This lesson is designed for those interested in getting hands-on time with wood shop-based tools. In this lesson plan we’ll go over how to build a playing surface for one of the oldest known tactical games still played today throughout most cultures on this planet. Chess is a game that has players from all around the world, separated by culture and language, and connected by 64 squares and 32 pieces that make up this scholastic game. Whether you’re just learning, a piece hustler, or a tactical genius, your future board can be a common ground to spend some genuine face-to-face time with someone in this otherwise tech driven world.
Chess Board Frame
Other Items Needed
Now is the time to prepare our turning blanks for their transformation.
Turning Blanks into Ranks and Files
If we are using turning blanks (blanks), we have to make sure our blanks are all the same size. We can do this by using calipers to measure every blank on both ends and in the middle.
To make this easy on our selves make sure you have a pencil, and some scratch paper if you’re not willing to write on the wood. Once you measure all sides (not including the length) number each blank and write both the number and it’s measurements down on the scratch piece of paper.
An Even Planing Field
After measuring all blanks and determining the smallest, begin to prepare the planer by setting the height to match the height of the smallest blank.
Once height is set, you will run all blanks through planer in a specific manner. For consistency purpose you can mark the end of a blank with a pencil marking the side you’re sending through the planer. In the picture above we would make a hashmark at the end on the top side as this will be the one cut. Once the first side goes through, rotate blank left or right once, mark that side and send it through again. We should only need to plane these two sides.
This task is complete when all our blanks can line up end to end with no variation in sizes. No blank should be thicker or thinner than the other.
Prepare for the next step by placing your blanks on the table alternating wood types so they sit walnut, maple, and so on continuing this pattern until all 8 blanks are side-by-side.