Chess Board

  • Advertise with us
Project by JMB posted 2008 days ago 1728 views 4 times favorited 11 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This was my thesis project when I graduated from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 05. Since then it’s been beaten up some. My skills have improved so much since that time that I find the method of construction I used at the time almost childish. But, we all grow and learn. The playing surface itself is still quite viable. I intend to eventually build a lighter, less clunky apron and legs for the table, and much smaller chairs.

The table is about 4 feet square. The squares of the playing surface are yellow heart and paduk. The body of the table and chairs are a mixture of plywood, red oak veneer plywood, and solid red oak, depending on function construction and visibility. Ideally I’d like to work entirely in hardwoods all the time, but you have to cut corners somewhere or you end up spending a LOT of money you don’t have.

The playing pieces are all my own design and fabrication. Cast bronze. White side polished to a dull shine and sealed with wax. The black side patinated with liver of sulfur to a rich brownish black and sealed the same. Cork circles were glued to the base of each piece to protect the surface of the table from dings and scratches. Each piece is about the diameter of a can of pop and weighs between 5 and 7 lbs.

-- If I can't fix it, it wern't broke in the first place!

11 comments so far

View DaytonB's profile


154 posts in 2490 days

#1 posted 2008 days ago

Welcome to LJ’s ! Very impressive work. I know where you are coming from on the live-and-learn stuff. Your work on the chess pieces is amazing, great design and execution. The chess board looks great and the Chairs and table are nice, too bulky for me but still well executed! Way to go buddy hope to see more of your work soon

View LocalMac's profile


281 posts in 2029 days

#2 posted 2008 days ago

All the lines look very clean. This is a really interesting piece. I don’t think I’ve seen chairs built to match a chess table like this before. I like it. You’re right about cutting corners. One of my friends wanted to build a dresser completely out of solid cherry. I laughed and told him to price it out. He then decided that veneers and plywoods aren’t a bad way to go. I have another friend who just graduated from the AI of Chicago. What do you want to do in the field of arts?

-- Don't tell her I'm in the shop!

View SCOTSMAN's profile


5339 posts in 2209 days

#3 posted 2008 days ago

Now see this is interesting I love the design of the pieces and the workmanship and design of the table and chairs suits me very well good luck Alistair

-- excuse my typing as I have a form of parkinsons disease

View JMB's profile


18 posts in 2049 days

#4 posted 2008 days ago

LocalMac – Man, I’m doing it now! I have a shop, regular commissions and I get to work on my art when I have time. I sleep in when I want and I don’t have anyone telling me what to do or when to do it. All I need now is a windmill generator and a well and I can go completely off the grid. Life is good.

-- If I can't fix it, it wern't broke in the first place!

View firecaster's profile


557 posts in 2042 days

#5 posted 2008 days ago

I love those chess pieces.

-- Father of two sons. Both Eagle Scouts.

View Bob Areddy's profile

Bob Areddy

177 posts in 2026 days

#6 posted 2008 days ago

Cool… why no finish?

-- --Bob

View CharlieM1958's profile


15683 posts in 2842 days

#7 posted 2008 days ago

Quite an accomplishment!

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View JMB's profile


18 posts in 2049 days

#8 posted 2008 days ago

rareddy – At the time I chose a natural rubbed in wax to protect the surface. Nowadays I just use satin lacquer. Much Faster!

-- If I can't fix it, it wern't broke in the first place!

View savannah505's profile


1694 posts in 2210 days

#9 posted 2008 days ago

Thats great work, the playing pieces are excellent.

-- Dan Wiggins

View Rotceh's profile


225 posts in 2071 days

#10 posted 2007 days ago

great work, and great game.

-- Work is my road to knowledge,Curiosity is my fellow traveler. El trabajo es mi camino al conocimiento, la curiosidad es mi compañero de viaje. Héctor

View Tom "BUG" Janos's profile

Tom "BUG" Janos

367 posts in 2104 days

#11 posted 2000 days ago

very nice chess set. And the bonus is you get a workout lifting those pieces lol. Nice

-- Bug from Minnesota. Creating Designer Firewood Since 2006

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics :: gardening showcase