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Tom Kinder





Joined: 27 Nov 2008

Posts: 148

PostPosted: Sat 20 Aug, 2011 11:44 am    Post subject: Best gauntlet?         Reply with quote

I'm looking at getting a new set of gauntlets that I would use for WMA practice with wasters and steel blunts. the Gauntlets I have now are plenty sturdy but they are very heavy and since they are mitten gauntlets they are pretty restrictive. they are fine for SCA stick bashing but are not making me happy when used with longsword.

I would like to hear your opinions on what the best gauntlets are with in these parameters:

1. allow the best movement possible

2. sufficiently protective to keep me from getting hurt by steel blunts or SCA sticks if I go that way. I can take bumps and bruises, that's part of the game but I do NOT want broken fingers.

3. I'd like to spend less than $1000 but I could go up a LITTLE bit for something that is really top notch.

4. historical plausability is good but not required though I'd like to avoid plastics and obvious space-age materials.

5. I don't mind if I have to wait for them but I want the source to be reputable and not have a wait list that will take a year or more, quicker is better, but I can wait up to a year if I really need to.

6. I am suspicious of any vendor that doesn't want measurements, I want these to fit me WELL. I am sick to DEATH of hand protection that doesn't fit right, and I have no desire to EVER buy something that doesn't fit right again.

so far my favorite example is the Wisby #3 by www.crimsonforge.com but I have heard rumor that they may not be open any more. I have sent them an email so I should have a good idea if they are open still or not. if Crimsonforge is still running I will almost surely buy from them. unless there proves to be a reason not to.
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Scott Hrouda




Location: Minnesota, USA
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PostPosted: Sat 20 Aug, 2011 12:24 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Tom,

Give Allen at The Mercenaries Tailor a try. His Wisby #3 gauntlets are listed at $412.00 USD currently.

I haven't purchased gauntlets from him, but my Merc Tailor 14th century breastplate and besegues are awesome items and the purchase experience was very pleasant.

Regards,

Scott

...and that, my liege, is how we know the Earth to be banana shaped. - Sir Bedevere
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T. Arndt




Location: La Crosse, WI
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PostPosted: Sat 20 Aug, 2011 12:39 pm    Post subject: Re: Best gauntlet?         Reply with quote

Tom Kinder wrote:

so far my favorite example is the Wisby #3 by www.crimsonforge.com but I have heard rumor that they may not be open any more. I have sent them an email so I should have a good idea if they are open still or not. if Crimsonforge is still running I will almost surely buy from them. unless there proves to be a reason not to.


Hey Tom,
If you get a hold of them, please follow up on here. I would also like to order their Wisby #3's....
I sent them an E-mail the other day and I will let you know if I find out anything.
They also have a phone number listed I may try during the week.

Wisconsin Historical Fencing Association (WHFA) - La Crosse
A HEMA Alliance Affiliate

“Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?” -Juvenal
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M van Dongen




Location: NL
Joined: 22 May 2010

Posts: 29

PostPosted: Sat 20 Aug, 2011 12:42 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Vickers / St George's armory though you might have to wait a bit.
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Tom Kinder





Joined: 27 Nov 2008

Posts: 148

PostPosted: Sat 20 Aug, 2011 1:27 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

http://www.stgeorgearmouryshop.co.uk/64901.html this appears to be the Vickers / St George's armory you refer to and if so I must admit that I am uninspired by what I am seeing. those big thick straps are something I have found I really don't like very uncomfortable and really reduces, for me, both security of grip and tactile control. I mean how many things can you hold at once? that's what these feel lik to me: like I have to hold something else while I'm holding my sword and keep it all juggled and balanced. surely, this cannot have been how it was for a good set of gauntlets back in the day. I used to be ok with the idea that armor restricts your movement a lot back when I only knew SCA armor, but the more I learn and experience the less I am willing to accept armor that doesn't fit well. thank you for the pointer though, and perhaps I have misjudged them I will keep an open mind in the matter.

I will mention it here if I hear from Crimsonforge one way or another.

