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Last Edited: January 12, 2013, 2:46 pm
Module 1 - Introduction to Chainmaille
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Module 1 - Introduction to Chainmaille
Article © MAIL User: Muzz
Introduction to Maille
Note: This is designed for a more formal classroom setting and in no way should replace informal teaching of anyone interested. The following is just a guideline. As this is a compilation of many different people, we ask that this not be used as a profit-making venture, but rather as a method to further our craft.
To give an overview of the history and craft of Chainmaille.
To explain the safe use of the various tools used in the making of chainmaille.
To understand the basics of European 4-1.
The student should be able by the end of the module to:-Identify the four main families of maille and the hybrids.
-Show safe use of the basic tools used.
-Explain the reason for good connections.
-Show proficiency at European 4-1 weave.
The instructor should provide the following: -
-Enough pliers for each student to have 2, unless students are given notice to provide their own. Count on at least a few of them forgetting. (For in class use only. Students should if possible provide their own.)
-Enough precut rings for students to make a European 4-1 patch.
-Samples of various types of chain maille
-Safety glasses for each student.
-First aid kit.
- What is Maille. (Link to student handout in construction)
- Celtic origins of Maille. (Link to article in history)
- Know your pliers. (Link to article in construction)
- Chainmaille construction. (Link to article in construction)
- European 4-1 (Link to Big V's armory E 4-1 article in weaves)
-Skills check sheet.
-Learning aids (Posters, jigs, samples, etc)
The student should provide the following: -
-2 pairs of pliers.
-$ For cost of materials. ($5 recommended: We should be making a profit off the items we make, not the knowledge we pass on.)
-Willingness to learn.
The teaching space.
Take some time to prepare the space in which you are going to be teaching. If you have posters put them on the walls, have nametags available and enough space that people are not going to be in each other’s way.
Note to instructor: The classroom should be a safe place for people to learn and discuss different ideas, it is your responsibility to nurture that atmosphere. You may need to ask disruptive people to leave so that you can stay in control of the class. (If possible, have an assistant)
Introduce yourself to the class and let them know both the objectives of this course and what they will be able to do at the end.
Go over behavior policy and any house rules.
(This should take 3-5 minutes)
Begin at the beginning.
What is Maille?
-Hand out the notes on both “what is Maille” and “Celtic origins of Maille”
-Spend some time going over these notes with the class and show them some examples of the different families that Maille falls into.
-Let people pick samples up, feel them, and see how they are different.
-Ask if anyone has any questions. (Do not feel stupid if you do not know the answer but try to find out and let them know.)
(This should take between 5-10 minutes)
Chainmaille is made with tools and supplies that can injure if care is not taken. You should go over some basic safety items at this point.
Eyewear – Not everyone is clumsy but clumsy people can shoot a ring at a very careful person.
Pinches – Warn people that pliers will hurt if you get skin pinched in them.
Note to instructor: Have a first aid kit handy to take care of any minor injuries Stay in control of the class you can prevent injuries by enforcing house rules.
Tools and supplies
-Hand out notes on “know your pliers” and “Chainmaille construction”
-Go over these notes with the class spending some time on the different types of pliers (if you can have some different ones to show people that can help a lot)
-Show the difference in wire gages and types of metal (The Ring Lord has some sample sets of both gage and type that are a great asset in teaching. Also, bring some short lengths so that people can feel the difference in for example galvanized and stainless steel.
-Demonstrate how rings can be made on a mandrel set up. (Later in the class, while people are working on a weave you can bring students up one at a time to try winding rings for themselves.) Have a range of mandrel sizes and rings made on them to show.
(This should take between 15-20 minutes.)
-Hand out rings to students. (enough to start a weave project.)
Holding off handing them out will help stop people trying to get ahead of you.
-Hand out instructions for Euro 4-1.
-Demonstrate Euro 4-1 step by step. Give enough time for students to keep up with you step by step.
-Give the class some time to work on this weave.
Keep an eye on people and check people individually. Some people may need some more attention as we all learn at different rates. (Assistant teachers are an asset to help in this area. A good ratio to aim at is 5 students per teacher.)
Some people may find a weaving jig helpful to learn while some people will really have a hard time so have some alternate weaves up your sleeve i.e. Byzantine, Japanese 6-1, Japanese 4-1 or box chain are so good alternatives. This is also a good time to invite people to try their hand at winding their own rings.
(This should take the balance of your remaining time i.e. 25-45 minutes.)
Do not just close up class suddenly. Give people about 5-10 minutes warning and use this time to get peoples contact information if you do not have it already. Also, if you have Internet access at your teaching venue get interested people to sign up on M.A.I.L.(community is an important aspect of our craft.) Thank the class for their time and schedule some time to answer any questions that people may have. (Sometimes people will not ask them in the class setting.)
(This should take between 5-15 minutes.)
Test:- Write up a short 10 – 20 multiple choice test based on the specifics that you taught.
Completion card:.- Print out small completion cards (about the size of a business card.) with students name, course name, teachers signature.
Original URL: http://www.mailleartisans.org/articles/articledisplay.php?key=279