Some of what follows are things I’m designing.
Some of it is about the tools and methods that I use.
I’m sure I’m doing most of this wrong.

design notebooks

I’m crazy about design notebooks. I usually carry a Moleskine notebook with dotted pages. I keep separate notebooks for game design and physical designs. Most of my notebooks have a Quiver pen holder, but my physical design notebook is by Galen Leather. It’s large enough to hold the notebook, an iPad Mini, and a large collection of tools.


This is an alternative design for the Fox in the Forest scoring track. It holds the deck and 4 pegs. It’s designed to fit in a Quiver game case. When opened, the case acts as a board/scoring track. Inside are 2 QR codes; one that links to a PDF of the rules and another that links to a how-to-play video. The scoring reference appears on both sides of the board. The hinge, made with no round parts, maintains tight alignment as the box swings open.

vertical isometric game

The working title for this game was Santorini, for obvious reasons. In its current form, it’s a 2-player abstract game. Several publishers have considered the game, based largely on its table presence. I considered changing the name to Oia or Fira, which are villages in the Santorini region, but the game would still be confused with the existing popular board game. I’d love to dust this design off. If you have ideas, comment below.

rondel trays for Macao

I often make items just to enhance our enjoyment of our favorite games. One such game is Macao. It features a rondel device that rotates one position each round. Each “pie slice” of the rondel points to a collection of cubes. I thought it would be nice to have compartments for each of the sections. This design isn’t commercially viable because 1) the game is out of print and 2) it uses a lot of wood. Each tray is comprised of 4 layers of wood. The rondels included with the game fit precisely in the center of each tray. Small divots allow easy gripping of the rondel to lift and rotate it. I posted the cut files on BGG.

odds & ends

A few odd bits.
I found color-coordinated bags for Carcassonne. At the start of each game, I can just hand each player a bag with all their bits for the game.
I designed some trays for playing Mahjong. They’re exactly the same width as a wall with the tile set we use. This way, we can quickly make a wall without counting.
As a commentary on the runaway expansions for Carcassonne, I made the “jump the shark tile.”
For Christmas 2017, to commemorate the upcoming release of the modular dice towers, I made dice tower ornaments. The D6s are 5mm.
I tried making a foam version of a Gravwell ship, suitable for flying.

pinewood SR-71

My son wanted his Pinewood Derby car to look like an SR-71. Yes, he did the woodworking parts and most of the assembly. Also yes, I was kinda that dad when it came to the design. The engine exhausts, cones, fins and decals came from a plastic model. The engine/fenders are wooden dowels. It didn’t win many races, but it won for design.

cardboard space shuttle

My wife and I made this for our kids. Most of the body is made from large cardboard boxes covered with adhesive vinyl. We had rolls of that from my dad’s sign business. He printed the graphics using a Gerber Edge, again on adhesive vinyl. Most of the cockpit controls are printed graphics, but we incorporated some old computer hardware too. It was about 1.5m tall. The center “bay” was a tent-like sheet that was held in place with rods, connected to the fore and aft parts.

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