Introduction: Rustic Wood Finnish Style Skittles Game

Looking for a simple outdoor Maker project for outdoor fun ?

What's in this instructable ?

This Instructable shares a method to make rustic wood Finnish style skittles game.

This is a quick and dirty way to make a rustic game for outdoor pure & simple playing fun.

Complementary relevant instructable already exists

I just discovered before publishing that there is already a great Instructable "Mölkky by Kiteman" for making such a Finnish game.
I recommend Kiteman's instructable reference for learning game rules. (these will not be repeated in this article)

What's the specificity of this instructable vs. existing ?

Our project for Finnish skittles is an example of more "rustic" version of Finnish skittles vs. Kiteman's project.

Rustic means you'll end up with a game less neat & with way more irregularities (imperfection) than with Kiteman's Instructable.

The rustic version described here may be more adapted if you want to build involving teenagers : we used a 45° angle for the skittles, that allowed to use a basic miter box for cutting the skittles (I feel it's safer to cut with a miter box than cutting freely with a saw).

This rustic version's Instructable includes some elements inherent to usage of rustic wood branches.

Step 1: 1 Get Wood Branches

You may get dead wild branches or branches cut by gardeners in their own garden. (Never cut live wild branches)

We used garden cut branches that had rested outside for 2 weeks (horse chestnut tree).

Step 2: Define Skittles' Length and Cut 12 Skittles + 1 Throwing Piece

Define your skittles' length

Depending of the wood size / density / diameter you got, you need to define the skittles size you're aiming at.

  • The skittles and piece to be thrown should be of a similar lengths.
  • The piece to be thrown is a simple long slice of branch.
  • The skittles are cut to have a 45°C angle on the top.
  • Your goal is to have 12 skittles
  • Skittles should stand up easily, and fall when hit by the wood piece thrown.

Based on all every elements above decide what will be your skittle's length.

For our project we made them around 4 1/2 inches long (+- 12 cm).

Cut your skittle's

The picture presents a strategy for cutting the branch. (This is explained for extensively in Molkky by Kiteman instruct able for 30° angle skittles, however the method remains valid for 45° skittles).

Use a miter box and a hand saw to get neat and nicely cut pieces (standard miter boxes generally have 45° and 90° options).

As branches are not regular, choose your pins orientation to have the wider side as base and thinner side as top (for stability purpose). If side branches remains are big you can cut them (if they are causing issues to stability)

Step 3: Number Your Skittles

Skittles should be numbered from 1 to 12, with large numbers on the top.

We painted ours with a brush and acrylic paint.

Step 4: Decorate Your Skittles (Optional)

We decorated the skittles length with bright colors, in order to see them better on grass (the wood we got had same color as the play area grass).

Again we used brush and acrylic paint.

Step 5: Start Playing !

Once your paints are dry you can start playing.

While paint is drying, read game rules in Molkky by Kiteman's Instructable :-)

Have fun !

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