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What Can I Use Instead of a Planchette With a Ouija Board?

Karen Frazier
Planchette on talking board highlighting word yes

If you're using a homemade Ouija board or your Ouija game is missing some parts, you're probably wondering what to do for a planchette. There are several alternatives to a planchette you can use as a substitute so your Ouija board is still functional.

Spirits Use the Ouija Board Planchette to Communicate

When you use a Ouija board, the planchette is the wooden or plastic piece that slides easily along the board to point at letters, numbers, and words.

  • A standard planchette is usually made of a heart-shaped piece of plastic with a flat, round plastic lense embedded in the pointed end so you can see what letter, number, or word it lands on through the window.
  • The planchette may also use the pointed end to point at letters, numbers, and words.
  • In order to allow it to slide along the board easily, the planchette has short legs with felt pads as feet.

During a Ouija board session, two players sit on opposite sides of the board resting their fingertips lightly on the planchette, which moves in response to questions. This essential piece of equipment is what allows spirits to use the Ouija board to communicate and answer questions so when it goes missing, your board is rendered useless unless you can find a suitable replacement.

Requirements for a Substitute Ouija Board Planchette

With the above function in mind, a substitute for a Ouija planchette needs to have the following properties:

  • It needs to be large enough that two people can place at least one fingertip on it.
  • It must be relatively smooth so it can slide easily along the surface of the board.
  • It needs to be of a shape or size so you can easily read the letter, number, or word it indicates.
  • It must be stable and heavy enough it won't move on its own with a slight breeze or if someone inadvertently bumps the Ouija board.

Use Common Household Items as Ouija Board Planchette Substitutions

Many small items you probably already have around your house make a passable planchette substitution when you're working with a Ouija board or a talking board. If you need any of the substitute planchettes to slide along the board's surface better, you can use double-sided tape to affix a cotton ball or part of a cotton ball to the solid surfaces that will come in contact with the board.

A Large Coin

Any coin quarter-sized or larger will work well as a Ouija board planchette. Quarters, fifty-cent pieces, and dollar coins or similarly sized coins such as money from other countries or commemorative medallions will all fit the bill here because the surface area is large enough that two people sitting across from one another can each place the tip of an index finger on it. While the coin will cover the letter or number it indicates, it's easy to tell which number, letter, or word is underneath.

Morgan silver dollar back eagle 1881 united states historic coin

A Large Washer

Similar to a large coin, you can use a large metal washer with a thick rim to move to each letter. The two players need to rest their fingertips along the top edge of the washer on either side of it.

Cut metal washers

A Piece of Cardboard

Cut a piece of sturdy cardboard into the shape of a heart using a box knife or scissors. Then, cut a round hole in it at the pointed end as a viewing window. Players need to rest their fingertips very lightly on the planchette's surface so they don't pin it down and keep it from moving. You can also cut the cardboard into the shape of a triangle and mark one tip with a felt pen as the pointer that will point to each letter.

A Backgammon Piece

Backgammon playing pieces are about the size of a coin, and they have a smooth surface that slides easily. Use just as you would a coin.

Wooden Backgammon board with slots and dice

A Poker Chip

Poker chips will also work similarly to a coin, washer, or backgammon piece. The surface should be smooth enough it will slide easily.

Man pushing large stack of poker chips across gaming table

A Shot Glass or Whiskey Glass

Turn a clean, dry shot glass or whiskey glass rim-side down on the board's surface and have each player rest his or her fingertips lightly on the flat bottom of the shot glass. You will be able to see the letters though the glass or use it as you would a coin.

Alcohol shot cup upside down on table

Make a Replacement Planchette

You can also use this Ouija board and planchette pattern to make a planchette out of wood. This is a more permanent solution for a planchette, and you can decorate it in any way you wish to complement your talking board.

No Planchette? No Problem!

Just because your planchette has gone missing doesn't mean you need to give up on using your Ouija board for spirit communication altogether. You have plenty of substitutes in your home you can use in a pinch, and if you're handy, you can even make a new one that will last until you lose it.

What Can I Use Instead of a Planchette With a Ouija Board?