Chess Board with Algebraic Notation using Epoxy Inlay

Chess Board with Algebraic Notation using Epoxy Inlay


Hi everybody!
I’m Mike McCrory and this is Wood U Make It. I made an end grain chess board several months ago and a viewer from Austria reached out to me and asked me if I could make him the
same board but this time put algebraic notation into the frame.
I don’t own a CNC router so I’m gonna do it with a handheld router. Imagine that! So… let’s get started! I’ve already made the chessboard so I printed these letters and numbers on the computer and I’m going to arrange them around the
chessboard. If you want to see how I made this
chessboard I’ll put a link in the corner. I’m arranging the notation so that I
have letters across the top and the bottom with the white square in the
lower right hand corner and then numbers along the side. Then I’m gonna use old-fashioned carbon paper to transfer the letters and the numbers to the wood. Sometimes the wood grain will cause the
pencil to go a little bit off-course so I’m just cleaning them up after I
remove the carbon paper. I’m using a wood carving router bit that
has a 15 degree tip on it and now I’m just waxing the bottom of the router
base so that it’s gonna glide smoothly over the frame as I’m doing the carving
because I really want to minimize the amount of friction that I have to
overcome. I’m gonna carve the notation in two passes so I’m gonna do a first cut
and then I will lower the bit a little bit further and then do another pass. This shows about how far I’m gonna go down for the first pass. Now I’m gonna proceed very slowly and move very cautiously as I follow the outlines that I drew. I really only have one chance to do this; any mistakes can’t be hidden. The router bit that I’m using here came
in a set of four and it was relatively inexpensive. I’ll put a link in the description if you’re interested in learning more. When I get close to the end of the board
then I’ll move the clamps down to the other end and proceed. After doing several letters and numbers,
I’m gaining more confidence and now I’m able to lift the router bit out while
it’s still spinning and then reposition it to carve the next piece. They’re looking pretty good after the
first pass and now I’m gonna lower the bit a little bit and get ready for the
second pass. This is almost like an ASMR video. Now I’m just using one of my carving
gouges to clean out the grooves. I’m gonna fill the algebraic notation
with epoxy resin. I’m using this epoxy from TotalBoat. It’s a pump system so it
eliminates the guesswork out of the measurement. Just one pump from each of the containers — one pump of the resin for every pump of the hardener. This is a brand new kit so I’m going to begin by priming the pumps to remove any air. This is a pretty nice epoxy system and if you’d like to get some there’s a link in the description that will entitle you to a 20% off discount. You just need to mix it together thoroughly and after you’ve mixed it just mix it up
some more to make sure that it’s really thoroughly mixed and then it’s ready to
go. You want to mix the epoxy slowly so that you don’t introduce air bubbles
into it. The video is running at 2x speed so that’s why it looks like I’m
mixing faster than I should be. Then I’m going to add a few drops of black tint. That will contrast nicely with the walnut frame without standing out too much. After filling each of the engravings I’m
just gonna shake it a little bit to release any air bubbles that may be
trapped inside and then I’ll tap each one from the top to make sure that the
epoxy is fully seated into the engraving. I let that dry overnight and then sand
it off the next day. Then I’ll glue it up and I’m using
some of the off-cut pieces to clamp the corners to make sure that everything is
aligned horizontally. Next, I’m going to use this spline jig to
cut slots in each of the corners to be able to hold the splines. The spline is just a little bit too
tight so I’m gonna run it one last time through the drum center without making any adjustments. That’ll remove just a tiny amount of wood to loosen up the fit. The next day I’ll use the bandsaw to
remove the excess part of the spline and then I can finish it up with a sander. Now at the router table with a fence
in place and stop blocks at each end I’m going to cut finger slots. Now I’ll do some final sanding to
prepare it for finish. One last step before applying the finish
is that I’m going to apply water to the board to raise the grain. I’ll let this
dry and then I’ll sand it one last time and that makes for a much smoother
finish. Now I want to eliminate as much dust as
I can so I’m rubbing the board down with denatured alcohol. For the first coat of finish I’m using de-waxed shellac and this helps to seal the grain and penetrate deeply into the wood. I want to end up with a satin finish but
if you spray on multiple layers of satin polyurethane, the silica particles that
it contains will make it look cloudy so I want to put five layers of a gloss
finish and then end up with a final coat of satin. It’s still not warm enough to
spray outside so I’m using this spray shelter so that I can spray indoors
without getting the polyurethane all over my equipment. It’s not a perfect
solution but it works fairly well. I just got this inline filter and it’s been a
game changer for me to eliminate moisture from the finish. Now I’m gonna rub down the final
finish with some pumice stone mixed with paraffin oil. At the end, I’ll just rub it down with
some paste wax. So, I gotta ask… Would YOU make it?

25 thoughts on “Chess Board with Algebraic Notation using Epoxy Inlay

  1. Tracing those letters and numbers with the router must of took you forever to do. And it came out good. Thats skill and patience.

  2. Very nice work. Do you find any issues with spraying inside a small tent shelter such as dried finish particles landing on and embedding themselves into the finish surface?

  3. The hand routing worked great! The finish looks really elegant, shinny enough but not too much! Great work!

  4. Much respect to you Mike! I would never attempt to freehand with the router like that. The completed board is amazing. Having made one for my son for Christmas, I know how much work goes into getting it just right. I would love to see more frequent videos!

  5. You are awesome. You are on the level of the gods. Congratulations. This way of recording the letters and numbers is spectacular. I use puncture : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9Q9lFBTkuy4

  6. Awesome job again on this one! Your hand router skills are right on dude. That’s great you’re in nova. I was born in Canada but live in Richmond Virginia and see ya got a Tim hortons coffee can! Phenomenal job on the project and video editing

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