Shirts, shirts, shirts shirts shirts shirts! ERREHBODEH!
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Joined: November 5, 2013
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Posted on Sat May 10, 2014 12:47 pm
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I just began working on my first chainmail shirt project.
I think I might have made a mistake when I decided on 1.5mm thick galv steel wire and a 7mm ID. Now that I've started, why stop, I mean it seems like a lot of work but I want to make this happen this way or another.
Though I'm a beginner to chainmail since November last year, I've only been doing smaller stuff like jewellery. Most proud of my two sterling silver necklaces I made for my grandma and my mom.
Sorry no tangents, I was going to say I'm such a beginner I think my shirt will be so simple as just rows on rows of Euro 4-in-1 without contractions, expansions, what have you.
Maybe in future projects I'll look further into how to make a more fitted shirt than what I'm shooting for right now.

I have a question for anyone interested in answering, do you have any special techniques or ways of pacing your process into something more than just thousands of repititions, or maybe your process is divided into segments of chainmail sheets stitched together at the end. I'm kinda looking for tips on how to make my project a bit faster than I'm imagining it being as it is right now, about years into the future.

Joined: March 27, 2002
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Posted on Sun May 11, 2014 4:23 am
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In despite of that, Dethmoose, I'd say tailor. It's not hard at all, and it's all done with columnar expansions/contractions anyway, which are the neat and easy kind.

A mailshirt whose body is a tube without some "ins and outs" will slide through your waistbelt of its own weight, particularly with a fairly dense weave like your 7mm ID and even more so if you intend building a hauberk -- a long project as well as a long shirt! Good thing you can do it in stages, isn't it? If it slides through your waist belt, it will weigh very heavily on your shoulders, instead of utilizing that belt to put some of the weight -- your shirt is going to be pretty strong and fairly heavy -- on your hips.

Follow this method, especially Sections 3 and 4.

Tips:

By all means divide making your shirt in patches of mail, which I predictably enough call mailpatches in my posts. (You can Search the site for a few things I've posted on that word.) The directions for a shirt linked to above suggest to me that mailpatches, in a mix of squares, rectangles, and triangular expansion zones which you will learn about reading that link, were how they assembled mail shirts anyway. The expansion links/contraction links only appear in certain specific places to let the shirt out or to take it in. All the rest of the shirt is plain, regular E4-1 weave, and even the expansion zones weave on easily, because their edges are all just plain E4-1; all the weird stuff happens safely inside them.

I pre-open all my opened links before weaving them, by taking half my coils and stretching them out to about 2 1/4 times their original length. Don't stretch much more than that or your links will end up as pringle-rings, in a saddle shape like a potato chip. Then I cut the stretched coils just as I would with the coils I did not stretch. The pre-opened cut links are ready to weave in; the regular cut links are ready to be pre-closed, and weaving them all on is mostly done with hooking an opened link into a closed link and then weaving the opened link into three of the links already in the mail, filling in the corner the three make. For a detailed explanation of how this starts out and looks while you're doing it, see my only article on this site in the Library: Articles section. (Ignore what I have to say about the body of a mailshirt there. I didn't really know from tailoring shirts when I wrote it years ago. You want to use what's in the link up above.) Anyway, pre-opening saves you a lot of time laboring away on your links.

Store preopened links separately from your raw or preclosed links, because the preopened links are very tangly, and you'd lose a lot of time if you mixed the opened and the closed in one container.

Pre-opened links come out of the container in a tangled lump; I just pick up a lump with my pliers, not even using my fingers, and dump the lump on my worksurface. This shakes links loose from the lump and I use these. When they run low, I pick up the lump and drop it again, and more links fall loose.

When weaving mailpatches and particularly when they are small, don't pick the patch up. Slide the link(s) you are weaving on the patch up to one edge and hook the open link into the weave, and close it without picking up the mailpatch. It is handiest to work on an edge that has its links angled up off the work surface, like pointing right at your chest as you work.

You will probably put 130-150 hours into weaving this masterpiece -- if you go at it steadily and don't give up, it will take about three months of the calendar, not years.

Simply working on a project this big with an eye towards making your motions efficient will help a lot to speed up a 30,000-link project which this is likely to be if you are building a haburgeon -- mid-thigh length and short sleeves. It will probably weigh ten kilos or a bit more.


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

Joined: November 5, 2013
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Posted on Sun May 11, 2014 10:52 am
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I didn't actually think of making the expansions and contractions in patches, but that totally makes sense and seems alot easier than making them on the go like I thought I would have to. I'm going to try tailor it as best I can.
Can you explain your weaving method, I didn't quite understand what you meant.

