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Re: how to make chainmaille

Posted: Thu Jul 31, 2008 3:06 pm
by ¿
i have no need for any kind of armour, i just thought this might be usefull to some of you. :roll:
knowing how to make chainmaille doesn't cost or weigh anything, but who knows it might be usefull some day.

Re: how to make chainmaille

Posted: Thu Jul 31, 2008 6:10 pm
by Slug
Dont worry bro, I learned from it. I didnt lose anything from reading this thread. I do want to apologize for the people that kinda shitted on your post here. It was interesting and the pictures were good.

Keep in mind people, not everyone comes to this site for the same reasons... Even though I do use a lot of the stuff I learn here, some of it I read for pure entertainment. your right, I don't know if I will have to use this skill, Just like you never know if you will have to use your FAK. does that mean you dont have one?

Re: how to make chainmaille

Posted: Thu Jul 31, 2008 6:41 pm
by andygates
Nice how-to. Mail's fun.

Back when I re-enacted, the stuff got wet and rusty if it was badly stored. You put in on and run around for a bit and the rust came off; after a season or so your mailshirt was a nice patinated grey. I can vouch for Ad'lan's comment from personal experience. Not sure why you'd want to stop, though: half the fun of mail is the momentum it gives you in a charge. A full-length hauberk and coif in 6mm mail (we used to use spring-steel split washers, a little more dense and robust than the wound-wire demonstrated in the OP) will add fifty pounds to a two hundred pound guy.

It's good against cutting (we used to do sharp blade demonstrations, for the kiddies). It's good against bites - the padding worn underneath spreads the force and our 6mm was dog-proof. Like all armour it's good against those dumb minor injuries that distract you while the zeds close in. It's useless against arrows, firearms, and pretty poor against blunt force trauma.

Making chainmail bikinis, now that's the perk of being able to make mail. And now Red Sonja is being remade, I see a bright future...

Re: how to make chainmaille

Posted: Fri Aug 01, 2008 2:05 am
by el Punisher
¿ wrote:maille is not time consuming! i can make a 1 foot x 1 foot square in a day. and its actually not as heavy as people think, just wear it a while you'll get used to it and when you take it off you'll feel really light.

just like when you go backpacking

I'm gunna try this out and tell you how it goes

Re: how to make chainmaille

Posted: Mon Aug 04, 2008 2:19 am
by NapTime
For the non-haters in the crowd, this is a really good site for chain maille stuff. In my experience, it's a great hobby, makes good presents, but has no real practical application or monetary value. Maybe as a handy way to store small chunks of 18 gauge galvanized steel wire for repairs? Whatever...

Re: how to make chainmaille

Posted: Mon Aug 04, 2008 11:32 pm
by ninja-elbow
My SCA gambeson:
Image

Red linen outer, 1" wool batting, blue silk liner. Hand quilted by my knight's wife. It is based off of some Rus and Mongol jackets depicted. I wore a chain byrnie over it and that would stop most blows (blunt) from whooping me pretty well.

Shots I took of note that whooped me good were when His Majesty Davin got a good back wrap on me and nailed me in the left kidney and a spear shot that hit me square in the bisquits that knocked the wind out of me. Other than that, knowing how to use your armor and the armor itself deflected blunt shots pretty well. My center-grip shield did most of the work though.

I concur - riveted is the real stuff.

Edit to add: I would not wear the gambeson in any modern application though it is extremely warm and comfortable.

Re: how to make chainmaille

Posted: Mon Sep 08, 2008 5:57 am
by Rush2112
¿ wrote:maille is not time consuming! i can make a 1 foot x 1 foot square in a day. and its actually not as heavy as people think, just wear it a while you'll get used to it and when you take it off you'll feel really light.
Real, proper, heavy-gauge chain mail is VERY heavy. An old teacher of mine is heavily into re-enactments. They do full out battles where people get the shit beaten out of them. They use proper armor that is very similar to what actually would have been used a couple hundred years ago. With some improvements such as foam padding on the inside of the helmets. It stops people from being knocked out quite so much.

Re: how to make chainmaille

Posted: Mon Sep 08, 2008 6:04 am
by Ad'lan
it is very heavy in the hand, but distributed over the body, it's not so bad. There is a lot of weight on the shoulders, but wear it for a while, like he said, and you get used to it. The Main problem I used to find is inertia, it's much harder to stop once you pick up speed.

