The Era Retro Tal Set

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My Tal set from Era Retro arrived around 5:00 PM on a recent Saturday. I unwrapped it at 6:30, and we were playing with it by 7:00. It's a very large and beautiful set, fun to play with, though a tad cramped for my taste on a 2.5" board.

 

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It is a very good reproduction of what has been come to be known as the Tal Set, the set that adorns the cover of the great "Life and Games of Mikhail Tal." 

 

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It is very well-crafted, though as comparisons are inevitable, a notch below the NOJ version in most respects. For example, some of the pieces exhibit machine marks, which I never have seen on an NOJ set.

Nevertheless, there are a couple of features of the Era Retro set that particularly commend it. First, its knights incorporate details of the knights' heads that only became evident in photos of an original set that were taken and circulated after NOJ's set went to market. Those details are not apparent in the many photos of the set I've examined. Here are some close-ups of the contemporary photos of an original set knight:

 

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Here are some photos of the outstanding Era Retro knight...

 

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Second, Era Retro offers the set in the original black, which NOJ has not.

 

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Third, the rich golden finish of the white pieces suggests a very well aged patina evident on Soviet GM sets of the fifties.

It's truly an outstanding set, and a welcome addition to my collection. Here are some more photos, several of which include Bulletins of the 30th Soviet Championship in Yerevan, where the set was used.

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The set is very large, with the kings about 5" tall.

 

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It dwarfs other original Soviet tournament sets of the era.

 

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The rose felting is fitting homage to that used on GM sets in the fifties, as seen in a fine specimen posted elsewhere by Goodknightmike.

A most welcome addition to my collection.

MySeTH

Whouaouh!!! Here is "A Real Chess Set".

(Tous mes compliments Chuck)

yeti10

Bonjour.

Fantastic set ! You are lucky to get it.
Much more accurate than the Mike's one. (le pauvre.)
Did you give them directives for some improvements ? (the shape of the stem and head of the king)
I like the Knight, the weak spot of the Noj version.

I want the same for Christmas.

ChessAuthor

Great set, Chuck! Those pawns are exquisite. I love the wide bases on all of the pieces. Thanks for sharing!

Horace

Beautiful set, thanks for all the photographs Chuck.  My "wanter" is in overdrive right now.

Fer8799

very, very nice chuck!! thanks for sharing!!

Rsava

As usual Chuck, an absolute beauty. Love those Knights.

 

Thank you for sharing.

fightingbob

Nice looking set, Chuck, and I agree with others on the knights.  Unfortunately, it's way too big for my taste at five inches.  I'm short and the board needed for these pieces is so big I'd need a grabber to queen a pawn.  (ha ha)

Oh, and thanks for all the closeups.  You always do a fine job posting your sets.  By the way, can you read Cyrillic script?