Jump to content

Rob MacLennan

Moderators
  • Content Count

    517
  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won

    92

Everything posted by Rob MacLennan

  1. Rob MacLennan

    New to this looking for pointers

    The only thing that I've used ceramic "fast cut" media on is to deburr welded stainless steel rings and you can believe that I police-up every single granule that ends up anywhere, but in the storage bin after use
  2. Rob MacLennan

    New to this looking for pointers

    You don't want to go too abrasive, or you'll be scrubbing off that thin layer of oxide that's holding the dye. I'd say just the walnut shell, or corn cob media, would be enough on its own for anodized. Clean up oils without scratching up the surface. A little water is good, to help transport the soap around better, suds things up, etc.. I've used both stainless pin shot and ceramic cutting media, is a rotary tumbler, to help to deburr stainless. A little polishing compund or blue Dawn, and a little water, and I found that the ceramic media (though rather expensive) seemed to do the best job. I'll be interested to hear Lorenzo's take. Always learning
  3. Rob MacLennan

    New to this looking for pointers

    Tried wearing gloves, but I found them annoying. Takes me a couple of weeks to build up the callous again after I've not been mailing for a while. As to dirt/fingerprints I tumble.
  4. Rob MacLennan

    Couple of questions returning to the craft

    I don't cut rings in those gauges, so can't help there. When working on smaller rings (or sometimes even larger ones these days) I'll use a large lighted magnifier desk lamp, like this one. Far less cumbersome than headgear. https://www.staples.ca/products/2969862-en-dainolite-led-magnifier-witha-bracket-white
  5. Rob MacLennan

    Seeing what works for others

    From what I remember from the video, the presenter found many barely closed rings. If you've got machine cut rings and leave them closed to say 50% of the wire's diameter, eventually the closure points of abutting rings will meet. The result; the shirt falls apart. That's likely what happened as it rattled around in the box, during shipping.
  6. Rob MacLennan

    Seeing what works for others

    I saw an unboxing video for one of the "$50.00 shirts." Guy pulled out the shirt, then dumped a few dozen butted rings out of the box that had become 'undone' in shipping. And that was a supposedly steel shirt. My aluminum shirts don't fall apart like that in shipping.
  7. Rob MacLennan

    Other types of armor

    Right now I'm largely just doing what I'd call 'making things out of leather.' I need to cut off a couple of square feet and spend 20-30 hours doing nothing but working on carving and stamping test designs in leather before I'd consider what I do 'tooling.' I might have been happier with the hatband if it had been jeweller's brass, rather than stainless. Most of my models are 3/4 of a continent away, so distance and time are big factors. I have several pieces that I'm waiting to see photographic results from and odds are it'll be quite a while before I do.
  8. Rob MacLennan

    Other types of armor

    I've done a few belts but, in truth, they were only fashion and not for their main purpose; holding your pants up. They were very bad at that. Made one dress that was my version of 'the little black dress', in 1/4" - 16gauge bright aluminum. Gave it t a model friend, who it fits perfectly, and is trying to come up with some sort of photo shoot idea for it, still, three years later. Several bikini tops, in both chain (50% EPDM rings) and scale. Those were quite popular for a while. The chain dress was based off that basic pattern, extended. Did a hatband in 4-in-1, 18 gauge, 3/16" stainless and didn't like the look as much as the plain black leather, with brass buckle and studs hatband that I also made, so stuck with the latter. Maybe if I'd done Dragonscale instead.... Though one 'shirt' I made for a friend's birthday gift ended up being so well fitted to her, and she liked the look of it on her so much, that I think it's now become a party dress. I contoured it about as well as I could imagine and gave it a far bit of hang, so it can flair out when spinning like a skirt.
  9. Rob MacLennan

    Leather edged, fabric lined chainmail shirt

    Japanese 4-in-1 and 6-in-1 may look like the joining rings are oval, because they're perpendicular to the lie of the main rings, but they're round.
  10. Rob MacLennan

