Jump to content


  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


Posts posted by j_betts

  1. I didn't know to look at the gage. How important is the thickness of the wire?

    The thickness of the wire combined with the size of the ring will tell you how much of the shirt is metal, and how much is air. More metal means stronger, but welding is also a big factor. Unwelded rings are much weaker.

    At this point I'll point out that TRL sells their fabric to someone that makes anti-shark suits. They also sell chainmail leggings to protect lumberjacks from cutting themselves. This stuff is pretty tough. Not bulletproof, but more than capable of stopping sharp objects from cutting you.

  2. It took a while but memories of a similar discussion have finally bubbles to the surface. The outcome of that discussion was that the least expensive way to make an weighted blanket was to make a rice quilt. A rice quilt is basically two pieces of cloth quilted together to form a number of pockets usually 4" by 4", each containing a measured amount of rice or other grain.

    This may be the cheapest way, but 25 lbs of rice is not a small amount. It is also not a washable item. Running this idea, but using stainless shot would reduce the volume of material, and make it able to be cleaned. This would cost more per pound than rice, but would still be much cheaper than chainmail cloth.

  3. I was looking at the Ring Lord online store and noticed that the weight listed for the stainless steel welted t-shirt is only 6.8 lbs. That is much lower than the weights I've seen for similar products. Is this the correct weight? If so, why?

    TRL's welded shirts are made out of 22 gage wire, so it is much less metal than a normal chain shirt. This is the stuff you see butchers wear as protective gear. It is super thin, but still quite durable.

    When you say you found similar products, can you tell us how much they weighed? A difference between this and 9 lbs is much different than 6.8 lbs and 35 lbs.

  4. While looking for a blog on chainmail I found a link to the official google blog talking about chainmail. One of their data center techs made an inlay of the Google logo for their office.

    The link for the full article is located here.

    He also gives the size of the banner, the number of rings, and the size of rings he used.

  5. Japanese 4-1 using 14G 3/8" large rings and single 18G 3/16" Stainless small rings. That would be very close to what you want in weight and much lighter than European 4-1. The reason for the steel 3/16" ring is for strength and you already have the rings.


    I have to agree with Movak on the weave suggestion. Japanese 4 on 1 is one of the most open, and fastest to come together weaves I've ever worked on. I'd almost thing that a "ring mail" set up where you use a very large center ring perhaps up to an inch in diameter would work well for you. It would lower your weight, and speed up your weaving time.

  6. is there any way that you can make one piece of mail then change the colors in photo shop so you can see what the combination would look like

    The short answer is yes, you can do it. The long answer is look up "photoshop color change" on a search engine of your choice. There are several tutorials out there that will show you how.

  7. somewhere around 18ga 3/16ths (or 5/32nds) should give you a small tight weave that's strong enough for your purposes.

    Unless someone else will give a more specific answer....


    I don't have any exacting information, but I do have my experience when it comes to costume armor. I currently wear a shirt made out of 16ga 5/16" aluminum while playing a Lord of the Rings based war game. It was originally made in 2003 and I've spent less than half an hour tightening up links since then. All repairs I've done to it are fixing rings with gaps in the 1/16 - 1/8" range. I've not had any open up so that I've lost any rings. Those rings have an AR of 5.3, so if you are looking for super tight it may not work well for you. It is tight enough that seeing the cloth under it isn't easy though. The shirt goes to just past my waist (I'm 6' 180 lbs) and weighs about 5 lbs.

  8. I'd also suggest you rest your hands every now and again. The length of my working session goes way up if I put the pliers down every 10 minutes or so. I'm not talking long, just put them down, and stretch your hands for a moment. It makes the world of difference to me.

  9. There is minimal added weight using a 14g ba for the bulk of the project versus a 16g though.

    Actually there is a fairly big difference according to TRL. A bag of bright aluminum 16 ga 1/4" is .23 lbs for 750 rings, while the bag of 14 ga 1/4" .25 lbs and has only 500 rings in it.

    I'm now going to suggest something odd, but have you thought of using the micromail strips sold by TRL? There would still be a ton of work, but the stuff is very light, and strong. It works out to about $12 per sq foot, so not super expensive.

