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Forum Index > Historical Arms Talk > Rope cap helmet Reply to topic
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Mark Hanna





Joined: 11 Sep 2008

Posts: 61

PostPosted: Mon 29 Sep, 2008 6:36 am    Post subject: Rope cap helmet         Reply with quote

Interesting that you guys are talking about scale helmets, I plan to make one. Right now I am working on a rope cap helmet. I am putting together a hussite reenactment group and wanted a variety of low end helmets. The only picture I have of a rope cap original is in the old Glossary of arms by George Cameron Stone, pg. 187. Does anybody have any more pictures or information on them? I was sewing one together last night and I couldn't help thinking about impregnating it with glue. I plan to put a thin leather lining in it. But I thought if it was covered in glue, then had a waterproof paint or pitch on the outside it would make a pretty good helmet, speculation on my part. I have made one in the past out of thinner rope and worn it over a padded coif, but under a mail coif and it worked pretty well. Any thoughts?

Thanks,
Mark
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W. Schütz
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Location: Sweden
Joined: 19 Dec 2005

Posts: 363

PostPosted: Tue 30 Sep, 2008 6:33 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Post pictures when you are done, one cant get enough of simple soldiers equipment.
Gentes scitote,
vicine sive remote,
quod claret Suecia
plebeque militia.
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Mark Hanna





Joined: 11 Sep 2008

Posts: 61

PostPosted: Tue 30 Sep, 2008 7:47 am    Post subject: rope helmet         Reply with quote

I will. I rubbed glue into it yesterday and it was very interesting. The rope sucked up the glue. It went from a basket kind of feel to a hard helmet feel. I think it could turn a sword now or at least it would help in incidental fighting contact. I think part of armor is the psycological confidence to get soldiers into battle. It would be interesting to do some cut tests.

Mark
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W. Schütz
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Location: Sweden
Joined: 19 Dec 2005

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PostPosted: Wed 01 Oct, 2008 4:24 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

What kind of rope and what kind of glue are you using?
Gentes scitote,
vicine sive remote,
quod claret Suecia
plebeque militia.
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Mark Hanna





Joined: 11 Sep 2008

Posts: 61

PostPosted: Wed 01 Oct, 2008 8:43 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I used a commercial sisal rope and a commercial wood glue. so not the right kind! I was just experimenting. I guess it will have to be repeated with hemp rope and hide glue?

Mark
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Mark Hanna





Joined: 11 Sep 2008

Posts: 61

PostPosted: Wed 08 Oct, 2008 9:49 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Here is a picture of the helmet, now wheres my pitchfork!

http://i204.photobucket.com/albums/bb280/amth...elmet2.jpg

Mark
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Sean Flynt
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PostPosted: Wed 08 Oct, 2008 12:48 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I think that looks great! And when the war is over you can raise bees. Laughing Out Loud
-Sean

"Everywhere I have searched for peace and nowhere found it, except in a corner with a book"- Thomas a Kempis (d. 1471)
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Marc Pengryffyn




Location: Canberra, Australia
Joined: 21 Jul 2008

Posts: 72

PostPosted: Wed 08 Oct, 2008 8:07 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

What a cool project! Covered with pitch, I think it'd be just the thing! I can't help wondering how much protection it would give, but I'm not sure how you could do the experiments both accurately and safely. It certainly looks as if it would protect against light or glancing blows. Well done!
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Christopher H





Joined: 06 Mar 2008

Posts: 79

PostPosted: Wed 08 Oct, 2008 9:11 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Was pitch used historically in that sort of thing?

I have no idea about any of those things, I just find it surprising as pitch is quite brittle by itself.
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Boyd C-F




Location: Nelson, New Zealand
Joined: 08 Oct 2008

Posts: 57

PostPosted: Wed 08 Oct, 2008 9:49 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Mark, that hat looks awesome! You look really happy with it in your pic!

Can I ask what time period and location that style of hat belongs to?

I also have some questions about your construction;

- are the rope windings stitched through or bound around with thread?
- is the hat made of a single winding or a double thickness of rope over the gaps?
- did you use a form to make the hat, and did you start from the top and work down?

Thanks for making and displaying this

Cheers

Boyd
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Jean Thibodeau




Location: Montreal,Quebec,Canada
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PostPosted: Wed 08 Oct, 2008 11:18 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Mark Hanna wrote:
I used a commercial sisal rope and a commercial wood glue. so not the right kind! I was just experimenting. I guess it will have to be repeated with hemp rope and hide glue?

Mark



All sorts of interesting things can be made using white wood glue and fibrous materials: I haven't tried the rope helm but it should work quite well if the rope is saturated with the glue and the glue let to penetrate into the fibres. The fibres end up being glued to each other inside the rope and between rope segments in contact to each other becoming almost a single solid mass.

Depending on penetration depth of the glue there may remain a core of unglued fibres in the centres.

Oh, I would try to saturate the rope and let it start to hold and use a clean wet wipe to clean off the surface glue by diluting it a bit to avoid creating a surface crust.

I've used wood glue and toilet paper to build up " micarta " like handles on knives in the past that look like ivory and are quite hard and can be filled and sanded to shape.

If the wood glue remains water soluble after it has dried sealing it in with some waterproof coating can be a good idea.

I'm not sure, but some brands of wood glue as diluteable with water but once dry are water proof: Diluting the glue for deeper fibre penetration should be tested for when one wants really deep gluing of inner fibres for a more uniform hardening of the whole mass I think.

You can easily give up your freedom. You have to fight hard to get it back!
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Mark Hanna





Joined: 11 Sep 2008

Posts: 61

PostPosted: Wed 08 Oct, 2008 11:58 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks for the comments everybody. I'll try and answer the questions. I sewed through the rope using waxed linen thread and a big curved leaf shaped needle. I did a running stich through the rope from the inside. It used alot more rope and thread than you would think. probably 12'-15' feet of rope. I wasn't thinking of using the glue at the time. I started at the top and worked down. I wanted to make it big enough to have a light leather lining and fit over a hood or coif. I didn't use a mold. Which is why its sort of flat on top and flares out, but I like it. Not sure how you would use a mold. I guess you could sew from the outside. Then I made the lining and thought about glueing the whole thing. I put a fairly heavy layer of glue on the inside and smeared it into all the cracks and fibers with my fingers. Then put in the lining. At that point I did use a mold. I have a skull cap that I put in to maintain the head shape. Then I glued the oulstide the same way. I poured a blob of glue in my fingers and rubbed it in. The helmet is fairly stiff with a slight flexibility. I bet it could take a fairly good chop, but it's not invinsible, probably only good for sword cuts. I deffinatley feels like a helmet. Will have to get a watermellon and a machete. he he.

Mark
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Mark Hanna





Joined: 11 Sep 2008

Posts: 61

PostPosted: Thu 09 Oct, 2008 12:00 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Ps I made it for doing hussite reenactment, 1420's.

Still working on the "angry" peasant look.

Mark
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Boyd C-F




Location: Nelson, New Zealand
Joined: 08 Oct 2008

Posts: 57

PostPosted: Thu 09 Oct, 2008 12:21 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Haha! Thanks for that!
Has the glue made it easier to slice the rope with a knife?

I eagerly await your watermelon test!

Cheers

Boyd
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