Allen Antiques

16th century

Piece of Mail. Rings of round cross section except at the overlap. All rings rivetted. Wedge rivets.

Detailed analysis by Mart Shearer shows that this is either the remnant of, or perhaps a piece in progress of becoming an armpit defense, commonly called a voider. Ring level detail images use a millimeter scale. They show (in order a-h):

Using a digital micrometer, and rounding to the tenth, five rings were measured parallel to the rivet join. The average exterior diameter was measured to be 5.1mm (0.20 in.), though the rings are slightly larger measuring over the riveted lap, as the expansion around the rivet sometimes goes to the outside of the ring, averaging 6.3 mm (0.24 in.). Average wire thickness opposite the riveted join from five rings measured 0.68 mm (0.027 in.) -- approximately 22 gauge for those using ferrous wire. Of interest to the modern re-enactor, the welded stainless mail available from AZON or Ring Mesh used for butcher's safety gear, shark suits, or protection for modern fencing measures 5.3 mm (0.210 in.) with a thickness of 0.55 mm (0.0215 in.). Total weight of this voider from a digital kitchen scale was 231 grams (8 1/8 oz.), although the weight would be slightly more with the missing gore of mail.


If you have any questions, please send them to Wade Allen