Duct Tape Game Board (Chess, Draughts and Backgammon)




This instructable shows you how to make a game board for chess, draughts (checkers in American) and backgammon from duct tape.

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Step 1: Bin Bag Foundation

As a foundation for the board cut a black bin liner up so that you have a square of plastic at least 12 times the width of your duct tape (60cm in my case).

Duct tape the plastic to your work bench so that it is lightly tensioned.

Then stretch alternate colour strips of duct tape across the plastic as shown in the photo.

Make sure that the edges of the tape are as close as possible without overlapping.

Step 2: Slice'n'dice

Next mark the edge of the outer two bits of tape at regular intervals the same distance apart as the tape is wide (about 5cm in my case).

Then using a ruler and a sharp craft knife slice the strips across the so that you have separate strips of alternate colour tape.

You should end up with 8 strips.

Step 3: Shuffle the Deck

Rotate every other strip through 180 degrees and replace it where it came from so that you have alternate colour squares.

Step 4: As If by Magic

Duct tape the stips to the workbench again so that they line up with the edges as close together without overlapping again.

Necessary usage of another material other than duct tape... Magic tape the internal edges and across the strips for strength.

Add some strips of a third colour of tape to either end so that the board is rectangular - about ten percent longer than it is wide. 45cm by 55cm is tournament backgammon size so if you're picky then this is your target size.

Step 5: Flip Reverse It

Carefully remove the board from the workbench leaving all of the tape in place and turn it over.

Tape it back to the workbench this with the underside face up.

Step 6: The Invisible Step

If you're a real duct tape ninja then you might be able to skip this step. Since this was my first duct tape build I used clear sticky back plastic to fix the parts constructed so far into place. Difficult to see in the photo but it's there if you look closely.

Step 7: To the Bar

The first step in making the backgammon side of the board is to add the centre bar in the middle. 2cm wide in my case but make it in proportion to the tape (2/5ths of the width of your tape).

Step 8: Complete Cover-up

Complete the base of the backgammon side of the board with strips of duct tape in your third colour. Again, make sure that the edges of the tape touch but do not overlap.

Step 9: Look No Safety Net

Carefully remove the board from the workbench again and remove your magic tape safety net from the chess board side.

Step 10: Cut to Size and Edge

Next trim the board down so that the long sides only have half the width of your tape in extra material either side of the chess board. Then wrap tape around this extra material to finish the long edges.

Don't finish the short edges yet! This allows for some variance in the width of your backgammon triangles.

Step 11: The Trianglular Step

Make 24 triangles of duct tape, 12 one colour, 12 another. They should be 10% narrower than the tape and a bit shorter than the width of the board.

Step 12: Fix the Triangles

Fix the triangles along the long edges of the backgammon side of the board so that they alternate in colour across the length and width of the board.

Step 13: Almost There...

This is what the backgammon side of the board should look like with all the triangles attached. It doesn't seem to matter if you start with the lighter colour on the right of the bar or on the left. If you know differently then please let me know though.

Step 14: Finished!

Finish the board by folding tape over the short edges of the board. You can add corner reinforcement too if you like.

Step 15: Checkmate!

Here in all it's wrinkly glory is the finished board chess side up. Happy gaming!

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    18 Discussions


    2 years ago

    Fun! That's a neat way to make an easy travel board :)


    7 years ago on Introduction

    It seems like the next obvious step would be to make playing pieces out of duct tape, perhaps a long strip coiled into a disc.


    10 years ago on Introduction

    Bravo. Finally something original. ENOUGH WITH THE DUCT TAPE WALLETS.


    11 years ago on Introduction

    Cool!! Handy Man's secret weapon (Mr. Red Green) I like that you included Backgammon. I've wanted to make something like this so maybe this is my incentive.


    11 years ago on Introduction

    i can't believe i haven't thought of this already! this is a great idea! and great for taking with you for traveling (roll it up). you should try making an instructable to make your own pieces! and maybe put magnets in them, the board so you can play in the car/ anywhere else.


    11 years ago on Introduction

    Thats a great idea; I might make one. (scrolling over the last step hurts my eyes!)


    12 years ago

    Great Idea!


    12 years ago

    > It doesn't seem to matter if you start with the lighter colour on the right of the bar > or on the left. If you know differently then please let me know though. I know! It doesn't matter, because you can turn it around 180 degrees! Heh. Great instructable! Thanks!

    1 reply

    Reply 12 years ago

    Thanks for the comment. Since the triangles are alternate colours across the board, if you turn it around 180 degrees then you'll find the same colour on the right of the bar on your side. Have a closer look at the picture...


    12 years ago

    Great. FYI, don't upload all your pictures at the start and leave them there, upload then remove and move on.

    4 replies

    Reply 12 years ago

    Thanks for pointing that out, it wasn't intentional. I've removed all but one of the photos from the intro.


    Reply 12 years ago

    Peter, go a little easier on people :) Slamdunk, this is really a great project, but why no Czechers?


    Reply 12 years ago

    I'm honestly just trying to help.


    Reply 12 years ago

    Gotcha. I partially misread your post with a more sarcastic Great.

    Jezza Bear

    12 years ago

    Brilliant, is all I can say. I know of a few children's play groups who would love this type of thing. Keep it up