Chess Tournament Equipment Regulations

Chess Tournament

Did you ever wonder how to set up a chess tournament? Here are some things you require to know concerning the regulations surrounding what you can and cannot have in tournaments. The following discussion follows FIDE tournament rules.

1. Chess Pieces for Tournaments.

Both players must agree on the chess pieces used by either player. The pieces can be made of any material that is wood, plastic or imitates either option. The height of the King should be 3.75 inches, with a bottom diameter of about 1.5 inches. There is a small wiggle room the size of your pieces, but not a lot. There is no particular ruling on the weight of the pieces, although I highly suggest heavy piece because they make for better stability.

The style of pieces is flexible, but Staunton style recommended. The only important rule is that the King and the Queen must be clearly differentiated. The dark pieces in the chess set are usually brown or black or must be a dark shade of these two colors. The light pieces may be natural wood color or any other light color. It’s important that your pieces are not too shiny – as that is a major distraction in a tournament.

2. Chess Boards for Tournaments.

Depending on the tournament, the type of material used in the board may matter. Most tournaments, however, will allow wood, stone, marble, vinyl, plastic, or cardboard. The important marker of a tournament chess board is that the contrast in the colors used to be significant enough. The boards cannot have a shiny finish.

The measurement of the squares on the board should be two times the diameter of a pawn’s base. The most popular square size is 2-2.5 inches.

3. Chess Clocks for Tournaments.

Both analog (mechanical) and digital chess clocks are acceptable at most tournaments. Analog chess clocks should be able to signal full hours and a flag that can be clearly seen when it falls. It is advised that the clock runs as quietly as possible (a loud ticking clock can disrupt play).

Digital Chess Clocks follow similar rules. It should show at all times the remaining time left for both players. The displays need to be legible from a distance of 10 feet away. The clock ought to run without a battery change for at least 10 hours. The clock should also have a security feature making it impossible to erase or alter the data in the display with an easy manipulation.

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