Tech Decks and other finger skateboards are very popular and are almost always constructed out of plastic, but did you know that it's relatively easy to learn how to make a wooden fingerboard of your own? This project is great to use in your shop class at school or as a nice little father/son woodworking craft. If you're sick of playing with the same old Tech Decks, try creating your own with customized artwork and a unique shape by learning how to make a wooden fingerboard.
Things You Will Need1 block of wood a little bit bigger than a standard finger skateboard, access to a band saw, sandpaper, skateboard grip tape, 1mm drill bit, power drill, acrylic paint, Tech Deck trucks and skate tool.
Step 1First thing's first; in order to make a wooden fingerboard you need to draw the outline of one onto the largest face of the block. You can do this by tracing a finger skateboard or you can freehand your own design and give it a wacky shape, the choice is yours. I've seen some people give it more of a longboard-shape to it. Just keep in mind that by altering the shape you also change its performance.
Step 2Next it's time to cut the outline out on the band saw. It is recommended that have somebody with you to supervise and make sure you're using safe technique. The most difficult part about how to make a wooden fingerboard is making such intricate cuts. Take your time and wear the necessary personal protection equipment to minimize injury. It doesn't have to be perfect the first time around since you can always go back and touch everything up afterwards.
Step 3Now you need to draw another outline, this time the side view. Use a miniature skateboard as a reference or trace it on for a more precise approach, and sketch the profile onto the side of your finger skateboard. To finish the construction aspect of how to make a wooden fingerboard, make your final cuts at the band saw and carefully follow the curves of your lines. You will really need to take your time with this step because it's extremely small and narrow. Just like before, it doesn't have to be perfect right away.
Step 4Using a fine grit sandpaper, smooth out the surface where you made all the cuts. For the edges, a file works perfectly. It's important to remember to sand and file evenly and conservatively to avoid warping the shape of your finger skateboard.
Step 5Now for the bolt-holes. Without these, you won't be able to put on any trucks, and you won't have too much fun without those. Mark where the holes go with a pen and make sure they are placed and spaced exactly how they need to be in order for the trucks to actually fit on. Secure it in a vice and bore out the holes with a power drill and a 1mm drill bit. You've officially learned how to make a wooden fingerboard now, and the rest of the process is gravy.
Step 6Grip tape is definitely a good idea. How else are you going to be able to stay on the board and control it? Of course you need grip tape. You can also use sandpaper if you don't have any extra skateboard grip tape available. As long as you find a similar grit, it will still work the same. If you use sandpaper, you'll have to use glue, so if you do just be sure to avoid blocking off the bolt-holes. You can use the drill bit to continuously poke through the holes to prevent any glue from drying in them. Cut off any excess grip tape or sandpaper that is hanging off the edges.
Step 7Are you ready for the best part about how to make a wooden fingerboard? Get out your acrylic paint and some thin paintbrushes and start customizing! Start out by creating a solid background and then add in your own artwork when it dries. Three to four thin layers should be sufficient for this task. When you're finished and all the paint has dried, apply a thin layer or two of clear coat nail polish to protect your graphics.
Step 8Now that you have finished learning how to make a wooden fingerboard, you can install the trucks and take it to theâ€¦deskâ€¦or chair, or whatever it is you like to finger-skate on.
Tips & Warnings
If you get good at this project, stick to it. You could make this into a hobby in itself by creating an entire collection of your own personalized finger skateboards. Another option is to ask your friends if they want you to make one for them, and if enough people hear about you, you may end up being able to make a few bucks from each one. If you don't feel like starting your own miniature skateboard manufacturing business, you could always teach everyone else how to make a wooden fingerboard for themselves.
Never operate a band saw unsupervised if you are under the age of 16 or are unfamiliar with these machines. Also, always remember to wear the appropriate personal protective equipment such as safety glasses and leather gloves.