I have often wanted to make a chess set out of something UNUSUAL and I finally did it. Here is a chess set (pieces only, no board), made of CONCRETE. I own a nice wooden chess set and wanted to reproduce it and might give them away as Christmas presents. The nice thing about this set is it looks almost identical to my very expensive wooden set... yet these sets only cost about $3 dollars apiece to make! I used an unusual method of making the molds that I have not seen anywhere else. The set is pretty rugged EXCEPT for the queens crown. If the queen is dropped, the spikes on the crown may crack off. I have not thought of a way to remedy this... and maybe someone has an idea.
Step 1: THINGS YOU WILL NEED :
The first thing you will need is a NICE chess set that you want to reproduce.... and that you are willing to risk doing MINOR damage to them. I discolored one of my pawns but only need to put some staining oil back onto the piece and it will be as good as new. Also, I had to remove the felt bottoms of the pieces before painting them so that is easily repairable also. I had about equal success using the quick setting CEMENT-ALL or also the MORTAR MIX. A box of the concrete is only about 12 dollars, and would make several sets. I tried many kinds of stains and paints including RIT-dye, women's hair dye, printer inks, brush-on-paints, and spray paints. The best combination I could come up with was the ones pictured here.