If you are in need of a chess set, there are a vast number of chess sets from which to choose. Depending on your specific needs, you may opt to purchase a chess set made of wood, plastic, metal, stone, ivory or even a glass chess set. For other purposes, the chess set may be antique or themed. Here, the vastness of chess sets available is examined.
If you are a collector of high-quality chess sets or old chess sets, then you may be looking for an ivory set. Since ivory is a sturdy material and it is not easy to find due to restrictive laws, many people see it as ideal for display. You may also decide to seek a set in glass, silver or gold for the same reasons. There are also a variety of themed sets available such as Alice in Wonderland, the Civil War and Army versus Navy. A lot of people see themed sets as investments, as they may become more valuable later. Themed sets also serve to express your individuality. For example, if you know someone with a keen interest in football, you can find a football-themed set.
A chess set collector could also focus on antique chess sets. In order to get a decent appraisal, the pieces should all be included and in good condition. Antique sets that were made before the 1800’s and are not made of base wood will generally be of the most value. Certain sets, such as original signed Staunton sets, are very valuable.
There are also a variety of different woods for chess sets. If you would like the pieces to have a uniform color, a birch set would be a good choice. If you prefer a wood that has more character, the honey-colored European field maple wood might be a better choice. Wenge, on the other hand, is an ebony-colored wood. Wenge is not a common material for chess sets but it is a nice option if you desire something that is uncommon. Elm, while it is a common wood for chess boards, has a luxurious quality.
Plastic chess sets are ideal as a learning tool. Plastic withstands the effects of frequent use and, in the case where any pieces become damaged, they are inexpensive and easy to replace. Chess clubs typically use plastic chess pieces with vinyl boards that roll up for instant portability.