A very simple, cheap way to begin mailling
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Joined: December 15, 2003
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Location: Brigham City, Utah

A very simple, cheap way to begin mailling
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Posted on Fri Oct 03, 2008 6:22 pm
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The easiest way to start mailling is to reserve about 80 bucks or so, and head to the local hardware/farming stores in your area.

Things to look for that will solve almost all the needs you have:
1.Pliers- a good set of pliers will almost last you forever
2.Snips- Home Depot has a pair of diagonal cutters or my favorites HK porter brand scissor leverage style for heavier duty wires
3.Drill blank (aka mandrel)- basically any size you want, I'd recommend a 3/16" to account for springback as you'll have tension on the rod, this will give you 1/4" rings to work with.
4.Steel or aluminum fencing wire- A 1/4 mile of galvy or aluminum will go a long way..... trust me
5.WD-40- I find that if you get a rag and run the wire in your hand with the rag doused in WD-40, the wire polishes and doesn't snag on the rag or a glove, you can tumble and acid bathe later if you need to
6.A project to practice- Don't go all out on a shirt or pair of leggings right away, you'll get burnt out and never pick it up again, or worse, won't LIKE doing chainmaille as a hobby

Once you have supplies spend an hour or two in the galleries and look for inspiration and ideas. Once you have those two down, get going. If in case you find a hard spot in your project, post on the boards and see if anyone can help you. We try to be informative and helpful as often as possible.

Lastly stay positive. We'll keep with you as long as you do us. I've found that if you can find a local SCA group or other LARP group, you can usually get the "face to face" help if needed. Not to deter or refer you to someone else, but sometimes, only a real living person that can rearrange your chainmaille so it looks "right" will help.

Ask questions, be positive, and have an enormous amount of fun while you enjoy your new hobby.


Ask not what wd-40 can do for you, instead ask what wd-40 cannot do for you...... (quietly slurps his wd-40 protectively and growls)

NorthWest MailleFest!
http://mailleartisans.org/board/viewtopic.php?t=9249

Joined: June 26, 2008
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Posted on Fri Oct 03, 2008 8:17 pm
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only one thing i'd disagree with, and that's the mandrel size. most tutorials that say 1/4" rings are assuming 1/4" mandrel plus springback... not that it wouldn't work for basic experimentation, but it's likely to cause some frustration.

mandrel size should also be based on wire size... there's a lot of difference between 18ga 1/4" and 16g (or 14g). I'd say 5/16 for 16g, and 3/8 for 14g.

Joined: August 18, 2008
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Location: Sacromento (Area), CA.

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Posted on Fri Oct 03, 2008 9:40 pm
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Kahuna wrote:
only one thing i'd disagree with, and that's the mandrel size. most tutorials that say 1/4" rings are assuming 1/4" mandrel plus springback... not that it wouldn't work for basic experimentation, but it's likely to cause some frustration.

mandrel size should also be based on wire size... there's a lot of difference between 18ga 1/4" and 16g (or 14g). I'd say 5/16 for 16g, and 3/8 for 14g.


I agree with you on the ring ID. If you tell people about 3/16" rings + spring back so you have 1/4" rings, it gets confusing. And if half the people on this site use ( 3/16" + spring back = 1/4"). And the other half use ( 3/16" spring back or not its 3/16"). every one will get confused! no one will know witch ring size you are talking about unless you say 1 or the other. And I would hate to type in all that info, like most people.

For ring ID V.S. wire gauge; I use 14g on 1/4", 5/16", and 3/8". The 14g works the best for 3/8". And it works OK for 5/16". But 1/4" dose not work well with 14g. It is vary hard to open/close rings. And even tougher to do so when there are rings through the 1 your closing. 16g is probly good for 1/4" ID rings!!

Coif Cool Smiley

Joined: March 20, 2008
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Posted on Fri Oct 03, 2008 11:05 pm
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get a set of calipers and measure it in mm!

Joined: December 07, 2006
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Posted on Sat Oct 04, 2008 2:03 pm
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NOw that is good advice, do you mind if i copy it and make a few copies to give to people who are intersted in starting up

Joined: December 15, 2003
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Location: Brigham City, Utah

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Posted on Sun Oct 05, 2008 5:58 pm
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Feel free, I just hoped to help out a bit, and yes guys, if you want 1/4" rings, get a pair of calipers and make a couple of coils on different rods, you'll find 3/16 works wonders for 1/4 rings, springback sucks but it works to your advantage if you know how to gauge it all, I hope this helps guys.


