Hand Turned Wooden Chess Pieces
A larger-than-life set that could sell for big dollars, depending on the woods you use.
Step 1: Start by choosing a couple of contrasting hardwoods to turn them from. Walnut & Maple, Pear & Wenge, Beech & Ebony, Holly & Cocobolo, the list is limitless. Due to heavy handling of chess pieces, unless you’re planning to apply a hard cover coat such as polyurethane or varnish, closed grain woods are usually better than open grained woods. The more highly figured and striking the pieces look, the more they’ll be worth to your customers.
Print out the patterns -- they are at 100% of size (each square should = 1/4-inch). If you’d like to make a smaller and/or a larger set, just reduce or enlarge your printout accordingly.
Turn the Kings, Queens, Bishops, Rooks and Pawns according to the patterns. You can turn them freehand or use your Shopsmith Lathe Duplicator to speed-up the process considerably. In fact, for even more efficiency, you can create a set of long templates (or patterns for duplicator-turned pieces), each designed to turn rows of multiple pieces
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