Old Chess Boards

IanM

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Anyone know anything about Chess Boards?

I've got one, its definitely over 70 or 80 years old. Its just sitting in a cupboard.

What's the best way to get an idea of its worth, or to move it on without getting ripped off? I am sure the local antique bloke will offer me £3 :D
 

Hobbit

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A lot depends on what it’s made from. A basic board isn’t worth a huge amount, a few quid. However, a walnut & amber board might go as high as £20k. An ebony & ivory board could bring a good price, £300-ish, but shifting anything with ivory in it can be problematic - you need to prove when the ivory was culled.

If you know the make, Google it. It’s not unknown for some boards to go for up to £7k. Sotheby’s & Christie’s will auction the good stuff but you could put a good board into a provincial auction house and lose out.


One of my boards, wood inlaid and felt lined tray, around £200 twenty years ago, inc. pieces(heavy metal). American war of Independence. To be honest, it’s not worth much more than I paid for it. The boards are coming out of southern Italy for less than €200 now.

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Hobbit

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Therein lies the issue. No makers name, not sure of materials, but quite heavy wood. A few marks , sadly too, but it got lots of use when I was a kid!

I wouldn’t worry about the marks, they’re seen as patina, and can actually add to the value…
 

sammyzsum

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Having an old chess board sounds intriguing. If it's been tucked away in your cupboard for decades, it could have some real history behind it.
 
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