Instructables
Build a nice goban with a resonating chamber.

Before jumping in to this project, I suggest reading up a little on board dimensions.
 
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Step 1: Select your wood

I chose Purple Heart for the frame and Birdseye Maple for the playing surface. Its all personal preference, but a lighter color playing surface is more traditional.

Step 2: Rough cut the frame

The pieces of Purple Heart I got were about twice the thickness I wanted for the frame, so I ripped them on the tablesaw.

Step 3: Plane the frame

Get them down to thickness using the planer.

Step 4: Cut the sides of the frame to length

Using the tablesaw, cross cut the frame pieces to length. Then set up the saw to do dados. You want to dado the top edge of all the pieces to accomodate the top of the board, I suggest that the top be around 3/8" so that it will actually resonate. I made my top too thick (around 1/2" and it isn't very harmonic.) You also want to dado the bottoms for a piece of 1/8" plywood. Finally you want to dado both ends of two sides of the frame to have it all fit together nicely.

Step 5: Fit and measure the frame, glue up the top

Fit all the frame pieces together to get the dimensions of your top and bottom pieces. (just doing the math to figure it out may leave you with gaps between the top and frame.) I bought a plank of Birdseye Maple for my top, so it had to be cut to length and glued together in order to get the square shape. I used biscuit joints for the top, in hopes that it would be stronger and resist warpage better.

Step 6: Cut the top to size

Once the glue has dried on the top, use the frame measurements and cut the top to size. Its better to cut it big, then slowly work it down to the perfect fit.

Step 7: Glue the frame and top together

The more clamps the better!
Verga24 days ago

Finally got those pictures. I made a couple of changes to your outstanding design. I added one drawer on each side to hold the pieces and I routed the top edge. My legs were made of wood and routed to match the top.

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Verga3 months ago

Meant to tell you I followed your design and built mine about a year an a half ago. I routed the top edge and put drawers in mine to hold the pieces. I used a Sharpie to mark the lines and they smeared a bit when I put the lacquer finish on. Over all it came out really well. If I can get my wife to take a picture witht he digital camera I will post it later. Thanbks for a great Ible.

I made this in my woodworking class it took me about a mouth and I love it and all but no one wants to play it becase it can get confuessing
Can we get a woodworking-to-English dictionary here? what the hell is a dado (and shouldn't it be extinct) or a pinned rabbit joint? *sigh* so much to learn...
All trades have relevant jargon, it allows workers in these trades to be concisely specific (to each other) about trade-related details, for which ordinary language expressions would be too wordy. So much to learn, indeed! - but omit the sigh - it's a GOOD thing. Curiosity educates us... and here you are, with a computer and probably access to a library, too. Have fun!
Oh, and actually it's rabbet - or in the U. K., rebate (yep, it means 'cut-back', specifically, in a linear way, like a long step)
I really must make a goban soon - inspiring, ain't it?
Dead as a dado!
ancaf332 years ago
Ah =) real nice job!!!! :) I will do one of these boards for sure :D
petre4 years ago
wh at is PURPLE HEART ? i have a book on how to play go but never played. pete
That is a beautiful Goban. I've been trying to work up the courage to take on a project like this - but for now, my homemade MDF board is holding up ok :)
PackRat44487 years ago
what is this?????????
ravelgrane7 years ago
Read the book "The Master of Go" by Yasunari Kawabata if you want to get the flavor of how the game is played by the old masters. People used to be as fanatical about it as football fans are about their sport today. It doesn't explain the rules or strategy, just the human experience, the style, the atmosphere. For example, it will tell you why the "plunk" sound is so important. After reading this book, I fell in love with the game and decided to learn how to play.
mito ravelgrane7 years ago
I too read this book -- what a strange coincidence, Ravelgrane. My favorite part: at the start of the Big Game, the players sit and stare at the board for a few hours. The one who is to play first is only considering a handlful of opening moves, but still, you gotta take your time. He then decides on a first move. Instead of plunking his stone down, he writes it on a slip of paper which is put into an envelope and sealed, to be opened at the start of the next match. They take a few months off to think, and then the next match is scheduled. And so on. I'm telling you, this book is a roller-coaster ride.
ravelgrane7 years ago
The best books I've read about how to learn the rules and strategies of the game are the Ishi Press series of books on Go. They are small paperbacks, easy to carry around, and have excellent illustrations. Also very easy to read.
thorwor7 years ago
Nice work indeed. Go is a timeless game worth learning. For those users interested, visit this link for a fun and easy way to learn the game:

http://www.nihonkiin.or.jp/lesson/index2-e.htm

joshuajahr8 years ago
does anyone know where i can learn how to play go?
Read the comment 4 up ;-)
boocat7 years ago
This makes me wish I had a woodshop. I am learning Go by using the five volume book set from Janice Kim, which I got on Amazon.
grungehead8 years ago
where does the simple man, (i.e. the people without fancy table-saws, woodworking-garages and such) go to do all this?
wow. excellent tutorial (everyone: he knows shop safety!) i think ill make this just as an interesting and fun addition to my coffee table, maybe americanize it by stenciling in a checkers pattern on the top. pretty sweet piece!
btw thats called 'resawing'
Looks Awesome! but whats goban?
It's the fancy way of saying a Go board. A board you play the game of go on.
wow! this really is a beutiful piece. im not really up to date on the price of wood lately but the cost of materials must have been a killer, but i can look that up latter. what i really want to know is how do you play and where you got the plans/idea for this? really nice work man. keep up the good work.
numberandom (author)  Roninofthewest8 years ago
Thanks! If you are looking to dive into Go, I suggest checking out http://senseis.xmp.net/ (The Sensei's Library) and also installing a computer go client from here http://senseis.xmp.net/?GoPlayingPrograms . I got the idea when I first learned to play and realized any decent board was going to cost a lot more than I thought it was worth. I was reading about how blocks of wood were chosen for the really high end boards, where they check not only the grain but the harmonics. Thats when i decided to cheat and make the resonating chamber.
i love it! it makes me want to learn how to play Go again hehehe
Neotronix8 years ago
Nice work. How does resonating chamber effect the sound of stone placements? Is it louder or sharper? Sorry I'm not from audio engineering. :-)
numberandom (author) 8 years ago
radiorental and fungus are right on, I was attempting to accentuate playing the pieces on the board with this design. And, like I mention unfortunately my top piece is a little too thick for it to really "pop" though it works alright. Another crucual aspect I forgot about is adding rubber feet to the bottom, which I'm updating now...
dbrew8 years ago
I don't think I understand. Why would you want a board game to resonate. Nice shop and beautiful work, btw.
The very very nice goban are chosen for their sound. Many players like to hold the stones between the tips of their middle and index fingers and then slam it onto the board to emphasize a good move. Or just sound cool.This sounds like an extra loud version of that.
I havent played this game in years but I recall seeing a style of playing that was quite 'expressive' in the placement of the stones. Made a nice noise on a traditional goban
radiorental8 years ago
very well documented woodworking tutorial. You make it look easy