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Scales tutorial by Khelgar Scales tutorial by Khelgar
One way to assemble scales from The Ring Lord.

1. Put two split rings on one scale.

2. When looking at the inside of the scale with the two rings the one on the LEFT will ALWAYS be slid into the split ring with the outside of the scale facing you.

3. When looking at the inside of the scale with the two rings the one on the Right will ALWAYS be slid into the split ring with the inside of the scale facing you.

4. With both scales on the inside of all three scale should be facing you and the split rings should lay flat.

5. Expanding to the left, put two more split rings on a new scale and slide the bottom left scale from #4 into the split ring on the right side of the new scale.

6. Slide another scale onto the left side of the scale you added in #5 and remember that since this scale is going on the LEFT side you must slide it into the split ring with the outside of the scale facing you. Repeat #5 and #6 until you have the width you want.

7. Add two split rings to each of the "lower" scales. Note: the scales will not stay nice and neat as shown in the pictures at this point you will have to keep putting them back in order until the piece gets larger.

8. Add scales onto the new rings as shown. The thing to remember is always look at the scale you are adding the new one to. If adding to the RIGHT side then the INSIDE of the scale you are adding should face you, and when adding to the LEFT side the OUTSIDE of the scale you are adding should be facing you.

This is not the only or best way to do this and I am only trying to help others learn how to do this.

Download for full size!

Good luck!
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:iconlady-amethyst:
lady-amethyst Featured By Owner Feb 14, 2017  Hobbyist General Artist
Oh my gosh, this is wonderful to find!! Thank you for sharing this!
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:iconmr-alicates:
Mr-Alicates Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2017  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
Thanks for the picture! It helped me a lot, specially the comments pointing to the use of specific ring sizes :)
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:iconkhelgar:
Khelgar Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2017  Hobbyist Photographer
Your welcome!
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:iconkhelgar:
Khelgar Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2014  Hobbyist Photographer
Glad it helped, good luck!
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:iconblakmage86:
blakmage86 Featured By Owner Sep 21, 2014
Thank you so much for posting this.  Was about to give up out of sheer frustration trying to work the diamond patterns out to a proper size when I came across this.  Have got more done in the past couple hours then I did in the week previous.
Reply
:iconclockwork-eden:
clockwork-eden Featured By Owner Nov 29, 2013  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
I just bought large scales from theringlord.com and realized I didn't buy rings. There are so many rings! How do I know which ones to get?
Reply
:iconkhelgar:
Khelgar Featured By Owner Dec 2, 2013  Hobbyist Photographer
Hi there, if you look on the page with the scales and look at the large scale description it will tell you that you can use the split rings (which they sell at the bottom of the page, they have them for large and small scales) sold at the bottom of the page.  The also tell you what size to use if you want to use the regular rings, 16g 5/16" for the large scales.  Let me know if you have any other questions!
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:iconclockwork-eden:
clockwork-eden Featured By Owner Dec 2, 2013  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
I promise I looked maybe I just skimmed over it in my nervousness :/ thank you so much!
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:iconkhelgar:
Khelgar Featured By Owner Dec 3, 2013  Hobbyist Photographer
No problem, let me know if you need anything else. :-)
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:iconkaykenday:
kaykenday Featured By Owner Jun 21, 2012
is it possible to do scale-mail over a shirt of oriental 6 in 1?
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:iconkhelgar:
Khelgar Featured By Owner Jun 23, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
Certainly you could put the scales over anything, you just have to figure out how and where to attach the scales to the piece below it. The scales are put together much like the regular 4 in 1 so you could even use the rings that hold the scales together along the edges to build your oriental weave off of instead of laying the scales over a finished piece.
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:iconhookahbill:
hookahbill Featured By Owner Sep 23, 2011
How long do you think it took you to make a vest of this? I was thinking of making one for when I do fighting in the SCA/MSR events I go to. I was thinking of chainmaile but I think this would look nicer and be something that would stand out.
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:iconkhelgar:
Khelgar Featured By Owner Sep 23, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
The large scales actually go together pretty quick once you get in a rhythm. I am terrible at guessing times but if I really wanted to I think I could put a vest together in a week or two. I highly recommend using the split rings if you are going to fight in one, no chance of scales coming off when hit.
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:iconchainmonkey:
ChainMonkey Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2011
I may have to try working with these scales again got so frustrated with the small scales,may just order some of the large ones and try working with them, Inot giving upon this,Thank you Khelgar for sharing,
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:iconkhelgar:
Khelgar Featured By Owner Jun 21, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
I tried the small scales first and put them away for over a year because I got frustrated trying to get them right. I got some of the large ones and it was much easier to figure out with them. Once you do figure it out it really becomes easy, that was why I made this tutorial in the first place was to try and help people figure them out before they get fed up trying to get them to go together.