Re: how to make chainmaille

Posted: Mon Sep 08, 2008 3:42 pm
by Hawk
I didn't read through the whole way, since I know how. Just a tip if anyone is interested in this, a nice quick way to get the wire rolled up is to get a piece of steel fuel line from the auto parts store, cut it to a comfortable length with a pipe cutter, and stick it in a drill chuck. Throw on a set of leather gloves and wedge one end of your wire into the chuck, and hold it with your glove and spin it until you're at the end.

Re: how to make chainmaille

Posted: Mon Sep 08, 2008 3:49 pm
by andygates
Ad'lan wrote:it is very heavy in the hand, but distributed over the body, it's not so bad. There is a lot of weight on the shoulders, but wear it for a while, like he said, and you get used to it. The Main problem I used to find is inertia, it's much harder to stop once you pick up speed.
40-60lbs for a full hauberk and coif (sleeves to the elbows, skirt to just above the knees, and a cap) depending on how big you are. Just like walking with a pack, it takes a bit of practice to get the strength and stamina up to spec.

All that extra momentum is *great* for charging people down. :)

Just be sure to have good grippy boots. :shock:

Re: how to make chainmaille

Posted: Mon Sep 08, 2008 5:26 pm
by thorian
Paladin1 wrote:The best chainmail set I ever saw was a chainmail bikini, I just stood there and imagined the good old days.

Other than that chainmail is very time consuming to make a full corslet, head piece, etc. What would be faster, easier, and just as effective would be leather with riveted overlapping plates. You can have a "trauma" plate of steel front and back that would protect your COM. You could go all hi-tech and have a ceramic plate that would stop handgun rounds and still have the leather/plates on your arm coverings that would defend against knife attack, etc.

I have seen people who started with a heavy leather jacket and built up from there. It's not going to win best costume at the local renaissance festival, but it does work.

Oh yeah and make sure you wear something under a chain malle Bikini. Because 2nd degree burns from hot metal in tender areas sucks ass. Or at least it did for the girl I saw in one. Sun came out heated that metal right up and within 15 minutes she was screaming and tearing it off.

Re: how to make chainmaille

Posted: Mon Sep 08, 2008 5:37 pm
by Rush2112
thorian wrote:Oh yeah and make sure you wear something under a chain malle Bikini. Because 2nd degree burns from hot metal in tender areas sucks ass. Or at least it did for the girl I saw in one. Sun came out heated that metal right up and within 15 minutes she was screaming and tearing it off.
Somehow I doubt you were complaining. :lol:

Re: how to make chainmaille

Posted: Tue Sep 09, 2008 2:02 am
by andygates
Chamois leather liner.

Start with a regular bikini. Use it as the template and cut a car-wash chamois to match. That's yer base layer - fabric won't last (or look barbarian enough!).

Re: how to make chainmaille

Posted: Tue Sep 09, 2008 12:24 pm
by Squidi
I made a shirt of chain mail when I was a young teenager. It was fun, and I never really thought of any practical value of it. I've still got it, along with my wire bending doohicky ( threaded rod and wood stand ). Around the same time frame I had a butcher's glove. Which are pretty nifty for when you are doing something with sharp knives as fast as you can.

Re: how to make chainmaille

Posted: Fri Sep 12, 2008 1:29 pm
by Slugg
i am so making chainmail coasters now for my coffee table.

Re: how to make chainmaille

Posted: Fri Sep 12, 2008 4:53 pm
by Erik
Jvandenhaus wrote:Ok, because I wasted so much time in re-enactments and living history groups, allow me to point out a few things.

What you're making what is referred to as "Butted mail". It's only good for LARPing like the SCA or something, it has no real armour value. Any mail that you can bend easily with pliers will unbend easily under the force of an attack, but that's incidental, what gives mail it's strength is the connections of the links. Riveted mail is the only way to make it legitimate armour.

It's largely unimportant because mail, even good mail, is crappy armour. It's a bitch to keep clean, weighs a lot, the links spread under puncturing attacks and don't disperse the force of mass weapons, oh and naturally, it's not bulletproof!

There's a reason it's been obsolete since about the twelfth century.
But will it stop a zombie bite? I believe so.

