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Rob MacLennan

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Everything posted by Rob MacLennan

  1. Rob MacLennan

    Looking for Armor Tailoring Patterns/Advice

    I don't have a moment to go through your whole post yet, but might I present to you The Wayback Machine? https://web.archive.org/web/20160305015723/http://homepage.ntlworld.com/trevor.barker/farisles/guilds/armour/mail.htm
  2. Rob MacLennan

    Bearded Dragon Armor

    I had a similar issue a while back. The first thing that I had to do was stop thinking like I was making armour for a human shape. I ended up thinking more along the lines of making a sock to go along the body, rather than having the armour hang like it would on a human. No pattern; just straight out of my head. Getting the dimensions right would be important and the leg holes could hold the armour in place, so that it doesn't slide up the body. You would likely need to lace it closed along the belly if you went this way.
  3. Rob MacLennan

    Weaving anodized aluminum

    I tried it and wasn't really happy with the results. Under pressure the teeth start cutting the PlastiDip from the inside and it eventually splits. Removing and redoing it is a pain. If you want to go that way then getting pliers with replaceable plastic jaw covers is likely the better way to go, though it does work well to replace the handles on cheaper pliers. Dip 2 or 3 times to get the desired thickness of handle.
  4. Rob MacLennan

    Weaving anodized aluminum

    Using toothless pliers certainly helps.
  5. Rob MacLennan

    MAIL -- the other site -- and its health

    Nope, looks like it's been toast for more than a year now. I didn't really go there for anything other than the odd weave instructions and haven't done that for a couple of years now, at least. The last post seems to explain their demise and there has been nothing posted since. The forum gives a "forbidden" error. I'd say that their database is well and truly pooched. MAIL is Back Online... Mostly (Posted: 2020-05-19) by Daemon_Lotos (PM) Hi Folks, After a ~12hr code and database dive, the site is back online. I've confined it to a read-only state as I slowly bring everything else back online. Articles, Weaves, Gallery Items, Downloads, the Glossary, and the FAQ are all up and running. Logins, the Forum, and Submissions are all currently being held offline. Please note that this is out of an abundance of caution, the remaining functions and features of the site will be returning in the coming days. There may be a few tiny broken things around, please don't fret if you notice a bug. They'll all get dealt with as I go through the entire codebase, line by line. Once the forums are back up, I'll be taking Bug Reports for any outstanding bugs I haven't caught.
  6. Rob MacLennan

    Questions from a struggling new mailer with split ring

    It all depends on what sort of pattern you're using. If you're working with a pattern of 45 degree angle joins, then there may be some inherent flaring anyway. This would mean that you don't necessarily have to add any expansions along the breast line. Even using a straight hang pattern the rings will tend to open along the swell, so you would just need to contract to follow the curvature of the breast. I use both expansions and contractions, to try and make the piece better follow the body of the wearer in a closed hang.
  7. Rob MacLennan

    Questions from a struggling new mailer with split ring

    Looks like you just missed a ring and are off by one ring all down that row.
  8. Rob MacLennan

    you'll never believe what mila kunis wore!

    Typical magazine shot editing, unfortunately. Take a truly beautiful woman and then treat her as if she's less so, by manipulating the image to accentuate some things, minimize others. Undoctored shots of Kunis show that she has come pretty far from the child actress who lied about her age to get on a wildly popular sitcom. There's an actress that I vaguely know, who is built literally like a comic book superhero (34DD, with a 23 inch waist, and far from a Kardashian style bottom), purely by genetics. No surgery. A couple of years ago I stumbled across some professional shots that were taken of her and could easily make out that the photographer had performed similar edits on her. It was shot in a bedroom and there was a bed behind her, with vertical lines on the quilt. The lines SHOULD have been straight, but made obvious curves around her obvious curves. it disgusted me that someone would do that. To her credit this actress now, on her Instagram, makes sure to post any and all edits that have been made to a picture.
  9. Rob MacLennan

    you'll never believe what mila kunis wore!

