Below are a few photos of some of my backgammon sets
(Right-click on each image to see a larger view)

Updated March 2017

 

#1)  This is the first backgammon set I bought for myself. I bought this set when I was 17 years old and still living at home... about 38 years ago.

Prior to purchasing this set, all of the games I played were on my brother's set. Despite buying it so long ago, I still remember exactly where I bought it - at a small "chess and games" store inside a local mall. It's a small set but when I bought it I didn't think it was small at all. (Back then I was not yet familiar with large, tournament-size sets.)

 

With all of the other larger and more expensive backgammon sets I now own, I don't play or use this set much any more, but just looking at it brings back a bunch of memories and for that reason I will never sell it or give it away. I've played many games on this set over the past 38 years. I think it cost me $30 or $40, which at the time was a bunch of money to me.

 

 

 

 

#2)  I bought this set on eBay about 19 years ago, when I was living in Arizona.


Although I remember buying it on eBay, I can't remember what I paid for it... but it was probably between $50 and $70. (Sets identical to this one can also be found now and then on eBay, usually going for similar prices.)

It is described as a "Cowhide Championship" set. The cowhide has a nice smell to it, that doesn't ever seem to fade away. Soon after I bought it, it became my favorite set. I liked the smell of it and the size of it and the color combination.  As of this moment, I've probably played more games on this set than any other!  With all of the nicer, larger, tournament-size sets I've since purchased, I know that will change soon.

 

 

 

 

 

#3)  This is a small set I bought on eBay just a year or so ago, for just a few dollars.

The board frame and the dice shakers are wood and the playing surface is cork.

 

 

 

 

 

 

#4)  This is an inexpensive set I bought from Amazon.com several years ago.

I don't remember what I paid for this set, but I know I didn't pay very much and sets from Amazon that look nearly identical to this one are currently selling in the $40.00 - $50.00 range, and that sounds about right.

At the time I bought it, it was my largest set, and for that reason it was enjoyable to play on. Because it's so inexpensive, it's a perfect set to take to the beach, for example, since you it won't bother you too much if it gets ruined with via sand or water, etc.



 

 

 

 

 

#5)  This is a "combination" set. The other side of the backgammon board is a chess board.

I don't use this set at all - it's really just for "decoration" only. If I remember correctly, I purchased this set when I was living in Michigan, in the late 1980s or early 1990s.

 

 

 

 

#6)  According to my digital checkbook, this Gammon Village set cost me $119.95 when I bought it back in 2013. And yet it is currently on sale for $69.95. Ouch! 

One of the reasons why I bought it was because I was attracted to the red, white, and green color combination. The playing surface is inlaid velvet. The size of this set is 15" x 19.5" when open. The stone diameter is 1" and 1/4" thick.

I toss this set in the back of my car now and then and use it when playing friends in coffee shops, restaurants, etc. (It's small enough it fits on most restaurant tables and large enough to enjoy.)

Since it didn't cost an arm and a leg, if something were to "happen" to it (a coffee spill, for example), as with set #4, it wouldn't bother me too much.

 

 

 

 

#7)  This is a large table-top set, from Crisloid. (It does not fold in half.) The playing surface is cork. This set was my first "large" (1.75 inch checker size) tournament-size set.

It currently sells for $175.00 on Crisloid.com.

After purchasing it, I enjoyed playing on this large, tabletop set so much I bought one for a friend of mine and then later bought an identical set from Crisloid that is blue in color!

I like their boards and checkers, and their prices are fair.

Note that in the third photo, I've replaced the white-colored checkers with light-green checkers!  This would be a good set to use on St. Patrick's Day!

 

 

 

 

 

#8)  Crisloid Table-top #2. (Blue and white checkers)

This set also looks good if you replace the white-colored checkers with green-colored checkers, as the second and third photo show.

Update:  Note the red and blue color combination, in the last two photos.

 

 

 

 

 

#9)  This is my third tournament size Crisloid set, again, with a cork playing field.

Unlike the two Crisloid table-tops, this Crisloid set is an attache-type set that folds in half. I paid $250.00 for this set. I LOVE the red and black color combination!

What's I really like about this set is the checkers AND the dice cups fit into the side compartment!  Of ALL of my backgammon sets, only one other set has this feature!

 

 

 

 

#10)  This is one of three different Wycliffe Brothers tournament-size sets I own.

I really like these Wycliffe Brothers sets. As the item description says,

"These stunning sets offer all of the features found in high-end professional sets but at an affordable price."


I find that to be true. They are very affordable and provide an EXCELLENT "bang for your buck."  I purchased each of these three Wycliffe Brothers sets from Gammon Village for $265.00 each. (The list price is $395.00 but the $265.00 "sale price" seems to be permanent.)