Re: how to make chainmaille

Posted: Fri Sep 12, 2008 5:00 pm
by andygates
Absolutely it will. I used to do a demonstration where I'd basically knife up a guy wearing mail with a big sharp scramseax. All that ever happened was that I blunted my knife (which then got stuck into a tabletop to impress the kids). Given how small the human bite is, even if it could get purchase, all it would do is break teeth.

You might want to wear a barrier layer between the gambeson and your skin, to keep zombie gunge off.

Re: how to make chainmaille

Posted: Mon Sep 15, 2008 12:09 pm
by Slugg
i was gona make coasters, now my wife said i should make her a bikini :lol: so idk if im gona make coasters anymore

Re: how to make chainmaille

Posted: Sun Oct 05, 2008 10:42 pm
by Shadowsbane
It does have it's uses. Especially against bladed weaponry. I know some prisons use them to protect the guards. Though that is more of a micro size.

Probably would work pretty well against animal attacks as well, such as dogs, given the proper materials of course.

For me it is strange how similar the construction is to crotchet, or knitting stitches.

Thanks for the info. Always helps to see pictures of it in progress instead of just seeing diagrams or reading the text.

Re: how to make chainmaille

Posted: Mon Oct 06, 2008 9:15 am
by kiwilrdg
If you work harden the links you can increase the strength of butted maille considerably (as well as making it look as though it was made using square wire.

Just place the rings flat on a cold anvil and flatten them with a cold hammer. they can then be reopened and knitted as usual. instead of butted thes can also be done with a lapped joint in the ring and the joint does not catch on things as bad.

Maille has uses. There are drawbacks and advantages. It is easy to fit and move in. It does distribute force some and it resists cutting. Comparing it to plate armor is like comparing a flak jacket to tactical ballistic armour. Both have diffrent uses. Maille was obsolete in Europe when it was found to be very good in the American Colonies.

Re: how to make chainmaille

Posted: Wed Oct 08, 2008 9:11 pm
by razi
another option for chainmail is for jewelry. Mix it up with some copper wire and you can make all sorts of neat shit (not just dice bags).

you can use a dowel rod on a power drill but you need a strong drill to do it. also, a dremel is great for cutting the links out of the coil.

http://artofchainmail.com/patterns

There's a great site for different patterns from different nations.

Re: how to make chainmaille

Posted: Fri Oct 10, 2008 12:40 am
by BB42924
There's always trading the shit off to the uninformed. "Yeah it'll totally stop bullets! It's made out of steel!" Unscrupulous business tactics aside go with leather over chain if given the choice. It's lighter, has arguably better defensive qualities, and is far less time consuming in the construction phase.

Re: how to make chainmaille

Posted: Fri Oct 10, 2008 1:37 am
by Jeriah
Jvandenhaus wrote:Ok, because I wasted so much time in re-enactments and living history groups, allow me to point out a few things.

What you're making what is referred to as "Butted mail". It's only good for LARPing like the SCA or something, it has no real armour value. Any mail that you can bend easily with pliers will unbend easily under the force of an attack, but that's incidental, what gives mail it's strength is the connections of the links. Riveted mail is the only way to make it legitimate armour.

It's largely unimportant because mail, even good mail, is crappy armour. It's a bitch to keep clean, weighs a lot, the links spread under puncturing attacks and don't disperse the force of mass weapons, oh and naturally, it's not bulletproof!

There's a reason it's been obsolete since about the twelfth century.
Butted maille was widely used as functional armor in India through the 19th century. It is effective against slashing attacks (and bites!). It's not as good as riveted, it's true; the best solution to that is to use thicker wire: finely wound 14 gauge wire is VERY tough. 16 gauge looks nice but is a bit light for real action.

As for whether it's crappy armor...depends what for. Against a slashing knife attack, it's great. Against a stab, it's inferior, and against a firearm (which is a lot of what we'd face these days) it's useless (Wild Wild West aside).

It's still cool stuff to know how to make, for fun. Or you could make boar armor for your dog!

Re: how to make chainmaille

Posted: Fri Oct 10, 2008 11:29 am
by andygates
Butted is also fast to make, with minimal tools - two pairs of pliers - and relatively low skill. It's knitting, with steel. Or maybe crochet.