim the spray paint inside to make sure it's covered all the way down that is visible.

Once it was primed and dried, I broke out the textured paint. This came out of the can in a tighter cone than the primer so I had to pay attention to get even coverage. It took a couple of passes but in the end there was even coverage all around, even inside the tower top and bottom.

Once the final paint job is done, I took a knife and pulled up the masking tape on the felt.

At this point, it's done! Time to roll those dice and see what you get.

There are a lot of ways you can paint or modify foamboard to make it look like something besides foamboard. Do a search for "foamboard building terrain" or "foamcore building terrain" and look at some of the options.

I hope you find this instructable useful and thanks for getting to the end of it.

Keep those dice rollin'!

Comments

slewis18 made it! (author)2017-06-21

I took this design as a template and made one out of wood. It turned out great! I did have to scale some of the measurements up just slightly for my own personal tastes.

brunswickflyer (author)slewis182017-10-04

The wood looks great! Your slats go all the way through, but seeing this, maybe routing through 50% of the side thickness would make the outside wall look cleaner. Just a thought. Great job!

brunswickflyer (author)2017-10-04

I'm going to line the outside with fabric that is themed to the games.

Cris Spiegel made it! (author)2017-07-06

Made one out of cardboard. Added some padding in the bottom because cardboard is less thick. Mine looks a bit shabby, but I think I'm gonna do some ornamentation, like a castle tower. Thanks for the project!

dynamite_kid (author)2017-06-08

what is this doing on a knex page, this doesnt have a single piece of knex in it

but it is good though

King Jackalope made it! (author)2017-04-23

I used a cardboard lettuce box from my restaurant. I was just going to use it as a prototype before doing wood. Then once it was done (like an hour or two) I liked how cheap it looked! lol

Anyway thank you for posting the pattern. I may make a nicer once but this works and I just need to add the felt tomorrow.

ZatriX_ZA made it! (author)2017-04-03

Yay, my 1st DIY project! I'm not a very hands-on guy, so just printed the decorations on self-sticking paper.

Floeur made it! (author)2017-02-05

The patterns were very useful for the tower I made for my boyfriend. Thanks a lot for this tutorial!

mamayama made it! (author)2015-03-15

Michael's has castle-shaped birdhouses...so I got out my trusty glue-gun (plus a hammer and chisel, to break apart the glue bonds, and a drill and jigsaw, to cut the holes) and used foamboard for the baffles: Behold, the Castle of Chaos!

Bbluesound. (author)mamayama2016-10-31

I saw your tower and just purchased the same castle. Great idea!

Bbluesound. (author)Bbluesound.2016-11-05

How many baffles did you use?
I've used 3 and I opened the bottom portal to the 1/2 brick. I'm thinking of spraying the walls with concrete gray, instead of the natural wood. I use popsicle sticks for the baffles and I would stain them and keep them wood.

mamayama (author)Bbluesound.2016-10-31

Beware: the top crenellations have a tendency to break off. You might want to reinforce them with some extra hot glue on the inside to make them a bit sturdier. But the main part of the tower is still going strong!

cryanb (author)mamayama2015-03-16

Any extra deets on this, time, process, etc? My Michael's carries these, and I'd like to do it, but I am a winning combination of busy, lazy, and all thumbs.

