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Re: Japanese Armor on Budget - Green Style

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  • b1laxson
    Odd that I should happen to choose to wander by this list today to see the asking of low-budget Japanese armor. Be sure to check this group s link list at:
    Message 1 of 9 , Dec 8, 2006
      Odd that I should happen to choose to wander by this list today to see
      the asking of low-budget Japanese armor.

      Be sure to check this group's link list at:

      http://groups.yahoo.com/group/sca-jml/links/Armour_000977359482/

      As others are pointed out the helm and gauntlet are the harder parts.
      I do not use self made for those put trust to skilled artisans. Notes
      no those immediately below followed by the rest of the kit:


      On the helm:

      I am still wearing an early Konrad helm even though its Normanish. A
      kabuto can be self made and there are patterns out there. However,
      check that the pattern you are using is intended for SCA use. There
      are many "ceremonial" designs that do not meet SCA standards. Most
      notable is the presence of those curved bits on the sides near the
      temples and large crests... those we Marshalls often disallow due to
      the possible damaging of the opponents rattan weapon... which in turn
      puts you and others at risk.

      On the gauntlets:
      There is no proper Japanese gauntlet that I have found/seen that keeps
      up to the SCA-impact sport. You will likely need to get some "western"
      ones. You can however extend your shirt/arm covering to cover them up.


      Torso:
      There are indeed many patterns out there including those under this
      group's link list (see above).
      The larger number of plates/scales reflect a richer/higher samurai.
      There are some examples of Ashigaru "grunts" wearing large plate armor.
      I also made up my own, known to the pleasure or horror of
      Ealdormereans. Given that it is based on large broad plates it is
      fairly simple to make. Only the shoulder tops have 2-way curves. Most
      is just mono curves to go around my body.
      Many real samurai armor have zero coverage on the spine. Some had it
      as an added piece. Some nickname it a "coward's plate." I had the
      misfortune in the mid-90s to fall off a roof. My almost full height
      single rear plate is what I call a "built in spinal board". You rarely
      will get there but I do suggest if the pattern you use is missing
      spinal coverage you add it in somehow.

      Arms:
      You have a few choices here. There are examples of mail covering for
      the arms and of course those famous sideboards. Once again the cutting
      nature of the katana led to armor being poor for SCA-impact sport. You
      will need non-japanese elbow protection.
      Some wear european standard-SCA elbows but a kimono over top.
      I did something else wierd for my own armor and used a closing
      hardshell forearm (which has some precedence) and added one tiny and
      one large plate that articulates to cover the back side of the elbow.
      My upper arms have earned some reputation (good&bad) as among the
      largest wings ever seen in Ealdormere. There is indeed precedence for
      them being that big. The size is such that they are my upper arm
      coverage reaching almost all the way to aforementioned elbow plate
      when my arm is extended.

      Legs:
      Well once again we find that the Japanese cutting weapon style doesnt
      match to well to the smack and impact of SCA fighting. Some wear
      European standard SCA legs&knees covered by baggy pants.
      There is common on the samuri shin protection but the knee protection
      is flexible, thus not upto SCA standard.
      Only rarely is there a picture showing these shin guards coming up
      high enough to offer hard protection to the knee. This is the style I
      adapted with the greaves extending up the side of my knee. Hidden
      under pants is articulated U shaped pieces that complete the knee
      coverage no matter how I move. This leading to an uncommon "ankle up"
      rather than "thigh down" knee armor.
      For the thighs we also run into the samurai and SCA not working
      together. There are even references to samurai taking off their thigh
      guards because they are so cumbersome.
      Thus for thighs I recommend you wear something that gets covered. As I
      was working with plastic this is a series of 4" wide strips cut to
      different lengths, crudely laced together and covered by the same
      baggy pants that cover the knee articulations.


      >phew<

      I probably have my patterns for some of these around someplace on my
      hard drive. If you want them email me directly at b1laxson@...

      The biggest expense for your armor is going to be the choice of
      material. First of all the helmet requires metal as per our Marshall's
      handbook. The rest can be something else.

      For the "sam-like green" I used 3/16" ABS plastic obtained in a 4'x8'
      sheet from PlasticWorld near Steeles&Dufferin. I am actually thinking
      of trying 1/8" (2/16) the next time. Cost of the plastic was around
      $350 - $400 IIRC. This sheet provided enough for torso, legs and arms.
      Switching to 1/8" would also reduce the cost.

      Some patterns you will find on the web use a much lower cost of
      plastic barrels. Quite suitable for starter armor.

