My First Chessboard/Posting

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Project by inmysparetime posted 1314 days ago 1049 views 5 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch

As the title indicates this is my first ever post on LJs and my first attempt at building a chessboard. I have been trying to register for months and finally got an email today so I’m excited and honored to be on the same site with so many talented woodworkers.
Before I started the board I looked through images online and compiled some ideas that I liked from all of them. I had built cutting boards and small boxes before so I figured I just had to stick them together. My original idea was to make a hinged top with storage underneath, but I kept coming back to the drawer because I liked the look better. This was a Christmas gift for my brother-in-law and it took me a little over a month to build and finish, but he loved it. The 4th picture is from Christmas morning just after he opened it and I had stayed up all night building the dividers from Poplar.
The woods are Bloodwood, Tiger Maple, Walnut and Yellowheart. I tried a new technique for cutting coves on my table saw, a little scary at first but once everything is setup not bad at all. The hardest part was sanding out the saw marks of the very dense Bloodwood. I had some issues with the fine dust from the Bloodwood staining the Maple, especially on the splines where the end grain was exposed (picture 5). The feet and drawer dividers were both last minute additions because I just felt it was missing something. I was trying to make it look like it was floating, it really doesn’t, but I like the look anyway. It is finished with 1 coat of Seal-A-Cell Clear and then topped with 3 coats of Arm-R-Seal Semi-Gloss on the base and 5 coats on the top. The pieces I bought from Lee Valley for like $4 plus shipping, not bad for solid maple and walnut. Thanks for looking and and I’m on here to learn so please feel free to provide any critiques or tips that I can work on. My other brother-in-law wants one now and his birthday is in March so hopefully I can learn from this one and build something cool for him.

-- Mike from Mass

8 comments so far

View Matt Stauffer's profile

Matt Stauffer

76 posts in 1389 days

#1 posted 1314 days ago

Impressive! Nice choice of woods. Welcome to LumberJocks.

-- Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life. ~ John 5:24

View jhawkinnc's profile


111 posts in 1925 days

#2 posted 1314 days ago

Great looking board! Welcome to LJ’s!

View degoose's profile


6992 posts in 1979 days

#3 posted 1314 days ago

Welcome… a fine looking board… i/c storage…

-- Drink twice... and don't bother to cut... @ For lovers of all things timber...

View fernandoindia's profile


1072 posts in 1568 days

#4 posted 1314 days ago

Mike, have nice time here. Welcome.

A great chessboard. I agree that drawers are better for this piece than a hinged top.

Take care

-- Back home. Fernando

View stefang's profile (online now)


12864 posts in 1958 days

#5 posted 1314 days ago

A really beautiful chessboard Mike (I like that name). Welcome to LJ.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View ghazard's profile


379 posts in 2134 days

#6 posted 1314 days ago

Excellent! Really well done. Has a nice look to it…I can’t put my finger on it…

Welcome, you will never get anything else done now! :)


-- "Hey, you dang woodchucks! Quit chuckin' my wood!"

View CharlieM1958's profile


15683 posts in 2842 days

#7 posted 1314 days ago

Quite impressive for your first chessboard. I like the design. I’ve used those Lee Valley pieces myself… they’re a real bargain.

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

View bigike's profile


4031 posts in 1913 days

#8 posted 1314 days ago

very nice looken chess board.

-- Ike, Big Daddies Woodshop,

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