Introduction: Plywood Babygym
I wanted to make a babygym for our babygirl.
It seemed quite easy, and I thought I had proper plywood for it, but I ended up buying some of better quality.
When planning to build a babygym, find some inspiration and draw up a raw sketch. I opted for upside-down V-shapes for the sides and a crossbeam with big holes. for attachements.
Then find some dimensions. I went with sides 60x60 cm (12 mm ply) and a cross beam 8 cm x 60 cm (18 mm ply). All of it birch plywood.
When you buy a sheet of plywood for the sides, remember that you can put them opposite each other (like an A and a V), to save some wood.
- Plywood - I went for 90x60 cm in 12 mm, and had some 18 mm at home
- Screws and washers
- Ruler, square, measuring tape
- A round object
- Small drillbits (3 mm & 5 or 6 mm)
- Bigger drillbit (I had a 25 mm Forstnerbit. Could have been a holesaw instead)
- Some powertool for sanding (I had a Delta sander, but whatever you have)
- Sandpaper (end up with some fine stuff. A baby's gonna touch it)
Optional (didn't have, could have helped)
- A router
- A sawguide
- A circular saw
Step 1: Draw the Parts
I opted for triangular legs. The triangles were 60 cms high and 60 cms wide, which I drew out on the plywood.
Then I found the with of the legs (5.5 cm perpendicular to the sides).
At last I found a round object and used that as a template to round the upper and inner angles in the top as well as the bottom of the legs. Be aware that it might get tricky to saw out the inner piece if it has to small of a diameter.
The upper beam was just a 60 cm wide and 8 cm high rectangle.
I drew lines for every 15 cms on both the height and the depth, and marked the center of the lines for later usage.
Step 2: Cut Out the Pieces
Find your saw of choice and cut out the pieces.
Step 3: Drill Holes in Upper Beam
As mentioned before, mark out a decent number of holes for attachments.
Mark out both on the height and the depth of the upper beam.
I used a small diameter drillbit (3mm) for pre-drilling.
I then used a 25 mm Forstner-bit for the big holes and a 5 mm drill for the connectionholes (from the bottom to the big holes).
To get nice, big holes without tear outs, drill halfway through, then turn the piece and drill from the other side. The pre-drilling makes this quite easy.
Step 4: Predrill for Screws
Mark out for holes on either end of the upper beam (1.5 cm from top and bottom; 5 cm apart), and mark out on the sides with the same distance.
Step 5: Sand. and Then Sand Some More
I used a Deltasander with grit 60, 180 and 240.
If you can't come into the small corners, take of the sandpaper and do it by hand.
Step 6: Assemble Your Babygym
I used screws with washers
Step 7: Attach Strings
Thread a string layed double through a wooden pearl and tie a knot on the ends of the string.
Thread the loop down a connection hole and either thread some more pearls on it or just secure it to a toy/ring with a cow hitch
This is it. A simple, nice and sturdy baby gym. Just remember to sand some more. It's the only finish it'll get before baby's gonna grab it.