How to make a Dice Tower

How to make a Dice Tower


hey I’m Jaimie and I’m Jay and today
we’re gonna make a dice tower so Dex tower is basically a box with a
whole bunch of little pegs inside of it you put the dice in the top they clink
around come out the bottom hopefully with a really awesome hull yeah it’s a
super cool thing to have at the gaming table if you play a game that rolls a
lot of dice then this is a nice way to consolidate all your rolls into one
place the dice aren’t falling off the table they’re not knocking over minis
and it’s just cool so our next our design is a riff on a
design from the guys over at geek chic who made a super cool based our few
years ago I’ve always loved that design so we’re gonna try to build something
similar and we’ll see how it goes that’s it sorry
so taking a look at the plans here we can see that there really aren’t that
many pieces you’ve got four walls in the tower itself you’ve got the two longer
outer walls and then a front wall we’ve got a handful of smaller components like
the tavern style sign and the ramp inside that the dice roll out of it
we’ll start by milling up all our pieces so we’ll cross cut what we want then we
can use a template to straighten out this line now we over at the bandsaw we
can chop off that waste and end up with some nice straight grain for the towers
we’re use the jointer here to get a nice straight board so that we can reefs on
half at the bandsaw another pass at the jointer straightens out that face and
then we’ll send everything through the planer for final thickness table saw we
can rip these down to four inches and then two inches for the smaller pieces
and on the crosscut sled we’ll true up one end of each piece we’re gonna set up
a stop block so that we can cross cut these to their final lengths so they’re
the same thing with the skinnier pieces for the outer walls and then the front
wall gets measured to size and cut as well now that we’ve got all our pieces and
they’re cut down to the right size the next thing is the joinery which in this
case is going to be miter joints those are 45-degree cuts that come together to
make a 90-degree angle there’s a whole bunch of them in this project so let’s
go ahead and cut those with our table saw blade at 45 degrees will rip the
long grain miters on the tower wall pieces for the smaller pieces these are
crosscut lighters so we’re gonna use a crosscut sled with a 45 degree setup
it’s important at this step to take our time so that we really get right on the
edge if we go past it it’s likely to tear out the grain which is gonna result
in a lot of sanding for us later it’s better to take our time here and do this
really clean a few quick passes with the hand cleaner our shooting board and this
joint is going to go together perfectly and the shavings are awesome
next we’ll lay out which pieces are which and we’ll start drawing the door
on the front of the tower we measure an inch and a half squared and if you use a
bending something or other to draw a line they’ll mark out clearly where
we’re gonna cut and then a bandsaw we can cut our vertical lines cut out the
waste and bring it over to the bench where we can use a coping saw to rough
out the rest of that curve at the belt sander we can get rid of those saw marks
and get a bit closer to the line but to really dial this thing in to final we’re
gonna use a hand file over the bench we can also use some sandpaper to clean up
the vertical edges of the door from there the door should be in pretty good
shape next we’ll tackle the outer wall pieces
these have a big notch in them that measures an inch and a half in from the
ends and three quarter inches down we’ll measure it with the combo square square
that line across and then continue that line down the face of each piece so that
over at the bandsaw we can cut it we’ll use the miter gauge to make sure our cut
is perfectly square and then we’ll set our RIP fence to exactly three quarter
inches and rip out the rest of that notch do that on each piece I’ll be
ready to move on it’s nice when things start to come
together for the battlements on these pieces these measure a half inch across
so we’ll measure the top we’ll square those lines down the face and then we’ll
set our gauge to a quarter inch for the depth and mark that as well on the front
wall we measure half inch all the way across and we’ll square those lines down
we’re gonna cut these on the table saw but we want to make sure the lines are
clearly marked so we know where to cut it’s surprisingly easy to cut in the
wrong place even with all these marks so we’ll make sure they’re clear back at
the table saw we’re gonna take out our combo blade and we’re gonna put in a rip
cut blade we’ll see why this is cool in a minute we’ll set our depth of cut to
exactly a quarter inch above the crosscut sled and then we can line up
our pieces against the fence and with the flat tooth of the RIP blade easily
cut these battlements the other blade we’re using has an angled tooth so this
technique doesn’t work as well from here a few minutes with a sharp
chisel cleans it up and it’s good to go now that we have all these pieces will
do a quick dry fit just to check it out and it’s looking pretty cool but before
we glue it up we’re gonna pre finish the inside of the tower since it’ll be
pretty much impossible to access once it’s glued up we’re gonna finish it with
shellac which is a super easy finish to use it dries really quickly and it’ll be
really good for this we’ll use a foam brush to apply the shellac we’ll let one
coat dry for about ten or fifteen minutes give it a quick wipe with some
320 grit sandpaper and then a second coat will do it for the inside once
everything is dry we’re ready to glue up we’ll put all the pieces in line and
we’ll tape them together with some flute painters tape and then flip it over and
apply the glue to the miters using a small craft brush here to make sure that
the glue is nice and even and when you put the pieces together a small plastic
straw helps get any squeeze out of that inside corner we’ll repeat this process
