How To Make Armor

Learn how to make armor with this guide

A listing of a few tools that a maille maker might need are:

Pliers, End Nippers, Side Cutters
You will want at least 2 pairs of pliers. Butted maillers usually use them for opening and closing rings. Usually the maille maker will grind the teeth off of the face of the jaws so as not to mar the rings. The various cutters are useful for cutting wire.

Die grinder with various bits and stones
A die grinder has countless uses. It can be used for grinding, cutting, and polishing. I find that it comes in most handy during the construction of other armor-making tools.

Propane or MAPP Torch
If you are only making butted maille, you probably won’t need a torch. However, if you are going to make riveted maille, you will likely need a torch for annealing your tools before you can machine them, as well as for normalizing the maille rings before working them. MAPP torches are more expensive than propane torches, but they burn hotter, and thus you get your work done more quickly.

Hand Drill
A hand drill can be used during the construction of other armor-making tools. It can also be hooked up to a coil winding jig to speed the winding of coils of maille.

Drill Press
While not essential for making maille, a drill press becomes an essential item if you find you need to make tools (like for riveted maille) or fixtures for making armor.

Bench Grinder
Again, a bench grinder is not essential for making butted maille, but is almost essential for making the tools necessary to make riveted maille.

Aviation Snips
Many people use snips for cutting the individual maille rings from the coil. However, other cutting tools may also work.

A hacksaw is needed any time you need to cut metal.

Hand saw (for wood)
If you want to construct a winding jig, you will need to be able to cut wood. There are power tools that can do the same job faster, but the hand saw is the least expensive.