Author Topic: Making a Large Connect Four - How to make the discs?  (Read 11282 times)

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Offline Acrobat

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Making a Large Connect Four - How to make the discs?
« on: August 02, 2016, 11:29 PM »
Hi, I've been asked to make a large Connect Four game. So I have the materials (to keep costs down) the discs are going to be cut from a 12mm thick mdf sheet.
I have a hole saw that gives 90mm discs but it also gives a smaller hole from the centering drill bit of about 5-6mm. Anyone have any ideas on how I can get the large discs cut without the small holes in the centre?
I need to do 42 discs so it'll be slow going. I don't have a lathe nor know anyone who has one where I live as I thought that may be a good idea.
Anyone have any thoughts? I'm racking my brain to find a quick way, if I can find a nice large dowel 90mm thick then I'd simply cut it down to 12mm thick on the drop saw but the local big box store only has small sized dowels.

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Offline T. Ernsberger

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Re: Making a Large Connect Four - How to make the discs?
« Reply #1 on: August 02, 2016, 11:34 PM »
Cut a template with your 90mm bit.  Take out your center pilot bit and use your template clamped on top of the 12mm and it will allow to cut out the circles with out a pilot bit.  The template will guide the bit without a center bit. 

Offline SRSemenza

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Re: Making a Large Connect Four - How to make the discs?
« Reply #2 on: August 02, 2016, 11:38 PM »
I think the large dowel idea might create disks that would be prone to breaking with the grain if / when dropped.

For cutting them out how about a router with a template?

Seth

Offline bkharman

  • Posts: 1983
Re: Making a Large Connect Four - How to make the discs?
« Reply #3 on: August 03, 2016, 12:05 AM »
I made one a few years ago. I use styrofoam covered with black or red duct tape. So much better and looks great! 

Cheers. Bryan.


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Offline Roseland

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Re: Making a Large Connect Four - How to make the discs?
« Reply #4 on: August 03, 2016, 02:30 AM »
+1 for using a router and template.

Andrew
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Offline DiscoStu

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Re: Making a Large Connect Four - How to make the discs?
« Reply #5 on: August 03, 2016, 02:34 AM »
I recently made something similar and went for the router and template option. Another option would be a bandsaw or scroll saw but I think the router will give a better result. I have made up a circle jig for my bandsaw so if you need to make a lot then I'd suggest doing the same if you go the bandsaw route. The bandsaw does leave a pin hole in the middle of the disc.


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Offline Kev

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Re: Making a Large Connect Four - How to make the discs?
« Reply #6 on: August 03, 2016, 02:56 AM »
I've uses a hole saw with the drill bit reversed and the collar set way back. Then ever so carefully cut the circles for a standing position bent over. This was for four only and they were about 40mm.

I didn't enjoy it.

I think the method could've worked ok on a pedestal drill. I didn't have one handy at the time.


Offline GhostFist

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Re: Making a Large Connect Four - How to make the discs?
« Reply #7 on: August 03, 2016, 06:41 AM »
Bandsaw, or router with template, a good jigsaw with a trammel will do it as well but most jigsaws will suck at it

Offline budderbean

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Re: Making a Large Connect Four - How to make the discs?
« Reply #8 on: August 03, 2016, 06:54 AM »


This is one I built a few months ago for a friend.


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Offline JimH2

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Re: Making a Large Connect Four - How to make the discs?
« Reply #9 on: August 03, 2016, 09:01 AM »
I'n not certain MDF would be the best choice for the discs. The edges may not be able to take the abuse of being continuously dropped. A hardwood could be a better choice.

Offline Gregor

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Re: Making a Large Connect Four - How to make the discs?
« Reply #10 on: August 03, 2016, 12:44 PM »
I'm racking my brain to find a quick way, if I can find a nice large dowel 90mm thick then I'd simply cut it down to 12mm thick on the drop saw but the local big box store only has small sized dowels.

