We are up to 136 blocks, plus a few that I don’t count- just painted poplar pieces leftover from other projects, they aren’t sized right for the rest of the set. And 45 different colors. I have a thinner blade that should be able to handle those tight curves much better than this one does- I just need to have enough wonky pieces to push me into switching them.
Blocks are definitely one of the easiest and cheapest wooden toys to make yourself- and you can get so creative with the shapes. I’ve been using big inexpensive planks of “SPF”- Spruce/Pine/Fir, AKA: Whitewood (heheh). It’s just cheap softwoods that are used inside walls- they have ugly knots, are very dusty to cut, and come with ugly stamps all over them.
But, better wood in Florida is $$$$$. Thick good wood (these are 1.5″ thick, 2″x6″x8’s) is next to impossible to find, and shipping gets outrageous. These are pretty light- they don’t break toes when a tower tips over. They sand quickly, they don’t wear down my blades, I don’t cry when I screw something up.
I have been able to cut through these thicker boards with my scroll saw, but, I definitely recommend a band saw (for speed alone). I try to stick with multiples of 1.5″ for most of the designs- it helps make things stack stably.
I am really running out of space in the pillowcase now!