Make an appliance box fort

Make an appliance box fort



It’s no secret to kids that a big cardboard box is the best play fort you can have. Find a washing machine box on the curb, drag it home: instant fun. If you want some amenities, such as a drawbridge door or firing slits, you need to put a little extra work into it.

I’ve embellished ours in the past with everything from a Swiss Army knife to a box cutter. Turns out, a Dremel Multi-Max is a much easier, more controllable tool for this than anything I’ve tried. Add some good fasteners and there’s no limit to the size and complexity of the cardboard castles you can construct.



Dremel Multi-Max oscillating tool with circular drywall/wood blade
Drill with ¼” bit
Big cardboard box from a fridge or washer/dryer
Cardboard supports that come with the box (optional)
Small cardboard tube
Box rivets from Mr. McGroovy’s or other fasteners
Ruler and pencil

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(Right click to save the PDF to your desktop.)

4 thoughts on “Make an appliance box fort

  1. Donald Haas says:

    Part of the fun of making a box fort as a kid was doing it myself. My parents let me use a box cutter under their supervision, but I was young enough I doubt they would have let me use the dremel tool. I get that it’s easier to control, but it just seems like overkill for something like this.

    1. John Park says:

      Hi Donald, great point, kids love building, for sure. I actually found that the Dremel was more controlled than the slicing action of a box cutter, and both my 4- and 7- year old have took supervised turns cutting out cardboard fort windows with the Dremel.

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John Edgar Park likes to make things and tell people about it. He builds project for Adafruit Industries. You can find him at and twitter/IG @johnedgarpark

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