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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is the third chessboard I have featured on this site. The first one was a basic item, with squares made of select pine “chunks,” each 2 inches square and .75 inches high. They were glued in place on a board, with a frame made of cedar around the thing. The lighter chips were unstained and the darker ones got a Minwax mahogany stain. Clear coating was with Minwax poly varnish in a satin finish. The dark pieces were mounted at right angles to the lighter ones.

The second board was similar, but was a three-dimension job, with the front ranks on each side higher up than the second rows, the seconds higher than the thirds, and with the two middle rows lowest of all. The “armies” would essentially march downhill into the plain and then march uphill to conquer the king. In this case, the frame around the perimeter was reclaimed redwood. Clear coating this time was with Deft spray lacquer in a semi-gloss finish. This was a novelty board that would obviously not qualify for tournament play. A conversation piece that could be used to play chess.

This third board is again different. I managed to get hold of some unused flooring boards and cut them up for use as squares. The dark pieces are high-gloss finished mahogany veneer. The lighter ones are solid bamboo. The thicknesses are about a half inch, with the bamboo being slightly thicker than the mahogany veneer pieces, but I sanded each backside with a table belt sander to get them all the same. The frame this time is oak, stained dark brown. I think this board can stand heavy use, what with the pieces made of flooring, and I kind of think of it as a chess board that one could walk on. OK, I am joking here, but the surface does look good, especially that high-gloss mahogany.

As with the earlier boards, during the glue-up work the pieces were separated by small “tabs” made of cut-up tongue depressors, with the squares glued in place with PL construction adhesive, which does not need clamping to hold quite well. As with the other boards, the bottom board holding the pieces is .75 inch mdf, which makes the boards all pretty heavy. Stability is important with chess boards, since there is a war taking place on their surfaces. Each of the three boards has a somewhat smaller standoff base underneath with felt pads to protect furniture.

Howard Ferstler
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Yep, sanchez has it. The spacings (also used with my two previous boards) are strictly an artistic embellishment. My first board was similar (different woods, though) and my second had the ranks at different heights to have the two armies marching downhill to battle on the central plain. This one is back to flat again.

I used to be pretty good at chess (almost won a high-school tournament over five decades back), but these days I can hardly hold my own against the lowest level of the chess game program on my computer. Old age at work.

Howard
 
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