    This just reinforces my belief that the most beautiful women always seem to have what some people would call an "imperfection" that makes them unique. Takes them out of the realm of the plastic.
  10. Rob MacLennan

    you'll never believe what mila kunis wore!

    It can happen due to illness, as it did in Kunis's case, but some are born with it. Bilateral ("full") heterochromia, like she has, is pretty rare (like 1/2000). No idea about the more common version that we have. Odd thing is that my father has blue eyes, my mother has green eyes, and I'm their only child (of three) with heterochromia.
  11. Rob MacLennan

    you'll never believe what mila kunis wore!

    Could be, but I was putting that down to them using a not so sharp blade to cut them (like a press or the like). *EDIT* I didn't realize that Kunis has bilateral heterochromia (her left eye is brown and the right is green). I only noticed when I looked at the picture at 100% zoom. When I saw that, I did a quick search and confirmed it. I find it interesting because I have centre heterochromia (centres of both eyes are blue, while the surrounding iris is green).
  12. Rob MacLennan

    you'll never believe what mila kunis wore!

    Very interesting. I couldn't find an online link to the March issue of Allure Magazine, which this picture is apparently from, so no idea if they say what the dress is made of. Looking at it though, I would say that it's a thin flexible plastic, to match the clear "scales" that they used around the waist. Punching 5 hols in everything probably just made sense from a production point of view. Or they just screwed up and had to change the hole placement, because I can't seem to find a single instance in which the "top" hole was used. Or they're repurposed from something else entirely... *SIDE NOTE* - Some unscrupulous individual is already selling this picture on eBay.
  13. Rob MacLennan

    Other types of armor

    For different projects you need to consider not only the weight of the leather you use, but also the type. Does it need to stand up on its own, or do you want it to give like cloth? And are you going to dye it yourself, "age" it with wax and friction or conditioners, or do you want to work with pre-dyed and finished leather? The hat that I pictured, above, was un-dyed 5 oz leather for the "crown", because it needs to be thick enough to hold its shape, with un-dyed 3 oz leather for the brim (stiffened around the outside edge with 16 gauge stainless steel wire). I have a "double shoulder" of 7 oz (3.5mm thick) veg tan leather that would likely be considered armour grade by the SCA because, well, it is. I struggle for an idea of what to do with it. So far I've made precisely one coaster out of it, a second in the works, that I burned a pattern into with a laser engraver. I want to make some pauldrons and greaves with it but, as you can imagine, even my sharpest utility knife and a great deal of sweat is required to make a dent in the stuff. Cutting, wetting, and heat forming it is going to be a major project for... someday. Maybe I need a band saw...? But then I made three "Indiana Jones" style hats using strictly 3 oz, oil tanned finished leather because I wanted something that had more give/was more cloth-like. I used the same leather to make several belt bags since I have two "sides" of it (basically a whole cow's worth). So in short I'd say consider first what you want to make, before you ask the question, "With what?"
  14. Rob MacLennan

    Questions from a struggling new mailer with split ring

    Lorenzo will be a much better source of information for this but, as he hasn't responded yet, I'll pitch in from what little experience I have. I've only made two scale pieces for women (maybe a dozen chain pieces) and in my limited experience it's just being on your expansion/contraction game. The two pieces that I made were for use by..... let's just say petite, but almost comically endowed women, using large scales. From the neck down to the top of the chest was pretty much a straight scale piece. Don't think that I added more that a couple of expansions. Just past the transition point of the chest I started with contractions. Starting at the transition point didn't work for me, as it started a "gather" too early. Long the curvature of the back I added a couple of contractions, to follow. Obviously small scales will require more contractions, however, you can space them better, both horizontally and vertically, to make the curve appear more smooth.
  15. Rob MacLennan