I LOVE the very large doubling cube!

This set has a black Croco case with a grey-colored playing field. It came with red and white checkers, but as the photo shows, using red and black checkers also looks great. (I used this set, with the red and black checkers, at my very first backgammon tournament.)

Actually, with the neutral colors (the grey playing field and the black and white pip colors), MANY checkers colors look great on this set!  For example, the third photo shows off the set with salmon and teal-colored checkers!

Update:  Two new photos added, one with black and white P-40 checkers and one with a different set or red checkers, this time matched with blue checkers.

 

 

 

 

#11)  Wycliffe Brothers set #2.

This set has a black Croco case with a cream-colored playing field. The checkers that came with this set were also red and white in color, but I like playing on this set with red and green checkers, as the first photo above shows.

With these colors, this is a nice set to use during the Christmas season!
 

 

 

 

 

#12)  Wycliffe Brothers set #3.

This set has a brown Croco case with a beige-colored field.  A backgammon buddy of mine has an identical colored set.

Update:  Two new photos added, one with yellow and black checkers, and one with green and black checkers.
 

 

 

 

 

#13)  This is an Aries set. At the time I bought it, it was the most expensive set I owned, having paid $695.00 for it at Gammon Village.

It is a large, tournament-size leather set. The smell of the leather is wonderful. This set is one of the few that came with precision dice. A personalized doubling cube with my name on it, that was given to me many years ago, looks great with this set.
 


 

 

 

 

#14) This is a Del Negro Eco-Leather set.

Eco-leather is made with natural fibers such as flax or cotton mixed with palm, corn, soybean and other plant oils that are laminated together in layers to create something that looks and feels as if it came from an animal.


I paid $465.00 for this set, also at Gammon Village. It's a beautiful set, with beautiful checkers. In fact, the checkers are almost TOO beautiful.  They can be somewhat distracting to play with, with all of their "swirls." 

Update:  Note the brown and white checkers I've swapped in, in the last two photos.


 

 

 

 

 

#15)  Here's a leather Marcello de Modena set. It's the most expensive set I own. I paid $895.00 for it at Gammon Village.

Alas, it's over-priced.  I don't think it's any "nicer" of a set than, for example, the Aries leather set or the Del Negro sets above, which both cost much less. In fact, the checkers that came with the set do not all fit in the side storage compartment! Only 14 of the 15 checkers fit!  For a set costing almost $900.00, you would certainly expect all of the checkers to fit, like all of my other sets! (The reason, I suspect, is when this set was designed, it was designed for checkers that are ever so slightly smaller in size than what the checkers Gammon Village provides.)

This set also did not come with precision dice, something the Aries set costing $200 less came with. For $900, toss in a pair of precision dice!  I do like the combination lock, which is a nice touch, and I do like the two "discreet storage compartments" for storing the dice.

As with all leather sets, it smells great. I also like the blue playing field.

Note the black and white checkers in the second photo, which matches the color of the pips.

Update:  I recently purchased some extra P-40 checkers.  They look great with this set, as the last two photos show.

 

 

 

 

#16) This is an FTH backgammon board.  It's absolutely gorgeous and quite possibly the nicest board I own.  I like everything about it... the locking case, the large size, the quality of the checkers, the color combination... etc.

I purchased it directly from www.gammonstuff.com  All of their FTH boards, dice cups, and doubling cubes are handmade from the expert German board builder Fazil Terlemez. 

I paid $675.00 for it and I think that's a very fair price.  The board is wonderful.  At that price I can see myself purchasing another FTH board in the future.

 


 

 

 

 

 

#17) Next up is my a P-40 backgammon set.  This a brand new type of set, with the first sets being manufactured and delivered in June of 2016.

It has a an ultra-modern "feel" to it, that is different than all of my other sets. 

The checkers, dice cups, and doubling cube are all unique. 

The checkers have a high-gloss, mirror finish.  The doubling cube has a "secret compartment" (a magnetized sliding door) that holds the precision dice.  The checkers, cube, and dice cups all fit in the side compartment when it's time to put the board away.

This 1st Limited Edition set is #53 of the first 100 that were made.  Because I was one of the first 100 to order one, some of the upgrades were free. 

The doubling cube AND the board itself have my initials on them.

I paid $795.00 for it, not counting shipping charges.

 

 

 

 

#19) And last but certainly not least is my latest backgammon board, another FTH set.  I paid $795.00 for it, not counting shipping charges, from www.gammonstuff.com

These FTH sets are a joy to play on.  Notice with the last photo I've swapped the black and white checkers for red and green checkers.