War of 1812 and Civil War Chess sets - Router Forums
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post #1 of 44 (permalink) Old 07-15-2013, 08:12 AM Thread Starter
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Default War of 1812 and Civil War Chess sets

JOAT and I have been brainstorming up some themes for chess sets. Of course the subject of wars came up (they do make good themes) and he mentioned the Civil War and the War of 1812. Those are two Wars where I've made sets and just wanted to post a couple pics of them. Both boards are about 36" square (they're huge), Abe Lincoln is about 9" tall, foot soldier pawns about 4" tall, the board is removable to feature different battles, this one features a period map of Gettysburg. The War of 1812 set if one of my favorites. It features replicas of the hulls of the Constitution and the Guerririe (sp) the boats are over 30" long, and with the captain it stands about 11" tall. The boats have the two flags, and just like in battle, when you're ready to surrender (or to concede a chess game) you remove your flag from your stern. The boats are significant as their battle was the first official Victory at Sea for the United States...the Constitution is still in service today!!! No dremmels, duplicators, or replicators, pieces are hand carved with old fashioned bench chisels.

Solid Walnut and Maple throughout.

And thanks to the many helpful tips and suggestions I've received from the forum, they help a lot!

Jim
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post #2 of 44 (permalink) Old 07-15-2013, 02:41 PM
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I guess that WOW! pretty well covers it. Ubercool.

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post #3 of 44 (permalink) Old 07-15-2013, 03:56 PM
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Beautiful sets, magnificent even but as a player, I don't want anything but a Staunton style plastic pieces and a vinyl board with the alpha-numeric notations in the margins.
I need to be able to carry it easily to the coffee house or club and if a piece drops and it's broken or I spill beer on it. It's no problem.

And for me, having a chess set to 'simply' look at doesn't make any more sense than having a pre-war Bugatti or 1960 Triumph Bonniville and never taking it on the road. Maybe that's a lousy metaphore. It's like having a fine set of chisels and never cutting wood with them.

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post #4 of 44 (permalink) Old 07-15-2013, 05:34 PM
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Those are absolutely superb! Even a non-chess player like me would be happy to display something like those.

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post #5 of 44 (permalink) Old 07-15-2013, 09:45 PM
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Really nice work. You've clearly passed through woodworking and are into artwork. Great idea and well executed.

Someone I consider a master woodworker once told me that a master woodworker is not someone who never makes mistakes. He is someone who is able to cover them up so that no one can tell.
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post #6 of 44 (permalink) Old 07-15-2013, 10:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by berry View Post
Beautiful sets, magnificent even but as a player, I don't want anything but a Staunton style plastic pieces and a vinyl board with the alpha-numeric notations in the margins.
I need to be able to carry it easily to the coffee house or club and if a piece drops and it's broken or I spill beer on it. It's no problem.

And for me, having a chess set to 'simply' look at doesn't make any more sense than having a pre-war Bugatti or 1960 Triumph Bonniville and never taking it on the road. Maybe that's a lousy metaphore. It's like having a fine set of chisels and never cutting wood with them.
Plastic? Why steenkin' plastic, when you can get wood Staunton style pieces? Or even make your own. Wood pieces don't break that easily either. A vinyl board would be OK, but if I were going to carry, I'd prefer a box to hold the pieces, and a board on top - do it with style. You could even carry a nice board and your pieces in a briefcase; I'd prefer a wood briefcase if I did that.

"It ain't what you're told, it's what you know." - Granny Weatherwax
Fawkahwe tribal police SWAT Team
Some days, the supply of available curse words is insufficient to meet my demands.
.....Call me a craftsman, artisan, or artistic, and I will accept that. Call me an artist and you will likely get a quite rude comment in return. I am not a @#$%ing artist.
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post #7 of 44 (permalink) Old 07-15-2013, 10:57 PM
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Jim, you are so over my pay grade I'm in awe...

This would have been the week that I'd have finished chewing thru the restraints...
If only new layers hadn't been added....

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post #8 of 44 (permalink) Old 07-16-2013, 12:24 AM
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Jim,

these sets are awesome - and as others said already, beyond mere wood working, and well showing beatiful art. Really impressive !!!

Martin

When life gives you lemons - make lemonade.... (1915, Elbert Hubbard)
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post #9 of 44 (permalink) Old 07-16-2013, 05:23 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for your comments everybody!

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post #10 of 44 (permalink) Old 07-16-2013, 05:35 AM Thread Starter
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They are definitely not USCF (United States Chess Federation) certified, so they won't be showing up in any tournaments, but they are perfectly and easily playable. I do make a reproduction set of the original 1849 Staunton designs, that has been popular. Here's a couple pics, I make them for 1.75", 2.0", 2.25", and 2.5" squared boards, and these are within USCF specs.

Hand-turned/hand carved from Walnut and Pear, heavily weighted and leather or felt pads on the bottom. The knights are 1-piece unlike even Jacques or HOS have ever done, if fact, Jacques and HOS use subcontractors to make their knights, they are two pieces the base, and the knight head.

In tournaments today, plastic and vinyl are the standard, but many players use wood pieces in tourneys as well. Came within a whisker of having a set used in the championship match of the Phoenix Open last year.
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