for all of the miters until eventually getting to the end and we’ll seal the
whole thing up with more blue painters tape this stuff is plenty strong to hold
this thing together while the glue dries the same process gets repeated for the
outer walls we’ll tape them together flip it apply the glue and then fold it
up and tape it I cut a little piece of scrap to help tape it together you may
have noticed I went a bit overboard with the glue on those joints and there was a
ton of squeeze out but luckily the plastic straw technique helps get all
that squeeze out of that inner corner as awesome as miter joints are they’re not
super strong because you’re basically gluing end grain to end grain and if you
don’t reinforce them somehow they can come apart pretty easily we’re gonna use
something called splines where we’re gonna cut a groove basically across the
corner and put a contrasting piece of wood in there so it’s gonna look badass
and it’s gonna make it super strong splines are cut on the table saw using a
small jig that lines it up at a 45 degree angle we’re use that rip cut
blade again because as a flat top so we’ll set our depth of cut cut a nice
clean Reuven our jig and then cut all the
grooves by aligning the piece in here diagonally we’ll also repeat that for the two
splines in the outer wall pieces we use a set of calipers to measure the exact
width of that groove and then we’ll take a piece of walnut over to the bandsaw
and we’ll rip it out to that exact width cross cut it off with a handsaw and from
there it’s a couple of quick swipes with a piece of sandpaper to make sure it
fits nice and snugly we’ll mark off the rough size of it and then we can use a
hand saw to cut out the little triangles that we can use as a splines gluing
these in is fairly straightforward you want to apply glue to the groove and to
the spline itself make sure there’s fitting nice and snugly and that they’re
all the way in most what glues say they need 24 hours to fully cure but we let
this dry overnight and it seemed totally fine there’s a few ways you can trim
these you can use a flush trim saw with some tape on the surface to protect it
you can also use a really sharp hand plane which is just a lot of fun it
takes a little longer or my personal favorite a super sharp chisel to pair it
nice and flush and get a perfect surface the next component is going to be the
ramp that sits at the bottom of the dice Tower so when the dice get to the bottom
they roll out the door this is a simple piece of wood angled and glued inside so
that the dice roll out nicely we used walnut for the ramp to match the
splines and after ripping it down the sizing the table saw to fit in there
perfectly it was time to make the angles since this isn’t an exact 45 degrees we
couldn’t cut it on the miter sled on the table saw so we decided to do by hand on
shooting we got the bottom angle looking pretty
much what we wanted and then held it up to mark the second one and it was
actually surprisingly pretty close to 45 degrees after all so we cut off the
waste took it back to the shooting board and gave it a standard 45 degree angle
when we put it in it didn’t quite fit so we brought it back and put a piece of
wood underneath it to bring the angle up to about 50 degrees and after that it
fit really nicely we’re not going to glue this in yet but
now we have a really nice fitting piece to use later okay so the next stage of
this build is to put the dowels in the tower now the purpose of the dowels is
so that when you put the dice in the top they get kind of clinked around inside
and get randomized before they come out so there’s three things we got to think
about make sure there’s enough dowels in there so that a dice will always hit at
least one and get randomized to don’t put so many dowels in there that the
dice get stuck and three we want to do this in a visually appealing way right
so we don’t want like 50 up on one side and none on the other side or we want us
to make sure it’s balanced in that it looks really nice
to make our dowels here we’re going to start with a 3/8 inch thick piece of
walnut we’re going to use that to set the width of the RIP fence and then cut
a piece that’s the same way this gives us a 3/8 inch square piece that we can
put into a drill and then use a dowel plate to turn this into a round towel
piece of sandpaper makes it nice and smooth and then like magic we’ve got
some walnut Dells at the drill press we’ll use a 3/8 inch Forstner bit with a
backer board clamped on to make sure we get some really nice clean holes the
position and the amount of the holes on each side is not critical because we can
always adjust the length of the dowels inside to make sure the dice don’t get
stuck for now we just want it to look at we had a tiny bit of tear out on the
inside so to clean that up to the chisel and then it was on to getting the dowels
ready it took a towel and wrapped it around a piece of wood and then taped a
piece of sandpaper on there and then we could drill the end of the Dallas to
make them nice and round in the end with a handsaw we cut a bunch of randomly
sized pieces to match the number of holes we had and then we cleaned him up
and put a coat of shellac on them so that they were nice and smooth and ready
to install while the finish was out we did a couple
of quick coats of shellac on the ramp using the same technique that we used on
the inside of the tower gluing these dowels into these holes was
honestly the hardest part of this whole project first we had to decide where
they were gonna go so we marked each dowel with a letter and then put some
blue tape to mark the corresponding hole and then we had to put some glue in the
hole and then carefully reach inside and stick the dowel in there in the
appropriate place we left a little bit of space on the outside because we’re
gonna fill those holes with a piece of brass back over at the table saw we’ll
put our non-ferrous metal blade on we’ll get the crosscut sled out and we’re
