DIY Poker Table Part 1

Ok, So I've decided to build myself a poker table. The group I play with is getting bigger, and the small octagon table we use can be a bit crowded.

I'm going to build one in the traditional Texas Hold'em style, with a vinyl bumper, wooden racetrack, drinkholders, and raised felt playing area.

Here's an example of the type I'm building:

Here's the lowdown on how I'm doing it:

First I bought three pieces of 8 x 4 plywood.

I bought 3/8 inch for the base, 1/4 inch for the bumper, and 3/4 inch for the racetrack and playing area. (I actually bought sandboard for the racetrack because it was nice and smooth and flat. Will let you know later if that was a good decision or not)

First thing to do, is find the center point on the end to trim the ends down to semi-circles.

For plywood 4 feet wide, your center point is 24 inches. Measure 24 inches in from each side, and from the end. Draw crossing lines on the point.

Nail a small brad nail or something into that point.

Now, I've read many ideas on how people have traced the semi-circle, and I tried many of them. Using a metal rule with a hole in the end would work, but unless I really suck at math, your measurements would be off a tad because the hole is 1/2 inch or so up the ruler. Also, the pencil and the string thing doesn't work well, because you can't hold the pencil at the same angle the whole time, and it bounces around when you hit different grains in the wood.

What I did was file a notch into the end of my metal ruler. Then I drilled a hole in it at 24 inches. I butted the ruler up against the nail where the notch in the ruler was, and stuck my pencil in the hole at 24 inches. This worked GREAT!

After marking your lines on both ends, take a jigsaw and cut them off. My friend suggested a router, but I've never used one, and I needed a good excuse to buy a cordless jigsaw. (Yes, I used a cordless Ryobi jigsaw for this!)

After trimming off all the corners of your base, take the piece you have for your racetrack and playing field (in my case the sandboard) and lay the base on top of it. Make sure it's all lined up, and trace it.


After tracing the base, move it to the side, and find your 24 inch point again, as you did on the base.

This time, drill a hole in your metal ruler at 15 inches. This will give you a 9 inch racetrack (4 inches of that will be covered by the bumper).

After drawing the two internal sides of the racetrack, take a straight edge and mark the inside side of the racetrack down the legth of the wood.

Take your jigsaw and cut it out. Be careful, so as to not split the wood from sag. I had to move my sawhorses around many times while cutting to support both the track, and the playing field.

Getting the inside side cut is a bit tricky. What I did was take a small drill bit, and drilled side-by-side holes big enough to fit my saw blade into. The playing field will be covered with padding and felt anyways, and HOPEFULLY this small hole wont be noticed. (Again, will let you know how this works out!)

After you have it all cut out, lay the racetrack on top of the base and make sure everything lines up well.

Take a power sander and sand down all the edges to get them nice and smooth and even.

At this point, I started the bumper, but the batteries on my jigsaw died, so I will finish them up tomorrow night and post an update with more pictures!

For now, it's Mickeys Time -- fuck Miller Time!

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