You can use scrap wood for several fun projects. Create wooden toys that kids can play with immediately after building. Salvage small scraps of wood left over from a larger project to use for arts and crafts projects. You can carve, glue, nail or paint a block of wood to make something new.
You can make stilts with two sturdy pieces of wood. Look for straight wood that is at least 1 1/2 inches by 1 1/2 inches. A child under 10 should start with pieces no taller than 4 feet. Choose thicker and stronger wood for larger individuals. Make platforms to set your feet on from two right triangles from a block of wood. Securely fix the platforms in the bottom half of the posts. Sand down the areas that you will be using as grips.
Make a marble run with troughs of scrap wood. Create troughs by adding side rails to flat pieces of wood, just wide enough to hold a marble. Wood glue will work in place of nails for this project, although small wood screws create a sturdier toy. Certain styles of wood trim, or moulding, also work well for this project. Use leftover moulding from a home project, or purchase trim from a hardware store and cut into sections. Place the sections at an angle to each other to make a marble run. Affix supports to a base to hold all the angled pieces in place. Test with a marble until it is angled the way you like it.
Use a chunk of 1/4-inch plywood to make your own L-shaped flying wing. The Canadian Home Workshop site in References describes how to shape the edges so it will fly. Sand and paint it in a classic Australian aborigine design or one of your own choosing.
With scrap wood, a saw and rubber bands, you can create toy boats that can compete in a lake, swimming pool or your own bathtub. Start by making a hull for your boat from a piece of 3/4-inch thick wood. Cut out a 3 1/2-inch wide, 8-inch long shape that comes to a point on the front. Make a notch in the back that is 1/2 inch longer than it is wide. Cut two square pieces 1/4 inch smaller than the notch in the back of the boat. Make a centre cut halfway into one side of each of the paddle pieces and slide them together to make a paddle wheel. Place a rubber band over the paddle wheel and then over each side of the notch in the back of the boat. Spin the paddle wheel and release it in the water.
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