I wasn't thinking of making any longer than right below the waist, since I wouldn't use this as an armor exactly, but it's really more of a novelty t-shirt if that makes sense. Smile

My only real problem right now would be figuring out how to undo the part I've already made to get the expansions over the shoulders sorted out. I followed an easy instruction and made half of the shoulder and sleeve part, but it's not that much, and I'm sure I'll figure it out. Worst case I'll have to break it up into smaller patches and just stitch it together with the expansions as best I can Smile

I'll have to make some more rings, lots more, and I'll definitely take your advice and stretch the coils a bit to pre-open the links, sounds way easier.

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Posted on Tue May 13, 2014 6:25 am
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Mailpatch weaving method -- works for any size patch, even one big enough to wrap completely around you. I start with making a chain of a desired length:

Quote:
. . . [It's] integrated with how I weave mail in general, for a body barrel or any size of rectangular piece. This is what I do: 1. I preclose a pile of links. 2. I make a chain of alternating single and double links, starting and ending with doubled links: 2 links 1 link 2 links 1 link 2-1-2-1…2. It’s a chain of fivelets that will become three columns of links because even though I’m working on this chain left to right on my worktable in front of me, it will ride vertically on my body when all is done. This chain of fivelets is as long as the distance between the bottom of my armpit and the hem of the mailshirt, say, mid-thigh. When I’m done with this I don’t have to guess how tall the body rectangle is; I know its height to the link. I smooth the chain out in front of me so its links lie flat and orderly, the doubled links lying so their edges nearest me are pointed up and off the table and the single links are lying in the opposite alignment. This makes step 3a convenient for weaving.

Step 3a. I hook two of the preclosed links onto an opened link and then weave that opened link into the nearer of the doubled links on the left end of the chain and the nearer of the next pair of doubled links and close that link. I now have a chain of fivelets with a little L-shaped tab on its left end: 3-2-3-1-2-1…2. 3b. I now take another opened link, hook just one closed link onto it, and weave the opened link into the interior corner made up of the three links defining the corner at the right-hand side of the little L-shaped tab, with that closed link occupying the lower right corner of this next fivelet of mail. The tab has now gotten fatter: 3-2-3-2-3-1-2-1-2-1…2.

Step 4. I continue step 3b all the way to the end of the chain so now I have a narrow strip of mail five columns across: 3-2-3-2…3. Everywhere I started with 2 links now has 3; everywhere that had 1 link has 2. Then I go back and do Steps 3a and 3b all over again. This generates a mail weave along the resilient direction, what I call “row-wise.” Rows go across the body, columns go up and down the body. While I’m working on these columns right to left, they will still end up being up and down. I’m righthanded and work left to right; lefthanders may prefer to work from right to left.


The "fivelets" are that basic unit of E4-1 mail -- four links making each corner of a little square, going through a fifth link in the middle. And you can add more interwoven fivelets to any side of this square, either direction of the weave, by hooking two closed links into one opened link and closing the opened link in two links on the edge of the square. This turns one fivelet into two interlinked fivelets, each one with its center link right in the middle of the square of the unit of mail links. And it's like that, all the way down the length of the chain of alternating double and single links.

One thing about length: do NOT make the shirt exactly groin length. You want to enjoy begetting children! -- so, above groin length or below it. Mail has a lot of inertia, and when you walk, it begins to slap. Fairly hard -- which is why nobody makes chainmail bell bottoms. Their ankles would get pounded. The shirt you're describing is pretty much a "byrnie" -- Beowulf-era mail.

To get expansion zones put into mail you've woven, open up a slit, taking a column of links out. Zip the expansion zone into that slit and fill in at the very point -- done. After the first time, you're pretty much an expert. Expansion zones at the shoulder blades are important for a shirt that has sleeves, to put slack in the mail fabric in exactly the right spot. A little too much slack is fine; slightly too little slack is bad.


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

Joined: February 17, 2005
Posts: 349
Submissions: 19
Location: Fortuna, CA

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Posted on Thu May 02, 2019 6:53 am
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*ressurrects the zombie thread*

I haven't done hardly anything for maille recently. Not for years. I stepped away from that inlay piece when I changed jobs, then I changed jobs again, then I bought a house, a new car, then I started working for myself. I'm a published author now with six books out in about two years... LOTS of writing, not so much time for maille. Thinking about it actually makes me kind of sad.

