When Buying A Chessboard, One Size Does Not F...

When Buying A Chessboard, One Size Does Not Fit All
by David Powers

That small is beautiful is an age-old advertising motto that is very much alive at present.

The trend is to go for compact, portable and user-friendly products. Everywhere you turn, you can see everyday gadgets and equipments being downsized just to quench the public demand for more compact and portable wares: mobile phones, television sets, cars and computers. The trend is generally good. But, when it comes to chessboards however, even though the smaller squared boards are less expensive, the question is, are they as useful?

A chessboard that is too tiny means that those playing it will find it more difficult to reposition their pieces around the board. The accidental knocking down of chess pieces is a regular possibility. So these are points to think about when choosing your new board to accommodate that set of beautiful pieces you have just spent your hard-earned cash on. Would you really spend on something unwieldy when there are more convenient alternatives?

There's a formula that can guide you in selecting the best board size for your chess pieces.

Computing for the dimensions of the board is the obvious first step. How? Measure the base and utilize 78% of the width of the squares across. The following reference is patterned after the most frequently used board size:

For a king's base that is 1.5 inches high, calculate what's 78 percent of 1.5. You have 1.92 inches rounded off to 2 inches a square. Similarly, for a king's base computation of 1.75 inches, you should have 2.25-inch squares. For a base figure of 2 inches, you should have 2.5-inch squares.

Now, for the mathematically challenged, a quicker solution would be to measure the diameter of the king's base. Then you can simply add half an inch to the figure. This formula lets you arrive at the correct sizing of the squares. This info should serve to guide you over which board to buy!

Note that the suggested calculation applies only to chess boards of standard sizing. They are not applicable to large sets. You'll know jumbo sizes if the king looms at least 5 inches high. If you find that this is your situation, you should best heed the recommendations provided by the manufacturers.

You have a variety of shops to choose from when hunting for that perfect chess set. A great place to start would be to have a look online. Many online establishments offer chess sets for sale. Alternately, you may google the data you need. I, for one, use Google search as a first option.

In case you're not satisfied with the offerings presented by online chess shops, you can step out and scour real malls and specialty shops for your perfect chess set. You will see so many varieties out there; all you need to do is to keep looking until you find the perfect set or chessboard for you.