The Samurai Chess Set

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Project by JimArnoldChess posted 03-18-2010 05:37 AM 133608 views 54 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


4264 posts in 2216 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


196 posts in 2081 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 2313 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 2677 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 2390 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


462 posts in 2527 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 2341 days

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

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

View WistysWoodWorkingWonders's profile


12275 posts in 2244 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 2079 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

1585 posts in 2339 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


622 posts in 2337 days

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

very , very, cool

-- -erik & christy-

View mortontony1's profile


4 posts in 2088 days

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

How do you get all the pieces the same?

View deon's profile


2395 posts in 2112 days

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

great work

-- Dreaming patterns

View Mike's profile


391 posts in 2704 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 2469 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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