How to Make a Cribbage Board: A Step-by-Step Guide

Cribbage is a classic card game loved by many, and having your own cribbage board adds a personal touch to the experience. Creating your own cribbage board can be a rewarding woodworking project that allows you to showcase your craftsmanship skills while enhancing your gameplay. In this detailed guide, we’ll walk you through each step of making a cribbage board from scratch.

Gathering Materials and Tools

Before diving into the construction process, it’s important to gather all the necessary materials and tools. Here’s what you’ll need:

– A sturdy piece of wood (preferably hardwood) measuring 4 feet long, 5 inches wide, and around ¾ inch thick
– Sandpaper (grits ranging from coarse to fine)
– Wood stain or paint (optional)
– Clear varnish or sealant

– Table saw or handsaw
– Ruler or tape measure
– Pencil
– Drill press or hand drill with bits appropriate for peg holes
– Countersink bit
– Router with straight-cutting bit

Preparing the Wood

1. Begin by marking where you’d like your peg holes on one side of the wood strip.
2. Using an appropriately sized drill bit for your chosen wooden pegs (typically around ⅛ inch), carefully drill holes at regular intervals along the marked line.
– Ensure consistency in hole depth by using a piece of tape wrapped around the drill bit as a depth guide.
– Leave ample space at both ends for scoring markers.

Cutting and Shaping Your Board

1. With safety precautions in mind, cut down your wood strip into its desired length using either a table saw or handsaw.
2. Using a ruler or tape measure, mark the center of your board’s width along its length.
3. On one side of the marked line, use a router fitted with a straight-cutting bit to create a groove about ¼ inch wide and ⅜ inch deep.
– Ensure that the groove runs along at least two-thirds of your board’s length to accommodate scoring tracks.

Sanding and Finishing

1. Smooth out any rough edges on your cribbage board using sandpaper, starting with coarse grit and gradually progressing to finer grits for a polished finish.
2. If desired, apply wood stain or paint following manufacturer instructions for an enhanced aesthetic appeal.
3. Once the stain/paint is dry, evenly coat both sides of your cribbage board with clear varnish or sealant to protect it from moisture and wear.

Adding Personal Touches

Now that you have completed constructing your cribbage board, consider personalizing it further:
– Engrave initials or decorative patterns onto the surface by hand or using laser engraving techniques.
– Apply felt pads on the bottom corners of the cribbage board for added stability during gameplay.


Creating your own custom-made cribbage board can be an exciting project that combines woodworking skills with gaming enjoyment. By following this step-by-step guide, you should now have all the knowledge needed to make your very own unique cribbage board from scratch. Enjoy countless hours playing this classic game while appreciating the craftsmanship behind every move!