Good luck!
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:iconbriteskyrea:
BritesKyrea Featured By Owner Jun 12, 2011
there it is, my first try :) ; [link]
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:iconkhelgar:
Khelgar Featured By Owner Jun 12, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
It probably needs to be at least one or two rows thicker to keep it's shape, that is one downside to scales. It is hard to tell from the front but it doesn't look like a bad start! :)
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:iconbriteskyrea:
BritesKyrea Featured By Owner Jun 13, 2011
oke :) will try that then, should have plenty of scales lying about ^^ thank you!
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:iconbriteskyrea:
BritesKyrea Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2011
well i've tried the first bit now, and no matter what i do i can't seem to get it tidy.

as in; when i make 4 rows of scales, in v-shape (i hope *g*) the scales wont stay in place, they keep shifting from their origional place. leaving my tidy rows, wich have to go under-over-under etc, in a big messy heap going everywhere :p

allso; the same to look flat when on their back, but when i turn them upright, they become bulky.. like open spread feathers ^^

will post a pic tomorrow, i gave up for now *g*
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:iconkhelgar:
Khelgar Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
When you first start it will not hold it's shape at all. One way thing that may help is put a string or wire in the top row and let that hang down from that and it might help you keep it in shape. You could hang it from a board or even a hard back book just something that you can keep it hanging at an angle.
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:iconbriteskyrea:
BritesKyrea Featured By Owner Jun 12, 2011
i'm going to post my first scalemail piece in a sec so you can look at it.. it doesn't look bad i'm just afraid it will never stay the way it should
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:iconbriteskyrea:
BritesKyrea Featured By Owner Jun 6, 2011
awsome :) now i can finally try this out! allthough i'm planning on using it in V-shape and in two colours! ^^
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:iconkhelgar:
Khelgar Featured By Owner Jun 6, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
Scales work great in a V shape so that shouldn't be too hard. Make sure you post some pictures when you make something!
Reply
:iconhellspwn:
Hellspwn Featured By Owner May 10, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
Found this through The Ring Lord. Been interested in making some ornamental scale mail, but the descriptions I've found for the weave have been a little odd and misleading. This is very simple, I like it.
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:iconkhelgar:
Khelgar Featured By Owner May 11, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
Glad to hear it! Scales are very nice and it is worth learning how to make them!
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:iconhellspwn:
Hellspwn Featured By Owner May 11, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
I've been doing a lot of chainmail jewelry, but I was asked to make scale mail out of soda can tabs; so I went through The Ring Lord to find a set of instructions and ended up here. Using your method, I've got a fairly nice sheet going, it holds its shape well.
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:iconkhelgar:
Khelgar Featured By Owner May 11, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
If you look at the pattern you will notice that the weave you are doing is just the standard 4 in 1 chainmail pattern minus a ring every other row. The scale or can tab is the one ring with four others in it. You can add the missing rings if you want to tighten up the pattern in areas if you need it.
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:iconhellspwn:
Hellspwn Featured By Owner May 11, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
So I can add that retainer link back into the design at some of the more troublesome spots without throwing the design off too badly?
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:iconkhelgar:
Khelgar Featured By Owner May 11, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
Yes, it should just tighten up the weave where you add them. On the scales it keeps them all laying flat which sounds good but doing that to an entire shirt will add a lot of weight, make it stiffer and shrink the size over all. Depending on what you are going for this could be a good or bad thing.
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:iconhellspwn:
Hellspwn Featured By Owner May 13, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
I didn't elaborate on the project. I've been tasked with making a 'scrapmail' belt. With the current weave, reverting to sections of 1/4 English stiffens it improperly, causing the tabs to twist into odd positions. I'm using 18 gauge silver 4mm links for the standard connections, 18 gauge silver 6mm links to connect the top 'front' links. It's working fairly well, I'll link my post of the photographs when I upload them, credit you with the base design.
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:iconkhelgar:
Khelgar Featured By Owner May 14, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
Probably the difference in shape is what causes the tabs to react differently to the added ring. I will certainly be interested in seeing the final project!
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(2 Replies)
:iconhellspwn:
Hellspwn Featured By Owner May 12, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
After experimenting, the tabs tighten up as you described, but the additional link pushes the weave out of sync. I found though a little tinkering that with the tabs, the best weave-saver is linking the topmost row together, which contains the subsequent rows without any additional links to increase bulk.
Reply
:iconlunaticslament:
LunaticsLament Featured By Owner Apr 11, 2011
What size jump/split ring do you normally use with TRL's small scales?
Reply
:iconkhelgar:
Khelgar Featured By Owner Apr 12, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
At the bottom of the page where they sell the scales I just order the split rings for small scales which according to the site has an inner diameter of 0.184". I have never actually tried putting scales together with jump rings, it seems like it would be more of a hassle.
Reply
:icongraememcivor:
graememcivor Featured By Owner Feb 11, 2011
Excuse me, I've been blacksmithing for about a year now, and this scale really interests me. I was wondering how you'd get this to a vest or shirt? Thanks
Reply
:iconkhelgar:
Khelgar Featured By Owner Feb 11, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
When you put the scales together they make a sheet and you just have to think of it as any other fabric but instead of cutting it you just make it the shape you want. Not the best answer but basically a basic way to make it would be make the part that goes over your head and shoulders first then just work your way down connecting the front and back parts under your arms. The best place for help with this is at www.theringlord.com you can get the scales from them and the Forum they have is the best place to get answers. I hope that helped some, if you have more questions let me know and I will try to help.