    Questions from a struggling new mailer with split ring

    Since Mithril, aka "True Silver", is supposed to pretty much look like silver but be lighter and stronger than steel, you could pretty much go for any silverish metal that you prefer. You could go with shiny anodized aluminum or, if you don't mind the weight, stainless steel. If you really wanted to break the bank, without going as far as selling your liver, you could use plain titanium when it's back in stock.
  16. Rob MacLennan

    Questions from a struggling new mailer with split ring

    Page 10 of the Scales Gallery has some pics of a shirt that was made using the same pattern, if I remember correctly, and you might want to consult it for comparison purposes. It's made in small gold anodized scales. http://www.theringlord.org/forum/index.php?/gallery/category/15-scales/&page=10
  17. Rob MacLennan

    Questions from a struggling new mailer with split ring

    An easy way that you could stabilize the dummy is to get a piece of scrap wood, preferable something like a piece or 2"x8", then drill a hole in the centre of it so that you can insert and glue a piece of dowel into it. Slide the dowel up into the bottom of the dummy.
  18. Rob MacLennan

    Questions from a struggling new mailer with split ring

    Wait until you've got the upper back done and don't worry about the hang, until it can hang unsupported. If you see a problem then, address it. You might need a couple more rows on the front to make it hang well.
  19. Rob MacLennan

    Questions from a struggling new mailer with split ring

    Can't say that I've gotten the last comment ever, but definitely the first two. Rather interestingly the "patience" comment has frequently come from people who do other labour intensive thing like knitting, or needlepoint. Two of them I convinced to go to a local gaming tavern for a beginners' class. One now occasionally takes out her gear and plays around with it, while the other has become an avid mailer and makes jewellery.
  20. Rob MacLennan

    Questions from a struggling new mailer with split ring

    You'll be amazed at what/where you can do with chainmailing, when the motions have been locked into kinesthetic memory.
  21. Rob MacLennan

    Questions from a struggling new mailer with split ring

    Hell, the second and third chain shirts that I made were cut up to make something actually decent, shortly after the third was completed. I had learnt so much and gotten so much faster at weaving that I couldn't stand to look at them anymore. I even asked an actress friend to send a piece back to me, across the border, because I know that I could do far better on it. Mistakes happen and we learn from them. Even if all that we learn is, "Don't do that again."
  22. Rob MacLennan

    Questions from a struggling new mailer with split ring

    I find that completing the top/neck area of a shirt and then working down from there allows me to do so far more easily. You can't hang just the front or back on yourself, or a mannequin, so working with only one side is making it harder for yourself. Having proper tools is always a good idea. For now you could just go to Home Depot or a hardware store, and find something that feels right in your hands, and works with the size of rings that you're using. I like Linesman's Pliers with a return spring, but that's just me.
  23. Rob MacLennan

    Questions from a struggling new mailer with split ring

    When you fill in the rest, they should lie the same.
  24. Rob MacLennan

    Questions from a struggling new mailer with split ring

    Assume that the angle of hang will ultimately be 45 degrees and you'll be "close enough for government work." If you have enough rags, sheets, or blankets around you can use them to stuff the duct tape mannequin full enough to support the weight. If you want to get *really* creative and plan on using it going forward, you could seal up the bottom and fill it with 2 part foam. Making sure that it fills fully would result in it spilling out the top, while it's expanding, so you would both need to make sure that you did it in a well ventilated and easy to clean up location, and you'd have to cut off the excess.
  25. Rob MacLennan

    Questions from a struggling new mailer with split ring

    I appreciate it when you come around. I almost always pick up some little tidbit I didn't know, or hadn't thought of. And I agree about the "production line" comment. I like to just work on projects that I have a passion for and have made props for a few actor/Cosplay friends. One friend is trying to convince me to make welded chain shirts for the local HEMA community, because he figures I could make bank at it, but I have a feeling that he's over estimating the market's willingness to pay for the time, and I'm sure that turning out a dozen or more shirts would kill my desire to do more.
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