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KiloBravo
12-09-2010, 06:08 PM
Anybody make a chess set on their lathe ? Any decent plans available for making a chess set.

What kind of metal would you guys use ? I was thinking brass for one side. However, not sure about the other 12L14 ?

Thanks,
Kevin

I have a lathe and a mill so it does not have to be made strictly on a lathe.

madwilliamflint
12-09-2010, 06:34 PM
Heh. I'm planning to do exactly that. I was thinking about something like 12L14 (send it out to be hardened) for one side then stainless for the other.

I'm trying to come up with a Rook design I like and I imagine some of those curves I'm going to need to grind my own tools for, so that'll be good practice.

I'm a little worried about using brass since it's so damn gummy. I just don't have the English on that down right yet.

rohart
12-09-2010, 06:41 PM
The brass I get isn't gummy. It's showery. It comes off in a shower of fine chips. The faster you machine it, the further the chips fly. You need a good hood if you want to cut at any appreciable speed.

I've heard of this gummy stuff before, but that's not what I get when I ask for brass.

You just want the weights about the same, so brass and stainless would be nice together.

Or both aluminium, anodized different colours. Now that might well be gummy.

Two different colours of acetal/delrin, with a lead insert up the inside of each one ?

Walter
12-09-2010, 09:24 PM
Kilo, I started mine some years back in brass and stainless, however all the stock went to different projects... I still have one brass Pawn :D

jep24601
12-09-2010, 11:34 PM
[QUOTE=madwilliamflint].... I was thinking about something like 12L14 (send it out to be hardened) for one side .../QUOTE]
HARDENED!!! For a chess set??

gr8life
12-10-2010, 01:05 AM
Made this quite a while ago, brass & alum.http://i461.photobucket.com/albums/qq336/gr8lifeLV/Projects/ChessSet002Small.jpg
http://i461.photobucket.com/albums/qq336/gr8lifeLV/Projects/ChessSet003Small.jpg
thanks
ed

madwilliamflint
12-10-2010, 02:18 AM
[QUOTE=madwilliamflint].... I was thinking about something like 12L14 (send it out to be hardened) for one side .../QUOTE]
HARDENED!!! For a chess set??

For the resulting blackening?

madwilliamflint
12-10-2010, 02:19 AM
I've heard of this gummy stuff before, but that's not what I get when I ask for brass.

Who do you ask for brass? And what brass do you ask them for?

Fasttrack
12-10-2010, 04:06 AM
Hey! I like your signature, Madwilliamflint! ;) :)

Here are some good alloys of brass (in terms of machinability)

"Free machining brass" - brass 360 (this is pretty common. It's a leaded brass, see the links below).

"Engraver's brass" - brass 653

"Architectural brass" - brass 385 (this is what strike plates, hinges, etc are made of ... or so I am told)


I'm not sure how well leaded steels harden, actually. Plus, not all hardening treatments will result in the black finish you are thinking about. You can get gun-blacking and do it yourself, though. I know leaded steel is very susceptible to rusting, of course. I think I'd go with stainless and brass, myself.

Links:
http://www.onlinemetals.com/alloycat.cfm?alloy=360
http://www.use-enco.com/CGI/INLMK32?PARTPG=INSRAR2

Some varieties of brass are extremely gummy owing to a high copper content, I believe.

Gator
12-10-2010, 06:58 AM
Nice work Ed on the Chess pieces and the case.
How about the board, did you make it too?
Larry

BigBoy1
12-10-2010, 08:45 AM
Two different colours of acetal/delrin, with a lead insert up the inside of each one ?

Maybe if you put a small magnet in the base of each for weight, you could use a steel sheet for the playing field. The kids could then use the set while in the car.

jep24601
12-10-2010, 09:40 AM
[QUOTE=jep24601]

For the resulting blackening?
I would polish and then darken with gun blue.

wierdscience
12-10-2010, 09:54 AM
gr8life,very nice!

Brass I would use 360,either that or make both sides out of 1144 stressproof and have one side PVD Tin coated :D

vpt
12-10-2010, 10:00 AM
How about copper and steel set outside for a few weeks for patina? Green and brown.

Or white plastic and the hardened (for darkness) steel.

madwilliamflint
12-10-2010, 10:44 AM
[QUOTE=madwilliamflint]
I would polish and then darken with gun blue.

Love it.

Yeah if I'm gonna make something like this on the lathe (and possibly miller, but I'd like to keep them strictly to the lathe) I'm sure as heck not gonna make it out of plastic.

