Learn How to Make Your Own Reindeer-Drawn Sleigh From Wood


Find out how to make your own Santa sleigh and reindeer with this guide.

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With Christmas just around the corner, you might want to really get into the spirit of the season with your own working reindeer and sleigh. To make one all you need is some scrap wood and a little bit of elbow grease. 

Happy days. 

diy santa sleigh complete
Source: ND – Woodworking Art/YouTube

But first, you’ll some materials and gear to get the job done. 

The best picks that will help you do the job

With all your tools and materials in hand, it is now time to get on with this epic, but awesome, build. 

Step 1: Make the main body of the sleigh

The first step is to take your large wooden bobbins and completely dismantle them. You are after the main disc portions. 

Clean up and sand them down. Alternatively, you could use some large wooden sheets instead. 

With that done, sketch out the design for the sides of the sleigh, transfer them to the wood, and cut out as needed. 

diy wooden sleigh sides
Source: ND – Woodworking Art/YouTube

You will obviously need two matching pieces. 

Next, take the central cylinder of the large bobbin and trim it down in a set of strips, as shown in the video. 

Step 2: Add details to the sleigh

Next, take your router, and carve out the shape of the inner walls of the sleigh. You can either copy the design in the video or follow your own design. 

diy santa sleigh rout
Source: ND – Woodworking Art/YouTube

With that done, shape and bend the strips of bobbin you cut earlier to match the curvature of the grooves of the inner wall you routed earlier. Connect the pieces to the main sides of the sleigh as required. 

diy santa sleigh inner walls
Source: ND – Woodworking Art/YouTube

Glue and screw into place as needed. 

Step 3: Make the wheels

With some more scraps of wood, cut out a series of blocks large enough for the wheels. Sketch out the size of the wheels, and cut them out as needed. Then bore a hole through the middle. You’ll need four of these in total. 

Next, grab some more scrap wood, design the runners, and cut out as needed. You can make them as detailed or plain as you wish. 

diy santa sleigh wheels
Source: ND – Woodworking Art/YouTube

With that done, take some steel rods and connect the wooden wheels between the runners as shown below. Next, bolt the runners to the main sleigh as needed. 

Once done, the sleigh should roll freely on its wheels. Adjust as needed if not. 

Step 4: Make the reindeer

As with the sleigh, sketch out the design for the reindeer’s body, head, and legs, transfer to some wood, and cut out as needed. 

With that complete, connect the body sides together with steel rods, and add the mechanical and electrical parts for the propulsion system as shown. 

Once done, connect the head and legs to the main body.

diy santa sleigh reindeer
Source: ND – Woodworking Art/YouTube

Next, close up the main body cavity with matching closer plates as shown in the video. Once the reindeer is complete, rig up the reindeer to the sleigh as needed and connect any wiring from the propulsion system to the sleigh. 

With that done, add any other decorative features to the sleigh and reindeer as desired. With the main design is complete, seal the wood, and/or paint it to the desired color.

After that is complete, your DIY wooden Santa sleigh is now complete. Fire up the reindeer, grab some presents, and take the sleigh for a joyride!

If you enjoyed this wooden transport-based project, you might enjoy making your own scale-model sportscar

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