A 20 th century moulded plastic B C M chess set

I have seen on a number of occasions this likable moulded plastic set “not BAKELITE ) !!!!which has been offered for sale as bakelite, by eastern European sellers,

Although sold by the B ritish chess magazine , one tends not to see these sets for sale in the UK too often .Which is why I decided to buy it very recently on e bay,

plus saving on paying excessive shipping charges .

things are so bad with plastic chess set descriptions one wonders what some sellers think they can get away with. there is no mention of Bakelite on the box label,

one might as well put the pieces in a ceramic bowl, add flour sugar eggs stir with vigour , pop in the oven & create a mucky mess, plus over paying for such a set  so misdescribed beware of moulded sets being sold as bakelite . I have seen players choice drueke , gallant knight sets being sold as bakelite, by USA e bay sellers !!!,

One might as well term moulded plastic as BAKERLIGHT !!!!. & look out for seam joins which this set has. also I rather like the plump knights. .

The weighted pieces are pretty light , with a 9 cms king weighing approx. a  few grams , inclusive of box the set weighs about 800 grams, just as well the pieces are not too heavy, as a few days ago watching keen yo ung kids bashing the chessmen about , such a set would have zero chances of surviving damage free , as the labelled box suggests it was made & sold in the 1960’s.

it is amazing how tough the mass produced Hong Kong plastic sets , which were used so often in irish chess tournament play in the 1960’s/70’s, the researcher

Robert Stoller wrote for the C CI stressing the importance of these sets , in his article reflections of the Staunton design, in the early 2000’s.

I have tried to collect early plastic sets which were hand finished scarce, but tend to be rather costly ,, plus seam joins  do spoil the look of the chessmen.


Posted on

November 5, 2019


  1. Kong Jian Yuan, Stephen

    Hi Sir,
    My name is Stephen Kong. I am interested in your 1960 plastic BCM chess set. If you ever selling it do let me know. I am interested. My Facebook name is Chess Praxis.

    • Pauline McCallum

      Hi Stephen, many thanks for your message and a very Happy New Year to you. Apologies for the delay in replying to your kind message due to me being away for New Year enjoying some Canarian winter sun – a vast improvement on the bitter Scottish weather here!

      Thank you for your interest in my plastic BCM set which is duly noted. I am alas not in good health and my wife Pauline will therefore become the custodian of my extensive and varied chess set collection in due course – she has noted your interest for the future but I like it too much to sell it at present. There are numerous reproductions available on ebay to purchase cheaply from Bulgaria/Belgium as you are probably aware, but this is of course an original set.

      I’m not on Facebook or social media but please feel free to contact me at guy.lyons@ntlworld.com/44 7966295430.
      Kind regards


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