Gamers with Hobbies: Chainmail (image heavy)

Making progress.
IMAGE(http://img691.imageshack.us/img691/7740/27mantleowrk.jpg)

Progress stalled. The problem is my 16 gauge 7/16" rings. I never expected to use more than a handful of these so I didn't make very many of them. They just ran out.

Operation V-neck is a complete success!
IMAGE(http://img63.imageshack.us/img63/7185/28mantleapron.jpg)
There are around 5000 rings in this picture. Probably a bit more. I had someone weigh a couple rings on a scientific scale and each ring comes out at just over .47 grams. At home I only have an old crappy non-digital weight scale which puts the weight at about 5 pounds.

You will have to wait before you can see me wearing it. I first have to extend the back a bit to balance the weight. It currently hangs like a lead apron.

Wow that's really cool Tamren, I haven't had a lot of time to do much lately, but I definitely haven't tired of it either.

So what is coming up next is extending the back of the piece to match the front. Then adding some connecting strips on the side to turn this into a small vest. I have to fix the portion that hangs behind the neck since it currently sags due to a lack of support. I can try to change the weave to make it more rigid, hopefully that will work. During this process I will also be working on variants. This should be fun, basically variations on the same pattern using different connections and rings sizes.

Pics in the near future.

EDIT: Bleh I need to stop posting after midnight, my spelling sucks,

Its certainly a hobby that works well in spurts.

For the variations I have a number of them planned. All work will be elfweave or tiffany modified by:
- Doubled rings (kinging)
- Scaling
- Varied ring dimentions
- Transitions between different weave sizes.

I have a whole 6 rings sizes on hand that will be used so this will end up making a large number of combinations.

For a moment there, I thought of chain mail as chain messages, like those horrendous facebook/email spams with terrible spelling and usually some crappy political message. I raged for a second

But this is cooler

Merry Xmas everyone Have some more pics from my experiments with 1/4" rings.
IMAGE(http://img683.imageshack.us/img683/2652/2914experiment.jpg)
Reading top-down left-right they are:
1. Experimenting with trim. The orbiting rings on the right side are one size smaller. This forms a nice trimmed edge that doesn't flop around. But its just a bit shorter than the rest of the weave, so this would bend the piece in a circle if I continued with it. On the other side I added a row of orbiting rings, only instead of laying them flat they are interweaved together.
2. Those interlinked rings can be used to create a variation of elfweave where the direction of the weave does not change every row. In this case every second row. This results in a bigger zig zag pattern.
3. Tiffany done with 1/4" rings is much tighter than if I had used 5/16". The weave is almost rigid and the rings stay in place without flopping around. It can bend just enough to make a belt. If I dropped the wire gauge down to 18 from 16 it would have the same aspect ration as 5/16" in 16 gauge. Making the weave as flexible as my usual stuff, only smaller.
4. On the top you can see what happens if I replace the orbiting rings with one size bigger. It actually works quite well, the connecting rings are spaced farther apart, but nothing gets distorted out of shape.
IMAGE(http://img85.imageshack.us/img85/2545/3014expantionjoint.jpg)
This was fun. Its the expansion joint I showed you earlier only done with 1/4" rings. This one was tweaked a few times after I took the picture and I'm very happy with how it turned out. Unfortunately the opposite version of this came out distorted into a weird shape. Needs more work.

IMAGE(http://img69.imageshack.us/img69/3651/3014experiment2.jpg)
1. This is tiffany with orbiting rings of different sizes. This one turned out super rigid. Not sure what I could use it for.
2. This is regular elfweave, again with different orbiting rings. This variation is quite interesting. In normal elfweave the orbiting rings have a bit of empty space around them. In this variation the wider rings eat up that empty space with no remainder. All of them fit perfectly without distorting the sheet which stays flat.
3. Trim on this edge of the sheet is rather hard because there is so little room. The best I could do was use a few small rings to tighten up the edge (compare the bottom to the top).
4. This rosette took me a couple hours. I am trying to find the right design to make a hexagonal sheet with 1/4" rings. I know this can be done starting from a rosette using larger rings. However this attempt is a bit of a failure, there is simply not enough slack in the rings to keep adding on to this piece. It can bend into an umbrella shape but not much else. In fact its so rigid, and dismantling it will be such a pain in the ass that I will probably just give this to someone as a pendant.

