The Samurai Chess Set

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Project by JimArnoldChess posted 03-18-2010 05:37 AM 148028 views 55 times favorited 44 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Started out with the theme and made the pieces, then designed the board to go underneath them. When I can, I like to get the chessboards involved as much as possible with the theme as the pieces are.

The pieces are carved from Walnut and Poplar. Kings about 7” tall. Pawns about 3.5” tall. The board measures about 40” wide by about 27” across to your opponent. On either side of the playing surface there are 7” by 27” sand gardens. The walking path is about 2.5” wide and can hold a number of captured pieces. Those are three ‘live’ bonsai as well making it one of the few chessboards that needs to be watered every other day. A fun set to play with.


44 comments so far

View sras's profile


4645 posts in 2943 days

#1 posted 03-18-2010 05:39 AM

Wow! Very creative! What is the meaning of the symbol in the center of the board?

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

View JimArnoldChess's profile


208 posts in 2808 days

#2 posted 03-18-2010 05:41 AM

Hey Steve,

That is the Kenji for Samurai. Painted it in with ink after the first coat of lacquer was applied. Thanks for the kind words.



View hardwoodman's profile


84 posts in 3040 days

#3 posted 03-18-2010 05:41 AM

WOW! I can’t believe it. It’s so wonderful.

View kolwdwrkr's profile


2821 posts in 3404 days

#4 posted 03-18-2010 05:46 AM

This is very cool. I’ve seen some inspiring chess boards, including this one. I think I have to do the inevitable and make one.

-- ~ Inspiring those who inspire me ~

View Abbott's profile


2570 posts in 3117 days

#5 posted 03-18-2010 05:57 AM

Well done!

-- Ohh mann...pancakes and boobies...I'll bet that's what Heaven is like! ♣ ♣ ♣ ♣

View JuniorJoiner's profile


480 posts in 3254 days

#6 posted 03-18-2010 06:00 AM

this is obviously a very involved piece, and your craftsmanship and carving are brilliant. I have to ask why you didn’t match the riftsawn grain of the front and back rails, on the sides. at this level of craftsmanship I don’t think it is by chance, so is there some reason for it?

A very inspiring project

-- Junior -Quality is never an accident-it is the reward for the effort involved.

View deucefour's profile


285 posts in 3068 days

#7 posted 03-18-2010 06:22 AM

Wow, that is awesome. Did you design the pieces?

View WistysWoodWorkingWonders's profile


12759 posts in 2971 days

#8 posted 03-18-2010 06:27 AM

wow, this piece is absolutely stunning… very nicely crafted…

-- New Project = New Tool... it's just the way it is, don't fight it... :)

View 1oldsarge's profile


3 posts in 2806 days

#9 posted 03-18-2010 06:35 AM

I’d be afraid to play on that. It’s so gorgeous I’d probably get the shakes and knock over a bonsai or something. Well done, that man!

-- Holland's .375: One Planet, One Rifle!

View Monty Queen's profile

Monty Queen

1593 posts in 3066 days

#10 posted 03-18-2010 06:58 AM

I love your work, you did an awesome job.

-- Monty Q, Columbia, South Carolina.

View webwood's profile


626 posts in 3064 days

#11 posted 03-18-2010 08:11 AM

very , very, cool

-- -erik & christy-

View mortontony1's profile


4 posts in 2815 days

#12 posted 03-18-2010 08:16 AM

How do you get all the pieces the same?

View deon's profile


2522 posts in 2839 days

#13 posted 03-18-2010 09:46 AM

great work

-- Dreaming patterns

View Mike's profile


391 posts in 3431 days

#14 posted 03-18-2010 11:06 AM

Love the board the trees however would have to be replaced if it were mine.

Bonsai trees dont live long in my house….

-- Measure once cut twice....oh wait....ooops.

View Junji's profile


698 posts in 3196 days

#15 posted 03-18-2010 12:56 PM

Wow, each pieces are so beautiful!
But for me as a Japanese, Chess and Japanese culture here (Samurai, Bonsai and so on) can’t be mixed, meaning, it’s very unique sense of mixing them together. I mean you really have your own taste. Good job!

-- Junji Sugita from Japan,

showing 1 through 15 of 44 comments

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