Here are the steps to make a DIY Pickleball Paddle
Create a Template Of Paddles
First, you need to create a template. For example, you can draw a paddle on paper with the desired height and width proportions. Make corrections, again and again, to have the template perfect shape and size. Or to make it easier, you can also print it off on a large enough paper (11×17 should do) the size of the height and width for the paddle you need.
However, one important thing according to the International Federation of Pickleball (IFP) Tournament Rule Book:
“The most common paddle measurement is approximately 8” wide by 15 ¾” long. The combined length and width including any edge guard and butt cap shall not exceed 24”
Choose the Pickleball Material and Thickness of the Paddle
The next step is that you need to determine the thickness and the material used to make the paddle. The standard measurement of paddle thickness is about 3/8″. Then for the construction material, the paddle is made of wood. There are also those who make paddles from 5-7 layers of wood. Not only wood, there are other materials that are also suitable for creating pickleball paddle, such as Nomex, Honeycomb, Fiberglass, Graphite, and Aluminum. However, these materials can be considered expensive and difficult to find. Therefore, to save the budget it is recommended to use wood or plywood.
- Read more: “Are Wooden Pickleball Paddles Good? [Things To Consider]”
After you have adjusted all the shapes, thicknesses, and sizes, you can start cutting the template that has been created. Then, clamp it to your chosen material you can use an adhesive, this can be in the form of a spray or ointment. Just make sure the template is properly secured and can’t escape for some time.
Cut along the Template Guidelines
When you’re done, you can Cut along the template guidelines. You can use any tool that can strip your paddle template image. However, you need to choose an appropriate cutting tool for cutting. Also, the tool must be sturdy and precise.
Removing the template
The next step you need to do is to remove the template from the paddle. This can be interpreted as polishing, squeezing, peeling, begging, or swiping. But you need to see the type of adhesive you are using first on your template.
Once removed, you can start by sanding the surface, and the edges or anywhere your cutting tool went haywire to make it smoother. Keep repeating this process as many times as needed, and this is done until smooth.
Pickleball Design Build
After everything is in order, then you can think about or determine the design for your paddle. Starting by painting, choosing designs, models, graphics, stickers, and more to give the impression that your paddle is attractive and beautiful. Of course, this remains consistent with the IFP rulebook, in that:
“The paddle hitting surface shall not contain holes, indentations, rough texturing, tape, features that are reflective, or any objects or features that allow a player to impart additional or increased spin on the ball”
Pickleball paddle grip – paddle grip size
The next step is to make the handle. The handle of the paddle is made according to rules and regulations that have been based on the level of comfort and adapted to the grip. The first way to make a very easy handle is to make a base by sticking small pieces such as foam or wood on one side of the handle. Then, cover it with one of the tennis grips. You can also apply electrical tape at the very top and bottom of the grip for an elegant look.
Handle sizes are generally between 4” to 4.5”. Different grip sizes will offer different features. When you make a small grip, your wrist moves more spin on the ball and has more control. This means vice versa more stability and less arm fatigue if you opt for a large grip. You can also cover the paddle with adhesive tape.
Test Your Paddles
After everything is ready, the last step is you need to test your paddles! Make sure not to miss anything from the steps above, so that the paddles you make can be perfectly built.
Basically, Pickleball sports equipment is not much different from ping pong and tennis equipment. In the case of pickleball, the paddles are similar to ping pong paddles, but of course, they are different. The paddles you see can actually be that easy to make your own paddles. By following the steps above, you will have your own paddles without having to buy them expensively in offline or online stores.