I've heard a lot of good things about Merc Tailor and they are certainly being considered. anyone worn a pair of these?
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Johan S. Moen




Location: Kristiansand, Norway
Joined: 26 Jan 2004

Posts: 259

PostPosted: Sat 20 Aug, 2011 1:35 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Tom Kinder wrote:
http://www.stgeorgearmouryshop.co.uk/64901.html this appears to be the Vickers / St George's armory you refer to and if so I must admit that I am uninspired by what I am seeing. those big thick straps are something I have found I really don't like very uncomfortable and really reduces, for me, both security of grip and tactile control.


Mark makes really nice stuff, but he does have a long waiting list. And honestly, he does custom armour - I've got a hunch he could probably accomodate your wishes on something as trivial as strap thickness.... Happy

Johan
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Tom Kinder





Joined: 27 Nov 2008

Posts: 148

PostPosted: Sat 20 Aug, 2011 2:42 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

thanks for the info Johan, that makes me feel better about his stuff. at some point I will likely contact him for more specifics.

I think I may have to compromise on my wait time restriction if I want the best out there but I'm trying to avoid a really long wait.

so to add to the questions, has anyone here had any experiences with this company: http://www.performancearmour.com/Individual_I...type2.html
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Jean Thibodeau




Location: Montreal,Quebec,Canada
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PostPosted: Sat 20 Aug, 2011 7:03 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Scott Hrouda wrote:
Tom,

Give Allen at The Mercenaries Tailor a try. His Wisby #3 gauntlets are listed at $412.00 USD currently.

I haven't purchased gauntlets from him, but my Merc Tailor 14th century breastplate and besegues are awesome items and the purchase experience was very pleasant.

Regards,

Scott


I like mine but keep in mind that Allan makes these for SCA folks in mind so they may be a little heavier than optimum for HEMA use but he might be able to use 18 gauge instead of his usual 16 gauge to keep the weight lower ?

The reason they are heavy is that SCA kit can take a weekly beating and not need constant repair: Historical armour would be lighter because their function was to keep you alive or uninjured in a battle and if they needed repair or replacement later it wasn't important. Modern guys don't want to have to buy need kit every weekend. Wink

I find mine to be flexible enough and one doesn't have the problem of badly executed articulation of some low end gauntlets that look nice but just don't work well.

The best thing is to contact Allan if you have questions or want some custom modifications.

One option to consider is to send him sturdy gloves that fit you perfectly and have him build you Wisby gauntlets to those gloves instead of the welding gloves he usually uses to keep the cost down: This way you should get the optimum fit rather than one size glove fits most. ( Had a pair of gauntlets made by Allan where he used deer skin gloves at a slighty higher cost for a closer fit for me ).

Waiting times are much less than with most custom makers which can run into many months if not years. Wink

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




Location: Los Angeles
Joined: 04 Jul 2010
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PostPosted: Sun 21 Aug, 2011 2:59 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

This might be tangential, but it MAY be somewhat on topic for Tom depending on response (*Just realized this option violates point #6, my apologies). Does anyone have experience with "Martial Historical" gauntlets? I saw these pop up on KultofAthena's "New Items" page at the suspiciously low price of $209.95.

http://www.kultofathena.com/product.asp?item=...+Gauntlets



The description says "articulated 16 gauge steel over leather gloves," which doesn't reveal much. Worried
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Jeffrey Faulk




Location: Georgia
Joined: 01 Jan 2011

Posts: 578

PostPosted: Sun 21 Aug, 2011 5:47 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Luna, see here where I inquired about the same subject...

http://www.myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t=23713

Christian Tobler also commented directly on them in another thread:

http://www.myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?p...ht=#229184

Hope that helps...

Tom, Mercenary Tailor seems to be pretty well thought of; couldn't hurt to give him a try. Price's not too bad though (of course, 'not too bad' is a relative term!)
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Chad Arnow
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PostPosted: Sun 21 Aug, 2011 7:41 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Zach Luna wrote:
Does anyone have experience with "Martial Historical" gauntlets?


