Review: Ceasyde Magnetic Wooden Chess Boards Sets, Premium 15" ×15"

The brief was simple - after losing our 40 year old wooden chess set - somewhere. (Quite how one loses a chess set remains a mystery!)  Find a new FULL SIZE (15" board) chess set online. Ideally with wooden pieces and if possible with a wooden board too. 

Actually finding such a beast proved to be tricker than you might think. There are plenty of cheap multi-game sets with plastic everything and there are super-expensive 'pro' chess sets, but not that much in between. 

However, we found this one on Amazon UK, for just over £40. A little more than we wanted to pay, but hey, why not treat ourselves?

The really curious aspect (other than an utterly botched delivery by our Amazon delivery man, who left it unnoticed in a garden compost bin!!) is that, although this is a good quality item, the packaging is hopeless cheap and nasty, and with typos:

All I can think is that the chess set itself is made by a third party (in China) and then resold under various brands and their packaging. But, ultimately, it doesn't matter if the product itself is decent, eh? And this is top notch, for the money, once out of its tacky cardboard sleeve:

The folding case is wooden, with metal clasps and feels very nice indeed. Wood at every turn. Veneered in places, of course, but really premium to my amateur touch.

Opening the clasps reveals padded storage for every piece:

Perhaps a slight pain when getting pieces out or putting them away after a game, but the presentation is terrific and it makes it easy to see if a piece has been lost (e.g. knocked off the table during a game!)

The pieces themselves are carved wood and fabulous to the touch. I know it's snobbish of me to hate playing with light plastic pieces - these are heavy, wood, and also with a magnetised felt bottom:

Normally when a chess board (and pieces) are magnetised, it's so the set can be used on the move, e.g. in a car. But I think this set is too good for car use, it sits better in the home. But the slight magnetism is still handy, since it stops the pieces being jolted out of position if someone accidentally knocks the board.

I can't praise this set highly enough. The only catch is that, at the time of writing, it's just gone 'unavailable' - maybe worth adding to an Amazon wishlist or just watching the URL/product?


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