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twilightbanana

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Posts posted by twilightbanana


  1. Yeah, those look like the standard India- or Pakistan-made maille sold all over the place. Most of these are made of galvanised 1.6x9mm (around 16 ga. 11/32") rings. They don't have any contractions or expansions to worry about when resizing.

     

    Yes, those shirts are cheap, cheaper even than just the materials would cost from TRL. You get what you pay for, though: bad closures on most of the rings, ugly ring cuts, soft metal, bad fit, and so on and so forth. They're good for Halloween and Larp (if you don't set your standards too high), but not much else. The market demands them to be as cheap as possible, so corners are cut. Which is a shame - if they took a bit more time and used slightly better tools and materials, they could deliver much better work.


  2. Not a TRL employee, but I've been around for a bit.

     

    These colours tend to be either leftovers from custom orders or 'oopsies', manufacturing errors. The available stock is essentially one minimum anodising batch of this colour. Since these are intended to be one-off batches they will generally not be replenished. They are not being discontinued, they were never part of the regular assortment to start with.

     

    Setting up a factory-scale anodising line for a specific colour is quite an undertaking, so minimum orders tend to be quite big. The standard pink is economical, since it uses the same setup as the red rings (it just does not get soaked in the dye for as long).


  3. Stripping the zinc is just a matter of tossing it in a bucket of vinegar for a while. This will produce some hydrogen gas, so do it outside. But as everyone is telling you, a belt made of 16 ga. 3/4" rings, even if they are actually closer to 14 ga., will need a lot of repairs if it doesn't just fail altogether.

    I know of no quick, practical way to paint steel rings which won't wear off with wear or leave you with a clump of paint-fused rings, but you could try coating them in wax or oil to stop them from rusting.


  4. Sorry, I'm going to have to shoot down your idea. Jewelry connectors (which is what these would be called) are easy to get for far less that $9 a piece in base metal. Even (or perhaps especially) with celtic knots on them.


  5. IGP (the Irregular Grid Painter by Zlosk) will do the same thing as the knitting program your wife uses, only for chainmail.

    The Sketchup thing sounds like a good idea. You'd need to be able to scale up the ring diameters without changing the wire diameter. Perhaps have a palette to one side for multiple ring sizes. The ability to duplicate units, or maybe even add those to the palette. An option to scale the wire diameters used in the model up and down, so you can easily find out which wire diameters you'd need.

    This would be very useful for making tutorials, too.


  6. Not a TRL employee, but very familiar with their products. The mild steel rings have more oil on them (to prevent rust) now than they had before, which is why they are darker.

    As said before, mild steel is generally a metal you choose because it is more period correct, or other properties, rather than because of the colour. That said, you can wash the rings with warm water and dish soap, and they'll turn up quite shiny.


  7. Ideally you'd want to display your items so people can see how they'll look when worn. So, hang your earrings, drape your necklaces, put your bracelets on something roughly arm-sized. Try to avoid having anything just put flat on the table.

    Add height to your display. Wooden crates are handy, if you can get them cheaply, since they also allow you to carry stuff in them.

    Make groupings, either by type (bracelets, earrings) or style (masculine, steampunk, colourful).

     

    Cheap display materials: look around your house or the nearest thrift store for items you could press into service for this.

    Bracelets: cover a cardboard tube (from a carpeting store, for instance) with fabric as a bracelet display. Or use driftwood, cut-down branches, rolling pins...

    Earrings: wire mesh makes for a quick display that lets you space your earrings evenly. Have some fabric behind the mesh to better display the earrings. Tack the whole thing to the back of an empty picture frame if you can.

     

    And most importantly, get a sign or banner with your store name, and business cards. Oh, and have price tags or signs for everything. Customers often hate asking for the price on anything.

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