mamayama (author)cryanb2015-03-16

It took me about 2-4 hours, I think, but I did it over several days. A good chunk of time was spent in trial-and-error fitting of the foamboard baffles. Run many handfuls of dice through before gluing in final position! I also suffered some crenellation casualties when chiseling the two upper levels off (i.e: those decorative crenellated rims cracked, but I just glued them back after final assembly)...check all the houses when you buy and see if you can find some that are more loosely glued, it'll save you time. You might be able to get the roofs off by firmly and repeatedly slicing at the glue bonds with a razor knife...it would take longer, but you'd probably spend less time gluing broken pieces back, and the cuts would be much neater than chiseling. I saved the square wooden pieces I cut out of the centers of the two upper levels and used pieces of them to make the two uppermost baffles (they look and sound better that way—gives a nice tonal contrast with the dice-on-foamboard sound). To cut out those wooden floors, first drill holes in each interior corner, then use a jig-saw to cut between them. When cutting the foamboard pieces start with the bottom-level trapezoid, narrowest side just wide enough for the opening, opposite side as wide as the castle interior, length a bit longer than the castle floor so it makes a nice slope to the portal; then cut two foamboard rectangles that fit snugly on either side of it, angled as vertical walls to "herd" dice to the narrow opening. Mark on those pieces where you want the baffle above the bottom one to go, and cut them so they'll support that next rectangular baffle (use the PDF on whamodyne's design to help with this, and leave at least an inch of clearance for the dice to get past each baffle). Once the second baffle is placed, I used the wood scraps to make the two upper baffles, and just hot-glued them in place (they don't need all the extra support, being stronger than foamboard). Hot-glue the wood from from the bottom (and the foamboards on the edges) so there are minimal glue-blobs interfering with the falling dice. Glue something decorative in the window (like the glass blob I used) if you'd like before assembling the levels back together, running multiple tests with handfuls of dice, then gluing everything back into place.

mamayama (author)mamayama2015-03-16

BTW, if you do end up chiseling the glue bonds, you need to do it gradually or you'll crack the wood. I did a 3 firm taps, moved the chisel, repeat...all the way around the castle, and over again until things finally came loose. If you try to get all the way through in one go you'll crack it for sure. Also take care that the crenellations are not supporting the structure when you're chiseling, or they'll break. Put something under the wall (scrap wood, an old paperback, whatever) to support it while you chisel.

mamayama (author)mamayama2015-03-15

Oh, since I wanted to keep the cute little portal as it was, I had to cut the bottom baffle into a blunted triangle, with the short side just wide enough for the portal, and cut two more triangles as side walls (and supports for the upper baffle) to herd the dice to the portal. Makes it slightly more likely to have a dice-jam (if using many dice simultaneously) than if I had cut the opening all the way across, but no clogs if I let the dice flow out of my hand in a stream (rather than just dumping a handful straight in)...and that little arched portal is so darn cute! Thanks for the idea!

mamayama (author)mamayama2015-03-15

Better shot of the top. I glued a bit of craft-glass into the top window.

Jamie Christine made it! (author)2016-08-16

Thank you for the great tutorial! I was a bit too impatient to cut the foamboard nicely. And like others said, it can look a bit messy if you aren't careful. So I covered mine with a regular, soft, craft foam facade. Definitely turned out better than I expected!. D&D is going to be great with this thing. Thanks again for the well-detailed tutorial and pattern pdf. It worked beautifully!

RobertoF25 made it! (author)2015-10-13

Thank you for this tutorial. I built mine in a Mordheim style building!

Wow! This is amazing! What kind of materials did you use for the outside facade?

Servius (author)2016-05-27

Finished mine!!

Spackled it to cover up my skill shortcomings and the toothpick ends.

Spray painted it black and glued a piece of red felt in the tray and on the bottom so it slides better.

The kids love it and it's almost addictive just to roll dice through it and listen to the sound.

MichaelK217 made it! (author)2016-03-01

I just finished making this after just a couple hours work. My tower is still in the raw, and the felt I had hanging around the house isn't the prettiest, but the tower works great! I am very pleased with the results, and this is by far the easiest set of instructions for such a tower I've run into. Thanks so much for putting these out there!

buildandsewandstuff (author)2016-02-15

I am blown away by all the creativity shown by you and the commenters!!! This is why I love Instructables! I hope to make one of these with my grandson soon - we like to play Yahtzee, but he likes to fling the dice all over the room. This might corral them better ! Thanks for the great instructions.

theCelticFriar made it! (author)2015-11-21

I "kinda" made it. My brother is a HUGE Dr Who fan from back in the day. Colin Baker is his favorite Dr. He was very happy with it, totally surprised. Thanks for the inspiration

RobertoF25 made it! (author)2015-10-13

Thank you for this tutorial. I built mine in a Mordheim style building!

lwwz (author)2015-08-09

I threw this one together in about an hour with a left-over USPS shipping box and then wrapped it with black Gorilla Tape.

lwwz (author)lwwz2015-08-10

I actually like how the gorilla tape is 'rubbery' enough that it actually makes the dice roll rather than slide down the baffles.

