Chess is a classic game that has been around for centuries, and it's no surprise that it has become so popular. With its strategic moves and timeless appeal, it's no wonder that people are looking for the best materials to make their chess sets. From stone to wood, there are many options available, but which one is the best? The short answer is that it depends on your needs and preferences. Most good quality chess sets are made from exotic woods such as ebony, rosewood, boxwood, bubinga and the like.
Aspen is one of the favorite woods of some North American chessboard manufacturers, with Populus tremula being the most favored species. The broad sapwood is whitish to creamy in color and gradually fuses with the heartwood, making it easily converted into veneer. It is also a favorite wood for chessboards because of its high availability and its smooth finish. For those looking for something more luxurious, bone chess pieces from Series II from Reykjavik are a great option.
These pieces are hand painted with oxo-teak with a remarkable level of detail and come in bright colors that will attract everyone's attention. The luxury chess pieces from the Biedermeier series are also a great choice, as they are a replica of a set originally manufactured in the Victorian era. This set is weightless, but Frank Camaratta has worked his magic to add weights to this replica set without the risk of the ebony pieces breaking too finely. The checkerboard pieces are available in all types of materials, from ancient mammoth ivory to natural stone and plastic.
Each material has its own unique look and a list of pros and cons, so choose the one that most appeals to you. Plastic sets are cheap and durable, but often lack sophistication, detail and elegance. Marble chess pieces are beautiful and luxurious, but sometimes they have the wrong weight and are difficult to play seriously. Wooden games are traditional and elegant, but some require special care. We recommend choosing a set of chess pieces that is weighted to maintain balance, either naturally or artificially.
For regular play, weighted sets are the best option as they provide stability during play. Most chess pieces are weighed with lead discs inserted inside the base of each piece, although some use more unique weighting systems such as a decorative brass disc placed on the bottom of each piece. Other materials such as marble are naturally well-balanced and often do not require additional artificial weighting. The best way to check the weight of the pieces of a chess set is to find them in a physical store and manipulate them or find someone who owns them and lets you check them. So you can shop with confidence online. Think about how you plan to use your new chess pieces.
Will it be in constant play every day, will it only have occasional use or will it be a purely decorative item? This will determine what type of durability is needed and, to a certain extent, what material you'll need to buy. Plastic and wood are among the most durable materials that can withstand a lot of wear and tear. They are difficult to break even when dropped to the ground or accidentally stepped on. This makes them an excellent choice for children, frequent transportation or the very clumsy chess player. In conclusion, there is no single material that is best for making a chess set; it all depends on your needs and preferences. Plastic and wood are among the most durable materials that can withstand a lot of wear and tear while marble chess pieces are beautiful and luxurious but sometimes have the wrong weight and are difficult to play seriously.
Bone chess pieces from Series II from Reykjavik are also an excellent choice as they come in bright colors that will attract everyone's attention.