Here are some pictures to give you an idea of what can be done.

[link]

[link]
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:icondaglemj:
daglemj Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2011
what do you recomend for a noobie what type of scales and rings should i buy i want to make a full sleve shirt but i have never tried to make scalemail before
Reply
:iconsir-tibbar:
Sir-tibbaR Featured By Owner Mar 12, 2011
Large scales take only about 2000 for a vest, plus about 4000 split rings.

I haven't seen any patterns for scaled shirts with full sleeves. But it you know the length and diameter of the sleeves you want you could figure it out pretty close.

There are about 400 large scales per square foot when weaved.

Hopefully that was a little helpful. :)

I agree with Khelgar on the use of large scales for a first run, and also on the choice of material. A full stainless steel shirt will get rather uncomfortable after a bit of wear.
Reply
:iconkhelgar:
Khelgar Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
I would use the large scales and split rings, that will make it easier to learn and will go together much faster. As for type of scale it depends on what you want to end up with. I like stainless steel but a full sleeve shirt would be pretty heavy. The stainless clad scales are light and very shiny if that look is what you are after.
Reply
:iconxxsueyxx:
XxSuEyXx Featured By Owner Dec 21, 2010  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
Hello! I was just wondering, what are the best size jump rings to use for larger scale projects? Thanks!
Reply
:iconkhelgar:
Khelgar Featured By Owner Dec 21, 2010  Hobbyist Photographer
Hi there! According to The Ring Lord website, if you use butted rings (jump rings) you want to use 16 ga 5/16" rings on the large scales.
Reply
:icondearc:
Dearc Featured By Owner Dec 12, 2010
Any suggestions on minimizing scratches on the scales from the split rings? Been trying to find a pair of split ring pliers that opens further but to no avail so far without ordering online.
Reply
:iconkhelgar:
Khelgar Featured By Owner Dec 13, 2010  Hobbyist Photographer
The part of the scale that you put the ring on should be hidden when the piece is together so the scratches shouldn't show. If you really didn't want there to be any scratches like for the top row I guess I would just open the ring with the split ring pliers enough put a thin piece of metal, plastic or maybe even some thick cloth under the ring so it would slide over that instead of the actual scale.
Reply
:iconzera18:
Zera18 Featured By Owner Dec 11, 2010  Student Artisan Crafter
I want to make a bracer type piece out of these. Any idea how?
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:iconkhelgar:
Khelgar Featured By Owner Dec 12, 2010  Hobbyist Photographer
I would make leather bracers first then make your scale piece and attach it to the leather. Make sure the leather is slightly larger than the scales to keep them from digging into your skin.
Reply
:iconjewelledtrellis:
JewelledTrellis Featured By Owner Aug 25, 2010  Professional Artisan Crafter
Great tutorial. It really helps with construction.
:flagcanada:
Reply
:iconkhelgar:
Khelgar Featured By Owner Aug 25, 2010  Hobbyist Photographer
Thanks, I gave up the first time I tried it with the small scales. A year later I got some of the big scales and that's how I learned to do it. I know I could have used something like this back then so I thought it would be nice to help other people from feeling so much frustration. :-)
Reply
:iconjewelledtrellis:
JewelledTrellis Featured By Owner Nov 1, 2010  Professional Artisan Crafter
You certainly helped me. My scale mail skills are in their infancy but I have hopes to make something fantastic for my son's birthday.
Reply
:iconkhelgar:
Khelgar Featured By Owner Nov 1, 2010  Hobbyist Photographer
Glad to hear it! Once you get the hang of them it really is easy. Make sure to let me know if you put what you make on your DA page!
Reply
:iconroothragon:
roothragon Featured By Owner Aug 14, 2010
These look like key-rings. They're called split-rings? Where did you get them? I didn't see them on theringlord.com ...?
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