    New to this looking for pointers

    Well this particular CosPlayer is also a social media rep for a software company, artist, podcaster, model, crafter, tarot card reader, Reiki practitioner, and actress. If you've ever heard of "The Gamers:" series of movies, she's been in a few of them. https://www.patreon.com/thejenpage
  11. Rob MacLennan

    New to this looking for pointers

    It's all 1/4", 16 gauge bright aluminum rings, turned out with my coiler and cutter The collar is integrated with the body. Using the 45 degree joins makes it a natural fit to keep building up into a round collar piece. There's a leather bolster under it, to keep its shape. I went back and forth with the model for weeks, getting it just the way that she wanted it, because it was a (late) birthday present. She hasn't done the CosPlay yet, because she has about a million irons in the fire on an ongoing basis. If you check this link, you'll see the progression as we refined the look. The original chunky looking collar is more true to the original character, but also would have been hell to wear. http://www.morallyambiguous.net/multimedia/gallery/index.php/Chainmail/Form-Fitted-Chain
  12. Rob MacLennan

    New to this looking for pointers

    Typically non functional in terms of armour profile. It's about the look and being able to wear it for a day straight, in a 30 degree C convention hall full of barely washed conventioneers, without passing out. Ideally it wouldn't restrict movement. It's also frequently accessorized with foam based armour pieces, like this one eventually will be.
  13. Rob MacLennan

    New to this looking for pointers

    I caught a note, on social media, about a local supplier (Toronto) that was selling off some old stock of display mannequins. When I saw that one particular torso model was just an inch shy of my chest measurement, and pretty damned close elsewhere, I immediately called and asked how much for cash, "today." Still came in at just under C$100.00, but I don't regret it. With one of my gambesons on it, the fit is pretty accurate. Amazon was good for the female dress forms, for fairly cheap. I wouldn't want to put a full length steel dress on the two I have but, for aluminum CosPlay or Hallowe'en grade stuff, they're more than good enough. Be warned though: If the particular female you're making the piece for isn't built like a 14 year old with a boob job, the non adjustable cheap ones won't likely work. The first piece that I had to specifically make for a photo shoot involved an alt model who was a petite 5' nothing, but a 34-DD, so it works. The proportions are different but the measurements are the same as an actress/burlesque performer friend of mine so with a little mental adjustment, I've been able to use it to make pieces for her without issue. One route that I didn't consider, but should have, is schools. Home Ec classes and such must need to rotate out their stuff on a regular basis and they don't buy the cheap stuff. I work in a university and keep forgetting to check with our Fashion Design Faculty. Since my coverage as a comptech doesn't cover their department, the opportunity never comes up.
  14. Rob MacLennan

    New to this looking for pointers

    I'm lucky to have a torso mannequin that's within a half an inch of my measurements, so that's easy for me. Before that it was the on and off routine. For the CosPlay armour I make for female friends, I'm lucky that they all fit into two basic body types and have a torso for each. That helps a lot, since the majority of them are anywhere from a 12 hour drive, to 3/4 of a continent away from me. Do yourself a favour and put on a touque or arming cap, before you put on the coif
  15. Rob MacLennan

    New to this looking for pointers

    I got the lubricant from The RingLord and it seems to help, at least somewhat, when placed on the surface to be cut of the coil. It's a must on the blade. I still have a fish tank pump that I intend to use to pump a cutting oil/water mix across the blade, but I'm waiting for my Mk II cutter to do it. It's.... been a while The tougher the material that you're cutting the slower RPM and feed rate you want to use, so you don't burn out or break your blade. The tach helps with that, by letting you be consistent. As you figure out what works best for you, make notes and you can repeat what you've done before. Of course this means having a speed control too.
  16. Rob MacLennan

    New to this looking for pointers

    No, you definitely want a speed control. Also a LASER tachometer would be a good idea. The Ringinator website has a very good reference for calculating proper cutting speeds and feed rates, for various metals. This was the way that I went (second half of the video):
  17. Rob MacLennan

