Marble Chess Set Pieces
The Marble chess set remains a popular choice for a stone chess set.Marble has been used for sculpture and decoration as far back as the ancient Greeks. It's often been the preferred stone for carving because it has a medium hardness allowing it to be shaped but hold very fine detail. And when brought to a polish, marble sparkles. When it comes to stone chess sets, there's nothing quite like marble chess pieces.
These qualities allow for marble to be sculpted into an elegant marble chess piece. However, a marble must be treated carefully. It will not hold up well outdoors and it's less stain resistant. Citric acid, alcohol, or oils can all cause damage to marble. Stone marble must be treated like furniture but if treated properly, it can remain beautiful for decades.
Marble chess pieces are triple weighted, meaning they're around 75 grams. This makes the pieces more difficult to knock over when playing a game. However, marble chess boards can be purchased individually so that you can use pieces made of different material if so desired.
An alternative to marble is marble resin. This is a mixture of ground marble and stone with a polyester resin. This mixture is then poured in moulds to form pieces. It will not stain as easily as regular marble because it's coated with a protective layer.
Marble resin sets can be a better alternative if you want a set with a marble feel but are worried about it getting stained. They can also be a great alternative if you're primarily looking for a themed set. Marble resin is ideal for themed sets because it can easily be painted.
Just keep in mind that the natural weight of a marble resin piece is only between 15 and 30 grams which makes these pieces significantly lighter then traditional stone pieces.
If you want a really nice traditional marble set then go with pure marble. A nice marble set will serve both as a game and piece of art in one.
Alabaster chess sets are another popular choice. The alabaster of today is a fine-grained variety of gypsum. These stones can be shaped into very nice pieces but because of their softer nature they're easier to scratch or chip, even by a fingernail. Some pieces are also made from oxo-teak which is a compound made from crushed alabaster.
When you think of a stone chess set, marble may come to mind. However, soapstone is another type of stone used for chess sets and has some interesting qualities. Soapstone chess sets are another option. Some ceramics are even made from soapstone. It's a soft stone that often seems soapy to the touch.
It's no surprise that soapstone chess pieces are a popular choice considering that soapstone has been used for carving around the world for thousands of years ranging from the ancient egyptians to the native american indians. This type of stone can be used for carving anything from pottery to molds for pewter objects.
There are two primary types of stone often referred to as soapstone. The first being made of talc with some impurities. This type is available all over the world and comes in a variety of colors depending on the location. Talc is the softest known mineral making it great for carving.
The other type is Steatite. This type consists about 90% talc but also contains some other additives that make it harder then talc soapstone. Steatite only comes in gray.
These types of stone are very dense, more so then marble. This gives it a non-porous nature that prevents it from staining. It is also resistance to acids unlike marble. These stone types may may feel soapy to the touch thus the reason for its name. The stones can also absorb and distribute heat very well.
Stones natural weight is heavy and often triple weighted. This makes pieces more difficult to knock over and can make playing the game more enjoyable. Soapstone sets also makes excellent decorations for the home.
Some examples of less popular stone sets include onyx chess sets, fossil stone chess sets, Mexican stone chess boards, or even mother of pearl chess board (actually shell).
Stone chess pieces offer heavy decorative pieces and can be created from many types of stone including soapstone, alabaster, or marble. Stones can be shaped into very nice pieces and the natural piece weight is triple weighted. This gives a piece a weight around 75 grams and makes it more difficult to knock over.
Learn more about a variety of chess set pieces.