This awesome goban set came to Baduk Club from a second-hand store in Hiroshima.
The board is 13cm thick, and has taken on an amazing candy color with age. It comes with a protective lid. It looks like a textbook species of Kaya, with these indicators:
- The Cut: it is a Center Cut (kiura) to show off the heart of the tree. This is one of the highest-regarded cuts for fine boards when the tree is not large enough for a cross-cut.
- The Grain: the growth rings are quite thin because Kaya is a slow-growing tree so you should see hundreds of rings.
- The Weight: for its size it is very dense. Kaya retains its resin as it cures (usually for 10 years before the board is shaped), which provides amazing longevity.
- The Rings: You can see that the rings are very wavy, radiating irregularly instead of forming neat semi-circles like Spruce or Pine do. This was an absolutely tremendous tree. While kaya isn't a rare species, it does take 500-1000 years to grow large enough to be used for a go board.
- The Color: the heartwood is a warm, uniform yellow color.
- The Scent: kaya should smell sweet like patchouli, or vanilla and cloves.
A center cut like this leaves beautiful end-grain where both players will sit, and straight lines along each side. The top and bottom have cross-grains in unique patterns like a fingerprint. based on the heartwood of the tree.
The corners and edges are pretty good. The cloth cover and protective lid have done their job. There are a couple small scratches, please see the photos for details. Those may be far less noticeable after being re-waxed. The legs look a bit dry, and while there are some cracks on the bottom they don't seem to be spreading - still, it would be good to plan to wax the board, at minimum, unless your climate is as humid as Japan. Visit my Care Instructions to learn more.
Purchased new, such an item would cost about $3000-$5000 today.
The bowls are chestnut, and the stones are slate and shell. The clamshells have a nice vintage patina. Unfortunately, the stones were not measured or counted - when they arrive you can measure the thickness and request replacement pieces for any broken stones and this will be included in the purchase price.
Please understand that this is a Vintage item.
FedEx International Priority shipping from Japan (to nearly anywhere) is already included. This service reduces the actual transit time to only 5 business days, and also allows more room for padding in order to avoid shipping damage. Please allow a week for Customs preparations, then a FedEx tracking number will be provided that you can use to sign up for notifications.