Toy Monster Truck Arena

About: Hi, I am Ashley. I am a geek and woodworker. I am author of the DIY and woodworking blog, Handmade with Ashley. I also have a YouTube channel where I share video tutorials. I have always been into crafts. M...

Hello everyone, today I’m sharing how to build a toy monster truck arena! Earlier this year my son and I attended our first Monster Jam. That trip inspired this project. The toy monster truck arena is a quick weekend project and a great way to use up wood scraps.

Step 1: Tools and Supplies

The following items are some of the tools and supplies I gathered to build the toy monster truck arena (affiliate links).

TOOLS

SUPPLIES

Step 2: Cut Boards to Size and Drill Pocket Holes

Cut the 1x4 boards and 1/4" plywood to size. My arena dimensions matched the space beneath my son's train table so we could stow it away when it was not in use.

  • 30" (2)
  • 20" (6)
  • 19 7/8" x 29 7/8"

The extra 20" pieces are supports for the piece of plywood.

Drill a pair of pocket holes on each short end of the 20" long 1x4 pieces.

Step 3: Assemble the Frame

Build a rectangular frame and attach the boards to the bottom for supporting the plywood and insulation foam.

My frame in the pictures differs slightly from what I describe here because in hindsight I wish I added one more board for the bottom supports.

Step 4: Cut the Insulation Foam

Cutting the insulation foam was the most fun step of the whole project. I used a box cutter to cut straight lines out of the foam and a hot foam cutter to cut out curvy shapes. If you use the hot foam cutter, make sure you do this in a well-ventilated area and wear a respirator.

  • First you need to create a base layer for the arena.
  • Cut a piece of foam to the size of the 1/4″ plywood.
  • Next, cut out corner pieces of foam to the borders of the arena
  • Finally, cut out a piece of foam for the center dirt mound in the arena.

Customize this step to match your desired appearance for the arena. I modeled the arena to match what it looked like at the Monster Jam event.

Step 5: Glue Foam to Plywood

Glue the base pink insulation foam to the 1/4″ plywood. Glue the arena corners and dirt mounds / obstacles on top of the base layer with some spray adhesive. You could probably use hot glue instead. You want the bond to be strong enough to withstand the wear and tear of a young child.

Step 6: Paint Arena and Seal

Spray paint the pink foam brown. Spray paint the frame of the arena another color. I also spray painted some cheap Dollar Tree cars the same color as the arena.

I painted arena border line with white acrylic paint to somewhat match the appearance of the Monster Jam arena. Seal the paint with a few layers of a clear coat. I recommend spraying 2 layers of gloss (for high protection) followed by a layer of satin or matte to tone down the shininess.

Step 7: Install Caster Wheels and Enjoy!

Install 1″ caster wheels on each corner of the arena frame and enjoy! My son loves the monster truck arena! It has seen many hours of play.

Thanks for checking out my Instructable!

Watch the video tutorial below:

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