HOS Reykjavik vs. Fischer Spassky Series Commemorative Chess Pieces

rickr705

I recently picked up a couple of variants of the 1972 Fischer-Spassky chess sets from House of Staunton on clearance: A Reykjavik Elite (RE) and a Fischer Spassky Commemorative (FSC) set.  For any members contemplating one of these editions, I thought a visual comparison might prove helpful.

 

The Reykjavik Elite is billed as a "faithful" reproduction of the prototype and is offered in golden rosewood and ebonized boxwood.  The king stands 3.75 inches tall with a base of 1.6 inches.  The set weighs 58 ounces. It sells for $110.

 

In contrast, HOS claims the Fischer Spassky Commemorative set is an "exact" reproduction (I don't know about that).  It is offered in boxwood and ebonized boxwood or golden rosewood.  I purchased the ebonized set.  Like the RE, the king stands 3.75 inches tall, but is slightly wider at 1.625 inches.  And the set weighs a bit less at 52 ounces.  It sells for $149.95.

 

I find the sets more similar than different.  The knights offer the most noticeable visual difference, though a close inspection reveals subtle variations on all of the pieces.  I slightly prefer the FSC, mostly because I find the knights a wee bit more elegant.  

 

Below are detailed photos of each of the pieces.  The RE are on the left, FSC on the right.

rickr705

The Knights

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rickr705

The Kings and Queens

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rickr705

Bishops, Rooks and Pawns

 

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Impractical
Thanks, Rick. It's a tough choice.
maik1988

I like the RE pawns much better. Broader bases and nicer collars. For me the rooks are a tossup and the other pieces I prefer the FSC.

MJosh1066

I have an HOS Fischer/Spassky set from several years ago, and one of the Jaques sets from around 1970 that it is patterned after.  (The Jaques 1970 box is in the background.)  Just for fun, I'm also picturing a Jaques set from 1870, to show how they have evolved in 100 years.  The Jaques 1870 is the butterscotch, the Jaques 1970 is light boxwood, and the HOS is the dark brown.

I think the 1870 is the best proportioned, with a nice size ratio among the pieces.  The sizes of the 1970 are very well balanced, too.  The HOS is certainly very good, but the knights should be a bit bigger and the bishops just a tad smaller.  It's not a big deal, and I use the HOS for most of my practice and play.  Also, the grain on the HOS is really beautiful.  (It's odd how much trouble most companies other than Jaques have making round balls for the pawns.)

FYI, the pieces are shown on an HOS chess table with 2.375" squares.  I had a glass top made to protect it.  I highly recommend this table!  It is very solid, well made, and looks like something you'd find in a chess club in the 1920's.  I really love it. 

 

D2-To-D8

Haven't been on the forum for several years... Here's my real deal HOS Fischer Spassky. HOS only made 40 of these very special sets in triple black Genuine Gaboon Ebony and aged Boxwood with real gold embossed leather bottoms to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the famous 1972 match. My set which is also serial number 40 the last one produced remains perfect to this day with not a single flaw due to advanced triple weighting that was specifically designed to help in avoiding any cracking of the very rare ebony used. Enjoy the pics and also notice the rare green white marble board and clock as in similar used in the actual tournament. 














  

Impractical

An excellent collector's item!  Where did you get that board, D2-To-D8?

D2-To-D8

Thanks Impractical... The long story... Going back around 5+ years ago I'd guess I was known as Robb_Chess (The Fischer Guy lol) , but back then members including myself were having minor squabbles about this and that which was kinda disappointing and hurting the site. I decided for a number of reasons to leave chess dot behind. I was the first who brought to the site's attention things like the use of Renaissance Wax and the humidity packs for storage as well as other things. Back then I was also a member of the equipment forums "in crowd" and was also a member of the Dubrovnik click which GoodNightMike turned me on to many years back. During that time I was looking for a original old school Drueke board, which as some of the old timers here know, originals in mint condition were being sold from the 1989 US Open that were actually used in the that tournament. I forget the chess companies name in New York that was selling them. They also were selling back then NOJ Dubrovnik sets on special order, but NOJ did not use the term "II" in the set and some of the older members like myself were able to obtain the rare original NOJ Fischer type chess set as shown below. Yes it is a "II" now NOT a 1950, but as you can see by the box label it was just called Dubrovnik 1950 back then. That same company turned me on to a fella that had the green and white marble board which I chased after him to buy for a couple years and finally snagged it up for a hefty price. I was told by a respected party it was of the same company that did the inlay board as in the tournament, but I can't prove that.

A Few Memory Pics...

This before and after pic I posted years ago about the R-Wax... I first discovered and used it on my HOS 25+ year old Frank Camaratta, his first limited edition. Only a few old school guys here actually own this rare set as far as I could obtain...

Here's my pic of the original thread Dubrovnik On A Drueke...

Here's the box label photo I referred to...

 

D2-To-D8

Yes, the clock is also the original wind up...


 

forked_again

To the OPs question I like the FSC better due to the smooth glossy finish and the fatter rooks. 

Impractical

Nice pics, D2-To-D8, and nice memories of tournaments before digital clocks and engines.

Drawgood

The pieces do look great. I just want to advise  people to be careful. Nearly every company now makes "Reikjavik" set because they know that people who just got into the game will want that set. Just research more and see just how much there is to buy everywhere.