Taking a break for a while to rest my hands. But next up is more experimentation. Things will quickly move on to the larger rings sizes which will open up a lot of possibilities. Should be fun.

Also changed the thread title to be a little less confusing

Did some more work. Lots of stuff to see! Again reading right-left top-bottom
IMAGE(http://img46.imageshack.us/img46/4927/3114variations.jpg)
- This little piece was my attempt at making an elfweave chain using connceting rings one size smaller. One size too small as it turns out, the weave was so tight it locked up and I couldn't add any more rings.
- Tifanny and elfweave with varying ring sizes.
- This variant uses alternating sizes for the orbiting rings.
- This is elfweave with the orbiting rings two sizes larger.
IMAGE(http://img46.imageshack.us/img46/2849/32rosette14.jpg)
I did finally figure out that rosette. The pair of pictures at the top are my second attempt. It was an improvement in that the piece is now properly hexagonal. But the same problem occured in that there is no more room to ad rings and extend the piece.

After some more work I figured out the problem. On the back side I stopped using the larger 5/16" rings and this allowed the rings to form neat little triangles. These then fit together well to form a hexagon with straight lines and perfect angles. The pattern seems to be stable without any distortion. So I could extend this piece into the size of a dinner plate without difficulty.
IMAGE(http://img191.imageshack.us/img191/849/33expansionfinal14.jpg)
Again we have the horizontal elfweave expansions. I managed to perfect the one I showed earlier. It sits flat without distorting and has clean lines throughout with no overlap.

Below we have the reverse version of this joint. This one isn't as optimal as the first, especially the back side of it. Not as aesthetically pleasing I suppose but it does work.
IMAGE(http://img300.imageshack.us/img300/9386/34verticalexpansionfina.jpg)
Lastly we have the vertical expansion. The bottom 3 rows are 7 "units" wide. The upper three are expanded to 8 units. A 60 degree joint such as the one used to make the hexagonal rosettes is really just a vertical stack of expansions facing opposite sides.

EDIT: Forgot to mention, if these pictures are too wide let me know. I have them sized for my 1600x1200 monitor which gives me about 11 inches of horizontal space for text and the like. I figured that wouldn't be a problem because the vast majority of you guys have widescreen monitors.

Tamren wrote:

Awesomeness

Tamren you should not be playing videogames, go call Peter Jackson and put those babies to good use.

Tamren wrote:

IMAGE(http://img228.imageshack.us/img228/5297/elfweavehybridrosette.png)

IMAGE(http://img89.imageshack.us/img89/299/elfweavehybridrosettece.png)

This gave me a nerd boner. I have zero knowledge on the subject but just looking at it I can't help but think of this in a mathematical way and it's just so beautiful. Congrats Tamren, hope you're rigth on being an innovator on the area and hope you get some well deserved recognition for this.

Hi guys. Been a while since I updated. I took a break after Xmas to rest my hands. And since then I've started to do a bit of work here and there. Mostly just practice or refinements of stuff I have already shown. Nothing worth posting I figured.

So yesterday I hit upon a new problem. I've been working a bit on coifs. A coif is a chainmail hat. I don't have one to show you guys but you can google up a couple thousand pictures easy, so thats not a problem.

Most coifs are made of european 4-1. The start of a coif is called a "rosette", a small round "bud" of chainmail than then expands in wider and wider circles. This forms the bowl shape that fits over your head.

IMAGE(http://img408.imageshack.us/img408/2296/euro41coiftop.png)

There are a couple of problems doing this the traditional way. The density of the weave changes a lot between each loop of rings. I don't really like the patchy effect this has on the look. It also means the level of protection would vary a lot. But anyhow, that problem can probably be fixed. You just have to carefully manage how many expansions you put in.

What really annoys me is that unavoidable hole in the centre. This is a common feature to all european style weaves. I was looking for ways to made a coif top without this problem. One of the things I tried had to do with something new I had learned.

This here is how to make a seam between elfweave and european. When you make a piece of european with a diagonal edge it matches up exactly with one side of an elfweave strip.

IMAGE(http://img717.imageshack.us/img717/7540/euro41toelfweaveseam.png)

So that got me thinking. 6 triangles of european weave will result in a hexagon shape. So what would happen if I interspaced 6 triangles with 6 strips of elfweave? The result would probably be a round shape.

After some experimenting I realized that the european had a tendency to bunch up and overlap. There would not be enough room for 6 pieces. So instead I used 4. The result was an almost perfect circle with center cross made of elfweave.

