Introduction: Poorman's Chess Training Board.

Picture of Poorman's Chess Training Board.

Have not played chess in years, so I thought it might be nice to start up again. Needed a way to help tutor myself, so I came up with this super cheap board setup board. You could probably go to a lot more trouble and make it fancy. I'never be a chess master, I invested enough for something that just works. 1 e2-e4 c7-c5  the classic Sicilian defense. Now you will be able to follow along famous chess games from you favortie chees game book or from online.


Note: updated.

Step 1: What's Needed:

Picture of What's Needed:


1 - Thick poster board.
2 - Regular white posterboards.
1 - Felt fipped Pen.
1 - Black dry erase marker. (it does not bleed through the paperwhere you are working.)



Exacto knive or razor blade.

Step 2: Chess Pieces.

Picture of Chess Pieces.

You will need 32 blanks from the white regular poster board. each blank should be 2 by 3 inches. Then cut a stem in each one for  stuffing into the board.

8 - P written on them. (pawn)
2 - R          "                (rook or castle)
2 - Kn        "                (knights)
2 - B          "                (bishops)
1 - K          "                 (King)
1 - Q          "                 (Queen)

You will need to make slash marks on the pieces and then add the letters like the white pieces.

Hint: you can always ad popsicle sticks to reinforce the pieces.

Step 3: Chess Board.

Picture of Chess Board.

Using the other white posterboardyou will need to trim it to the width of the thicker posterboard. for some reason my thicher board was not as wide as the regular posterboard. 
Now you need to makrk a 16 inch by 16 inch square on the posterboard.
Nowyou need to mark subdivisions of two inches each both horizontally and vertially so you have 64 - 2 inch squares,
Blacken in every other squarefrm the lower left hand corner so that it looks like a checkerboard.
Now you need to mkae slits in just the thin cardoard only in bhe bottom of the 64 squares to receive the chess pieces.

Step 4: Put It All Together.

Picture of Put It All Together.

Step 5: Chess Notation.

Picture of Chess Notation.
There are different ways to represent the pieces and also at least to ways to record chess moves. Here are two ways:

From wikipedia:

Algebraic notation.

Algebraic notation (or AN) is a method for recording and describing the moves in a game of chess. It is now standard among all chess organizations and most books, magazines, and newspapers. In English-speaking countries, AN replaced the parallel method of descriptive chess notation, which became common in the 19th century and continued with sporadic use as recently as the 1980s or 1990s. European countries, except England, used algebraic notation before the period when descriptive notation was common.

Algebraic notation is based on a system developed by Philipp Stamma. It exists in various forms and languages, as described below. Stamma's system used the modern names of the squares, but he used "p" for all pawn moves, and the original file (a through h) of the piece instead of the initial letter of the piece name.

Descriptive notation: (Traditional notation)

Descriptive notation is a notation for recording chess games, and at one time was the most popular notation in English-speaking and Spanish-speaking countries (Brace 1977:79–80), (Sunnucks 1970:325). It was used in Europe until it was superseded by abbreviated algebraic notation, which was introduced by Philipp Stamma in 1737. Algebraic notation is more concise and requires less effort to avoid ambiguity; however much older literature uses descriptive notation. Descriptive notation exists in many language-based variants, the most prevalent being English descriptive notation and Spanish descriptive notation. Howard Staunton, in The Chess-Player's Handbook (1847), uses a cumbersome early version, viz., "P. to K's 4th." (later written P-K4). Notably, in the back of the book he offers brief descriptions of long algebraic notation, which he calls that adopted by "Alexandre, Jaenisch, the 'Handbuch,' and in Germany generally", (Staunton 1847:500–502) and of ICCF numeric notation, which he calls "Koch's Notation" (Staunton 1847:502–3). FIDE stopped recognizing descriptive notation in 1981 (Golombek 1977:216).



Step 6: Demonstration Game.

Picture of Demonstration Game.

Worlds shortest chessmate with black checkmating white.

    White     Black
1  f2-f3    e7-e5
1  g2-g4    d8- h4 mate

Step 7: Another Game to Review.

Picture of Another Game to Review.

White: Paul Morphy   Black: Duke of Brunswick and Count Isouard
Paris 1858

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 d6

    This is the Philidor Defence (ECO C41). It is a solid opening, but slightly passive, and it ignores the important d4-square.

3. d4 Bg4?

