chess clubs Posts

DGT Chess Clocks (Supplier Profile)

If you don’t already play chess with a chess clock and you a want to become serious about chess, it’s time to consider investing in one. DGT have been our primary chess clock supplier since 2008 and have proven to be extremely reliable.

DGT – a History

The Netherland based company was initially created in 1992 by Albert Vasse and Ben Bulsink as DGT Projects. The company’s main products are electronic timers, digital clocks and electronic boards for draughts and chess. The introduction of DGT’s digital chess clock range started in 1994 and since then the company have continued to expand by manufacturing electronic chess boards. And the rest, as they say, is history.

Why Chess Clocks?

Most professional chess players claim that a chess clock is just as important as the type of board and pieces that they use. For one, if it wasn’t for chess clocks, you would never see the end of a chess game. The presence of a clock means that players have to be both decisive and focused, as well as time conscious.

Electronic chess clocks are great training tools, and if you are trying to improve your game, perhaps moving from absolute amateur to accomplished professional, are a must when working on your chess skills.

Of course they also ensure that players have a fair game especially in Lightening or Blitz chess – a player loses if they use up all of the time that is allotted to them.

What Makes DGT Special?

The fact that the company supplies chess timers to some of the most famous chess players and tournaments is one of the many reasons why DGT products are so popular. Some of their chess clocks are so advanced that they allow four to six players to play simultaneously. In fact, it is this feature that has made them one of the most sought after suppliers of high end digital chess clocks.

Many of DGT’s chess clocks are calibrated according to the latest FIDE regulations – allowing even casual players the chance to play like pros. These DGT clocks are extremely reliable and ensure accurate readings throughout play. They are ideal for clubs and schools, and are sold alongside a variety of value DGT clocks, which are also good.  Don’t be surprised if you see a DGT timer on every playing table when you visit your next high profile chess tournament!

Chess Noob #19- What to Expect at Tournaments

One of the best ways to improve your chess game is by playing at tournaments.  It’s also fun and exciting (and from time to time profitable as well)!  There are many kinds of chess tournaments one can enter depending on the age and rating (we’ll talk about ratings in a blog in the near future), style of tournament, etc.  So  what should you expect at a tournament?  Let’s take a look at the different kinds and what each is like.

Scholastic Tournaments: Scholastic tournaments are for kids only.  Typically, these are for children in grades K-12 and will have pairing split into sections based on grade and/or rating.  There will often be hundreds (if not thousands) of children depending on the size and importance of the tournament… in other words, these tournaments are often very noise between rounds (and since many scholastic players tend to rush in their games, there won’t be much time of peace and quiet).

Open Tournaments: These are for children and adults alike.  Age doesn’t matter in an open tournament where it’s all about the rating!  If you’re a 1200 rated player in the U1300 section, you’ll be combatting other players with ratings of 1299 and below whether they are 6 or 60.  And don’t feel bad if you lose to a child… they have way more free time to study than you do!

Quad Tourneys: If the tournament you play is is a Quad, that means there will be 4-person sections.  The 4 people in each section will have very similar ratings to one another.  In a Quad tournament, there are 3 rounds (unless it’s a “double quad”) where each player in the section will play one another round-robin style and the person with the most wins is the winner of the section.

Swiss Tourneys: A Swiss tournament will pair winners against winners and losers against losers.  Each win gets you 1 point, each draw gets you 1/2 a point, and each loss gets you 0 points.  Every round after the 1st round, players with the same number of points will duke it out.  There are no eliminations, so even if you lose every game, you’ll continue to play the entire tournament.  The first round is slightly different… since everyone is starting off with 0 points, everyone is in the same “bracket”.  They will line up everyone in the section according to ratings, then cut the list in half.  The top person of the top half plays the top person of the bottom half, the second person of the top half plays the second person of the bottom half and so on.  The same thing happens every round… but each round the list of players that needs to be divvied up is smaller as there will be less and less people who have the same scores as one another.