Do you know someone with a lathe?
He could turn you a nice cylinder the diameter you need which you then can cut into slices the thickness you need...

Offline bkharman

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Re: Making a Large Connect Four - How to make the discs?
« Reply #11 on: August 03, 2016, 02:40 PM »
I am telling you, styrofoam with red and black duct tape works very well. If it dings up, who cares. Make another one in 5 minutes. If it falls on your toes, who cares.

Trust me, I went through this topic in my head last year.


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Offline ear3

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Re: Making a Large Connect Four - How to make the discs?
« Reply #12 on: August 03, 2016, 08:39 PM »
Man. Who knew life sized home made connect four was a thing?
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Offline Chris Wong

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Re: Making a Large Connect Four - How to make the discs?
« Reply #13 on: August 04, 2016, 12:02 AM »
My first choice would be the hole saw without the pilot in a drill press. Second choice would be a table saw and circle jig. Third choice would be a router and template.
Chris Wong, http://FlairWoodworks.com

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Offline Acrobat

  • Posts: 464
Re: Making a Large Connect Four - How to make the discs?
« Reply #14 on: August 04, 2016, 12:25 AM »
Wow thanks for all the suggestions guys.
Butterbean, that looks about the size I was asked to make. Yours is sweet! I see you have a dowel sticking out at the bottom left, is this for removing, so the discs can fall through?
BKHarman, styrofoam, interesting idea but since I have the mdf sheet and cut a few already I better keep going.
jimH2, yeah hardwood would be a better choice just trying to keep the price down for her so a sheet of mdf was chosen. I'll paint them when cut so they will look better. 12mm mdf should take some abuse, I dare say the discs will more than likely get lost before damaged.
I think either I use one disc I've already cut as a template and route around it (but 40 odd will sure take a while,  or remove the centre drill piece and cut them on the drill press as was suggested by Chris. Think I'll try that.
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Offline hopper

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Re: Making a Large Connect Four - How to make the discs?
« Reply #15 on: August 05, 2016, 09:51 AM »
Why not take advantage of the center hole when using a hole saw. You could use the holes (enlarged) to store the disks when not in use. eg drill holes out to 1/2" then stack them on a 1/2" dowel rod mounted vertically in a base. I don't think the holes would look that bad.

Offline Acrobat

  • Posts: 464
Re: Making a Large Connect Four - How to make the discs?
« Reply #16 on: August 07, 2016, 09:02 PM »
Hi Hopper. I had thought about that actually.  Still thinking about doing that or not. I'd need to enlarge the centre hole to fit a dowel, not sure if it would look ok or not really. Thanks for the suggestion.
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Offline WastedP

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Re: Making a Large Connect Four - How to make the discs?
« Reply #17 on: August 07, 2016, 09:58 PM »
I like the idea of using foam, but I would cover it with heat shrink film, like they use for model airplanes.  Then you could carve heads and tails in the foam and the relief would show through without falling apart.

Offline JimH2

  • Posts: 610
Re: Making a Large Connect Four - How to make the discs?
« Reply #18 on: August 08, 2016, 10:02 AM »
I'm racking my brain to find a quick way, if I can find a nice large dowel 90mm thick then I'd simply cut it down to 12mm thick on the drop saw but the local big box store only has small sized dowels.

Do you know someone with a lathe?
He could turn you a nice cylinder the diameter you need which you then can cut into slices the thickness you need...

I like that idea.

Offline jefL

  • Posts: 5
Re: Making a Large Connect Four - How to make the discs?
« Reply #19 on: August 31, 2016, 04:09 AM »
A bit late to the discussion I know but I made one recently for my daughter's wedding party. The discs were cut from 3/8" ply and I used a 5" hole saw, without the pilot drill, in a drill press. I doubled the ply sheets and cut two at a time but it was still slow going to make the 36 I needed (C4 was 7 x 5 holes to fit a quarter sheet of ply).
The main thing to watch is the heat. I stopped a couple of times to allow the hole saw to cool.
Also don't rely on holding the ply by hand, there is a lot of torque transfer in a 5" hole saw, clamp it to the table with a quick-clamp with the leading edge against the column.

