FAQ - Painting a Giant Chequerboard on the ground
Advice on creating a permanent outdoor chessboard / chequerboard on the ground for playing giant chess and draughts.
See also: Giant Games.
Constructing a chequerboard using patio tiles
Many people opt to create a permanent board on hard ground. You can use patio tiles, or paving slabs and they should just be installed in the usual way for patios or paving.
For the large sets (2 feet high King), squares of around 400-500mm are recommended.
For the small (1 foot high King) sets, squares of around 200-250mm are the best bet.
Can you advise the best way to paint my own chequerboard on our playground / floor?
- Choose an area which is not a pedestrian thoroughfare.
- Sweep the surface very thoroughly. Preferably twice. This will make painting easier AND make surface last longer.
- Use either a masonry paint (cheap, water soluble for brushes and clothes etc but lasts well) or a spirit-based roadline paint. Both are widely available but the spirit based paint is noticeably more expensive and will make you draw in your breath sharply!
- Plan to put the white square on the right at the front - looked at from each player's point of view.
- You don't need to paint black and white squares: just do the white ones and use the background colour for the black squares.
- When marking out the squares before painting, use chalk (classroon chalk works well) and if possible a chalk line (from a builders merchants). To fix down any string if it is in Tarmac you can use a hammer and nail (surprising, but true!). The critical thing is to get a good right angle. You can do this with a 3,4,5 triangle. If you don't understand this look on the net (eg http://www.tpub.com/math1/20f.htm)
- The size of squares can be between 300 and 600mm, but we suggest the 400mm squares look best.
- Take a small supply of black or dark brown paint so that errors can just be painted over.