gonna cut a bunch of 1/16 inch plugs from a 3/8 inch brass dowel whenever we
cut these we always end up with a little tab on the end of each of them they sand
off easy enough but it’s kind of a pain in the neck to glue all of the plugs
into the holes all it took was a little dab of super glue and then to tap them
into place with a hammer luckily they fit really snugly in these
3/8 inch holes with all the plugs in and the glue dry we are finally ready to
start sanding using brass and other soft metals and
your woodworking is easier than you think you can buy stock like this online
for like a couple of dollars I think this dowel was literally like a dollar
so just google it you can buy them on lots of different websites and get them
shipped to you just make sure that if you’re ascending or cutting metal that
you’re always wearing a mask and eyeglasses because the dust is brutal
we started with 80 grit sandpaper because of the brass then I’d have gone
all the way to 220 with a random orbital sander finish it out with a 320 by hand
and then burnish the surface with some hand plane shavings okay finally done
sanding that took like 10 times longer than I thought
sanding those little brass pieces to get flush with the wood took like a million
years because I didn’t do a good enough job when I glued them in they were kind
of crooked and a little well not flush enough I think I could have done a much
better job putting them in that would have saved me a ton of time so I’ll
remember that for next time but for now we’re ready to move on in
the next step for the finish on the dice tower we’re use water locks which
protects super well if you do the three coats like they recommend then it really
protects nicely against oils and you know spills and stuff like that not that
the dice tower is going to get wet but it does constantly get picked up and
moved around a lot at the dice table and you know people might spill things or
just have greasy hands and stuff like that and you want to protect it against
things like that because it’ll just last longer and it’s worth it after cleaning
up the surface with some mineral spirits to get rid of any latent sawdust we used
a foam brush to apply the first coat of water loves this finish goes on really
easily you really only have to worry about
making sure it’s nice and even and that you don’t have any drips we ended up
doing three coats and each coat takes about 24 hours to cure so it ended up
taking about three days to get it all on but it looks really really to make the sign that hangs in front of
our dice power we’re going to use a wet ink image transfer technique now
typically we use something like a branding iron
but our logo is brand new and we haven’t had a chance given those made yet but
this method still gives you that really cool aged look it’s also super fast easy
to do all you need is an inkjet printer and some freezer paper that’s the
sternum first let’s prep the wood by roughing it up with sandpaper this helps
our ink sink into the wood better next cut the paper out to match your printer
for us that was eight and a half by eleven freezer paper has a plasticky
coating on it that helps the ink sit on top instead of soaking in once your
paper is ready let’s take the image into Photoshop and get it ready for printing
we’re gonna resize the image so that matches the size of our sign will also
make the canvas a little bigger lastly we’re gonna mirror the image so that it
prints out in Reverse we want the ink to be wet when we put it
on the woods so this next part we have to work pretty quickly on we cut out the
image to match the size of our sign and then carefully place it face down on the
wood will rub over the surface with something hard like a credit card to get
the ink to soak into the wood and really careful not to move the paper
carefully peel the paper off and hey it worked now we’re going to cut out the sign with
a handsaw the size here isn’t really exact it’s just whatever looks best to
keep our size we’re using a handsaw here because it’s a small piece and a little
delicate using a disk sander we’re going to round off the corners and smooth the
edges now we’re gonna drill the holes where the sign is going to hang from to
hang the sign we’re gonna use a small wire so we’re cut a piece to length and
then twist it up we’re using this wire because it’s super easy to work with and
it helps the sign say in place but you can just as easily use some twine or
string we’ll trim off the excess and then color it with a sharpie to make it
look a little aged and not so shiny we were originally going to use a
roundel for our sign post but then we decided it looked better square so we
are Rhys queering up our doubt we drilled some holes in our sign post and
then thread the wire through and bent it over on the site is done and worthy of a wicked
tavern finally we’ll drill a hole for where we
want the signpost to go now that everything else was done and
out of the way it was finally time to glue in the ramp it took a little bit of
superglue on the sides and just put it right in place and a clamp holds it in
to glue the outer wall component on to the tower itself we also used super glue
so we applied a little bit on to the inside there spread it around evenly
with the brush and then slid the tower in from the top and carefully put it
into place a couple of clamps and a few hours later and it was all done dude that was awesome that was so much
fun to build that was definitely a lot of fun to build it changed a little bit
from our original design but it came out really nice I’m super happy with it yeah
I can’t wait to use it this weekend I think this is a tower truly worthy of an
epic adventure hey everyone thanks for watching we had
a ton of fun building spice Tower and if you build your own dice tower send us
picture we’d love to see it be sure to subscribe to our channel we
have a lot more awesome videos coming up and tell them stay wicked perfect do
they have all the time if you can’t even see them if you build ice tower send it
send it to us okay hey everyone

