Green go stones?

I’m in the process of making my own goban and I’m on the fence about the final color scheme.
I like the color of these green glass stones from Korea, which I would pair with a medium-gray wood stain.

My second choice is a Sedona red wood stain, the same as my Shogi board, with black and white melamine stones

The first picture doesn’t showcase textures well, but the dark green stones are a matte finish and the light green stones are glossy. The dark stones have noticeably more friction than the light stones when they slide on a smooth surface. Both light and dark green stones are just a hair smaller than the B&W melamine stones.

I’m not necessarily opposed to the traditional equipment colors. They have obviously served most players just fine for thousands of years. But I also like the idea of having something unique and perhaps even a little progressive.

Any thoughts?


I think I would rather play with green glass stones instead of black/white melanine ones.

As you say - black and white is the default choice but there are other more exotic options i.e.


I think the green stones do not have enough contrast with the gray board. The contrast is better on the red board, but the board color is so dazzllng that it might become tiresome and distracting over time. I’m afraid I am just a traditionalist in these matters.


The actual stain color would look like this

I just don’t have any on hand so I put the stones on some gray fabric for a general idea.

Any better?

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I think not. Dark against dark just doesn’t work for me—but I have old eyes, which may be a factor.


Since you’re asking, i much prefer both the wood (non-gray) board and the black & white stones.

If you and I were to play a game together, I would ask: “Those green and tan stones on the gray board are amazing! Do you mind if we use my set for the actual game please?” lol Unique and progressive are fine on the coffee table, but to play go, it’s all about removing non-traditional distractions to the eye.

That said, it’s your choice completely. My perspective is from a guy that likes green and not orange football fields, and white ice rather than purple on hockey rinks, too. :stuck_out_tongue:


Darker boards can work surprisingly well: .
Obviously personal preference.


I have these green stones and I use them with the dark red wood board. It works quite well. Definitely different albeit untraditional. The green stones also work well with a yellow board.


@Skurj, those green stones are beau-ti-ful!

Where did you get them? Are they available for purchase online?

And actually, green colour is not totally untraditional in Go: while don’t know specifically for Baduk, I have a beautiful vintage set of green-luster single-convex Jade Yunzi stones for the game of Weiqi.

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You can find them on eBay just search for “green Go stones”

Amazon carries them as well

And here

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I think I may end up going with the black and white if you want the green ones @trohde

Thanks, @Skurj, after your seeing those I searched German Hebsacker’s new site and found these:
which look quite nice, and I think they’d look very nice also on their dark Bamboo board with etched grid … maybe I should alloy myself our local village Go club a new set :sunglasses:

That Amazon vendor you linked to won’t ship to Germany, so Hebsacker’s offer would be clearly the best for me. Thanks nevertheless, because you made me search for the obvious source, which I, confusedly, didn’t do before.

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That’s probably the most important consideration. The whole point of a physical board in my house is to get used, not to sit around as a decoration.

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I ditched the idea of a gray stain since it is really tough to get it looking good. Birch and pine are very finicky taking in stain already, and it’s apparently even tougher to get good results when the stain and wood colors are on opposite ends of the spectrum e.g. Blue/gray vs yellow/brown/gold.

So now I’m considering just leaving the natural wood color intact, and keeping both green/jade and B&W stones handy to suit my guests’ preference. Here is a picture of the board sans feet and grid which I’ll be adding once the final color scheme is decided.

The only other option I’m considering seriously is a stain called “colonial maple” with the black and white stones by default. Here it is on a small test piece

@og1L @Tongue @Conrad_Melville @smurph
More opinions please =)


Wow, those green stones really look awesome on the wood, IMO.

Lemme see whether I can find a few photos of my Jade Yunzi stones … waidaminnit …

The white one has a greenish luster actually, doesn’t show well in this photo.

It’s a bit better here.

And this is a black stone, held against the sun.


@trohde How do you like those single convex stones? I understand they can be played upside down to keep track of analysis moves, but is it difficult to extract captured stones from small enclosures?

I think you’re best using a very light-coloured board for the green stones, so I like the board you posted them on – what wood is it? I have the feeling that green stones will only pair well with light-coloured boards and certainly not with a bold red board like the one you showed in your first post.

The “colonial maple” looks good to me for the black and white stones, it’s a nice yellow / orange so both colours are going to stand out well.


The playing surface and bottom face are birch and the sides are pine.

I’m pretty sure you could also experiment with a few different finishes. You should be able to get anything from transparent to light reddish-brown. If the grain was more defined, a lighter finish would literally make it shine, but with the rather indistinct birch grain I think I would want to darken it a little bit rather than transparent, as Birch seems to be almost white. If you have some scraps left over, maybe just try a few different finishes with the actual wood the board is made of.

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Yeah I applied a little satin polyurethane to some raw scraps and it yellowed them just a tad too much for my liking. For the sake of the green stones I would want to preserve the light off-white color with something like a clear shellac.

If I go with standard B&W stones and that colonial maple stain, I’d definitely stick with the satin poly cause its amber color makes the wood stain appear deeper and more vivid without darkening.

I’m not keen on oil finishes like tung or linseed but I suppose they could yield some interesting results as well.