    Though 3...Bg4 is considered an inferior move today, this was standard theory at the time. Today 3...exd4 or 3...Nf6 are usual. 3...f5 is a more aggressive alternative.

4. dxe5 Bxf3

    If 4...dxe5, then 5.Qxd8+ Kxd8 6.Nxe5 and White wins a pawn and Black has lost the ability to castle. Black, however, did have the option of 4...Nd7 5.exd6 Bxd6, when he's down a pawn but has some compensation in the form of better development.

5. Qxf3 dxe5 6. Bc4 Nf6

    This seemingly sound developing move runs into a surprising refutation. After White's next move, both f7 and b7 will be under attack. Better would have been to directly protect the f7-pawn with the queen), making White's next move less potent.

7. Qb3 Qe7 (see diagram)

    Black's only good move. White was threatening mate in two moves, for example 7...Nc6 8.Bxf7+ Ke7 9.Qe6#. 7...Qd7 loses the rook to 8.Qxb7 followed by 9.Qxa8 (since 8...Qc6? would lose the queen to 9.Bb5). Notice that Qe7 saves the rook with this combination: 8.Qxb7 Qb4+ forcing a queen exchange and saving the rook. Black is forced to move the queen to e7 which blocks the f8-bishop and more importantly impedes kingside castling.

8. Nc3

    White prefers fast development to material. He declines to win a pawn with 8.Qxb7 Qb4+ 9.Qxb4, or to win two with 8.Bxf7+ Kd8 (or 8...Qxf7 9.Qxb7 and now Black cannot avoid loss of the rook) 9.Qxb7, preferring to mass his forces for a quick checkmate and get back to the opera.

8. ... c6 9. Bg5 b5?

    Though ostensibly this drives the bishop away and steals the initiative, it allows Morphy a sensational sacrifice to keep the initiative.

10. Nxb5!

    Morphy chooses not to retreat the bishop, which would allow Black to gain time for development. Black's move 9...b5 loses but it is difficult to find anything better; for example 9...Na6 10.Bxf6 gxf6 11.Bxa6 bxa6 12.Qa4 Qb7 and Black's position is in shambles.

10... cxb5?

    Black could have played 10...Qb4+ forcing the exchange of queens (11.Qxb4 Bxb4+ 12.Nc3), although White would retain a clearly won game being a pawn up.

11. Bxb5+ Nbd7 12. 0-0-0

    The combination of the pins on the knights and the open file for White's rook will lead to Black's defeat.

12... Rd8 (see diagram) 13. Rxd7 Rxd7

    Removing another defender.

14. Rd1

14... Qe6

    Qe6 is a futile attempt to unpin the knight (allowing it to defend the rook) and offer a queen trade, to take some pressure out of the white attack. Even if Morphy did not play his next crushing move, he could have always traded his bishop for the knight, followed by winning the rook.

15. Bxd7+ Nxd7

    If 15...Qxd7, then 16.Qb8+ Ke7 17.Qxe5+ Kd8 18.Bxf6+ gxf6 19.Qxf6+ Kc8 20.Rxd7 Kxd7 21.Qxh8 and White is clearly winning. Moving the king leads to mate: 15...Ke7 16.Qb4+ Qd6 (16...Kd8 17.Qb8+ Ke7 18.Qe8#) 17.Qxd6+ Kd8 18.Qb8+ Ke7 19.Qe8# or 15...Kd8 16.Qb8+ Ke7 17.Qe8#

16. Qb8+!

    Morphy finishes with a stylish queen sacrifice.

16... Nxb8 17. Rd8#

Step 8: Cut-outs

Picture of Cut-outs
Couple of documents for chess cutouts. This is In case you do not like the lettering. You can color in the black pieces.

  _/____\_        ()       
  \      /      <~~~~>
   \____/        \__/         <>_
   (____)       (____)      (\)  )                        __/"""\
    |  |         |  |        \__/      WWWWWW            ]___ 0  }
    |__|         |  |       (____)      |  |       __       /    }
   /    \        |__|        |  |       |  |      (  )     /~    }
  (______)      /____\       |__|       |__|       ||      \____/
 (________)    (______)     /____\     /____\     /__\     /____\
 /________\   (________)   (______)   (______)   (____)   (______)
    King        Queen       Bishop      Rook      Pawn     kNight
     1            2           4          3         6         5    


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