Introduction: How to Make a Toy Dinosaur by Zachary

It's the perfect present for a child, or a great addition to a woodworker's collection.

Step 1: Gather Your Materials

When beginning the process of making a wooden toy, you need to make sure that you’re prepared. First, make sure that you have the correct amount of wood, cardstock, a miter saw, a drill press, a router, a sander, and most importantly, safety goggles! Your safety is the number one priority in anything!

Links to get the materials are provided:

Step 2: Find Your Animal

In order to make a wooden toy, you need to know what you’re going to be making. For this instructable, I’m going to be making a wooden dinosaur. Find the picture that best suits you. Make sure it’s a noticeable side profile. Recognition is key!

Step 3: Print Out Your Picture

After finding the picture you want to use, print it out onto a piece of paper, and using a pen or pencil, draw a cartoonized outline of what you’re going to be making. This is going to be the outline for the wood. Remember, this toy is for children, so certain features should be exaggerated.

Step 4: Cut Picture Out

Once you feel like you’ve gotten your outline to a good place, cut it out to a rough shape. If any adjustments need to be made, they can be made during this process. Make sure that this is what you want, and make sure that the head is large, and the edges are rounded off.

Step 5: Trace and Cut Cardstock

After cutting out the toy shape, trace it onto a piece of cardstock. After getting that done, cut it out. This is a another spot where any adjustments can be made to fit what you want to make. The paper is traced onto cardstock, so that way a more sturdy base is used when tracing onto the wood.

Step 6: Trace Toy Onto Wood

After cutting out the outline, trace it onto a piece of wood. If needed, use a miter saw to get the piece of wood to a small enough size that it can be traced on. Remember, safety is key! Take any and all precautions when operating any power tool. After that is finished, trace your toy onto the wood.

Step 7: Cut Out Toy Shape

After you get your toy shape traced onto the piece of wood you’re using, use the bandsaw to cut out the shape of the animal. Put markings where you are going to drill the holes for the wheels. Make sure to use safety goggles, and to operate the machine with safety!

Step 8: Router Edges

Using a routering machine, round off the edges in the most efficient manner possible. Remember, this a childrens toy, so all the edges need to be nice and smooth, so that way a child could be able to use it and play with it. Safety goggles required!

Step 9: Drill Holes and Sand

After using the routering table, use the drill press to drill holes where you want the wheels to go. Make sure that the drill press is the right size for the axle of the wheels. Also make sure to not touch the drill bit while the machine is on! Afterwards, using sanding equipment, smooth the toy to remove any workmarks. Preferably get down to 220 grit, but the higher the grit used, the better and smoother it is.

Step 10: Make Painting Plan and Paint

On a blank sheet of paper, trace out the shape of the toy. After that, using the colors you want, draw out on the paper how you want to pain the toy. After you get something that you’re satisfied with, transfer the colors onto your toy with colored pencils.

Step 11: Finish Assembly

After you finish painting, take the wheels and axles that you purchased, and glue the axles with the wheels on them to the toy. Make sure not to get any glue onto axle, otherwise the toy will seize up.

Step 12: Finished Product

This project was fun to do. It uses a lot of machines, and teaches property workshop safety. For me, it definitely improved my skills on all of the machines involved. From the drill press, to the band saw, all facets of woodworking was used in this project. If done correctly, and with a good effort, it will turn out great. This is a great present for children, and a great hobby to take up. It’s a fun little project that can be completed within a few hours, and overall, was definitely worth it.