Scale Armor
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Scale Armor

Also Called

  • Leaf Armor
  • Lamellar
  • Bad terms developed from D&D books.  It is not maille of any kind, in normal use.
    • Scale Mail
    • Plate Mail

Quick start

'Scale armour can be leather, metal or a combination of both. I wouldn't know where to find ready made pieces, but I've known people to make their own. It's a matter of cutting out a lot of scales and sewing/riveting them to a base layer of cloth or thinner leather.

For show pieces, discarded leather couches can be skinned and the leather used for projects like this. Free leather is goood. Harder leather
you'd have to buy.

There are two types of scales in metal. has brass and
steel scales that are linked together with rings (I'd call this true
scale maille). The other kind can be found pretty much all over the
web, they're flat plates with holes for rivets. That kind can be
found, among other places, here:

-- JB

Easy or Hard to make the scales?

>Does anyone know how to make scale mail or leaf mail. Cheap
>easy or hard?

Easy, but some what repetitive....You can cut the scales out of leather, dip them in hot wax (and be careful!), dry and sew to a leather base. Stain and or punch any holes needed before 'french fryin'  the scales. I used a Singer 127 treadle machine with a leather needle to sew the scales on.

It's *great* armor, sheds blows like a champ, looks waay cool! If you don't harden the scales somehow, they will curl up like a pine cone--the voice of experience....And it makes a rattlely noise when you run about...

Cutting the 12 bazzillion scales can get old. Now that we have TMC,  life should be much better <G>!

It's cheep, you can use scraps of leather--I used fairly heavy leather--3/16" thick I think, it's been a while.


More spots out in the web to learn about Scale Armor  has good tips for making your own from 24 gauge aluminum. You just have to modify the size and shaping for Rohan-style scale mail.  I wish I had found it BEFORE cutting out over 400 scales from plastic. There is also some great info about scale mail here.  Mostly for Roman Legion LARP/reenactors, but also some valuable information about making scale mail and some cool historical tidbits as well. 

For making leaf mail I would definitely recommend visiting Julia's Haldir's Elven Archers site as someone else already mentioned

==Lady Angelariel

All About Chain Maille | Armor Terms | Scale Armor | Armor Cheats | Armor Tips | Gambeson | Armor and LOTR

LOTR Home | Pattern Modification & Tips | Fabric Techniques | Fabric Embellishment | All About Armor | Leather Working | Vambraces to Gloves | Weapon Tips | Shoe Tips | Metalwork and Crowns | Working with Clay | Casting Belt Buckle | Casting Small Props | Pipe Making Tips

This page was last updated 04/22/08