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I made a chess set using only money. Notes for the board, coins for the pieces. Total cost: £2,402.68.

Step 1: About...

I can't remember when or from where this idea originates. All I do know is that it was finally realized on Saturday 23rd August, after saving up a lot of money. The principle is simple, collect all your loose change to use for the pieces, and visit the bank to withdraw notes, and fold up them to build the individual squares. This alone, is a cool idea, but I wanted it to be more special, so I designed each piece using coins that I considered would specifically, and artistically, represent the piece and its historical and gameplay purpose. And instead of white and black, the opposing sides would be called 'heads' and 'tails'.

Step 2: Getting the Money

Go to and/or rob a bank and withdraw £2,402.68

Step 3: Prepare the Notes

Fold each note into a rough square so that a suitable colour contrast can be achieved. I used the '50' and '20' flashes to be prominant. Even notes of different sizes will, because of the chequerboard pattern, ultimate match on all four sides. Make sure every note is folder in exactly the same way.

Step 4: Lay Them Out

Carefully arrange the notes on the board, and add a surround. Do this so that the uniformity can be seen visually.

Step 5: Perspex Cover

Lower a sheet perspex onto the notes. This keeps the board flat, and together. Because the notes all stand up in the same orientation you should be able to lower from the 'hinged' side of all the notes, and they will collapse naturally into shape.

Step 6: Place Coins on Top

I designed each piece using coins that I considered would specifically, and artistically, represent the piece and its historical and gameplay purpose.

Pawn - The foot soldiers. Naturally, these had to utilise the lowest denomination, currently the penny. Since soldiers are individuals I decide on a single coin, but because as they are proud to be representing and defending their country, I picked only the shiniest coins I had. Total cost per side: 8p.

Rook - Sometimes called .castles., these are the solid bastions placed at the edge of the board, so they had to look strong and purposeful, so I stacked 9 in a tower. But which coin? The two fattest coins are the 2p and £2, so I choice the 2p. This means the total cost of the piece is 18p, thereby gaining value by brute force, in much the same way the rook controls the board. It.s war connotations are amplified by using dull coins, and is the only major piece to use copper. Total cost per side: 36p.

Knight - A complex piece, with deadly beauty . especially in the hands of a chess master. I therefore choice the most complex coins, the 7-sided 20p, and 50p, and stacked them for height and value, intentionally making it the most expensive piece of non-royalty on the board. It consists of 8x20p and 1x50p. Total cost per side: £4.20.

Bishop - This has a broad base of 3x10p to represent the congregation, and a tall stack of 11x5p in an attempt to reach heaven (why else are church spires so high?) The (physically) smallest UK coin, the 5p, represents the bishops narrow purpose in battle. Total cost per side: £1.70.

Step 7: King and Queen

Queen - Tall and stately. The 6x£1 stack is simple and direct. The pound symbolizes unity and home, with so much in our culture based around it, such as the .everything for £1. shops, the cost of a lottery ticket, and so on. Total cost per side: £6.00.

King - The focus of the game is to capture of the king, so this must include the largest value coin (£2), and be worth the most. (There is a £5 coin, but that.s rare.) There is also a stack of pound coins to mirror that of the Queen, and their marriage. However, the king is more important (sorry, girls!) so his stack is 7x£1, and 1x£2. Total cost per side: £9.00.

Step 8: Et Voila!

You didn't need all that, I know, but I think it's cool...

...and it's my Instructable, so I'm right ;)
<p>wow</p>
O.O How much is that roughly in American?
As of *looks at watch* NOW according to google that would be about $3016.5647
I guess it depends if you are going to make it from American money....<br>Could take it to another level by making the pieces using different currencies. (Although some currencies are eliminating much of their coinage, hence more boring).
Its cool but it seems unnecessary<br>
nice waste of money though
www.chessville.com/misc/jewelroyale.htm - five mill pounds o.o
rob a bank. not a good idea. okay,okay, you were being funny.
Not a good idea... a brilliant one, I do it all the time! Wait, you weren't meant to hear that. (Shifty eyes)
I'm thoroughly impressed! You did a wonderful job with this instructable. I really enjoyed the explanation; thanks for including it!
go to AND/OR rob a bank i enjoy the and or u can withdraw some money then steal the rest :D
And after that, you can learn English! :D
Not nearly the worlds most expensive chess set, but still cool.
<p>And the winner keeps the set sounds great, &nbsp;just don't sneeze or you might loose the <a href="http://www.thecollectorsshop.co.uk/chess_boards.html" rel="nofollow">board</a></p>
or u can just buy plastic coins and fake notes from Walmart and freak out your friends or get stolen for 15$
how did you afford that?
That is English Currency!
But they're ALL the Queen!
ha, i get it!
Wow! $3858.70, what do you do for a living that you can make chess sets out of money?
i think u shud have done an instructable on what u did instead of how u did it
re: step 2 - "...rob a bank and withdraw £2,402.68 ". I'd like to see the instructable for that....
wait now i'm older and more inquisitive... why did you bother getting this much money? wouldn't it have been easier to use fake money? most of us wouldn't be able to tell the difference.
God save the Queen!
"... opposing sides would be called 'heads' and 'tails'"? Don't you find it a bit tricky to identify which piece is on which side?
not the most expensive<br/><br/><a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.diamondvues.com/2007/03/500000_diamond_studded_chess_s.html">http://www.diamondvues.com/2007/03/500000_diamond_studded_chess_s.html</a><br/><br/>check it out<br/>rich people are ridiculous,lol <br/>
I have two of those who wants one ?
dude ill have it
sorry man I decided to use it as my dogs chew toy
but i can give u my ferrari for a spin ?
deal where can i pick it up lol
Most expensive DIY chess set, not any chess set
expensive chess set is expensive
Most expensive DIY chess set.
This is really cool - but if both sides use the same pieces how do you know who's who when the game unfolds?!
One side is heads, one's tails! Silly!
Awesome!As soon as I get thousands of pounds I'll probably try this.
I rather get a chess board and the pieces instead of making one out of money. The money can be used for creating other instructables, helping some one out, go out, or any other ways you can use to money for. That is a lot of money that is used to make this project no matter where it is from. You may want to keep this game is a safe place so you don't "LOSE" the pieces. What a shame that will be.
haha this is so figgen crazy
That's an awesome idea! It looks great with the British money. But Canadian money would be awesome And you could use toonies and loonies for king and queen.
toonies and loonies man you Canadians are funny with your rhyming money
It would look cool with Canadian money and probably would be more durable. But i've never had a euro just canadian and usd.
it'd probably be cheaper with USD too :-P
the worlds most expensive chess set is valued at almost $10,000,000 USD. 2,000 some pounds is almost nothing.
Yeah this is cool don't get me wrong but there are chess sets made out of solid gold and platinum encrusted with diamonds.
almost nothing compared to $10,000,000.... a lot compared to a $50 one (which are normally really good sets)
...or the 9.99 plastic ones from China at Wally-world (walmart)
...wow... bill gates would have a fun day with this he would mint million-dollar bills to make it... shame im so poor... stupid childhood...
gates doesnt waste his money though. not saying that this project is a waste of money, its pretty cool and is a great idea.
if i were bill gates (or preferably had his money) i wouldn't waste it either, but that's just buceause i would run out of things i wanted to buy before i reached a billion. man, he is lucky.

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