    New to this looking for pointers

    My first cutting rig used a jeweller's saw blade in an appropriate arbour, placed in a drill press. The coils ran through a hole of proper size drilled in a 2.4, which was clamped to the working base, and had the saw blade fitting through a slot I cut in the 2x4.
  18. Rob MacLennan

    New to this looking for pointers

    I started with a hand-cranked windlass, hand fed, and would never consider using it for anything less malleable than aluminum, copper, brass, or bronze. Therein lies danger.
  19. Rob MacLennan

    Coif collar

    I was beginning to doubt my search skills, but eventually found that it's called, rather unsurprisingly, a "ventail." https://learning.battleofbannockburn.com/battlepedia/armour/mail-coif/#.XvUjfed7mHs
  20. Rob MacLennan

    New to this looking for pointers

    The sled now has a foam arm that trips the light switch, to act as an auto-stop. The light dimmer acts as both a speed control and a panic stop. The curtain, and a tarp to the left, help to keep the sawdust and other loose crap from making a mess of the rest of my basement
  21. Rob MacLennan

    New to this looking for pointers

    My cludge of a coiling rig:
  22. Rob MacLennan

    Seeing what works for others

    It really depends on what sort of exposure you can manage. I started off making armour, strictly for myself. Later, while looking for something "quicker" to do, I started producing small jewellery pieces, starting with a 3/16", 20 gauge German Silver chain for my security card, for work. Where people were interested in the armour, from an academic standpoint, no one was willing to pay for the time that sort of project would entail. OTOH seeing the chain resulted in sales. Which had me posting my jewellery work on Facebook. Which resulted in more sales. I've donated jewellery to a couple of local causes for auctions. I do motorspports photography (in more normal times) and had some marshals ask me to bring samples to the track, many of which sold. One of the marshals even got involved in the hobby because of the pieces she bought from me. These days I'm not selling much except for the odd commission, mostly because I'm not actively pushing it, but I have made some CosPlay grade armour pieces for friends as favours, or as presents.
  23. Rob MacLennan

    Coif collar

    There are two ways that you can go. You can make a series of truncated triangular panels and join them with 45 degree seams. The number of panels is dependent upon the size of the rings that you're using, because different sizes of rings will tend to give different angles of hang. https://www.mailleartisans.org/articles/articledisplay.php?key=31 The other way to go is to add expansions at equal points around the collar. This imparts a curve to the chainamil, while allowing it to grow in size as you build it outward. Just add them as it feels natural, as the collar grows in size. https://www.mailleartisans.org/articles/articledisplay.php?key=423
  24. Rob MacLennan

    New to this looking for pointers

    Moving to Discussion, as Chat is for non chainmail threads and this post is likely to be missed. The first thing that you would have to do is create coils for cutting. Something as simple as a hand cranked windlass can do this for you. It all depends upon your level of McGyvering and the size of rings that you want to make. If you're talking about larger jewellery pieces, rather than getting into something like armour making, then you likely want something like a Koil Cutter. There are several similar brands and they use a Dremel Tool to cut a coil, that is trapped in a box with a slot. A quick Google search for "jump ring cutter" should give you a few of them, but here is the one that I mentioned. https://www.potterusa.com/koil-kutter-tooling For larger volumes of rings there's The Ringinator or, if you're particularly handy, you could make a similar tool as I did. It uses a power hand drill to cut a coil which is trapped between two plates. https://www.ringinator.com/ Though, to be honest, for most people it's just easier to buy the pre-cut rings. When dealing with something like silver, for example, an accident while cutting rings can become rather expensive.
  25. Rob MacLennan

    Ringlord's Shirt combat grade kit question

    If I remember correctly the kit instructions are more about weaving 4-in-1, in general, rather than a specific pattern. Given the amount of body variation possible that's likely for the best. I rather loosely based my personal shirt on the pattern from a shirt in the Wallace Collection, known as O-1848, as interpreted by Nikolas Lloyd (also known as "Lindybeige"). His musings on the matter can be found here: http://www.lloydianaspects.co.uk/armourMaking/mailMaking.html
×