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Chronic Helm Tutorial
Article © MAIL User: Chainmailbasket_com

Chronic Helm takes standard Helm Chain and scales an additional pair of small rings inside each singled large ring, giving it a 3-4-3-4 cell continuation. Each of these added rings passes through 2 large rings and is positioned to form a gap between the small ring pair in the next 4-ring cell. This causes it to be ring size specific.

The chain assembled in this tutorial is crafted of three ring sizes and they are rather specific. Normally two sizes are used, however an attempt at AR of 3.8, and AR of 6.2 caused slight kinking in the 3-ring cells so their large rings were increased in size.

Rings used:
.048" (1.22mm) stainless steel, brass, bronze
21/128" (4.17mm) mandrel
.182" (4.62mm) ID
AR of 3.8

17/64" (6.75mm) mandrel
.299" (7.59mm) ID
AR of 6.2

35/128" (6.95mm) mandrel
.306" (7.77mm) ID
AR of 6.4

The important thing to remember is to have a large enough gap between the large and small rings to allow them to scale properly, but not be so large as to have them slip out of position. In the same wire diameter, this seems to be a difference of around 2.6 - 2.7. The layering scheme involved is not a particularly sound one, and the resulting interactions are similar to those found in AR-locked items such as the otherwise unrelated Sweetpea.

The first sample I made in an AR of 4.1, and AR of 6.8 seemed overall a little too loose for my liking. I haven't attempted combinations lower than those listed above, but there is a gap between the horizontal large rings in the cells here, so further refinement should be possible.

Step 1:
Prepare the following items, and several more of the 2-ring sections:
Image: chron01.jpg

Step 2:
Situate the small ring of the 2-piece beneath the large ring of the fourlet.
Image: chron02.jpg

Step 3:
Image: chron03.jpg
Pass a large ring through the small ring on the opposite side, so as to secure it in its scaled position.

Step 4:
Arrange the piece by shifting two small rings so they scale inside the large ring pair. Another 2-ring segment is on deck.
Image: chron04.jpg

Step 5:
Position the small ring of the 2-piece beneath the large ring in the previous cell.

Note: The direction the piece is facing is reversed here.
Image: chron05.jpg

Step 6:
Add the sandwiching large ring as you did in step 3, and position the cell correctly.
Image: chron06.jpg

Step 7:
Scale another small ring inside the cell by connecting it to the large ring of the previous cell.
Image: chron07.jpg

Step 8:
Layer a single large horizontal ring between the large rings of the previous cell and connect to its two small rings.
Image: chron08.jpg

Step 9:
Affix a small ring to the pair of large rings in the previous cell. Position it between that cell's small rings, but be sure not to pass through either.
Image: chron09.jpg

Step 10:
Place another 2-piece; its small ring scaled inside the large one of the previous cell.
Image: chron10.jpg

Step 11:
Slip the stablilizing sandwiching ring through the small scaled ring. Note that two different positionings are possible:
Image: chron11a.jpg

Image: chron11b.jpg

Step 12:
Close that ring and then scale two small rings inside the pair, maintaining the layering scheme.
Image: chron12.jpg

Repeat steps 8 through 12 to continue the chain. Be careful to never pass a small ring through another small ring.

Chronic Helm and Chronic Helm Alternating. Other patterns are possible.
Image: chron_vs_alternating.jpg

Before they're bolted down by the rings added in steps 8 and 9, the pairs of loose large rings of each four-ring cell flop around and have to be manipulated into their proper configuration. This arrangement that they alternately fall into is the same as that found in Acute Mandala.
Image: chron13.jpg
Image: chron14.jpg
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