Many serious chess players like to use a wooden set. It is the tool of their trade and one of their most prized possessions. The type of tool and general condition in which it is kept, typically says a lot about the way they play the game. The set may be heavily used, worn, and chipped, telling people that they like to play a lot and typically think on the fly.
Others may keep their wooden chess set in pristine condition which says that they are a methodical planner who highly values their tool. Taking the time to clean and polish a wooden chess set not only shows a deep enduring love of the game, but it also ensures many years of enjoyment.
Typical Daily Care of a Wooden Chess Set
A wooden chess set is often left on display at home but that isn’t always the case. Either way, they typically gather dust and small debris which settles on the surface. While it can be tempting to just grab a paper towel and wipe it down, that is not the best way to go. The coarse fibers of paper towels and other material can scratch the surface of your wooden chess set causing damage to the finish. At first, these scratches may not be visible to the naked eye, but they eventually erode the finish of your wooden chess set.
The best way to care for your wooden chess set daily is to wipe it down with a fine microfiber cloth, like those used for a camera lens or eyeglasses. It’s important not to use water or liquids which can wear down the finish on the surface. You should also avoid the premoistened clothes available for lenses. The other option is to lightly dust the surface with a super fine feather duster. This will help keep your wooden chess set dust free and ready for display or play.
Annual Chess Set Care
Your treasured wooden chess set will require a good cleaning at least annually. It’s always best to avoid liquid polishes and silicone-based liquids because they can damage the finish on the board and the pieces. For best results choose a good quality furniture wax to deep clean your wooden chess set. Apply the paste sparingly to the board and the pieces with cotton balls or a fine microfiber cloth and allow it to dry. After a little time has passed, use a clean microfiber cloth to buff the board and the pieces to a nice clean shine. This will remove deep dirt and wax build-up deposited over the course of hours of play to keep your wooden chess set in tip top shape.
Maintaining Your Wooden Chess Set
Maintaining your wooden chess set is the best way to ensure hours of fun strategic play throughout the years. A simple dusting with the right type of cloth is all it needs for daily care. You’ll also want to avoid water and water-based cleaners as they can warp the wood and make the pieces swell to unsightly shapes. Give your board and the pieces a good annual clean and it will provide you with years of enjoyment.