One of the most popular summer BBQ games is cornhole. The bean bag toss game is a great way for family and friends to connect. But if you don’t want to spend the money on purchasing the game, or you simply would rather take the time to create your own DIY cornhole set, then you’ve come to the right place!
You can accomplish this task in a single day, and take it to your nest tailgate right away, or leave it in your backyard for the next summer event. It’s not as complicated as you may think. Keep in mind that you will be cutting a lot of these pieces. You can definitely accomplish this cornhole set on your own, but it can also be a great project to take on with a friend.
How To Make A Cornhole Board
What You’ll need:
- Tape measure
- Pen or pencil
- Miter or circular saw
- ¾-inch spade bit
- 3/8-inch drill bit (for holes for carriage bolts)
- 3/16-inch drill bit (for pilot holes)
- Countersink drill bit
- 3 2 x 4 x 8-ft. board for the frame and legs
- 2 ½-in. x 2 x 4-ft. plywood project panel
- 3-in. exterior wood screws (for the frame)
- 1¼-in. exterior wood screws (to attach the plywood deck)
- 4 3/8 x 3½-in. carriage bolt
- 4 3/8-in. wingnut
- 4 3/8-in. washer
- 3 ¾-inch x 1′ rope (for handles)
- Begin by cutting your pieces all at once. This will keep you from going back and forth aimlessly. Use your miter or circle saw to cut 2 x 4 frame parts that create the four 48-inch-long sides and four 21-inch-long ends. Also cut four 14½-inch legs.You’ll need to cut: 2 x 4 Sides — 4 @ 48 inches; 2 x 4 Ends — 4 @ 21 inches; 2 x 4 Legs — 4 @ 14½ inches; ½-inch Plywood — 2 @ 24 x 48 inches.
- Use a pen or pencil to mark the holes for each carriage bolt that will eventually attach the legs of the board. It will be 3½-inches from each end. Be sure to mark the center of that line. Place the board on a flat work surface. Use the 3/8-inch drill bit to drill through the board on both sides.
- Use a 3/16-inch drill bit to drill pilot holes near each corner of the long sideboard. This will prep it for assembly.
- Now it’s time to prepare the holes for the handles. Use your writing utensil to mark two holes on each of the side boards; they will be toward the center of the board, and 5 inches apart. After it is marked, use your ¾-inch spade bit to drill through each mark on each of the side boards.
- You need to angle the base of each of the legs. Mark the leg 1-7/8 inches from its base with a line from end to end. Set your miter saw to 37-degrees and cut on the line of each of the legs.
- You need to round out the top of the legs. Draw a semi-circle on at the opposite end of where you just cut the legs. You can use a jigsaw or miter saw at 45-degrees, and cut off about 1-inch from each corner.
- We’re still working on the legs here. Draw a line 1-inch from the top edge of the leg (the area you just rounded out). Using a scrap block take your 3/8-inch bit and drill a hole through the center of the line.
- Grab your plywood project panel now. Use a compass by setting it to a radius of 3-inches, and draw the circle in the center, 9-inches from the top edge. Repeat this on the second panel as well.
- Use a 3/8-inch drill bit to create a hole toward the edge of the marked circle. Then place the jigsaw over the hole, and cute the parameter of the circle you created with the compass. Do this for both pieces of plywood project panel.
- Now you can use your sander to smooth the edges of the holes that you just cut.
- Before you assemble the frame, lay it out and make sure that everything fits correctly together with the project panel face down. Remember, you’ll have two frames for the game.
- Use your wood glue to put the wood together first. Then, use your drill/driver to drive the 3½-inch exterior-grade wood screws through the pilot holes that you previously created. Do this to the sides first, as it will be easier to do the others after.
- Now flip your frame over and drill pilot holes into each corner. Try and space them 6-inches apart around the perimeter. Do this for both frames.
- You can now use your countersink bit in order to prepare each hole.
- Apply your wood glue to the top edge of the frame, and nail 1¼-inch wood screws in the holes you just made.
- Use your drive to put the carriage bolt through the 3/8-inch holes in each frame for your legs, and slide the leg onto each of the bolts in the corner. Make sure the long point of the angle faces up.
- Hit the bolt with the head of your hammer until it sits straight.
- Use your washer and wingnut to secure each leg.
- Cut your rope in half, knot one end, and stick it through the holes you created in the center earlier. Adjust the handle to your liking and knot the other end so it stays.
- Now you can paint and design your creation to be a real cornhole set.
How To Make Cornhole Bags
You’ve just completed the most difficult part! Now, it’s time to make the bean bags to accompany your cornhole game. You can easily make these DIY bean bags before even starting the DIY cornhole game. That way, you can immediately play once you finish assembling everything.
You usually get 8 bags per set, so keep this in mind. Traditionally the bags are filled with feed-grade corn, hence the name of the game. But often times people use other things like beans and other weighed fillings.
What You’ll need:
- 2 different colors of 15-inches x 30-inches duck cloth
- 8-pounds of feed-grade corn (or 1-pound of filling of your choice per bag)
- Fabric glue
- Or in place of thread, needle, and fabric glue you can use a sewing machine
- Cut 32 squares measuring 7-inch x 7-inch. Each bag is made of two squares. Use a pencil or pen to draw out the squares prior to cutting, it will be easier this way.
- Sew two of the squares together. You can use a sewing machine, or stitch each one by hand. You can use your fabric glue as well to help you when stitching by hand, but you must sew the squares to make it durable. But leave a small opening on one side, about 1-inch. It should be big enough to put your filling inside.
- Once you’ve stitched your squares, use fabric glue to strengthen the stitch. This is really only necessary if you’ve stitched them by hand.
- Cut the corners of each bag, just above the stitch line to keep the bags from rounding at the corners due to bulk.
- Fill each bag with 1-pound of corn-feed, or the filling of your choosing. Just make sure each one weighs one pound for regulation.
- Once your bags are filled, it’s time to close up the open ends. You can use some fabric glue to keep the two sides together, followed by a simple hand stitch. Or take your bags back to the machine and stitch over the final seam to ensure that your bags are closed.
- Start your game!