home crafted mail hauberk and chausses
Greetings all,

I'm a long-time admirer of this community and lurker. This is the first time I honestly feel I have a question that hasn't been answered and could be a contribution to this group.

First to start:
I am making my own riveted hauberk and chasses. This isn't my first mail project either, and I have a pretty good knowledge base on the history and manufacture of mail.

I'm doing this kit more geared towards historical reenactment rather than just for sport or games. I really want to know what about my kit is off, so I can tell the public thus, and the reasons why the inaccuracies are there. Basically how I'm thinking to start is "my mail is fully riveted which didn't start to appear until _____, and even though my persona is early 13th century, I made my kit fully riveted because I couldn't convince myself the expense to have punched rings made.

I am trying to make this kit as close to accurate as I can make it, with a few exceptions and here's where the "hitch" is so to speak:

I'm making my kit full riveted mail because I can't convince myself to purchase washers/punched rings at the cost they are and my plan is to make a full hauberk with integral mittens and coif.

What I am wondering is if anyone knows the dates based on the archaeological record of when full riveted mail came to be, and if that included a full integral set like I'm making?

Also, does anyone know of extant examples that have been extrapolated to show their patterns of where expansions and the like are made and how the armpit seam is formed?

Any and all help and criticism is appreciated. I think I've gotten to the point at the moment where I've over-loaded my brain on research and can't discern the facts from the fantasy anymore.

thanks again,
You might want to check out this thread on Armour Archive

There was a period where both styles of hauberk--half-riveted, half punched mail demi-clouere and mail of all riveted rings, mail de haute clouere are both found in inventories. There is no hard date when mail of half punched rings stopped being made, but the newer all riveted construction seems to win out after circa 1350a.d.. If you're doing early 14th century, I think you'd be alright with an all riveted hauberk with coif and mufflers appearing in the year 1292 as lorica cum tenā et maniculis. From: 'Plea Rolls for Staffordshire: 20 Edward I', Staffordshire Historical Collections, vol. 6 part 1 (1885), pp. 204-211. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?...ery=lorica Date accessed: 06 June 2013.

Here's a thesis describing the mail in the Keeper of the Wardrobe (Tower Armouries) accounts during the 14th century.

Here's another thread at Armour Archive showing the tapering of the sleeve and tailoring around the elbow based on extant mail sleeves. Mac also posts on myArmoury, as do many of the contributors to those threads.

Under the arm is usually joined at a 90 degree angle with a gusset in the upper sleeve. Wallace A2 has been diagrammed showing tailoring.

Unfortunately there's not much evidence for how things were done in the early 13th century, so we have to use 14th century information. For the early 13th, you'd really be better off using the half & half construction. Money spent on washers also buys back time in the weaving and riveting phase. The best preserved hauberk for the early 13th century is unfortunately a rusted lump.
thanks for all that info Mart. It's really appreciated. I've already browsed those Armour Archive forum posts, and it's nice to see them linked here. With forums or anything else for that matter posted on the internet, most people can come off as "experts" of anything, it's nice to see references I've found pop up from someone else as well.

I was going to do the 90 degree split, like the A2 shirt in the Wallace Collection and see how that goes, I hear it allows a bit better movement than others, and it is based on archaeological evidence which is always a plus.

Thank you so much for that Doctoral thesis! Those are always worth value as I am always interested to see what others have done for their graduate work, and having be so close to my own studies is always a nice bonus. Usually, the references found in the really good ones are worth more than anything! It's funny, but I first found out about a lot of the premiere scholars of the medieval and crusading period through a thesis, rather than somewhere else like an Osprey book.

I've seen the "rusted lump" as you say as well. Such a shame it's in the condition it is, but as my group has been known to say, "it's far better it exists at all."

I'm going to have to toil around with the punched rings part. I know it's crucial to making a very authentic kit, and it saves a ton of time I'd think, with the way I weave the mail. It's just the only resource I've found for them are, well, washers that are too flat, thick, and well, washers. I may have to go completely nuts and start making my own. I've seen riveted, butted, welded, and riveted with punch rings on a person before, and even from 10 feet away, I can tell the difference.

It's a shame my persona for living history is now a veteran of the Third Crusade and a Knights Templar, if I had stuck to my galloglaigh, everything would be easy street!

I'm a member of the Modern Chivalry boards like Ian L and Nathan Q, and I'm posting my journal of making my hauberk and chausses over there in case anyone is interested:

Again, Mart, thanks for the help. It's always nice to see when one is on the right path.

Also, I'm a bit humbled by this being moved to the "Historical Arms Talk" section. Like I said in my first post, I haven't posted much, and I am a new member, but I've been around this site since 2007 or so, I'm honored it was put in that section.

fair winds following seas

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