DIY Whiteboard

In preparing for a new school year, my wife decided that we needed a new white board.  We had one 3’x3′ on the back of an Ikea easel, but she decided that it wasn’t going to be sufficient.

Big white boards, the kind that you get in a school are expensive, and so we decided to go the DIY route.

We ended up getting a 8′ x 4′ sheet of tile board at Lowe’s ($11) (masonite board that is painted a shiny white on one side), hoping that it would be shiny enough to write on, but after bringing it home, and writing on the board, it seemed to leave a bit of a shadow, and didn’t erase sufficiently.

So we decided to splurge and get some dry-erase paint ($22 for a quart) to apply on the tile board.  We were able to apply 3 coats on the mason board, and still have enough to paint both sides of the boys’ bedroom door with the stuff, to give them a built-in white board on their door.

After letting it dry for 2 days, we were ready for the acid test on our new white board:

Unfortunately, it didn’t erase–at least not with a dry eraser, or a dry rag or paper towel.  We ended up having to spray it with the spray cleaner to get it to come off.  Additional experiments led to the same results.  It would erase (leaving a slight shadow) if you sprayed the cleaner (or rubbing alcohol–a cheaper solution) onto the board.

Interestingly enough, though, the paint on the boys’ bedroom door worked beautifully.  Just like a dry erase board.

Nonetheless, we were unhappy with the results, but kudos to Home Depot who gave us our money back on the paint, even though we already used it.


3 thoughts on “DIY Whiteboard

  1. Maybe a little primer would have helped it out???

    Or just a plain old piece of board primed and painted…or maybe a door sized white board????

    Good luck with the new school year!

  2. Yeah, I think that we went through some of that after our experiment “failed.” The thinking with the masonite was that it was a nice smooth surface.

    And I assumed that since it had already been painted, that priming was unnecessary. But I guess something was wrong.

    Oh well, we figure we’ll use this as long as it lasts, and we’re only out $11 (since we got a refund on the paint).

    Now, have you started doing school yet, or are your kids still too young?


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