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Choosing The Right Size Chessboard

Finding a chessboard to fit your space can be a challenging prospect - but we have a few simple guidelines to help make things go easier. Before you decide on a size, however, be sure to consider the colour of the furniture and other items that will be in the same room as your chess set.

More often than not the wood that the chessboard and chess pieces are made from provides a contrast or a blend of colours to compliment the room. Once you've decided on a list of possible woods and colours, you need to then find out if the chessboard you want will fit! Here are some things that you can do to help:

  1. Once you know the dimensions of the chessboard you are interested in, stick together some sheets of plain paper and draw the outer dimension of the chessboard on them. Fill the rest of the paper with squares and borders of the correct measurements. Carry this fake board around your home and try it out on your table tops.
  2. Consider making two or three fake boards of different dimensions to see which looks best. You can't be sure that the chessboard you want is really the one that you should have for the space. It makes sense to give yourself some options so you really know.
  3. If you already have chess pieces that you are going to use, be sure to place those on your fake chessboard to make sure that the bases of the pieces fit as you'd like them to. As important as it is to have the right size chessboard for your tabletop, it's also important to have the right sized squares for the pieces. There are no rules and beauty really is in the eye of the beholder! Seeing the whole setup in front of you will give you an idea of how the final chess set will look.
  4. Get someone else's opinion - this can't be overstated! You can easily become blind to an ideal, but a second opinion can go miles before you spend your hard earned cash.

With a few scraps of paper and some tape you can be sure that you will find the right sized chessboard for your space! Of course it won't improve your chess, but your chess set is sure to look fantastic!

The Sheffield Chess Set

The Sheffield. A Larger Chess Set.

One of my all time favourite chess sets is a new style that we shipped in last year. The Sheffield is simply beautiful. Of all the shipping boxes we received, the one containing the Sheffield was by far the heaviest. Noticeably. After several hours of lugging boxes around the warehouse, two of us attempted to pick up one of the last boxes only to find it carried something rather heavy. Our further investigation turned into giddy excitement as we pulled out two cardboard boxes containing large and heavy chess pieces. My, those are heavy chess sets!

Indeed, the volume of wood and the excessive load of the steel weights used to anchor the chess pieces firmly to the board was impressive. At nearly four pounds, I believe this may just be the heaviest mid-range chess set we have in stock. When you consider that the King's base is approximately 1.96 inches - or 50mm - then you can see that the chess board to go with these pieces also has to be large. 

Most of our tournament chess sets fit on a 50mm square. It's standard. Some of the larger sets require a 55mm square. But the Sheffield King's base being a whopping 55mm requires the largest board that we have in stock. And what board would look better than a Santos Palisander chess board from Rachapados Ferrer. With a 60mm square and length of almost 24 inches, the owner of the Sheffield had better make sure they have a large living room.

The Sheffield Chess Set

The Sheffield comes in both golden rosewood (sheesham wood) and ebonized boxwood as the black pieces and standard boxwood for the white pieces. The chess pieces feel extremely sturdy and the Knight has, much like most of my favourites, a gnarly set of teeth which it bares, along with flaring nostrils and aggressive ears.  It's not quite a Fierce Knight, but it's close enough to make me giggle when I play a game. The King height is four inches and the other pieces are well proportioned - oftentimes you can find other pieces appear relatively small compared to the King, but it's not the case here. You can find the Sheffield in the mid-range chess set section of Cool Chess Canada..

The Sheffield Chess Set