Here's where I'm at so far. I took this picture last June.

I've been picking up woodworking now, but part of what I picked my home for was the ability to have a (small) workshop. I've since built myself a new (massive) desk, and I moved my old desk to the workshop and put all my chainworking tools into it. I just need to make myself sit down and work some wire. I need to finish that inlay before I misplace the pattern again.

What have y'all been up to?


Maille Code V2.0 T6.7 R5.3 Eo.f Fbyz MAg Whi$ Cew$ G3.25/0.55 I12.7/1.42 W24.29 Pa Dacdejtw Xa2g20p4t0w5 S03

^^^ Dude, this code is so out of date for me now... I don't even remember what it means! ^^^
The unintentional God of Chainmaille,
Brandon Cornwell

Joined: March 27, 2002
Posts: 3474
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Posted on Fri May 03, 2019 2:06 am
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I've only been coaching people, here, and at TheRingLord.

Joined: March 29, 2005
Posts: 498
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Location: Plumstead, London

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Posted on Fri May 03, 2019 10:50 am
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The axe man is back! Hello Celtic! Congratulations on the 6 books! You'll have to send us a link; also I wish you all the best with your forays into joinery (I do a little bit of that myself (current projects are, built in dvd/cd/ shelving in my alcove ridden house and under stair step draws.) bit fiddly but should be fairly straight forward.)

What have I been doing? Well as a commuter I've been refining a principle and technique I call Tranter mailling or maille making on the move. I may write it up and post it at some point.

Generally been working on hat bands and sashes. I'm sorry to here you haven't picked up the plyers in a while (You'll be loosing your callouses if your not careful!) But as I discovered when I took a year off (have I really been doing this for 20 years, bloody hell). You get your reflexes back in a week and your rhino skin back in a month.

Good luck with your future books! Published author a ballsy move sir! but good to hear that it's panning out. He who dares wins.....

Joined: February 17, 2005
Posts: 349
Submissions: 19
Location: Fortuna, CA

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Posted on Sat May 18, 2019 2:23 am
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ClymAngus wrote:
The axe man is back! Hello Celtic! Congratulations on the 6 books! You'll have to send us a link; also I wish you all the best with your forays into joinery (I do a little bit of that myself (current projects are, built in dvd/cd/ shelving in my alcove ridden house and under stair step draws.) bit fiddly but should be fairly straight forward.)

What have I been doing? Well as a commuter I've been refining a principle and technique I call Tranter mailling or maille making on the move. I may write it up and post it at some point.

Generally been working on hat bands and sashes. I'm sorry to here you haven't picked up the plyers in a while (You'll be loosing your callouses if your not careful!) But as I discovered when I took a year off (have I really been doing this for 20 years, bloody hell). You get your reflexes back in a week and your rhino skin back in a month.

Good luck with your future books! Published author a ballsy move sir! but good to hear that it's panning out. He who dares wins.....

Oh, those callouses are -long- gone. They've moved to my fingertips. I have completely destroyed five keyboards in writing since 2015 before I got this one that I can hot swap the keyswitches, allowing me to keep the same board through multiple keyswitch failures (I just had to replace the switch for the 'o' key as it double or triple tapped about every fifth strike, like, five minutes ago).

I'm hoping to get my next book finished by July 31 so that I can got on a backpacking trip in August and unplug for a while. It'll be nice to not be hooked into the robot 24/7 for a week. I'm gonna spend the next three months training for the trip by putting on my stainless hauberk and going for two mile hikes around the main street circuit of my neighborhood. THAT should raise some eyebrows, lol

My work can be found here. If you're into high/dark/epic fantasy, it might be up your alley. I have six books out right now, but one of them is a collection of my first full trilogy. You'll be able to see everything I've got at that link, as well as take a look at the writing to see if it's something you'd like. Smile


Maille Code V2.0 T6.7 R5.3 Eo.f Fbyz MAg Whi$ Cew$ G3.25/0.55 I12.7/1.42 W24.29 Pa Dacdejtw Xa2g20p4t0w5 S03

^^^ Dude, this code is so out of date for me now... I don't even remember what it means! ^^^
The unintentional God of Chainmaille,
Brandon Cornwell

Joined: March 29, 2002
Posts: 410
Submissions: 0

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Posted on Fri May 31, 2019 5:47 am
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Still making and shipping. Demand has fallen off somewhat in the last few years so my backlog is usually only a few weeks which makes my customers happy (but me less so). Only 18 shirts last year and this year is tracking even slower.


weldedchainmail.com

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