Ask not what wd-40 can do for you, instead ask what wd-40 cannot do for you...... (quietly slurps his wd-40 protectively and growls)

NorthWest MailleFest!
http://mailleartisans.org/board/viewtopic.php?t=9249

Joined: April 07, 2006
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Posted on Mon Oct 06, 2008 2:53 am
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Unless your mandrel is only like a foot long Razz (when I coil with my short little mandrel there's no springback, at least not any that's noticeable)

Joined: August 18, 2008
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Posted on Mon Oct 06, 2008 3:29 am
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NinjaTails wrote:
Unless your mandrel is only like a foot long Razz (when I coil with my short little mandrel there's no springback, at least not any that's noticeable)
same here!!! but make coils 2' - 2' 6" long galvy and vary lil spring back.

but i see your logic if you are trying to make a chain that is the same size, but with different wire.

Joined: February 17, 2005
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Location: Fortuna, CA

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Posted on Mon Oct 06, 2008 2:28 pm
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bigtitann wrote:
For ring ID V.S. wire gauge; I use 14g on 1/4", 5/16", and 3/8". The 14g works the best for 3/8". And it works OK for 5/16". But 1/4" dose not work well with 14g. It is vary hard to open/close rings. And even tougher to do so when there are rings through the 1 your closing. 16g is probly good for 1/4" ID rings!!
[/color]
Coif Cool Smiley


Hmm. My first project was a 14g. 1/4 hauberk. Turned out quite nicely. Quite heavy though...

Moved to 3/8. Didn't like how much more open it was, but the increase in weave speed was very very likable, as well as the decrease in weight. Stayed there for quite a while.

Currently favoring 5/16 myself... I like the balance of weave speed and weave density. Makes for a heavier, but prettier suit. I have pics of all three... Gonna upload a few more pics into my gallery, and then you can see them all. May post them in here when I get the newest one up.


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

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Posted on Mon Oct 06, 2008 3:20 pm
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First suit; 14g. 1/4 links, with the skirting using Serpentskin, 1/4 and 1/2.


Second Suit, 3/8 Galvy steel, 14g. All Euro 4-1. As you can see, the weave is MUCH coarser.


Seventh shirt, made with 14g. 5/16 galvy steel. Decent balance between density and weave speed.


I hope that last one shows up. Due to the time delay here, I had to link through TRL...

EDIT: No dice. I uploaded it to Photobucket, and I'm linking through there.


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: December 15, 2003
Posts: 404
Submissions: 4
Location: Brigham City, Utah

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Posted on Wed Oct 15, 2008 9:28 pm
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Nice work, I'm partial to 1/4" right now, but my first shirt was 7/16" e4-1 and I still have it, even though I grew about the shoulders and midsection and need to expand it a bit. Let me know if you guys use any of this and if anything could be improved on a basic starter kit.


Ask not what wd-40 can do for you, instead ask what wd-40 cannot do for you...... (quietly slurps his wd-40 protectively and growls)

NorthWest MailleFest!
http://mailleartisans.org/board/viewtopic.php?t=9249

Joined: August 06, 2008
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Location: Loves Park, IL

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Posted on Thu Oct 16, 2008 4:59 pm
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Personally I like the 2nd one you made, with the 3/8 Galvy 14G. It may be coarser, but it looks comfortable.

Joined: October 14, 2007
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Posted on Thu Oct 16, 2008 5:32 pm
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So far in my mailling experience I have made 1 suit with a new one on the way, and have made tons of jewelry (it sells). The first project I did was a suit. Got burnt out for about a week untill I went to the ren fair (that was mostly because I had one plier and my left thumb was black and blue).

But so far none of my coils ive made have had much spring back, about a mm max.


"Who is to say that I am who I say I am if no one knows who I am not to become but me."
-Azrenn the Draconian

Maille Code V1.0 T5.2 R5.1 Fbyz Mfe.s Wcs Cjaw G1.6/0.3 |25/1 Pa Dacdj S06

Joined: December 15, 2003
Posts: 404
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Location: Brigham City, Utah

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Posted on Mon Nov 03, 2008 12:15 am
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I found another mailler in my region recently and he was telling me about a post he read here, lo and behold! it was this one, haha Coif LoL


Ask not what wd-40 can do for you, instead ask what wd-40 cannot do for you...... (quietly slurps his wd-40 protectively and growls)

NorthWest MailleFest!
http://mailleartisans.org/board/viewtopic.php?t=9249

Joined: March 21, 2004
Posts: 503
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Location: CT, USA

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Posted on Mon Nov 03, 2008 5:16 pm
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that's great, gonna submit this as an article?

and celtic... you look like a total BAD-@55 in that last pic.


Hail to the king, baby.

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