Quick VS Normal: “Quick” tournaments (whether they are swiss or quad) will consist of all games that are 30-min or less for time control (usually G/20).  “Normal” (non-quick) tournaments have varied time controls that could be anywhere from G/35 to 40/2.

Often, these tournaments will take place either at a hotel with a large ballroom, or a school gynmasium.

You’ll likely want to bring your own food as hotel food and/or vendors can get expensive.

If the tournament is at a hotel, you may want to book a room at the site hotel so you can just go straight to bed after a late round and sleep in longer than if you stay at a hotel that’s a 30 min drive away but cheaper.

Nearly all tournaments also have “Skittles Rooms”, where players can congregate to chit-chat, go over games, study,  or play casual chess.

Most tournaments will also have a chess store, which sells sets, clocks, books, dvds and more.  Make use of these stores.  If there’s a certain opening you want to learn, find a book about it at the store (they’re often times on sale).

Now that you know what to expect, the only thing to worry about is the entry fee, which can range anywhere from $2 for local mini-tournaments at your local chess club to over $300 for the World Open!  Look for tournaments that have a good entry-to-prize ratio and that has sections you think you might be able to win!


Chess Noob #1 – An Introduction to a New Blog Series

Greetings to all my fellow chess players and a big warm “hello” to all the would-be/future chess players of the world who’ve come across this blog.  This will be a new chess blog series titled “Chess Noob”, and it will be geared primarily to beginning/novice players (both adults and children and possibly even parents of new chess players).

So what will a chess blog for novice players entail?  “Chess Noob” will start out simple (the rules of the game, how to play, etc.) and work through everything you need to know to learn the game of chess or (if you already play) how to get better.

WARNING: This blog is not at all geared for intermediate or advanced players, so if you fit in one of those categories you may be very bored…  However, since we’ll be working our way up we may eventually get into the intermediate work.

My goal with this blog is to get someone from the point of going “what’s chess?” to having them play at a level that they can do well in chess tournaments (although this blog alone won’t get you there, you’ll need to actually practice playing as well!)  I won’t be turning anyone into a world champion with these blogs (as I’m nowhere near that advanced myself), but together we’ll coach you into someone that can, at the very least, beat all your friends (unless you’re friends with the Polgar sisters… then you’re on your own!)

I’ll be taking you through everything (literally) from the start.  The first blog after this you see will be to tell you what the game actually is and it’s rules.  After that we’ll talk about the pieces and how they move, a few openings, tactics (starting off simplistic and increasing in difficulty as we go), what to expect at chess tournaments, how ratings work and what they mean, how to help your chess-playing child improve their game while still having fun, and more topics (to be honest, I only know my plans for the first 10 or 12 topics so far… after that I’m going to just wing it).

So please, I invite you, bookmark this blog so you can come back every week to see what’s new to learn and let’s grow together as chess players.  And if there are any topics you want me to cover, feel free to leave a comment telling me!

Have a topic you’d like me to cover or a question you’d like to ask? send me an e-mail at flannelmann@yahoo.com

Tournament Chess Equipment Now Available From Regency Chess Co.

Tourament chess supplies

Since 2008 The Regency Chess Company have become established as the UK’s number one retailer of high quality and luxury chess sets. We have imported luxury sets from all over the world and gained a solid reputation based on the high quality of our products. 2012 however sees us move into a new niche, that of the mass produced tournament chess equipment. Our obsession with quality still applies of course, which is why we sourced a range of very high quality, tournament grade plastic chess sets and boards.

Our bulk purchasing power means we can offer these sets to you at very competitive prices and clubs and schools can buy at the best possible price when they purchase quantities of more than five sets. To keep things simple we have added bundle deals to the website that allow you to buy in bulk and make significant savings. All of these sets are stocked in large volume in our warehouse in Frome, Somerset.

For those of you who require custom orders get in touch via phone or email and we can price up what you need. Check out the new category here