      A standard CDN Tire heat gun is sufficient to heat up the plastic,
      provided you also learn to apply water to the outer layers when the
      heated area gets to 'melt' before the heat goes through. By cooling
      off the outside the heat already placed on the inside has time to
      migrate deeper into the plastic. Alternating heat and water you can
      make plastic of even 3/16" bendable. While holding it in shape dose it
      in a tub of water.
      The only real restraint I found is that compound/saddle curves...
      curves that bend in two different directions like a bowl... where very
      hard to do. Also the longer pieces, like the 12"+ front torso plate,
      where hard to heat the whole bend line at once.

      It should be added that large curve plates are very good at
      deflection. At Trillium Baron Cynred commented that my armor was "very
      skippy". He repeatedly told me not to take his spear thrusts as it was
      sliding off... which really is what armor is supposed to cause happen.

      >phew<

      Brian Goodheart the Green
      Green, not just for Europeans


      --- In sca-jml@yahoogroups.com, Kathy Dickson <akabara17@...> wrote:
      >
      > In need of Japanese-style armor.Constraints: College student
      budget.Solution please?
      > _________________________________________________________________
      > Express yourself with gadgets on Windows Live Spaces
      > http://discoverspaces.live.com?source=hmtag1&loc=us
      >
      > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      >
    • Kaneki no Ryuto Akimitsu
      ... budget.Solution please? ... On the nature of Gauntlets that work for those of us of heavy fighting calibur, or some such poo-hockey... The pattern by Sir
      Message 2 of 9 , Dec 11, 2006
        --- In sca-jml@yahoogroups.com, Kathy Dickson <akabara17@...> wrote:
        >
        > In need of Japanese-style armor.Constraints: College student
        budget.Solution please?
        > _________________________________________________________________
        > Express yourself with gadgets on Windows Live Spaces
        > http://discoverspaces.live.com?source=hmtag1&loc=us
        >
        > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        >


        On the nature of Gauntlets that work for those of us of heavy
        fighting calibur, or some such poo-hockey...

        The pattern by Sir Hadi works if you don't mind having a mitten to
        cover your whole hand at once. To give credit where credit is due,
        his is constructed with leather. In some kingdoms, this works.
        Being as most of my fighting injuries happen to my hands, I
        personally do not suggest it.

        My modifications to Sir Hadi's pattern, as strange as that may be,
        are mostly lacing and plastic. Yes basic barrel plastic and camping
        cord lacing. It works for me; mind you, I am covering the whole
        thing in a mitten and attaching them directly to my kote.

        This makes a very striking spike to most 'Purists'. They like just
        the pieces on the back of the hand, where that leaves the fingers
        open. If you do your research, they you will see that even full hand
        pieces were toggled to the kote in later periods.

        My biggest tip:
        Research, make a pattern, research some more, try western gauntlets
        out, research, make a second pattern, and then be ready to scrap all
        but your research in the pursuit of something that works for you.

        On the subject of a budget:
        Surplus stores usually have a whole barrel for less than $10;
        sometimes as much as $20. Even so, you can make a whole set of armor
        out of one barrel. Plastic is my suggestion.


        That's my two koku for the day.

        Kaneki no Ryoto Akimitsu
        - Goshi of Uroko
        - Eldren Hills, Ansteorra
      • Maddalena Alessandra
        Armour on a budget, If you decide to go plastic check with any farmers in your area raising horses or cows for plastic feed barrels (50 gallon). They might
        Message 3 of 9 , Dec 11, 2006
          Armour on a budget,
          If you decide to go plastic check with any farmers in
          your area raising horses or cows for plastic feed
          barrels (50 gallon). They might give you a good
          deal(free even) since they are commonly considered the
          leftover container and as such useless/trash. Note
          you might possible need 2 depending on you armour
          style.
          I am currently replacing some of my armour with
          plastic for weight reasons

          Best of luck,
          Baronessa Maddalena Alessandra Godwin
          Blue Sapphyre for Gleann Abhann

          --- Kaneki no Ryuto Akimitsu <sokkaiya23@...>
          wrote:

          > --- In sca-jml@yahoogroups.com, Kathy Dickson
          > <akabara17@...> wrote:
          > >
          > > In need of Japanese-style armor.Constraints:
          > College student
          > budget.Solution please?
          > >
          >>
          > On the subject of a budget:
          > Surplus stores usually have a whole barrel for less
          > than $10;
          > sometimes as much as $20. Even so, you can make a
          > whole set of armor
          > out of one barrel. Plastic is my suggestion.
          >
          >
          > That's my two koku for the day.
          >
          > Kaneki no Ryoto Akimitsu
          > - Goshi of Uroko
          > - Eldren Hills, Ansteorra
          >
          >




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