Offline Acrobat

  • Posts: 464
Re: Making a Large Connect Four - How to make the discs?
« Reply #20 on: August 31, 2016, 09:04 PM »
Thanks guys for all the helpful suggestions.
I have cut all the holes 42 in all for both sides cut and drilled the sheets together), and all the discs using a couple of large holesaws. I will enlarge the centre hole to12-13mm so then I can stack the discs on a vertical dowel either side of the connect four.
I chose MDF because it is cheap, flat, stable and I thought it would be easy to cut and paint etc, but boy what a mess all that dust was. No way would I do that many again in mdf. Next time I will try ply. Also of course being a rather large set, it will more than likely be played outside and knowing kids therefore at some stage be left in the rain. Even for a short period it won''t be good for it. I will endeavour to paint and spray a few coasts varnish on it to help protect it
Next issue I have, is how to secure it all together and still have it able to be taken apart and laid flat easily for storage as it's quite large and takes up a heap of space. So I have made the sides slide on with sliding dovetails, but I need to be able to lock it somehow so it can be picked up all together yet still able to be taken apart quickly. I'll checkout some furniture fittings or sliding bolts or something that will do the job. In retrospect I will do the whole thing differently next time but as all my one-offs it's been a learning curve.
Once I fully finish it I will put up the pics...
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Offline #Tee

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Re: Making a Large Connect Four - How to make the discs?
« Reply #21 on: September 01, 2016, 01:56 AM »
Man. Who knew life sized home made connect four was a thing?

ya lol..who has the space to store it? its like a beer pong replacement game
When youre feeling depressed just treat yourself to a systainer even if its a mini systainer its ok.

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Offline jefL

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Re: Making a Large Connect Four - How to make the discs?
« Reply #22 on: September 06, 2016, 02:24 AM »
The sides for mine I fixed with m6 coach bolts from inside the frame locked with a wing nut and penny washer on the outside, two per side. A selection of holes in the upright also allows for height adjustment to suit different age groups.
Storage is much easier as all parts are flat.

Offline eddomak

  • Posts: 300
Re: Making a Large Connect Four - How to make the discs?
« Reply #23 on: September 06, 2016, 02:31 AM »
Well, the Wood Whisperer has coincidentally released this video the other day, where he uses the router on a trammel method.


Offline Acrobat

  • Posts: 464
Re: Making a Large Connect Four - How to make the discs?
« Reply #24 on: October 26, 2016, 08:37 PM »
As promised here's some pics of my large connect four I made for a lady and her large family of many kid
« Last Edit: October 26, 2016, 11:53 PM by SRSemenza »
Don't wake me, I'm livin' the dream!

Offline Acrobat

  • Posts: 464
Re: Making a Large Connect Four - How to make the discs?
« Reply #25 on: October 26, 2016, 08:39 PM »
Sorry no idea why the iPad rotated the images and no idea how to rotate them back here correctly.
Thanks for everyone's suggestions regarding the large connect four.
Don't wake me, I'm livin' the dream!

Offline SRSemenza

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Re: Making a Large Connect Four - How to make the discs?
« Reply #26 on: October 26, 2016, 11:55 PM »
Sorry no idea why the iPad rotated the images and no idea how to rotate them back here correctly.
Thanks for everyone's suggestions regarding the large connect four.

Hmmmm, they look OK to me    [wink]



Seth

Offline Acrobat

  • Posts: 464
Re: Making a Large Connect Four - How to make the discs?
« Reply #27 on: October 27, 2016, 05:41 PM »
Hi Seth
wow, thats odd, as I looked yesterday and they were all showing on their side, but now they are fine. Ghost in the machine...
cheers
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