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 Post subject: Stone Soup: Comparing bowl capacities
Post #1 Posted: Tue Mar 31, 2020 12:33 pm 
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https://imgur.com/gallery/wXQfx9J

Stone Soup: A Visual Comparison of Go Bowl Capacities

I have ten pairs of handmade go bowls. Why? Later. They come in a variety of interesting materials and extraordinarily beautiful woods. They range in diameter from 140mm to 165mm and in height from 85mm to 110mm. How would you know what size go bowls you might want to buy when this corona madness passes? What size go stones will fit in those bowls? Bogiesan to the rescue.

The Imgur album linked herewith holds roughly a dozen photos to help answer that question. The idea was to illustrate how both thin and thick stones fill up the volume of the bowls. You should be able to estimate how your stones might fit. I have photographed each pair of bowls sitting on a standard-sized katsura go board that is 50mm thick. The left bowl contains a full set of 180, 7.9mm purple shell stones (obtained in 2003 from Kuroki). The right bowl contains a full set of 180, 10mm glass stones (obtained in 1983 from the original Ishi Press). These are the thinnest and thickest stones I have in my collection. I do not depict the popular flat Yunzi stones because I don’t have a set. (Hey, send me your set and I’ll reshoot!) Note: Some vendors list go ke in their catalogs as numerical sizes to indicate the largest stone that can fit comfortably in the bowls. I have not used bowl sizes because I have not found a correlation between estimated bowl volume and any vendor’s size codes.

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 Post subject: Re: Stone Soup: Comparing bowl capacities
Post #2 Posted: Tue Mar 31, 2020 4:08 pm 
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In Japan there are fairly standardized bowl sizes. For routine materials (keyaki, karin, kuri, kusu, sakura) bowls are labeled L(large), XL(extra large) and XXL(extra extra large. Vendors such as Kurokigoishiten give numbers stating the size of stones that would fit. For example: L stones size 22 - 28, XL stones size 30 - 35, XXL stones 36 - 42. Exotic woods such as Shimakuwa, kurokaki, have different measurements. Generally the Japanese shops do not state dimensions. An important point is that it is OK to have smaller stones in a set of bowls than these guides recommend; it is only a problem if the stones are too large.


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Post #3 Posted: Thu Apr 02, 2020 4:05 pm 
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bogiesan wrote:
Bragger!!!!!1

<just kidding>

That album incited some serious goke envy, I’ll never look at it again :D

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 Post subject: Re: Stone Soup: Comparing bowl capacities
Post #4 Posted: Fri Apr 03, 2020 8:22 am 
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Bonobo wrote:
bogiesan wrote:
Bragger!!!!!1
<just kidding>
That album incited some serious goke envy, I’ll never look at it again :D


Someday I shall recount that collection’s history (but it is not really an interesting story, just a series of opportunities). I hope to sell several pairs since I no longer need them, and someone out there could get a nice bargain. But. Maybe not. The bowls I do not use to hold go ishi are practical storage devices for small things and they do look great in the old IKEA bookcases.

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 Post subject: Re: Stone Soup: Comparing bowl capacities
Post #5 Posted: Fri Apr 03, 2020 8:35 am 
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gowan wrote:
In Japan there are fairly standardized bowl sizes. For routine materials (keyaki, karin, kuri, kusu, sakura) bowls are labeled L(large), XL(extra large) and XXL(extra extra large. Vendors such as Kurokigoishiten give numbers stating the size of stones that would fit. For example: L stones size 22 - 28, XL stones size 30 - 35, XXL stones 36 - 42. Exotic woods such as Shimakuwa, kurokaki, have different measurements. Generally the Japanese shops do not state dimensions. An important point is that it is OK to have smaller stones in a set of bowls than these guides recommend; it is only a problem if the stones are too large.


Thank you for the additional information, Gowan. I was hoping this thread would provide some relief from the endless AI discussions and possibly encourage others to share photos of their now-on-hiatus go equipment. Anything anyone has to contribute would be appreciated by all who stumble upon this thread.

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Post #6 Posted: Fri Apr 03, 2020 3:33 pm 
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I have one 'GoSeigen'-style bowl, of cheap, light, non-descript wood, and one much nicer and denser 'Kitani'-style bowl, Kuroki karin. I much prefer the GoSeigen shape, because of the significantly larger diameters and much bigger feeling, but of course karin's denser feeling is far superior. It's easy to guess why the Japanese craft stores make mostly (exclusively?) Kitani-style: since 85% (95%?) of the wood is hollowed out for each bowl, the wastage is immense, and GoSeigen-style requires much more source material than Kitani-style. :(

My Go sets are not on hiatus but in active use, even in these stay-home times, because I relay live my online games on them. :blackeye:

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Post #7 Posted: Sat Apr 04, 2020 5:56 am 
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EdLee wrote:
I have one 'GoSeigen'-style bowl, of cheap, light, non-descript wood, and one much nicer and denser 'Kitani'-style bowl, Kuroki karin. I much prefer the GoSeigen shape, because of the significantly larger diameters and much bigger feeling, but of course karin's denser feeling is far superior. It's easy to guess why the Japanese craft stores make mostly (exclusively?) Kitani-style: since 85% (95%?) of the wood is hollowed out for each bowl, the wastage is immense, and GoSeigen-style requires much more source material than Kitani-style. My Go sets are not on hiatus but in active use, even in these stay-home times, because I relay live my online games on them. :blackeye:


The names for the two more common goke shapes (Goseigen: low and ovoid; Kitani: taller and spherical), seem to have originated with Janice Kim when she opened her online operation, Samarkand. Her bowls were of Korean manufacture, if I recall correctly. It would be interesting to know the etymology and correct Japanese terms for the different shapes, there should be a good story behind the terms.