I can't imagine how I'd keep the pieces consistent. 16 pawns with precision? EEP.

KiloBravo
12-10-2010, 12:53 PM
I wanted something heavy for the set and of equal weight. I think I will go with Brass and Stainless. I have never cut stainless on the lathe yet, should be fun !

Thanks,
Kevin

Fasttrack
12-10-2010, 02:23 PM
I wanted something heavy for the set and of equal weight. I think I will go with Brass and Stainless. I have never cut stainless on the lathe yet, should be fun !

Thanks,
Kevin


Stainless can be challenging because it work hardens - especially if you have a large form cutter. You'll appreciate having a large, solid machine for working with stainless. If you don't have a big machine, that's ok but you may find it more frusterating.

In general, you want to keep your feed rate up and use a fairly decent DOC. A small DOC or a slow feed rate will just result in work hardening instead of cutting. The following stainless steel alloys are nice to work with: 410, 430 and 303. The 400 series does not have as good of corrosion resistance - it's usually used in appliances and the like. It should work great for a chess set, though.

gr8life
12-10-2010, 02:36 PM
Gator I made the box & handles also. Looked it up last night I made the whole thing on a Unimat in 2002 or 03. Made from 360 brass & 6061 alum.
thanks
ed

rockrat
12-10-2010, 03:50 PM
Nice work gr8life.

I have been collecting ideas for chess pieces for a while now but I'm sure that I lost them in the great hard drive crash of march 2010. It has been on my list of things to start looking for again, but things just keep getting in the way.

I now wish that I had taken a bit more time at the old job to program a set. We had a cnc lathe with a bar feeder and a 215 collet chuck and tons of scrap aluminum and brass. Still kicking myself for not getting that project done back then... Or at least buying that lathe when the auctioned off the whole place. Oh well, regrets.

This post however has got me thinking that I might need a holiday present for myself. I might yet make a set.

I was looking for a good design for the horse. Maybe 95% lathe work with a bandsaw or milling step to finish. I'll keep my eye on this thread for new ideas.

rock

RB211
12-10-2010, 03:53 PM
Aluminum and have it anodized Red and Gold?

mike os
12-10-2010, 04:42 PM
and put an insert into the base to add weight?

davidwdyer
12-10-2010, 04:59 PM
I'm sure everyone already knows this, but there is a kind of stainless which does not work harden. I should know the name or number of this stainless, since I use it, but I just ask for the stainless which does not work harden. The finished pieces are a little soft, but for chess pieces would be great.

Fasttrack
12-10-2010, 05:24 PM
I'm sure everyone already knows this, but there is a kind of stainless which does not work harden. I should know the name or number of this stainless, since I use it, but I just ask for the stainless which does not work harden. The finished pieces are a little soft, but for chess pieces would be great.


All steels work harden but the 400 series martensitic SS work hardens at about the same rate that mild steel work hardens. It is softer and not as corrosion resistant, but much easier to machine than 316 or the more exotic grades. On the other hand, martensitic SS can be hardened by heating and quenching, unlike the 300 series austenitic SS. There is also a ferritic SS ... I think that might be 430 and the martensitic is 410. Anyway, the ferritic SS can only be hardened by work hardening (like austenitic SS) but it hardens slowly and never achieves the same strength as the austenitic steels.

davidwdyer
12-10-2010, 05:48 PM
Please excuse me for asking on this thread, but how can I harden this the 400 series martensitic SS? What would the temp. be? What do I quench it in, oil or H20? Will I expect distortion of the piece afterward?

If this is too much to ask, just say so and I will start another thread.

rohart
12-10-2010, 06:02 PM
mad:

My metal people are a small outfit, and I get the feeling if I press them too hard for details then I'm pointing out their inadequacies. Which, of course, I am... Their limit seems to be hot-rolled, CRS, BMS and free-machining.

Still, I'll press them harder next time to tell me what brasses they have in stock, using Fasttrack's list, and what they give me.

You have seen which side of the pond I'm on I take it ?

gr8:

That's a nice looking set. Did you make a profiling tool for the pawns, or were they 16 one-offs ? Trouble is I couldn't make a set for myself without also doing one for the nephew who is, or was, very keen. Is the board metal, or something else. I have a fondness for marble for boards myself.

Had a Californian friend years back who made a board out of carpet squares - standard size board, not standard size carpet squares ! I'm not sure what he was on at the time.

Now if you made a Go set, you would need to harden the 'stones'. I know that a good Go player can bang down a stone from over a foot in the air, without moving anything on the board, but the stones would scratch themselves dull in no time, as half your thinking time is spent scrabbling around in the bowl for the next few stones.

