You own a chess set, let’s say, but you have nothing appropriate to put it in. By appropriate I mean you have a nice set like our Grand Turk. The King is 4 inches tall. A standard tournament or match set has a standard King height of 3-1/2 to 4 inches.

The casket (British term) or box to put the pieces in is named for the Pakistani superman Mir Sultan Khan, a servant who could beat his master as if he were a rented mule! GM Reuben Fine said he was of Grandmaster strength.

There are boxes available and the good ones are expensive. Our two, the Taj Mahal and the Topkapi are made of wood (walnut for example), super fine brass, keyless operation (instead, using powerful magnets), great hinging and a green fabric interior. In one design the pieces fit neatly in holes a little larger than the bases of the pieces, and in the other, the pieces are woodily caged. In both, the King’s “float” above the pieces. If you are interested I will post the photos.

But in the MSK (Mir Sultan Khan) we have something more practical which will handle most chess sets which have a 4 inch high King.

Yes, I have had friends with very large chess sets. I don’t see the purposes of these sets because it just means a further reach across the chessboard. I suspect grandeur and ego have to do with their purchase–bigger is better. Maybe we should ask the wives if that is true??

At any rate there are two things which India seems to have plenty of: wood such as boxwood, and leather. What you have with this chess box, the MSK, is a box with measurements of LWH: Black cowhide and pieces with a King height of 4 inches. Box measures 10 x 7-1/8 x 4-1/4″ on the outside. Includes key for snap-button brass lock with attached 1-5/8″ wide strap. And… a divider for compartment of dark and light pieces such as the Grand Turk set. Made in India. Lid fits with a “whoomp” sound when closing.

I saw the whole array of boxes of our supplier and once again chose this one for our customers. Naturally it is their best one. Personally, I have found with years of experience to back me up that when I buy the “best” the rates of returns, replacements, and problems are virtually non-existent! As in 6 Sigma, zero defects, guarantee.

This box has a green fabric interior similar to billiard felt but not quite.

As Tattoo from Fantasy Island might have said, one of the great attractions about this box is:      The Price, The Price Boss!

Indeed. Indeed. More on that later.

A Morphy Story

There are several reasons chess tables don’t sell well.

  1. Rickety and weak legs.
  2. Not enough room for feet and legs underneath the table.
  3. Table surface can be a mite small for an inlaid board.
  4. But, there is one other feature which is pretty annoying. No I am not referring to the price though that can be pretty hefty ($750 and up). It’s those small drawers where they put the chess men! Usually with all the pieces in the drawer, there is great opportunity for the pieces to bang on each other causing chips, gouges, and breakage as well as dryness.
    As a retailer who has sold almost everything chess over the years due to knowing my great friend Stephen Christopher from the 80s, I’ve inspected lots of things. And I’ve seen pictures of things.

For example:
I was sitting with Carol at her place in 2014 and we were watching a show called THE PICKERS.

UNBELIEVABLE as it may seem apparently they had sold a table Morphy had used to play chess on in New Orleans! Someone had cut his name into the table. I don’t know who authenticated it. The Pickers are about 20 minutes from my house so I was mucho interested. I told Carol, “Bet it sold for about $34,000.”

This is NO B.S. I Don’t Have Time for that!

She sat there silent, like you are, and it was announced that it had sold for around $32,000. Blew her mind. 20 minutes away. I don’t know how I knew my “guess would be so close but I was telling my grandpa when I was 14-15 on the ranch he had in South Dakota how much a steer would bring when we took it to market. ($500.) He liked that, and I’ve been doing that for more than 50 years. Not bragging just a God-given gift I am thinking. How much is this box? The new retail is $125 and it will be well-packed when we send it to you!

My purpose is to introduce it to you, you can tell your friends. It’s sturdy, nicely wrapped in tight black leather. Looks seamless (but not so on the bottom). Just well made and when you pop open the lid or shut it the first couple times there is a kind of WHOOOMPH to it! (Like in the photography of NCIS!) Kind of cool. If you have trouble getting the lid popped open, carefully use a butter knife to split the lid and the compartment. I used a blunt edged letter opener.

Without further ado, I will sell you ONE for $99.00 and a second one for $125.00. I only have 6 of them at the moment but I can ship right away.


And $10 for Postal Shipping (key to box is inside)

Write to: info@chessbutler.com

Bob & Jack thank you…and I intend to go knocking on the warehouse door of the Pickers as soon as I get my license and car! Life is GOOD, make it good for yourself!

PS: I have a set (Grand Turk) just like the one in  the picture above. Maybe two, but I know I have at least one (budrosewood and boxwood). Regularly $995.00, Christmas Sale priced at $750.00 + $25.oo for S&H.


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