Introduction: THE PUZZLE TABLE
Here is my entry into the SCRAPS SPEED CHALLENGE.
I built this for my first grandchild, Lincoln, AKA Link. Yes, my son was a big fan of The Legend of Zelda growing up.
Step 1: SCRAP WOOD USED
My neighbor built a deck and let me have all the scrap cut-offs which I stored under my assembly table. It is mostly 1" thick decking which I used for the entire puzzle table -- short of the secret drawer. For that, I rummaged through my lumber cart for more scraps, basically the frame and bottom of the secret drawer. And, of course, I scavenged dowels from that box of hardwood cut-offs to plug screw holes.
Step 2: TOOLS AND SUPPLIES
A picture is worth a thousand words. So here are the tools and supplies I used to create this puzzle table.
Step 3: THE PLAN
I build things from rough sketches, keeping the actual process in my head. So I jotted down the basics and began with the tiles from which the cut dimensions for everything else emanated.
Step 4: THE TILES
The edge of the decking was rounded so I squared them up on the table saw. I cut the tiles to rough size. The final size was 4.75" square. I routed a 1/4" grove in all four sides of each tile. I ripped down a bunch of 1/4" plywood strips for the tongues. To keep track of what I was doing, I turned all the tiles over, alternated the direction of the grain, and penciled numbers 1 through 15 on the back of each. Then all the tongues were glued in.
Step 5: PYROGRAPHY -- THE NUMBERS
After tracing numbers on the fifteen tiles, I used my wood burning set and darkened each number.
Step 6: THE TOP
The size of the assembled tiles dictated the frame. I secured a piece of thin plywood to the back and set the tiles in and secured the frame. I attached the frame to the base with screws and plugged the holes with dowels. A note: since I planned on making a secret drawer there was no frame to screw to on the far side. I only put dowels there to give the appearance of being secured down.
Step 7: THE LEGS AND BASE
I made a very simple leg tapering jig and cut the four legs, secured them to aprons on three sides leaving the back open for the secret drawer. I made a shelf, screwed it in, and plugged the holes with dowels.
Step 8: SECRET DRAWER
I added a secret drawer to the BACK of the table and initialed and dated it. I secured the drawer and will tell no one about it. Inside I'll leave a note to be read by the person who discovers how to open it.
Step 9: THE FINISH
I finished it with Tung Oil.
Step 10: THE DENOUEMENT
Here's a picture of Link for whom this puzzle table was made. He'll grow into it. Let me know what you think of this Instructable. And, as usual, all comments appreciated and all questions answered.
UPDATE: So nothing would rattle around inside the secret drawer, I wrote a congratulatory note to the discoverer on painters tape adhered to the inside bottom of the drawer. I secured the drawer by running a screw through the back of the runner into the finger pull section. The finished table was transported to my grandson's house and waits for someone to discover its secret. I also added an envelope of six $2 bills I have had for years. On it I wrote: The Treasure.
Participated in the
Scraps Speed Challenge