aleksandr90 made it! (author)2015-06-20

Hello! First I want to thank you for the instruction pdf! I made this tower out of regular cardboard, but I didn't like the idea of the corrugation showing so I had an idea: mask it with paper then glue thicker paper on it to make it look like it's made of stone. I also added another layer of cardboard at the top to make it look more like an actual tower. This is my result. Thank you again for the plans!

kurt.devlin (author)2015-04-05

PRO TIP: I would recommend using a large serrated bread knife to make the cuts. I used an xacto knife when I made mine and it ripped chunks of the foam core up. I just did a trial run of making some simple cuts using the bread knife and they were as smooth as the factory edges of the foam board.

kurt.devlin made it! (author)2015-04-04

I initially started using the plans to make a modified version of this with the tray acting as a lid the the tower could lay down in for easier storage. Then I realized that the tower would likely be loose when passing the whole thing around the table, so I mostly stuck with your plans.

I opted to cut out the individual pieces of the template and try to align them with the edges of the foam board. This minimized cutting and made for cleaner edges. I also added 3/16" tabs to each of the baffles each tab was 1/2" shorten than the overall width of the baffle (1/4" from each side) and then cut out a corresponding slot on each of the slots. I only cut through the inside layer of paper and scraped out the foam in the slot. This made for a snug fit and during the dry fit, the sides and baffles were very sturdy. Prior to final assembly, I spray painted all interior surfaces with flat black and I covered the upped and middle baffles with felt. I found felt with a wide zig zag pattern at Walmart that made a nice directional arrow for the dice. For final assembly I used hot glue.

For finishing, I glued in the final piece of felt to cover the lower baffle and the tray and wrapped the outer tray with black Gorilla tape. I printed out a D&D themed picture on sticker paper and wrapped it around the tower. Then I wrapped the tower with clear Gorilla tape to protect the sticker.

Thanks for the Instructable!

StephanieS6 (author)2015-03-22

We made a tower from your very good plans, but I cut the tray off and made it separate. The tower now will store laid down in the tray. We painted it to look like an old ivy-covered tower, but....there is a light; someone or something is home.

hellriser687 made it! (author)2015-03-03

I made mine using Popsicle Sticks. It was a lot more work than foam but worth it. If you are going to go about this method, i recommend two things.

1. If you don't have a bandsaw, cut out the sticks first before gluing.

2. Make it double layered. For example, I cut each stick to length but made double the amount needed. I then placed two down, then laid one on top the center of the two. Like this:

____

____ ____

I would then continue that until i had the shape for each piece.

Well my diagram didnt really work. If needed i can add a picture to explain.

michael.sims.9469 made it! (author)2015-01-10

Thanks for this great guide, with good instruction and pics. I added a top and base(which I magnetised).

dennisleeneo made it! (author)2015-01-08

Thanks for the idea :)

Rory Makes Stuff made it! (author)2015-01-06

I made this yesterday, thanks for the instructable! For those without a printer, here's the dimensions I worked with and it worked really well:

R/L side (cut 2): 7 1/2", 3", 6", 4 9/10", 1 1/2", 7 7/8" (this is each side length, going around)
Front: 3" x 1.5"
Top/mid step: 3" x 1.75"
Tower front: 3" x 5"
Tower back: 3" x 7.5"
Bottom step: 3" x 3 11/32"
Bottom: 3" x 7.5"

You can (mostly) see the way I laid it out on the foam board (which I got at Michael's for $1.50!)

I cut felt for the three steps and a 3" x 5" strip for the bottom dice tray. If I built it again, I'd also felt the tower front and back so it was even more quiet.

Thanks again!

AluinnGold (author)2012-12-27

Wondering if anyone has made this and it turned out a bit sloppy? I know it is 100% my fault, or my lack of quality equipment, but I just finished one for my husband for Christmas and the foam cut a little chunky and the pieces are not all perfectly sized/fitted. It fits together okay and even works great (I had to try it out!!) but the edges are kind of jagged and it looks raggedy- anyone have any suggestions for smoothing it out and making it look more uniform? I thought maybe something like modge-podge, paper mache, or some kind of clay or something around the outside to make it look like one uniform piece .... Any suggestions??