98 thoughts on “How to make a Dice Tower

  1. Have you considered making your own Blueray laser engraver for pieces under 40mmX40mm?
    Also consider a fer angled pieces on the ramp to make sure dice always come out.

  2. Well mine isn't as nice as this one, but I did build one out of cardboard. As a attempt to see if I even could and as a prototype. Gonna try wood next, once I get some more tools other than a box cutter.

  3. Wow, it was amazing seeing this incredible build. So nice with the wood. Meanwhile, I just PVA some foam core together in an afternoon…

  4. Hey Wicked
    nice work – The only thing I'd do differently would be to have a dowel in both sides at the bottom to have the outer wall on so it could collapse for transport. Like he said, it gets moved around. You don't always play at home, so a way to pack it up a bit smaller is a nice feature.

  5. I remember wood shop it was cool but im a matt (machine tool tech) grad. Ha metal bitches. Oh wood is for beginners but its cute.

  6. Yeah guys let me go spend 10,000 plus on all those tools, or do it all by hand, or build one out of legos, OR i could just buy one for 30 bucks.

  7. so what you're saying is, all i need is a table saw, a belt sander and about four to five days and i could make this? eh nah, i'll just stick to rolling my dice… on the table.

  8. I   don't    understand  the   Point  of  this,   Most   Dice   Games   You  just    roll   them   or    use   a   Dice   Cup.   A   Dice   Tower    seems   a   bit    extreme   and    Pain   to   carry  around.

  9. Was about to say how much I enjoyed the background music, when I found out not everybody seems to like it. …Well, surprise-surprise. Anyway thanks a lot for sharing your magnificent crafting with all us. I find it a bit hard to follow due to the lack of a workshop and the skill. But it's very cool to learn from the masters

  10. Really nice build and I think I’m going to try one myself. I can’t read the dimensions very well in the video though.

  11. I actually like the idea of having the tray at the bottom not have a …bottom…heh. Makes it easier to pick up the dice because you can just move the tower and scoop them up off the table.

  12. Nifty take on one. Good for just sticking it in one place. But the size and being glued together seem like it would be a bastard to travel with. Though point to counter point; This 'wood' be a nice table piece.