Fasttrack
12-10-2010, 06:04 PM
David - I actually don't know the details of hardening martensitic stainless steel. Most of my experience with SS is limited to 304, 316 and some exotic alloys for special projects. I searched on Google and found the following. I think it may be a helpful place to start.

http://www.azom.com/details.asp?ArticleID=1141#_Cooling_and_Quenching

KiloBravo
12-10-2010, 09:32 PM
Stainless can be challenging because it work hardens - especially if you have a large form cutter. You'll appreciate having a large, solid machine for working with stainless. If you don't have a big machine, that's ok but you may find it more frusterating.

The 400 series does not have as good of corrosion resistance - it's usually used in appliances and the like. It should work great for a chess set, though.

Well, I have a SB heavy10 so is that a medium lathe for the home shop guys or is it small ???

Regards,
Kevin

Mcruff
12-10-2010, 10:43 PM
Please excuse me for asking on this thread, but how can I harden this the 400 series martensitic SS? What would the temp. be? What do I quench it in, oil or H20? Will I expect distortion of the piece afterward?

If this is too much to ask, just say so and I will start another thread.

For 420 SS heat it to 1800*-1850* F hold for 20 minutes plus 5 minutes for every inch of thickness over 1 inch. Air quinch it, for heavy sections quench in warm motor oil. Temper at 350-650*F depending on desired hardness.
420 SS has good rust resistance. 420ss is a tool steel used in molds.

For 440c SS heat to 1850-1950* F and everything else is the same.

Oldbrock
12-10-2010, 10:59 PM
My students made them all out of leaded steel, polished and laquered one set and blued the other set in the oven, oil quench, acetone and laquer. No need for changing materials and no internal weights needed. They programmed them on a student cnc lathe except for the knights head which was milled and attached to the base. Peter

Fasttrack
12-11-2010, 01:00 AM
Well, I have a SB heavy10 so is that a medium lathe for the home shop guys or is it small ???

Regards,
Kevin


:D I'd say it's small, but I'm probably not the best guy to ask. I've got a "sweet tooth" for really big machines.

Seriously, I've run a heavy 10 before and I'd call it small. It is definitely a good size for a home shop machine, but I'd not want to do any big form cutters on it - especially not in SS. You might have to think of another way of doing things. For instance, you could step the profile you want and then clean it up with a form cutter. If that still causes too much chatter, you may have to step out the profile and then file to finish it. Give it a shot and see what happens! You've got a great lathe for a home shop and you'll definitely be able to do what you want to do, but you probably won't be able to do it as quickly as someone with a larger machine.

J. Randall
12-11-2010, 02:24 AM
Well, I have a SB heavy10 so is that a medium lathe for the home shop guys or is it small ???

Regards,
Kevin

Kevin, I have never been a particular fan of the 10L,but plenty adequate work can be done on them, some excellent work has come off from much lighter lathes, just not nearly as quickly as a bigger more rigid machine.
James

A.K. Boomer
12-11-2010, 03:40 AM
Just a comment on the original post about using 12L14,

I would stay away from anything to do with leaded materials --- it's not so much a why not use it as it is a why, plenty of other choices, Iv played enough chess to know that it can be a long and tedious game with lots of munchies and chess piece fondling.

Black and white delrin would be a great choice but I know that might not appeal to the hard core metal heads:p

MaxxLagg
12-11-2010, 09:09 PM
Here is a set, made out of aluminum, that I started probably 15 years ago. You'll notice that I still have the "handles" on the pawns, as they haven't been parted off yet. I stopped when I got to the Knights as I had no way to do them the way I wanted to do them. I'd prefer them to be of a traditional Staunton design. Anybody that can spit out a Fanuc 1 G-code file for one it would be appreciated. :D Oh well, one of these days. I plan to have one side in natural and the other anodized, Haven't decide what color, probably black even though it won't come out black, but it would look cool I think. I'll make a matching board. Everything was done on a Hardinge lathe. The details were all done with form tools and everything polished with diamond compound on the lathe.



http://i75.photobucket.com/albums/i313/MaxxLagg/ChessSet.jpg

vpt
12-13-2010, 09:23 PM
Now this looks like a fun game!

http://lolsnaps.com/upload_images/real/771.jpg

rockrat
12-14-2010, 10:22 AM
Now this looks like a fun game!

Might not make it too far into the game depending on what uncle "Al-Kee-Haul" has in the glasses.

On second thought, I might even loose track of what playing piece is which.

rock~