I thought I knew all the best backyard games, until I found out about kubb (pronounced ‘koob’). It was like nothing I’d ever seen, but once I understood the rules and played a game, I was completely sold?
Also known as Viking chess, it’s one part strategy, one part skill, and the rest is just plenty of luck. With a standard 4×4 and a few lengths of dowel you can make your own set in an afternoon, and enjoy it for the rest of your life.
Kubb is a simple lawn game played by teams of 1-6 people, with the objective of being the first to knock over the ‘king’ kubb. Sounds simple, but there turns out to be a lot of strategy involved.
Fortunately, building your own set isn’t complicated: I made my set with a single piece of 4×4 fir, and four lengths of dowel.
- 4×4 Post, 8′ long
- (2x) 3/4 inch dowels, 4′ long
- (2x) 1/2 inch dowels, 4′ long
- Paint (optional)
- 1x King (3.5″x3.5″, 12″ long)
- 10x kubbs (3″x3″, 6″ long)
- 6x batons (3/4″ dowels, 12″ long)
- 6x field boundary posts (1/2″ dowel, 8″ long)
Cut the the King and kubbs to size (I used a miter saw, but a hand saw would work fine too).
I got a little creative with the king kubb, creating a crowned and kerfed design (safely) with the table saw. You can make yours as simple or complex as you want, or just opt to keep the king square and use paint to distinguish it.
Spray paint is definitely the way to go here. I chose a solid summer blue and copper motif, using blue tape to make nice crisp lines. Remember to go slowly, and use light passes to create the saturation and opacity you’re after. Three light coats will dry faster than one heavy one, and there’s much less of a risk for drips.
Time to Play!
Overall, the game took about three hours to make and paint, so start early and you’ll be tossing them around by dinner time. And if you do, let me know or leave a comment with a picture so we can check out your DIY kubb set!
This post was sponsored by mike’s hard lemonade, but all opinions are mine alone. Thanks for supporting the brands that make ManMade possible.