  13. ….. you make this tutorial for the general person? who has a full wood shop and all those super specific jigs….like could you not have done this with mostly hand tools or something reasonable???? how many people are reallly going to own a drill press and a bandsaw or for that matter a belt sander?

  14. Really cool build! One minor bit of constructive criticism from a DM though: You shouldn't have glued the cage on to the tower. It makes transportation kind of a pain. It would have been better if the cage was completely separate (maybe with an added felt-lined base and a fourth wall so that it could function as a dice tray, or attached with some kind of hinge so that the tower can lay in the cage when not in use.

  15. Instead of dowels you could put a couple steep ramps at the top and in the middle angling in opposite directions and cover them in velvet or some other rough material. The velvet will grip the dice a little and cause them to roll, randomizing them without having to drill holes in the side of your pretty tower and dampen the noise so it isn't making a loud rattle whenever you use your tower.

  16. Watched a few of your videos you are a great maker. Not ashamed to admit that I liked you even more when I saw the rtx hat.

  17. I like the castle theme of your box. Made one years ago from someone's idea to play Axis and Allies, with the exception that the inside had two angled plates going downwards instead of sticks. It had the advantage of being covered with fabric and being less noisy. I even saw one that folds down for storage. These things are awesome to play a ton of dice.

  18. Thanks for bringing up burnishing with shavings, I always do that when turning, but never thought of it on flat surfaces. I will definitely try that on my next project

  19. Most dice towers i see online (to buy), are SO boring. Same-ole-same-ole. Would love to see some newer, more creative designs, including but not limited to Scifi themed towers, Cyberpunk themed towers, and extra tall towers (towers up to 2ft high).

  20. Every crafting project somehow gets so much less impressive when people have thousands of dollars worth of equipment that perfect and automate about every step

  21. Would love to know what application you used to make that 'blue-print' looking image at 0:48. Looks really slick. Beautiful end result too!

  22. If you are looking for something other than a credit card for the transfer stoneware cleaners are great I got one from pampered cheff for a few bucks

  23. It'd be nice to have all the tools used in this video. They certainly make this sort of project easier. But you can do this project with just a circular saw and some sanding to clean stuff up if you, like me, aren't fortunate enough to have a shop.

  24. All that work and you could not drop some dice down it to show us how well it worked? And I would of put a bottom board on it and felted it to just look cooler. And added some battements at the top of the tower to mach the wall. To make it look more like a castle. But its your toy, do it your way….

  25. a simple how to! now i just need to spend tens of thousands of dollars to buy all that machinery. Then i can finally make my dice roller.

  26. Great job. Only thing I would of added was a felt field for the dice to roll onto but other than that I love it.

  27. Question:
    Won't it be more durable to make some dowels and glue for the castle ground instead of only gluing it in place?
    LOVE the build, it looks awesome!
    Greetings from Denmark. 🙂

  28. Interesting, though I tend to prefer using the ramps rather than pegs for randomizing dice rolls.

    I would have also suggested getting some felt, self adhesive works well for this, and with your ramp to cover the part the dice will be rolling on with it…otherwise someone will probably show up with one of those fancy, metal dice and the ramps end up ripped up a bit from it.

  29. This is truly awesome! The only thing I would have added is a bottom with felt. Anyone would be honored to have this

  30. I didn't actually build a dice tower …but you do have it..
    Step one – go to the kitchen
    Step two – retrieve a coffee mug
    Step three – use said mug as a dice cup

    I guarantee equal results with this device and with much less labor

  31. While making your dice tower I notice you didnt make a funnel at the base to move dice out the door opening?

  32. Very nice if you have a toolshed with $5000 worth of tools in it. Not practical at all for your average user

  33. I wish I had room for a workshop. I've got a saw and a pencil and I can't cut straight for toffee. Nice build though. My little girls need this. They are enthusiastic dice throwers.

  34. The only change I would have made is to half cover the top as a platform for the dice to rest on. When ready to roll just pull them into the opening instead of dropping them from above. Plus it would give you a chance to put some decorative ramparts around the top.

  35. I've watched this video of y'all building this awesome tower about 40 times, and today I came to watch it just so I could hear the music again 😀

  36. I designed and 3d printed my own dice tower once, but I made the area at the bottom too short, so if you use heavier dice in it they have a tendancy to bounce back inside the tower. Revised version has a larger area at the bottom, and a little step up into the tower.

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