Curly Maple and African Mahogany Chess Board

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Project by Mcnervy posted 12-08-2009 06:05 AM 5497 views 1 time favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is my first completed non workshop project since my return to woodworking (1 new house+2 new kids= 5 years no woodworking). I have wanted to make a chess board for years and a basement flood that destroyed my old chess board gave me the perfect motivation. I got inspired by some curly maple i found at a hardware store. I never used it because after trips to Fox lumber and Willard brothers and 500$ in exotic woods i had some curly maple i liked better. My original intent was a two piece border with zebra wood insde and the bloodwood outside but upon the zebra wood closing on my tablesaw blade and stopping it dead i gave up. I planed the curly maple and african mahogany boards pass for pass to get the same thickness. I jointed and ripped them into (4) 2 inch strips that i glued together. I planed those strips flat.
I cross cut those strips in half and glued to have 8 stripes.
cross cut that into 8 strips found the best 8 sides and aranged that and glued up.
ripped a 1/4 saw blade width off to true the edges.
Then i biscuted the blood wood border on.
I left the blood wood about 1/8” proud thinking i would hand plane it down. No luck i could not get the plane to cut
I had to belt sand for 1.5 hours I was covered in red dust from head to toe.
1/4 roundover bit for the border I wanted a more interesting profile but was afraid to ruin the board
Finish sanded to 220 grit
3 coats danish oil each time soak surface wait 30 minutes put more on wait 15 minutes the dry
3 coats of wiping poly applied with foam brush sand 400 grit between coats
steel wool and floor wax final polish. I am happy, Wood is my friend again.
Lumber jocks rules

-- Bennett; If it can't be fixed with a hammer its an electical problem

12 comments so far

View a1Jim's profile


117722 posts in 4085 days

#1 posted 12-08-2009 06:24 AM

amazing chess board

View trimtrac's profile


59 posts in 3737 days

#2 posted 12-08-2009 06:39 AM

the maple really does the trick. It’s one of the better looking boards I’ve seen.

-- Which way did they go? Tell me, tell me I must know I'm there leader!!

View EROCK's profile


86 posts in 3600 days

#3 posted 12-08-2009 07:23 AM

WOW! That board looks amazing! Great job.

-- Eric, Seattle Washington - Sawdust Maker

View yarydoc's profile


417 posts in 3652 days

#4 posted 12-08-2009 07:45 AM

Great looking board. Border looks amazing.

-- Ray , Florence Alabama

View loupitou06's profile


139 posts in 3834 days

#5 posted 12-08-2009 09:29 AM

Great piece, welcome back to the shop !

-- 100 fois sur le metier remettez votre ouvrage

View DTWoodknot's profile


150 posts in 3694 days

#6 posted 12-08-2009 03:55 PM

very nice

-- Dave, I wood if I could but I can't so I woodknot

View tazz's profile


15 posts in 3609 days

#7 posted 12-08-2009 05:03 PM

Really nice board,, What about the chess pieces ?

-- tazz, Lake Elsinore

View Mcnervy's profile


108 posts in 3612 days

#8 posted 12-08-2009 09:12 PM

I am not ready to try to make pieces
I do have a set that goes well with the board

-- Bennett; If it can't be fixed with a hammer its an electical problem

View Ray's profile


86 posts in 4779 days

#9 posted 12-09-2009 11:07 PM

Wow looks great! I also used the curley maple and mahogany on my board. Its a great combination!
Our boards are almost twins! You can view my board.
Keep up the good work!! And most importantly have Fun!

View tazz's profile


15 posts in 3609 days

#10 posted 12-10-2009 05:02 PM

WOW!! Hey thanks for the comment, The problem is that this chess board is not mine I didnt make this one and I dont know were it came from. I really wish I could take credit becouse its really nice.

Can anyone explain what happened, Becouse I have no idea ??


-- tazz, Lake Elsinore

View Ken90712's profile


17741 posts in 3697 days

#11 posted 06-16-2010 10:42 AM

Great looking board! Love the colors!

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

View acducey's profile


65 posts in 3013 days

#12 posted 07-27-2011 05:38 AM

Nice looking board! Nice finishing job too.

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