IMAGE(http://img228.imageshack.us/img228/5297/elfweavehybridrosette.png)

When the piece was first complete, it was actually a donut shape. Really cool, but it still had the problem of the hole in the middle. Figuring out the centre gave me the most trouble. It took me more than an hour of fiddling with different designs. Repeatedly assembling and splitting rings into different patterns.

It took a while but the result was perfection! The centre is actually formed by two rings, one inside the other. Both of these rings combined hold the rosette together in a round shape.

This is pretty hard to see. So here is another picture using the camera flash:

IMAGE(http://img89.imageshack.us/img89/299/elfweavehybridrosettece.png)

Each piece fits together without any slack. Yet the piece still retains all of its flexibility.

Cool huh? AFAIK no one has ever done this before.

Very cool, just reading through the thread and seeing what is going on. High nerd factor! LOVE IT!

SodaGremlin

That is a thing of beauty, now go check for patents, and start an assembly line so you can begin defense contract negotiations!
May the arrows of your enemies fall, splintered, to the ground!

feeank wrote:
Tamren you should not be playing videogames, go call Peter Jackson and put those babies to good use.

What on earth would Peter Jackson need these for? o_O

Also I forgot to mention. The piece is symmetrical. So if you flip it over and rotate it 90 degrees it will look exactly the same.

More pix to follow soon.

Tamren wrote:
feeank wrote:
Tamren you should not be playing videogames, go call Peter Jackson and put those babies to good use.

What on earth would Peter Jackson need these for? o_O

Lord of the Rings Part II: Revenge of the Rings

Beautiful stuff, Tamren.

WipEout wrote:
Tamren wrote:
feeank wrote:
Tamren you should not be playing videogames, go call Peter Jackson and put those babies to good use.

What on earth would Peter Jackson need these for? o_O

Lord of the Rings Part II: Revenge of the Rings

Beautiful stuff, Tamren.

Well, if someone ever makes a Greyhawk movie, they'll need lots of... Chainmail..

Tamren wrote:
feeank wrote:
Tamren you should not be playing videogames, go call Peter Jackson and put those babies to good use.

What on earth would Peter Jackson need these for? o_O

Also I forgot to mention. The piece is symmetrical. So if you flip it over and rotate it 90 degrees it will look exactly the same.

More pix to follow soon.

Actually, get in touch with Richard Taylor, the head of WETA, he's the one calling the shots regarding "props". The Fellowship of the Ring Extended Edition has an awesome featurette on the custome/prop making production where they interview the chainmail artists, who spent around a year doing nothing else than weaving chainmail, I bet they're gonna be interested on what you're doing here : )

Crickey! o_O WETA is a huge company, I wouldn't know where to start.

This has been a major breakthrough for me. I've been working with elfweave for years now and I managed to create some new innovations like those expansions joints I showed you earlier. But this is the first major idea I have had in a while. The key part of this new kind of rosette is how it connects in the centre. If I can do that, then there are a lot of directions I could go with this.

Hopefully there will be more cool stuff to show you very soon. I have an idea...

I tried explaining this in words before realizing it would be much easier to just draw a picture.
IMAGE(http://img267.imageshack.us/img267/9782/elfweaverosetteexperime.png)
See what I did there?

There are even more variations I didn't have room for. Time to experiment.

If I were you I would look up the weaves in some of the more popular sites and see if anyone has made it before. If not then submit it to them, I believe you get to name your own weaves that you submit.

Tanglebones wrote:
WipEout wrote:
Tamren wrote:
feeank wrote:
Tamren you should not be playing videogames, go call Peter Jackson and put those babies to good use.

What on earth would Peter Jackson need these for? o_O

Lord of the Rings Part II: Revenge of the Rings

Beautiful stuff, Tamren.

Well, if someone ever makes a Greyhawk movie, they'll need lots of... Chainmail..

IMAGE(http://imgur.com/eopFE.jpg)

Yonder wrote:
If I were you I would look up the weaves in some of the more popular sites and see if anyone has made it before. If not then submit it to them, I believe you get to name your own weaves that you submit.

I'd love to share with everyone. But I'm not yet done refining the new stuff. I want to make it as great as possible before try to set anything in stone.

Soon, soon

EDIT: I think I'm on to something. Pics as soon as I finish...