It's "Marshal" Historical, not "Martial." Happy

Happy

ChadA

http://chadarnow.com/
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Aleksei Sosnovski





Joined: 04 Mar 2008

Posts: 313

PostPosted: Sun 21 Aug, 2011 11:30 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Tom,

You should first choose a type that you wish and then search for the maker. Your price range should allow you to order custom work.

Most fingered gauntlets don't offer enough protection (at least in my opinion). They may prevent bone fractures if you fight with some light weapon, but if you fight with something heavier such as polearm your finger can be smashed between the shaft of your weapon and the incoming weapon. And even without bone fractures having your fingers regularly bruised could result in some more serious permanent injury, I know it from my own experience. Gauntlets by Performance Armour would offer enough protection but in my opinion they are overpriced and are ugly as hell.

Mitten gauntlets offer superior protection but are not very comfortable and are not suitable for "unarmored" combat.

My current preference is "half-mitten" style. For example ones from here http://www.stgeorgearmouryshop.co.uk/64901.html look good: Large plates cover the most often-hit area and you can still individually move each finger.

Once you have chosen the style (fingered, mitten or "half-mitten") you can start thinking about details.

I strongly recommend rounded cuffs like on the photo above. Pointed cuffs like on most 15 c. gauntlets look sexy but are dangerous if you ever want to wear them without wearing gambeson and helmet/fencing mask. I have hit myself several times with such cuff in the head.

I prefer wide tubular cuffs because of better protection, but half-tube cuffs (like on the photo above) are better for "unarmored" combat since they restrict movements less. And in case of pointed cuffs the narrower the cuff-the safer it is.

Probably the most problematic part is the thumb. It is one of the most often-hit areas of the hand and therefore requires good protection. I prefer tips of my thumbs to be covered by deeply dished plates, more or less like on gauntlets by Performance Armour. This allows force of the blow to be transferred into other plates of the gauntlet bypassing the thumb. However such thumb construction makes placing your thumb on the blade (like in German longsword tradition) very awkward. Thumbs protected by plates that are not dished such as on the picture above are more comfortable but would cost you a lot of pain and an occasional "black fingernail". Also some types of thumb construction simply don't allow enough range of motion for the thumb to be comfortably placed on the flat of the blade.

As for materials, hardened steel would be my choice. Actually only some plates of the gauntlet should be hardened, cuffs for example are hit very seldom. Use of hardened steel and good choice of thickness would allow to make gauntlets that offer good protection and are light. For example my right "half-mitten" gauntlet partially made of hardened steel weighs 650 grams (this is total weight, together with the leather glove). And it could have been made even lighter.
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William P




Location: Sydney, Australia
Joined: 11 Jul 2010

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PostPosted: Mon 22 Aug, 2011 6:01 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

i will admit openly that i am smitten like a girl at a shoeshop with the look of the articulated gothic gauntlets

as for potection i consider that to be an acceptable risk for the price of being able to move your fingers and better manipulate your weapon, i cant imagine dchanging longsword grips from halfsword to mordeschlag and back to a normal grip with eggshell/ mitten gauntlets.that said once i get a pair on if i find that position to be wrong ill change it. but for now..
ihowever do think that those half mittens are the best design for manipulatory ability and safety etc
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Kel Rekuta




Location: Toronto, Canada
Joined: 10 Feb 2004
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PostPosted: Mon 22 Aug, 2011 7:04 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Tom Kinder wrote:
thanks for the info Johan, that makes me feel better about his stuff. at some point I will likely contact him for more specifics.

I think I may have to compromise on my wait time restriction if I want the best out there but I'm trying to avoid a really long wait.

so to add to the questions, has anyone here had any experiences with this company: http://www.performancearmour.com/Individual_I...type2.html


An advanced student bought a pair of these things and eventually got them after persistant effort contacting them. What arrived was non-functional, boxy looking costume armour whose primary selling point was they were made of titanium. As such they were very difficult to modify to some level of usefulness.

I strongly recommend you avoid this product for your stated purpose.
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Zach Luna




Location: Los Angeles
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PostPosted: Mon 22 Aug, 2011 11:06 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Chad Arnow wrote:
Zach Luna wrote:
Does anyone have experience with "Martial Historical" gauntlets?


