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Posts posted by lorenzo

  1. Here's a link to a good tutorial on medieval tunic patterns, It should clear up how the armpits are best done. Since you're using 16g 5/16" rings you shouldn't even need any of the gussets and gores so feel free to omit them. They serve the same purpose as the darting in the Trevor Barker pattern, historical accuracy and extra mobility for fighting men.




    A hauberk pattern tutorial is another project that I keep meaning to work on, especially since there's only that one decent one out there right now.

  2. The trick to doing a scale shoulder on a mail shirt is not to let the weight of the torso stretch out the scale weave. The two ways that I've done this are to either stiffen up the scale weave or just add it as an overlay to the vest rather than a weight bearing component. At a guess the shirt you referenced uses the second method. If you choose to stiffen up the scales instead I prefer to use plasti-dip sprayed on the backside of the weave and then cured onto a form.


    I'd steer clear of the bladeturner pattern, it's really just a flawed design, there are better ways to make a 45 degree seam shoulder if you really must have one. I've made a couple shirts based on that pattern in the past and having made 1000+ shirts now those are still among the worst.


    The Trevor Barker one is much better but unless you're concerned with historical accuracy I'd skip all the darting because it's not really necessary for a costume piece. There are still two minor drawbacks to this pattern, the neckhole and the armpits are very crudely done, they're serviceable but just don't look very good.


    I generally just use a simple tunic pattern unless I'm doing a custom piece. In my experience that's the most common way that historical mail shirts were made anyways.

  3. Okay, the first thing that you need to know is that with the ring size you're using you'll have limited success with tailoring. Historical armour was most often crafted with an AR of 6+ for a very good reason, it allows your suit to stretch as you move. I use welded rings with an AR of 6.7 to ensure a full range of motion, it looks like you're using 18g 3/16" rings which you'll have to accept will never turn out quite as good. Now onto your questions;


    Yes, we always weave the maille in the armpits so it hangs open just like the scales do. We never include gussets because they're totally unnecessary with ring AR's above 6, I think they're probably unnecessary in your case as well. I also have to comment that what you've made there isn't a proper gusset, which should be located on the torso of the shirt to accommodate the Latissimus Dorsi muscle. Yours is up on the arm where it probably does more harm than good.


    There is also a matching V on the underarm, the patch of maille that connects the two is more or less a simple hexagon shape. That won't necessarily work for your design though, this old post shows how I did the armpits in a shirt that was similar to the style you've made here, hopefully it'll be helpful to you in visualizing how to make the transition.



  4. Paladin; We minimized the problems with the shoulder seams by tweaking the ring sizes slightly. Having large AR welded rings really made a difference in having them lay a little more nicely. I think with a scale redesign they could be made almost perfect but that's a project for the future.


    rollcake; We covered the armpits with maille, basically just use the same sized rings as for your scales and regular european 4-1 should work. Feel free to ask whatever questions you like here.

  5. Hey all, I've been promising to show everyone some scale techniques for a long time now. Here's a link to a page about a scale gown that we made for the upcoming "Seventh Son" movie.




    The pictures there show details of some of the more advanced scale techniques and what can be accomplished with them. If you have any questions about the scale construction post them here and I'll try to answer them.

  6. To my knowledge the vikings used European 4-1 for armour but not jewelry. For authentic jewelry I've only seen examples of plain single and double linked chains.


    It's certain that the vikings had contact with cultures that used spiral and byzantine weaves but I've never seen evidence that they used them. Most viking pieces that seem to be a certain type of chain turn out to be twisted or woven wire on close examination.

  7. Adding expansions under the pecs and shoulder blades has two purposes. First it enhances the muscular look of those areas and second it spreads the contractions around so that they don't look bunched up at the hemline. It isn't a big deal to just do them all down the sides like you're planning but it might not fit quite as well.

  8. Nice work, it's difficult to stick with a project like that and see it through both due to the cost and the amount of work involved.


    I would really suggest redoing the seams though, the bladeturner ones are just plain bad and nowhere near historically accurate. Here's a link to a tutorial that shows how to do a proper 45 degree seam.




    The Trevor Barker ones are fine for high AR rings but with the low AR rings you're using they tend to bunch up a bit so I'd go with 3-1 expansions rather than the 5-1 ones.


    Other than that, the fit on your shirt looks excellent and the overall aesthetic is good. How are the arms for freedom of movement?

  9. Argon shielding is critical for getting consistently good welds in titanium and so is having clean rings. You should wash and degrease any Ti rings that you'll be welding with but it's not necessary to sand or file the surfaces. Tumbling or etching is the worst case scenario for very contaminated rings but I doubt you'll ever need that.


    It sounds to me like you aren't putting enough consistent pressure on the rings to forge them properly. That can be really tricky with lower aspect ratios in springy hard metals like grade 5 titanium. I'd recommend something more like 18g 5/16" or 16g 3/8" but 16g 5/16" is also workable. Make sure that you slightly overlap the ends of the rings so that they have spring pressure against each other as a closed ring and use the same amount of force each time you press a ring into the electrodes as well. With that size of ring it should be a few pounds of force at minimum.

  10. Stainless, or any other metal the scales come in, will keep you safe in this scenario but it won't be as dent resistant as you might like. My testing has shown that 20g 3/16" welded stainless rings underneath the small scales will stop an upward thrust from most weapons. Weapons that it likely wouldn't stop are icepicks and stilettos since a very thin blade can pass through the rings.


    For large scales it would be 18g 5/16" rings so larger blades like a rapier could possibly get through, it may or may not be a problem for your application but that's not for me to test, that's the marshal's job. Split rings are less reliable than welded but once again that's the marshal's job to test.


    If you don't want the weight of brigandine then don't even bother with large scales, they weigh about the same. Small scales save you about 40% of the weight as long as you stick with the 0.015" thick ones. Aluminum or titanium scales would save you another 20% on top of that.