  10. I've been watching Dirty Jobs lately and thought The Ring Lord might be a good suggestion for the show. They produce an odd (to the general public) product that I think might catch the producer's eye.

    Between making rings/coils/scales, maintaining machines, and shipping there should be enough to do for a segment. Add in some of the making chainmail work and I really think it would work.

    The one problem I might see is getting flooded with orders so that back orders become a problem. I've seen that happen to a one man shop that opened to internet orders. He got to the point where he was backlogged 3-6 months.

  11. One of the blogs I read had an article about the Canadian space agency working on a lunar rover. The odd part was that the wheels are chainmail filled with metal beads.

    Looking at the pictures I recognized the wheels as something TRL did.



    Bottom of the page is a video of the rover running around.

  12. This would be a very light restriction corset (more towards the fashion side). I know if it was too tight it would pull the rings apart regardless of the metal. My plan though is for a cloth/mail hybrid of sorts. I will be two panels, connected in the back with elastic, and tied in the front (she wants a front tie). my hope is that the elastic in the back will absorb/distribute enough of the stresses so thaat the rings will be ok under moderate tightness.

    And as far as the copper, again customer request. I might end up doing it as only a border if it can't handle the stresses of being put into the actual structure, but my hope was that in a sufficiently tight I4-1 weave it would work as a kind of boning, and be able to withstand the stress.

    My wife has made a corset before, and I've seen what type of forces are involved with doing any real tightening down on one. My first point is that if you use elastic of any type it will be fashion only. It requires quite a bit of force to actually reduce someone's waist. The stories of someone putting their foot on a woman's back and pulling on the strings aren't just stories. I know people that have done it.

    Your boning for a restricting corset needs to be made out of steel. The standard is 1/4" spirial spring steel. Fashion corsets often used a bunch of wire ties, so pulling together a weave that barely bends should work fine for fashion.

    Personally I'd make the base of this out of at least 4 layers. The lining that will be to the wearer's body, a structure layer of fabric that can handle some strain, a layer of fabric you can see through the chainmail, and finally the chainmail. Some fabric corsets have 9 layers, so that isn't that much. Putting the boning on the chainmail will give you the structural elements you want, and make it a functional part of the whole.

    For material I'd go with stainless at least for the boning. I'm assuming your customer isn't corset trained, and will be trying to bend over while wearing it. That will put a ton of strain on the weave that is trying to hold it flat.

  13. A lot depends on the airport.

    I know a few people that wear chainmail when flying to avoid the fee of checking a 40LB suit case.

    That has to be fun when they get to the metal detector/body scanner.

    TSA agent: Sir, can you put any metal objects you have on you in the bin. Belt buckle, spare change?

    You then strip off the chain shirt and dump it into the bin.

  14. I just bought a number of rubber and BA rings to make a pair of bracers. While checking out I redid my math on how many bags I needed, and noticed that nowhere does it note how many rings are in a bag while you are in the shopping cart.

    I'd suggest adding rings per bag to the link the the ring's info you get in the shopping cart. It would make it much easier to do recounts, and make the purchase process much more user friendly.

  15. I would think that something to tie the tails to the rest of the jacket would be nice. Perhaps some chainmail trim to the lapels and cuffs of the jacket. You could also change out any buttons for a couple of can tabs or a bottle cap. A piece of mail for a pocket square might also be a nice touch.

  16. this question came up in the "chat" forum, but i thought if i moved it here i could get more discussion:

    what do you guys use to display your armor (chainmail and/or plate)? i would love to have a display like you'd expect to see in a castle, with the armor hanging just as it would were it being worn. are there mannequins that would hold that much weight (probably upwards of 100 lbs)? if so, where would you get such a thing? if not, can you build a skeleton out of wood or metal? are there patterns for such things, or would you just make it up as you go along?

    any suggestions would be appreciated. if it really is a matter of just building something from scratch, i'll try to post my results here.

    I've seen several tutorials online about making a humanoid frame for displaying armor out of PVC piping. I don't know how thick of pipes you would need to hold up that much weight though.