It's "Marshal" Historical, not "Martial." Happy


Ah. That would explain why my googling yielded such unhelpful results. Laughing Out Loud
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Hadrian Coffin
Industry Professional



Location: Oxford, England
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PostPosted: Mon 22 Aug, 2011 11:10 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hello,

I recently ordered gauntlets from Jeff Wasson http://www.wassonartistry.com/. I got hourglass gauntlets based on the black prince pair. Hardened sprig steel was about $1500 if I remember correctly. I have several friends who own and use Jeff's stuff for WMA, it is really top notch. A friend of mine who runs a fight school has a pair of his gauntlets that are truly amazing.

The other armorer whose work I have seen and would recommend is Peter Fuller www.medievalrepro.com his gauntlets are similarly priced in general to Jeff Wasson's and are also fabulous.


Jeff Wasson and Peter Fuller are really two of the premier armorers available and either one should be able to make something high quality to suit your specific needs.


I purchased a pair of 15th century finger gauntlets from Alan Senefelder of Mercenary Tailor and unfortunately cannot recommend the gauntlets. Alan Senefelder is a wonderful fellow and can make very nice munitions grade armour. Unfortunately when we look at gauntlets historically, they really weren't a munitions grade item. Gauntlets must be specifically sized to the individual, and these ones really aren't. The metal used was overly thick and clunky, and unusable for actual protection. Whenever I closed my hand the finger lames would shift exposing my fingers. Alan Senefelder can do great work, it's just that his gauntlets aren't particularly effective for WMA use, nor do they look particularly historically accurate. I own other items by Mercenary Tailor more suited to munitions grade pieces and they are quite lovely, the gauntlets were a waste of $500.

Cheers!

Historia magistra vitae est
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Tom Kinder





Joined: 27 Nov 2008

Posts: 148

PostPosted: Mon 22 Aug, 2011 11:59 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hadrian, thank you very much for that information. I was looking at both of those sites recently and wondering about them.

for my next question, has anyone ever used these: http://armourandcastings.com/index.php?_a=vie...ductId=227 or any other armour and castings product? they look really good and they want measurements but it is just impossible to tell from a web site if their stuff actually works or not. but I am liking what I see there.
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Colt Reeves





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PostPosted: Mon 22 Aug, 2011 4:12 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Tom Kinder wrote:
Hadrian, thank you very much for that information. I was looking at both of those sites recently and wondering about them.

for my next question, has anyone ever used these: http://armourandcastings.com/index.php?_a=vie...ductId=227 or any other armour and castings product? they look really good and they want measurements but it is just impossible to tell from a web site if their stuff actually works or not. but I am liking what I see there.


Well, they aren't the same model or type of gauntlets, but Bill Grandy reviews some Gothic ones by Armour and Castings in the Reviews section of myArmoury.com. See here: http://www.myArmoury.com/review_arc_gaunt.html


Edited for a typo.

"Tears are for the craven, prayers are for the clown.
Halters for the silly neck that cannot keep a crown.
As my loss is grievous, so my hope is small.
For Iron, Cold Iron, must be master of men all..."
-Cold Iron, Rudyard Kipling
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Mackenzie Cosens




Location: Vancouver Canada
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PostPosted: Tue 23 Aug, 2011 9:47 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hadrian Coffin wrote:
Hello,

I recently ordered gauntlets from Jeff Wasson http://www.wassonartistry.com/. I got hourglass gauntlets based on the black prince pair. Hardened sprig steel was about $1500 if I remember correctly. I have several friends who own and use Jeff's stuff for WMA, it is really top notch. A friend of mine who runs a fight school has a pair of his gauntlets that are truly amazing.
...

Cheers!


++ Jeff Watson makes absolute lovely armour.
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Charles B





Joined: 22 Nov 2008

Posts: 16

PostPosted: Sat 27 Aug, 2011 10:55 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Does anyone have experience with the Deepeeka gauntlets? Kult of Athena sells a few styles; I wouldn't expect great historical accuracy or flawless fit at the price they're offered, but are they worth trying?
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