IMAGE(http://img185.imageshack.us/img185/9096/elfweavehybridhexrosett.png)
IMAGE(http://img191.imageshack.us/img191/9096/elfweavehybridhexrosett.png)
Can't write nerdy captions. Must sleep -_-

EDIT: Okay so this is another rosette. Instead of cross shaped, this one is formed into a hex with 6 branches leading off. In terms of making a hat without a hole at the top, this design is even better than the original!

I used 2 sizes of rings to make the webbing. The bigger size has a 1/4" ID, same as the rings that forms the spokes. The other kind are slightly smaller at 3/16". The bigger rings work like the original in that they give you a looser rounded shape that is better for covering a domed surface (like your head). The smaller rings give the hexagon sharper corners and could be handy if you specifically need that shape.

EDIT EDIT: I sense a pattern going here. If I can work out the correct types of rosettes I should be able to make a full sheet out of this design. If I fill in the panels it would be considered a sheet made of hexagons. And if I leave them open it would be called a web or netting instead.

IMAGE(http://img25.imageshack.us/img25/7784/hexpatternredux.jpg)

I made something new today. It has a really complicated name. As far as I can tell this is a hybrid orbital elfweave reverse bias joint. Basically it allows you to take a piece of elfweave and join it to another piece with its row bias reversed. This creates a mirror image. I have no idea what I would use this for but it looks great.

IMAGE(http://img197.imageshack.us/img197/2082/elfweaveorbitalreverses.png)

This was a development of the original "cross" rosette as you can see in this picture of the back side.
IMAGE(http://img214.imageshack.us/img214/2082/elfweaveorbitalreverses.png)

The "orbital" part of the name refers to the two loose rings in this picture. An "orbital" is a ring that is part of a weave, but not actually attached to any other ring. The pressure and position of the rings around it are what hold it in place, hence orbital. There are 2 in this picture, held up by the 3 large rings, and held down by the clusters of small rings on the top.

These rings act as spacers to push the seam ends apart. Without them the seam collapses inward and becomes floppy.

I always liked the weaves and chains that had orbitals in them. Not attached to anything, but still trapped in the pattern. Muahahaha!

I'm so incredibly impressed. This would drive me to madness. Well done!

Also, every time I read this thread title, it always reads as "Gamers with Hobbes" to me.
Don't worry, Hobbes2099, it's not because I think you're slutty, it's this damn dyslexia, you see...

Recent works:

This one isn't quite the opposite of the first rosette. The original was offset a bit so that the two bars that form the cross didn't quite line up. This is what made it possible to attach wedges of euro sheet to the side. This one on the other had is equilateral. Thats not to say euro sheet wouldn't fit onto it, but I would have to figure out a different way.
IMAGE(http://img688.imageshack.us/img688/414/elfweavehybridrosettere.png)

I tried to change the design a bit to offset it. But it ended up pretty much the same. Though this variation looks quite different.
IMAGE(http://img27.imageshack.us/img27/414/elfweavehybridrosettere.png)

This is a new innovation. This is another reverse joint that lets you change the direction of the elfweave bias. Only this time it uses euro sheet to support it from the side instead of using orbitals. This will come in handy later.
IMAGE(http://img710.imageshack.us/img710/5039/elfweaveeuroreverse.png)

I think you know where I'm going with this :D. I'll post pix later if it works or not.
IMAGE(http://img15.imageshack.us/img15/1613/jugglingball.png)

Amoebic wrote:
I'm so incredibly impressed. This would drive me to madness. Well done!

No one can drive me to madness. I'm already there!

Its 5:30 in the morning and I haven't slept yet. But hot damn! I think I have this figured out!

IMAGE(http://img375.imageshack.us/img375/2062/elfweavehybridsphere.png)

What really made this possible was my refinement of that reverse joint I showed above in the 3rd pic. It had to be of a certain height and width or else the chain wrapping around the ball would be too loose or too tight. And I think I nailed it!

IMAGE(http://img571.imageshack.us/img571/4817/elfweaveeuroreverse2.png)

Whelp. I have a headache. I'm going to get some sleep now.

If any of you guys are going to the Vancouver slap n tickle I might bring this with me so you guys can watch me finish it.

Tamren wrote:
If any of you guys are going to the Vancouver slap n tickle I might bring this with me so you guys can watch me finish it.

I was hoping to identify you as the only person dressed in chainmail.