Chess Pieces Measurement

ebonised german staunton chess pieces

It is indeed very important to have the correct sized board with the correctly sized chess pieces. A game of chess has a couple of specific measurements we feel are required to determine the correct size. Below are two key measurements.


Chess Board (Square Size) : A Chess board consisting of 64 squares, should have a relevant square size to suit you chessmen. 

King Base: The King Base should also be proportionate to this sqaure size.


palisander chess board corner

Most Chess collectors will be aware of certain tournament standards. This including the standard for a tournament chess set

  • Chess Board Square size of 2 1/4 Inch
  • King sized 3 3/4 Inch

This is indeed the standard used in champion chess tournaments these days. This gives each piece enough size and manoeuvrability. Tournament size guides date back to the introduction of the staunton chess pieces suggested by Nathaniel Cooke and Howard Staunton

Often There is flexibility of the size amounst the chess community and these rules often suit traditional chess boards and pieces of varying designs. Popular chess board designs will consist of a board with any size ranging in a square size between 2-2.5 Inch (50-55 mm).

Chess Pieces are also given a leniency range between 3 3/4 and 4 1/4 Inch in King size. Certain luxury staunton chess pieces require a larger size to allow the craftsmanship and the detail to be carved onto these chessmen.


Generally choosing a chess set does not have to be complicated and certain guidelines can be flexible to suit your need of a chess set. This can usually mean a slightly intricately designed chess pieces may require a larger board with a larger size to ensure all the pieces can line up, fit and be manoeuvred with ease.

We should ideally talk in terms of the square size of the chess board and inparticular the size of the King Base as this is the largest piece on the board.

  • The King should ideally cover upto 80% of square
  • The King should cover no more than 85%