There are two other types of Japanese goke shapes illustrated by these two links. The very tall units are specifically designed for pair go and are apparently rare, custom made for the professional tournaments. The other seems very western with its cylindrical form and wide base.

https://www.maekawa-kayagoban.co.jp/ima ... 105_02.jpg
http://shop.kurokigoishi.co.jp/en/item/981

Exploring the major Chinese and Korean go/weiqi/baduk suppliers reveals many other forms, apparently based on different aesthetics, woodcraft traditions, and regionally available materials. We need more western woodworkers to make bowls for go that are not based an any of the eastern tradition!

http://6brothers.net/product/detail.htm ... ay_group=1
http://6brothers.net/product/detail.htm ... ay_group=1
http://6brothers.net/product/detail.htm ... ay_group=1

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Post #8 Posted: Sat Apr 04, 2020 7:56 am 
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Hey Ed - these look like flat karin bowls. Maybe the best of both worlds?

Flat(ish):
https://store.shopping.yahoo.co.jp/ohku ... honka.html

Compared to their non-flat:
https://store.shopping.yahoo.co.jp/ohku ... karin.html


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Post #9 Posted: Sun Apr 05, 2020 7:47 am 
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The unfamiliarly shaped bowls in Bogiesan's last post (Maekawa go board shop) are known in Japan as Honinbo shape. I don't know where that name came from but I could guess that some pre-20th century bowls used in some castle game or such involving a player from the Honinbo house. The "Go Seigen" and "Kitani" labels are not used anywhere in the Asian go communities. The "Go Seigen" bowls are known in Japan as hiragata, (wide pattern) in English, and are easily obtained in a variety of standard woods in Japanese go board shops. The apparently tall looking bowls in the Kurokigoishiten link were originally devised for use in pair go. Two "bowls" are stacked. In pair go both sides would use one stacked set of bowls. This allows each pair member to have a separate bowl for stones.

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Post #10 Posted: Sun Apr 05, 2020 6:42 pm 
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Hi gowan,
Quote:
The "Go Seigen" bowls are known in Japan as hiragata, (wide pattern) in English, and are easily obtained in a variety of standard woods in Japanese go board shops.
Really? Maybe I haven't been looking at the correct websites. The usual Japanese websites I've looked at in the past, like Kuroki, etc., have most of their bowls in Kitani-style, like 95% to 100%. I just went to Kuroki's website, and saw only one set of Goseigen-style bowls, a repaired set, and already sold.

The flattened karin bowls in mhlepore's post seem to me an exception, not the norm.

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Post #11 Posted: Mon Apr 06, 2020 10:49 am 
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I have two sets of bowls from Kuroki, a 10.7mm set of their slate and shell stones, an 8.0mm set of Ishi Press slate and shell stones and a chestnut set I bought in Tokyo in 1970 with 9.8mm glass stones. The 8.0mm stones #30 sit happily in the Kuroki extra large bowls and the 10.7mm stones #38 sit happily in the Kuroki extra super large bowls.

I acquired a cherry set of bowls in 1971 from The Nihon Kiin that are the flatter type, they were ordered to take 8mm stones but the bowls are just a little small for my 8mm stones. I have just looked at their catalog from 1969 and the go bowl sizes were descriptive (eg medium, large, extra large, special) and not by stone thickness even then.

Last year I measured the volume of the three sets of stones using a cooking measuring jug and the volume of the bowls using uncooked dry rice - once the bowl is full you just pour the rice into the measuring jug. I used millilitres. I now need to find the notebook! Please be careful borrowing rice from the kitchen store cupboard - as excuses go it's not that believable.

fyi - There is a good selection of Go Bowls and stones at Aoyama GoBanTen in Tokyo - they all seem to be the fatter and taller type

http://www5b.biglobe.ne.jp/~goban/english@go@version.html

They give the sizes of their bowls as Large, Extra Large and Super Extra Large - but these differ from Kuroki and the bowls from Aoyama with the same size even differ slightly. <Sigh>

They also sell glass stones, demonstration boards and cheaper table boards

Best Wishes - John

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Post #12 Posted: Tue Apr 07, 2020 1:26 am 
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Hi John,
Quote:
There is a good selection of Go Bowls and stones at Aoyama GoBanTen in Tokyo - they all seem to be the fatter and taller type
Thanks for the link: once again, almost all the Aoyama bowls shown are Kitani-style.

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