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Shippo Tsunagi
Article © MAIL User: Chainmailbasket_com


Shippo Tsunagi is a sheet weave that applies a square tessellation to Japanese Dragonscale (JDS), which is hexagonally expanding. Instead of having an orbital ring surround three vertical rings oriented as a triangle, this weave has the orbital surround a square of four vertical rings. Since its composition is derived of JDS, I like to refer to it as Japanese Dragonscale-4 (JDS4). The small and large rings in every weave and unit sample displayed in this article have the same wire diameter.

The following picture compares JDS, and JDS4.
Image: jds_vs_jds4.jpg

Shippo Tsunagi has three types of rings:

Unfortunately the weave requires a very large AR for the large rings. Solid ring options such as split or welded should be used for anything that would require stability. Or rings of a strong material such as stainless steel or titanium in a large wire diameter.

Broken down into basic units:

Image: os_vs_os4.jpg

The small rings in these units are too low to allow sheet expansion. Also, the corner (large, layered horizontal) rings are kept smaller to prevent overlapping.

This picture shows three stable OS4 units in various few AR combinations, each with the small rings having an AR of 2.8.
Image: os4_3units.jpg

Top: AR of 2.8, AR of 7.9 (orbital rings), AR of 5.1 (corner rings)
Bottom left: AR of 2.8, AR of 8.3 (orbital rings), AR of 5.6 (corner rings)
Bottom right: AR of 2.8, AR of 8.7 (orbital rings), AR of 6.0 (corner rings)

By these extensions, "OS6" unit would be a reduced version of hexagonally-expanding "Japanese Dragonscale-6", however, the AR requirement for the large rings would be extremely high.


Step 1:
A 2 in 1 Chain of alternating ring sizes is made eight rings long with the last ring connecting back onto the first. It is important that the none of the rings twist it into a spiral.
Image: ass01.jpg
Image: ass02.jpg

Step 2:
Next, a closed ring is placed on top with the small rings arranged into a square that is angled toward the inside of the closed ring. This large ring orbits the small ring set.
Image: ass03.jpg

Step 3:
A large ring intersects two adjacent of the small rings. This ring mirrors the one on the opposite side. The structure will not remain intact if it is lifted off the surface, but can be placed back this way.
Image: ass04.jpg
Image: ass05.jpg

Step 4:
Add another large corner ring.
Image: ass06.jpg

Step 5:
Add two more corner rings to complete the initial OS4 unit. The orbital ring in the middle is now also a captive ring. This unique type of captivation differs from the typical cell structure captivation found in weaves like Captive Inverted Round, and Captured Full Persian, and is closer to that seen in Japanese 8 in 2 Captive 1 where the ring is sandwiched in place.
Image: ass07.jpg

The next step involved depends on the relationship of the two ring sizes used.

Step 6a:
In most cases, the next small ring is added first, then the next orbital ring is fed between two outer layer rings, and around the small ring.
Image: ass08.jpg
Image: ass09.jpg

Step 6b:
However, for tighter situations in which the small rings are being pressed firmly against the inside edge of the orbital rings, it can become necessary to add the rings in the opposite order. Position a large closed ring in between two of the large layered rings, then add the next small ring. This ring forces the other one to stay in place. The small ring is more difficult to close using this method.
Image: ass10.jpg

Image: ass11.jpg

Step 7:
Two more small rings are connected to the large layered rings. If Step 6a was used, these rings could have optionally been added before the orbital ring.
Image: ass12.jpg

Step 8:
The next small ring is held in place with the addition of the next set of two outer layer sandwiching rings.
Image: ass13.jpg

Step 9:
Finally, the second full unit is completed with the addition of the other set of two outer layer sandwiching rings.
Image: ass14.jpg

Step 10:
Add another unit laterally by following steps 6 through 9.
Image: ass15.jpg

Step 11a:
If you add the small rings first, add two more accordingly, then feed the next orbital ring around both.
Image: ass16.jpg
Image: ass17.jpg

Step 11b:
If you add the orbital ring first, insert it as shown, then add the two small rings to hold it in place.
Image: ass18.jpg

Image: ass19.jpg

Step 12:
Add the next two small vertical, and two large layered corner rings.
Image: ass20.jpg

Step 13:
Continue the pattern as you see fit.

Two Ring Sizes, Same WD:

One of my usual tendencies when tackling a new weave, espeically one with little available AR data, is to try it at smaller ARs attempting to find lower limits.

First attempt:
AR of 3.8, AR of 9.8 was very quickly found to not work.

Second attempt:
AR of 3.9, AR of 9.4 was far too tight.

At this point, I really just wanted to make the weave, so I increased the ARs quite a bit, and would later attempt to find smaller combinations.

Third attempt:
AR of 4.6, AR of 10.3 (approx):
My first successful piece of Shippo Tsunagi has some flexibility. Not a tremendous amount, but that's the nature of the weave itself. A general AR combination with room for reduction. It was very forgiving in ease of weaving at this combination of sizes:
Image: jds4a.jpg
.048" (1.2mm) copper and stainless steel
13/64" (5.16mm), 27/64" (10.7mm) mandrels
.220", .493" ID

Fourth attempt:
AR of 4.1, AR of 9.8 was still too tight, but not by much.

Fifth attempt:
AR of 4.3, AR of 9.8 worked very well and brought the large ring down below 10, barely. 4.2 as the smaller ring would very likely work alternately, as the small rings wiggle around a little bit and still a small amount of flexibility is present. This is my favourite sample of the weave.
Image: jds4b.jpg
.040" (1.0mm) bronze and stainless steel
5/32" (3.97mm), 11/32" (8.73mm) mandrels
.171", .392" ID

Sixth attempt:
AR of 4.2, AR of 9.4 allowed the production of the starter OS4 unit, but further expansion was not possible.

Seventh attempt:
AR of 4.3, AR of 9.4 didn't work either, but at this point the OS4 unit was distorted since the square of small rings no longer properly fit inside the orbital ring.

9.4 is too small for the large ring in any single WD JDS4.

Due to a current lack of rings in ARs from 9.5 to 9.7, further experimentation is postponed for the time being.

Small Ring AR Reduction:

The smaller of the two rings can be decreased with an increase to the large ring size.

Using the same large rings as in "Third attempt" above and decreasing the small rings by 0.6, the following sample was made. At this point, a gap is present between the edges of the small rings in each square which is larger. They are pressed up against the edge of the orbital rings, and this sample was very difficult to assemble: I was forced to use the alternate method of construction demonstrated above where each orbital ring is slid between the large ring set with the small ring added afterwards.
AR of 4.0, AR of 10.3 (approx)
Image: jds4c.jpg
.048" (1.2mm) bronze, and stainless steel
11/64" (4.37mm), 27/64" (10.7mm) mandrels
.191", .493" ID

Increasing the large ring's AR by about 2.2, an attempt was made with 3.5 as the small ring, but it was too tight. 3.6 worked, but barely in this very tight sample:
AR of 3.6, AR of 12.5 (approx)
Image: jds4d.jpg
.048" brass, and stainless steel
5/32" (3.97mm), 1/2" (12.7mm) mandrels
.174", .598" ID


Using the same wire diameter for each ring size:

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