Cribbage Boards

So this was a fun project!  I decided a fun way to play with epoxy and do something useful was to make some live edge and epoxy cribbage boards.  I ordered the Rockler templates for drilling and got both the large and small 3-track templates.  The first thing I wanted to try was using the template.  I snagged a small leftover piece of ambrosia stained tiger maple and put the template to work.  Below is the result:

I was happy with the results and was confident the templates would provide a nice clean cribbage layout.  On to the epoxy!

Step 1 was to choose some good live edge pieces for the boards.

Next was to build a mold for the boards and the epoxy, and to choose the epoxy colours.  I built the mold using leftover melamine and then coated the bottom in Tyvek tape.  I’m happy to report that release the epoxy from the molds went pretty well.  Initially I chose the green, blue and purple.  Later on I decided to swap in the red in place of the purple.

Mixing and pouring the epoxy…  A word of warning – your wood *will* float in the epoxy if you don’t hold it down.  Since epoxy isn’t cheap, I deliberately calculated the amount of epoxy needed per mold pretty tightly.  Too tightly it would appear.  I was a little short on the blue and red forcing me to plane those pieces a little more than I had planned.

As noted – releasing the boards from the mold didn’t go too badly.  The best approach seemed to be wedging a putty knife under them and prying upwards.  Below are the boards after they were released from the mold.  These are the steps I followed to create a finished board:

  1. Flatten the boards on one side and one edge using the jointer
  2. Cut them to the desired width using the table saw
  3. Plane them on the other face until the wood and epoxy are flush with each other
  4. Cross cut the boards to the desired length
  5. Sand the faces through all of the following grits: 60, 80, 100, 120, 150, 180, 240, 320, 400, 600
  6. Apply edge treatment to the boards (I used a simple roundover)
  7. Re-sand the faces after messing them up applying edge treatments
  8. Apply a clearcoat to all sides of the boards.  Out of convenience, I went with a water borne polyurethane and applied it using an HVLP sprayer
  9. Use the templates and drill all of the cribbage peg holes
  10. Look at the results in disgust, re-sand the faces to fix the imperfections the drilling process introduced, and apply another layer of clear coat to finish off the sanding…

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