Clock setting: no more Mr. Nice Guy

by Slivovitz on Tue Jan 21, 2020 10:13 am #339747

At a recent CCA tournament, just before round 2 started, a young man was wandering around the area where I was playing, asking if anyone could set his Chronos GX for him.

With a suppressed eye-roll, I told him to hand it over, and set it for him, storing it as time control #1. That’s usually saved for five minute blitz, but that way he wouldn’t have any trouble getting it back once the clock was turned off. Just press the red button. And it gave him an added incentive to get hold of the #!☠️⚡️⛈!! instructions and learn how to set it himself. The GX is actually quite simple once you learn a few basics.

In the meantime, the director told people to start their games, my opponent started my clock, and I lost about a minute off my time. No big deal, but you know what, new resolution for 2020. I’m not helping anyone to set his clock unless it’s a personal friend of mine, and even then I’ll use a friend’s privilege to give him a hard time about it. I know how to set the long and short versions of a Chronos (at least for any chess time control I’d encounter), a DGT 3000, and a Leap KK9908. I know this because I actually read manuals to the point where I don’t need to consult them every time, and I do keep the manuals. It continues to baffle me that so many chess players can’t seem to master the basics for at least the one model that they own.

The above sounds angrier than it is. I’ve seen this topic come up before, and it will doubtless come up again. But, one pro tip. If the reason you don’t know how to set your clock is because you bought it from the tournament’s equipment vendor two minutes ago and haven’t had time to absorb the manual, the vendor will probably set it for you. Then you can read the manual before the next round, and you’ll never have a problem again.