Chess box But No Pieces

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Project by Gumnut posted 07-06-2012 03:02 PM 3178 views 2 times favorited 2 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This project was made when I joined a wood club ( that gave me so much inspiration, so to all new woodworkers gain inspiration and knowledge from others in the craft because as you will see in my future posts your skill will improve equal to the amount of effort that you put in.

The Chess board box started as always the wrong way (no plans), Ooops big mistake but I tend to run every detail in my head and become obsessed with it.
The squares are made from Jarrah (Eucalyptus marginata) Burl veneer and I think an Oak burl veneer but I am not exactly sure about the Oak as it was a piece that was given to me. The veneer was glued onto a sheet of plywood and then cut just above the size that is used in competition chess boards which is about 50mm in my case. Though the regulation is between 50 and 65mm.
The I ran the squares between a straight router bit and a fence which is the wrong and very dangerous way of doing things so if you do as I have make very fine cuts at a time to size the squares down. Doing it this way has the advantage of making each square identical and a true square.
They were glued onto a board and edge stripping with locally bought inlay was attached. Here is the classic mistake of not using veneer on both sides of the wood which could cause warping later on in its life.

Then the base was made up of Western Australian Sheoak (Allocasuarina fraseriana), I had to cut the slots inside for the chess piece dividers first. I Mitred the corners and added two splines into each corner by running the assembled box frame on a sled through the router and then gluing a piece of leftover sheaok into the slot.
The inside divider walls were made up with some odd wood that was left over and lengths of Jarrah that were rounded off. when fully assembled I glued the leather inside with contact adhesive making sure I cut it to the correct size using a knife to push the leather into the edges so no gaps appeared.

The hinges are readily available knife hinges and also the same for the lid stay.
The finish is a two pack resin so the chess pieces wouldn’t scratch the surface.
A sheet of tan coloured felt was glued to the base so the box would not scratch any surfaces.
Hope you like it, any comments welcome?

-- Peter, member of the Fine Woodwork Association

2 comments so far

View BTimmons's profile


2303 posts in 3046 days

#1 posted 07-06-2012 04:01 PM

It’s a looker, for sure. Although I would’ve opted for a satin finish, I like it.

-- Brian Timmons -

View MarkTheFiddler's profile


2068 posts in 2749 days

#2 posted 07-06-2012 09:21 PM

Beautiful work Gumnut.

-- Thanks for all the lessons!

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