It's a bit late for this comment since you've obviously finished it. But if you have trouble getting a smooth finish on the edges, you can use sandpaper to smooth the ragged cuts somewhat. Like others, I spackled over mine, to cover the poke holes. Then I sanded it smooth. I later covered mine in sheets of polymer clay (a meticulous process that was harder than the original construction so I don't recommend it unless you really enjoy detail work). But the little holes were covered neatly with the spackle before attaching the clay pieces.

whamodyne (author)AluinnGold2012-12-27

You are on a good track with modge-podge. The last one I made for a gift, I took an old map and with modge-podge made it look better. Some people use old comic books to do it as well. If you want to just cover the edges, I would suggest a light spackle like to cover a small hole in your wall - find it in the hardware store in the paint section.

starshipminivan made it! (author)2014-06-22

I made this for my husband for Father's Day. He LOVES it. He says he really likes the sound of the dice rolling through the tower. The only thing I did differently was to cut an arch in the wall above the tray.

Like Giddykins, I made mine look like a castle. Honestly, I didn't even look through the comments and I could kick myself for it because mine took a long time to alter. I used polymer clay to make my faux stone. I have a fondant sheet mold that I bought just for polymer clay projects and used it to make most of the walls. It took me about 6-2oz blocks.

However you do it, this project is fun and easy to build. Great job on the Instructable!!

Giddykins (author)2014-03-30

So I took the time to build the dice tower, I'm overly thrilled with the outcome. After I got the base construction done, I decided to improvise a bit for my own desire towards creativity. Heading to Hobby Lobby and buying paint, and other supplies I spent a couple hours experimenting.

Thank you for a wonderful Instructable for the gamer in all of us.

Here are my results.

Fab4fan (author)2014-01-28

Really like your idea for Dice tower, Unable to download specs so I can build it. Can you email me the information. Would deeply appreciated it. Thanks for your time and have a wonderful night.

Eric

warhammer2009.1@hotmail.com

Once again thx!

rednedfred (author)2013-09-27

I just made this today out of eska board, and it turned out pretty nice! Thanks for the instructable!

cube-convict (author)2013-06-11

Using the toothpicks to pin the sides on is really clever and seems to work really well. However, I am curious if you explored using hot glue for the entire assembly. It seems to me that it might be nearly as strong overall without the need to pin and brush on white glue. What do you think?

jbrunsting (author)2012-12-02

Made this in about 2 hours the night before a game, and have to admit, it looks and works great! I was only hoping for something functional, considering I was sort of rushing, but it ended up looking really good! I used the side of my wire cutters to push the toothpicks in flush with the board, then just used a Sharpie to color the ends black and it looks fantastic! One note, however: careful of glue on fingers. That's the one thing I didn't do and affected the finish of the final tower. Next step? Trying this with wood! Maybe I'll have to post that project here...

egosselin1 (author)2012-03-28

Excellent tower ! I made one out of card board to test it out, the printable sheet made it all really fun to make, can't wait for the next game night...

dungeon runner (author)2010-02-25

Nice 'ible! What if you had rotating platforms in the center of the tower instead of static baffles, so that every time the dice hit them they spin a little bit and further randomize future rolls?

-Y

donbar (author)dungeon runner2011-11-18

You cannot have 'more' randomness in a static die (or dice) roll by adding more physical manipulation. Whichever die you choose, let's say 1 six-sided die, you will ALWAYS have a 1 in 6 chance of landing on a particular number--no matter how many baffles or platforms it tumbles on! If you want, or need, more randomness then you need to change to a different die, such as an eight-sided die. Then you only have 1 in 8 chances to see a particular number. Or, you can add an additional die to increase the range, but at the cost of losing lower number(s). So, if you roll 2 six-sided dice for more randomness then your range will be 2-12, not 1-12.

caseydavis100 (author)2007-08-03

I have an idea to make this look a little nicer. cut out all of the foam board pieces, paint then black, assemble them in to the tower, then add the felt. That way you have no white spots in the foam, and the felt stays clean.

Steve.D.W. (author)caseydavis1002008-02-21

I was thinking the very same thing Casey. Also I've never worked worked with foam board before so I don't know how durable it is. But if you want to make one that would really last you could use the foam board pieces as stencils to make it out of wood and put it together with wood glue and nails/screws.

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