Stacking Blocks Maximum (name Changed)




About: Professional work in various electrical and mechanical fields, obscure sense of humour and typically willing to help... Currently under contract designing environmental monitoring equipment.

The oversize Stacking blocks based on the popular game (I cannot say the name due to copyright reasons) game is almost essential for outdoor fun. Why huddle around a short stack when you can have 27 inches of play-room.

Once again I did this then found that there are others who have already done so... it appears that originality is becoming rare.

You will need 5 of the 2X3 studs(96 inches long). I used studs since this was all that was available at the local big box.
You will need 54 blocks and the cut studs will provide you with 60. I used construction grade material and the 6 extra did come in handy.

You will also need a wood saw and some sort of sanding implement. I used my trusty stationary belt sander and an 80 grit belt.

You may need wood glue or wood filler later.

The studs cost $1.99 each
Wood filler was $4

Total build time was less than 2 hours

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Step 1: Make a Cutting Jig

The best way to cut the blocks is to use some sort of jig. I did not have access to a miter saw so I built a jig from some scrap lumber.

The green base is a 2X8 and the sides are a couple of pieces of 2X4. The thickness of the the cutting section is another scrap 2X4.

There is a hole beneath the cut section to allow the cut blocks to fall to the ground. The jig build time was 5 minutes.

You will need to determine the width of 3 sections of your block material. This was measured to be slightly over 7.5 inches. This was marked as the cut line on the jig. The shoe of my saw was measured and another piece of scrap wood was placed at the shoe edge and screwed into place. This allows of cut repeatability,

I initially started cutting 2 at a time but found that the saw would bind so I went back to single cuts.

A single stud gave 12 blocks with only about 5 inches of waste.

A quick calculation shows that there will be 6 extra blocks. these may be needed later.

Step 2: Cut the Blocks

Use the jig to cut the blocks.

The cut blocks will fall to the ground when cut then the 2X3 is pushed to the stop for the next cut.

Be sure to run the saw shoe against the guide so a straight even cut.

Use a finishing blade or a fine pitch blade for best results.

Set the depth of the saw blade at slightly more than the width of the 2X3 for an optimum cut and jig safety.

Cut all 5 studs and discard the left over material..

Step 3: Sand the Blocks

Take a block from the pile... Sand it ... put it on top...

Seriously sanding without a belt sander takes forever... The belt still takes 30 seconds to 1 min each to sand.
I used 80 grit for smoothing and finishing. You may want to follow up with a smaller grit but I was under a time limit.

Sand the ends first then the contoured corners of the mill pre-cuts, then the faces of the blocks. be sure to keep the shape of the rough blocks and only remove as much material as necessary to give a smooth finish.

Step 4: Fix the Blocks

Since the material was construction grade, there were a lot of imperfections in the wood.

Most did not matter for the game but if you choose to you can fix the rough spots with wood filler.

You can use a 1 to 1 mixture of white glue and sanding dust or commercially available wood filler.

I used the wood filler to fix the deep spots then re-sanded the blocks as needed.

Step 5: Play

Stack the blocks and play as you normally would.

You have 18 layers of 3 blocks each. Spares are available and you should be able to have 20 rows, but what fun is that???

A poorly guarded milk crate is an adequate storage place.

Do not play this on a glass table... don't ask me how I know this.

The stack is approximately 27 inches high and weighs somewhere around 20 pounds depending on the type and moisture content of the wood.

Custom laser etching of the blocks will have to wait... for now... ;-)

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    15 Discussions


    3 years ago

    Nothing like a good game of Jango!


    3 years ago

    I, too, made a giant (please do not scream that word - even if you win). My methodology was slightly different, involving a chop saw, table saw and belt sander. I went to my local reclaimed materials place, bought stud-like wood that been used in a TV/movie set, pulled the metal out and went about cutting blocks that were exactly the same size. They can be any size to your liking but they all must exactly the same size. Do not spend a lot of time sanding. A quick pass on all sides is all you need. The secret ingredient to make it play well? Lightly spray the flat sides with silicone. The attached image is the set during its inaugural play in July at Red Hook Day. The game lasted almost an hour, the players made a freakishly high tower that morphed into a different sculpture by the turn. I am new at instructables. I will attempt to post these things I build in the future in a logical fashion.

    Build time is about two hours. I'm going to guess you just had to get this out of your system. I understand. Please keep doing that.


    7 years ago on Introduction

    and on the last page in the upper right corner of the screen we see what this would be worth.....$76 w/free shipping. nice way to entertain and save money mate. i give this 5* easily.

    2 replies

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    That site is they make great set and ship fast to your door via fedex. This game is so much fun at any party :)


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    yeah....and the author has been nice enough to show how to make it for a 3rd of that.


    7 years ago on Step 3

    Great jig, I think I may need to make this now. The only thing I would do differently, is to sand the lengths of wood first... then chop them down to length. Most of the sanding is now very fast, with only then ends taking up much time.

    1 reply

    Thanks.The jig almost makes the cutting fast enough to be production worthy... Hmmmm...

    You might be onto something with the sanding..

    Nicely done....

    The jig is a great idea (especially since I can't get to my radial arm saw... we have WAY too much shi.... errr, stuff in the garage)

    This would be good to keep in the camper too. And I could use the leftover pieces for leveling blocks :-D

    1 reply

    7 years ago on Introduction

    I just made this at the end of summer too. My friend moved in with her boyfriend and they have several kids in their blended family so I wanted to make something they can do together. (And also something that works at a BBQ as an adult drinking game once the kids are in bed) I thought the 2x3 were a more accurate scaling of the block plus they weigh less than 2x4s (which would also require 6 full 2x4 to make the game).

    I put a twist on it though I cut a small die for the wood and painted each side a different colour and then painted 9 x 6 blocks those six colours. I got the idea from the Wii game Boom Blox (awesome party game if you have never tried it!!)

    So you can play regular Jenga or mix it up and you have to pull the colour block of whatever you roll for added difficulty. I envisioned all the colours jumbled up but her daughter loves to play with colour levels - so who am I to tell them how to play, right?

    But yer right the sanding was terrible - I only had a mouse sander and it took forever. And your Jig was way better than mine. Wish I saw it first. This is something you wish you had a table saw for but I only had the circular saw as well. The paint made it a bit to sticky - so I had to resand all the blocks AGAIN so they would slide better. But I was worth it - they love it!

    1 reply

    7 years ago on Introduction

    I went to a local church youth rally and they had a set of jenga "blocks" made from two cardboard boxes for each block. It was probably somewhere around 20 ft tall.