DIY Sports Scoreboard

My brother is in charge of the Roller Hockey Club at Virginia Tech.  A few weeks ago, he asked if I could build a scoreboard for the rink.  I was thrilled with this project and had a blast brainstorming ways to make one that would work for the league.  While making the scoreboard, I thought that something similar would look fantastic as a headboard or wall decoration for a sports-themed boy’s room.  Here’s the tutorial!

I first bought a large sheet of plywood from Lowe’s, and sanded the entire thing using our random orbital sander with a course, 60-grit sandpaper.

I focused mainly on the edges of the plywood and sanded them until they were rounded and smooth to touch. I didn’t want anyone to get splinters while handling it.
Then, I applied two coats of primer to the front and back of the plywood.  I’ve been using Zinsser primer for all of my recent house projects, and so far, it’s worked out great!  It dries quickly and has great coverage.
Ready to paint!
Virginia Tech’s colors are maroon and orange.  Using leftover paint from our bonus room project, I coated both the front and back of the scoreboard with four coats of Olympic’s “Merlot” in satin finish.  Olympic’s “Premium One” paint + primer combo covers extremely well and I probably would’ve gotten away with just two coats of paint, but I wanted to make sure that the scoreboard could survive a heavy beating at the hockey rink.
Once the scoreboard was dry and good to go, I brought it inside the house and started stenciling letters onto it using a pack of mailbox stencils from Lowe’s.  This was a time consuming process, but I wanted the scoreboard to look as professional as possible.
To do this, I traced the outline of each stencil onto the scoreboard with a pencil.  I also free-handed two Virginia Tech logos on the front and back of the scoreboard to add some interest.
Once all of the stencils were traced, I filled in each letter and logo using a small acrylic brush and leftover white paint from our crown molding projects.  Each letter took three coats of paint and a lot of patience, but was well worth the effort!
The next step is something that I neglected to document with a camera.  🙂
The layout of the front of the scoreboard consisted of blank areas and stenciled titles that said HOMEVISITOR, and PERIOD.  I wanted the scorekeeper of each hockey game to be able to record not only each team’s score, but the period and the names of each team, as well.  Therefore, I taped the outlines of boxes for each section and filled the boxes in with four coats of chalkboard paint.  This was the first time I’ve used chalkboard paint, and it turned out great!
Once the chalkboard paint was dry and the painter’s tape was removed, I covered both the front and back of the scoreboard (except for the chalkboard sections, of course) with four coats of polyurethane in a glossy finish.  As far as I was concerned, this scoreboard was going to be able to survive a hurricane!
Here is the finished product:

Since I had plans to hang it on the rink’s chain-link fence, I wanted to make sure that the back of the scoreboard also served as an advertisement for the league.

To be able to actually hang the scoreboard onto the fence, I then needed to drill holes into each corner of the the plywood and affix the scoreboard using four carabiners. Therefore, I drilled a pilot hole into the scoreboard with a small drill bit, as demonstrated below.

Then, I bored larger holes with a bigger drill bit.  This reduced the amount of “biting” that the drill bit would make on the surface of the scoreboard. 
Finally, it was time to play some hockey!

I received many compliments and thank you’s from the guys during this past Sunday’s games.  They loved the scoreboard and were very appreciative of it.  I know that it will get a lot of use during this spring season.  

This was such a fun project, and I enjoyed taking a break from house renovations!

You may find me linking up at these fantastic parties:

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8 thoughts on “DIY Sports Scoreboard”

  1. So funny that I just came across this because we are in the process of making our own scoreboard! We are using the same letter stencils too! Love how your turned out :o) -Sarah @ Repeat Crafter Me

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