Discussion in 'Project Logs' started by Moriquendi, 19 Apr 2010.
Woah, got on the front page, how the hell did that happen?
It's different and actually being done.
Oh well, all to the good, I expected this to be a niche project not of interest to most of the community.
Progress is going to be slow for a bit now, I need to contact various companies and see whether they can/will help me. I need to find out for certain whether I can obtain small quantities of Ventile for the waterproof lining, I have been in contact with them but haven't heard back after my last email so I need to pin them down. I also need to contact d3o and see whether I can get the armour from them.
Finally I want to find out how much it would cost to get a punch and die cut to produce the plates for the scale-mail, I can probably make enough to test the concept by hand but the final suit will require far more than I'm cutting out by hand.
I'm thinking that I might extend the use of the scale mail to all the high-risk areas (if it performs as well as I expect it to) because I think A; it will look damn cool B; it will offer more protection than any fabric ever could and C; Because it will look different to anything else out there it might get more people interested in it who might be interested in having a suit made for them.
Edit; The other thing I'm going to try and find out is how much CE certification would cost, whether it's utterly beyond the realms of possibility or maybe possible.
Utterly beyond the realm for possibility unless you make a lot of them or charge a tidy sum for them. Not to mention a lot of people seem not to care all that much. For example Draggin jeans are the only CE certified kevlar jeans yet most people I know go for other brands for whatever reason.
I have a nasty feeling you're right but I thought I'd email the guy whose site you linked and see if he can give me some kind of figure. The other thing I want to know is how it affects a "custom" piece, for example would it be necessary to make two of any suit I sold so that one could be tested (costing many many ££) or is it a type certificate (unlikely I think)
It does seem that most people don't care and it seems to be a pretty useless piece of legislation anyway, you're not supposed to claim any protective properties if your clothing isn't CE marked (and certified) and yet most manufacturers do.
So, a question, aimed mostly at motorcyclists, what would it take to convince you that a suit is protective? For example, would you be convinced by videos of comparative testing as suggested above?
I haven't bought any gear that hasn't got CE certification, but I think if you could prove to me that your stuff was better than mine, in an undisputable manner, then there is no reason I wouldn't buy it without CE approval...
Out of curiosity what jacket/trousers are you using as the only CE ones I've found are the Halvarsson safety jacket/trousers.
Sorry, I meant kit with CE approved armour...
Yeah mine isn't CE certified though the armour is (one of the advertising tricks mentioned in Aradreths links). It's a BMW Tourance 2 jacket and trousers, it's great apart from one major flaw. The main zip is a "waterproof" zip and when it was new it was waterproof but it wasn't very durable. The pull tag broke off within a couple of months and the zip itself got harder and harder to use (harder to get it to zip up properly) till eventually after one year it died completely and I had to replace it with a proper, chunky, zip.
The armour in my jacket and trousers is BMWs NP armour which is supposed to work in a similar way to the d3o stuff in that it goes rigid then it's hit and it did protect me pretty well in my crash. The only downside is that it's not all that flexible especially when it's cold, I'm hoping that the d3o is better in that regard.
I have some experience of chainmail from a LARP point of view. Have you heard of Ultra Lamex? It's basically the stuff that they make butchers aprons from, very light, very tough, should be flexible enough for the areas you're talking about, it's also quite smooth to the touch so shouldn't easily catch. I think I still have some knocking about that I can probably get photos of if you wanted to take a look. It's probably best to drop me a PM as I don't read the forum regularly.
I hadn't heard of that product specifically but it looks interesting, do you have hands-on experience of it? it looks to me like it wouldn't have much "stretch" (stretch isn't the right term exactly since nothing is stretching, what I mean is how much the size of a piece can change without damage).
I have considered straight chainmail but I don't think that would have much "stretch" either.
PS, it seems that I cant PM you Philbert, there's probably a setting you'll need to chance to be able to receive PMs
Using rubber O-rings? If the aluminium/steel/titanium heats up enough, might it not melt?
Rubber doesn't melt, it burns but I think it's unlikely to be a problem. Even a fast crash is unlikely to result in you sliding for more than ten seconds and I don't think it would heat up enough in ten seconds to damage the rings even if you slid on the same small patch of plates for the whole way. Testing should show up any problems though, I'm going to try with EPDM rings to start with but there are other materials available with higher service temperatures.
Here is a pic of teh kind of stuff i'm thinking of
it should provide enough "stretch" to be comfortable, i'm not sure where the stuff i have is currently (probably in a box at the back of the shed) for testing you might be able to pick some up cheap on ebay.
Yup, I googled it and found pictures, I don't really think it's suitable for my purposes, the link I found gave a plate thickness of only 0.5mm which is pretty thin. I really want to try this scale-mail because I think it will be very effective.
Does anyone know about punch/die tooling or presswork?
I'm thinking of getting a punch and die made for producing the plates in the scale mail but I'm finding it pretty difficult to design a tool that will produce the right shape. I'm hoping that I can cut the shape out of a strip and curve it so that it can be assembled and hold it's shape a bit before being closed.
Can anyone offer any advice?
Still trying to get a punch and die made up, had a quote of ~£50 to get the punch and die waterjet cut out of 15mm tool steel but it doesn't look like the tolerance would be close enough to get clean blanks. On the plus side the guy I spoke to at a local water jet place has offered to cut several (tens) of the blanks out free of charge if I supply the sheet so it looks like I will be able to make a sample fairly soon.
With respect to the punch and die he suggested I look for someone to wire EDM the parts as that would have much closer tolerances but he thought I would be looking at ~£400-£500 for the pair in that case which is way outside my budget. I'm going to look at electro chemically machining the parts as that should be within my capabilities.
Ever think about getting the blanks laser cut? There is a local business to me who cuts 12mm Stainless, or 6mm aluminium.
Just have to nest the job right to minimise the spread of blanks.
The firm that I was going to have waterjet cut the punch and die have offered to cut the blanks for 20p each so I'll probably do that for the initial prototype, the final suit will require hundreds if not thousands of plates so the only economic way of making them will be to punch them, I'm still looking at different ways of making the punch and die at the moment.
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