I'm putting this page up to answer a few questions that I get asked regularly,
so you don't have to keep emailing me (not that email is bad or anything, but
if I'm just repeating myself, then I might as well do it here). Please still
feel free to give me feedback on the site or to ask for clarification if the
answers here do not suffice. On to the questions.
May I print out your instructions for my own use/an instruction seminar/showing to my friends/et cetera?
By far the most commonly asked question. The answer is yes, with a few caveats. First off, as I made my instructions and have put a lot of time into them, I want credit for them. Do not remove the copyright information from any of the pages.
You can go ahead and try to make the instructions more printer-friendly if you can. However, I'm currently working on getting some high-quality prints made of the more popular instructions. These would be cheap and look very nice for whatever you might need.
Can I use other things from your site?
If you're asking this question, you probably want to use one of my graphics (the Trizantine bar seems particularly popular). Generally I don't want to see my site graphics on other pages, as that reduces my site's uniqueness. However, you can commission a piece from me, whether it be a banner, a front-page logo, or a simple site decoration. That way you can be certain that your graphics are unique, too.
Why do some of your instructions look different from others?
Good eye. My older instruction sets tend to have blockier rings with less realistic colors. They were made with Mechanisto, which is a bit past its prime. It's a useful program for learning how the 3D rendering world works, but it's not very powerful. In the past few months I've switched to using POV-Ray, which is more difficult to use but far more powerful. I'm slowly working on updating the old instruction sets, but that's a fairly low-priority task.
What weave would you recommend for a beginner?
The classic weave for beginners is European Four in One, for good reason. It's the most simple of the available weaves (discounting the Oriental weaves), and can be used for both armor and jewelery. A good choice; I recommend it.
All right then, what should I make? And what kind of rings should I use?
There's always been a bit of debate on the ideal first project. The general consensus, however, is this: don't start with a shirt! Shirts are long, involved projects that require a lot of persistance, which the beginning mailler may well not have. Make something small, see what is required to make maille, and decide if you want to stick with it before you go off and buy thirty pounds of wire. My two recommendations are a dice bag or a coif. Both can be finished in about a week (variable depending on how much time you have free to work on them) and give you something you can show off to other people. You can make a dice bag by making an expanding circle and then sewing a rectangular sheet of European 4-1 to it. A coif works in much the same manner, except that the sheet won't go all the way around the circle.
As for ring size, start big. I started with 14 gauge 3/8" inner-diameter ("ID") galvanized steel links, which is a good beginner's size. Galvy is cheap, so you needn't worry so much about wasting rings, but it's strong and reasonably rust-resistant. 14 gauge 3/8" ID galvy rings make armor-quality European 4 in 1. Two other good options are 12.5 gauge aluminum in 1/2" and 3/8" ID rings, the former for costume and the latter for armor.
Got a question you think should be here? Email it to me and I'll answer. All items on this site are copyright 2002 Chris Weisiger (a.k.a. Derakon).
That's right - I made everything on this site. Reproduction of any of my work in whole or in part requires my express consent.
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All items on this site are copyright 2002 Chris Weisiger (a.k.a. Derakon). That's right - I made everything on this site. Reproduction of any of my work in whole or in part requires my express consent.