Closing Rings Neatly
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Joined: October 14, 2018
Posts: 5
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Location: UK

Closing Rings Neatly
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Posted on Sun Oct 14, 2018 8:17 pm
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Hi,

I'm brand new at weaving chainmail, and I'm already hooked, having got the hang of 4-in-1 sheet and Byzantium chain (I need more rings now...) However I'm wondering if anyone has tips on how to neatly close rings? Does it depend on the rings in the first place or plier used, or just technique?

I'm hoping to sell jewellery eventually, so any tips would be handy!

Joined: August 05, 2010
Posts: 601
Submissions: 28
Location: Bar Harbor, ME, USA

Re: Closing Rings Neatly
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Posted on Sun Oct 14, 2018 9:30 pm
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Xarra wrote:
Does it depend on the rings in the first place or plier used, or just technique?


Yes, to all 3.

Rings:
Cut type matters.
You can't really close pinch cut rings, you can only really "align" them. They'll look like >< at best.
Shear cut rings can be closed, but you will still be able to see where the join is.
Saw cut rings are generally considered "top quality", because if you use good technique, the closure can be nearly invisible.

Pliers:
Some give better leverage than others, which makes closing them much easier.
Quite a few people prefer flat nosed pliers because you get much more control compared to say linesman pliers.
Some users even go so far to modify existing pliers to be fully customized for knitting maille.

Technique:
I know it's not very helpful to say, but you'll learn what best fits your knitting style. Some good basic techniques for opening and closing rings can be found here: Link.


while(!project.isFinished())
project.addRing();
// Maille Code V2.0 T7.1 R5.6 Eo.n Fper MFe.s Wsm Caws G0.8-1.6 I2.4-8.0 Pn Dcdejst Xw1 S07

Joined: July 17, 2009
Posts: 451
Submissions: 76
Location: Denver, Colorado

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Posted on Mon Oct 15, 2018 1:50 pm
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I agree quality of rings helps, but you must still learn the pliers skills - good rings alone will not close themselves (sadly). Pliers Skills come primarily from practice. After 10,000 closures, you will be better than you are today.

I would recommend using copper alloys to start for practice. Copper bends easily and stays bent (less springy) than other metals. Aluminum is good for practice too. Avoid stainless and titanium for learning.

Metal temper is an advanced topic I won't go into for you right now. If buying rings, look for "soft temper" (or "medium"), and avoid "spring hard". You will use "hard temper" later so your work holds together strong, but not for practice.

Saw cut is best, but most expensive. Pinch cut is cheap, and looks cheap (bad for learning). TRL's "machine cut" (shear cut) rings are worth a mention, they tend to snap into place when you get it lined up. Medium quality, medium price, better for learning than pinch cut.

Try to close your ring in one try. Fiddling with it to adjust the closure just makes it worse. If you don't like the way it looks, toss it aside and try again with a new ring. You will get better with practice.

If you want to make jewelry, then you need to learn to close saw cut rings. Link some close up pictures of your closures and we can give you some more specific pointers. Cutters



Joined: March 27, 2002
Posts: 3490
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Re: Closing Rings Neatly
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Posted on Tue Oct 16, 2018 1:04 pm
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Welcome and well come, Xarra.

Xarra wrote:
. . . I'm wondering if anyone has tips on how to neatly close rings? Does it depend on the rings in the first place or plier used, or just technique?

I'm hoping to sell jewellery eventually, so any tips would be handy!

With any sort of cut, even the >< using this tool Cutters , a tighter closure more resistant to doing the Chinese Puzzle Trick and coming unwoven again is to butt the ends not point to point as above, but shove 'em together in such a way as to make them meet facet to facet, the points ending up overlapping, one to the outside of the link and one to the inside. Turning the ASCII sketch 90 degrees, the beveled pinch cut ends up closed like this: /\\/ -- there's metal all the way around the link that way, and no air gap; the facets can be made to press together just as with other cuts by the same twist and shove method. In this technique, one accepts a link that is slightly out of round. It's more acceptable for pieces intended for armor (hundreds or thousands of links per) than for jewelry -- shirts, sleeves-of-mail, and other war stuff. The riveted links genuinely used for that work, very strong and fairly lightweight, also ended up having an imperfection to their circularity, a thickened bump where the rivet join was. For armor-type work as with the Creative Anachronists' mailcraft, humble but sturdy galvanized steel wire is the usual material. Nearly all that stuff is pinch-cut. Cutters Pinch cut has the advantage of being the fastest homemade hand cutting technique, at up to two links per second. Home cutters seldom sustain this cutting cyclic rate, but they can do bursts of it. Good with TV watching.

Perhaps the ultimate jewelry mailling material of affordable price is silver wire. This may be silver soldered and make the join disappear altogether, using medium or hard silver solder and flux. Silver wire is dead-soft anyway and needs all the help it can possibly get to stay together.


'The Minstrel Boy to the War is gone...'

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