Tuesday, October 27, 2015

NECK ARMOUR - Because breathing and not being paralyzed is awesome.

Today's morning writing practice will be a discussion of the neck protection required for SCA heavy weapons combat. I'm not feeling nearly as wordy today; I have a lot to do. Meeting my son for lunch and we're going to see The Martian.

D. Neck Armor
The neck, including the larynx, cervical vertebrae, and first thoracic vertebra must be covered by one or a combination of the following and must stay covered during typical combat situations, including turning the head, lifting the chin, etc.:
1. The helm
2. A gorget of rigid material
3. A mail or heavy leather camail or aventail that hangs or drapes to absorb the force of a blow. If the camail or aventail lays in contact with the larynx, cervical vertebrae, or first thoracic vertebra, that section must be padded with a minimum of .25 inch (6mm) of closed cell foam or equivalent
4. A collar of heavy leather lined with a minimum of .2 5in (6mm) of close cell foam or equivalent.
--The Society for Creative Anachronism, Marshal's Handbook

Let's define a few of the unfamiliar words.

Gorget -

 (pronounced GOR-jet or gor-ZHAY) — Armored collar made from hinged plates or laminations. - Medieval Lifestyle 

They can also be made of leather, as long as they meet standards. 

Brigandine Gorget
Windrose Armoury
I like this one. I  like it very much. I don't know why. There are plates on the underside of that leather, that's what the rivets are for. But I'm unsure about the fact that it ties instead of buckles. You can also get a kit to assemble yourself, which I would love. I really like the idea of making my own pieces as much as possible. When you make something yourself and put your effort and sweat (sometimes even a little blood, you know I'm arcane like that) and energy into it, it's fully yours. If I could cut all the pieces myself it would be even better.

Hm. I think I've seen buckles on other websites. Maybe I could replace that tie with a buckle.

Brigandine Gorget
Windtree Crafts
Has a buckle on either side AND comes in red.
No kit option though.
Stainless steel gorget
Wintertree Crafts
Eh. I just don't like it as much,
though it's definitely the least expensive option for ready made..

Aventail - A flexible curtain of mail that attaches to the inside of a helm and covers the neck and shoulders. Can also be worn simply buckled around the neck.

Camail and aventail appear to be used interchangeably in many places, but when I searched for the images the camail is definitely more of a hood, although a mail hood is a coif in many of the definitions pages I've found. Confusing. The pictures I chose show basic neck protection but they can drape all the way down over the shoulders, past the shoulder joint.

Camail - also called a mail coif.
I think it's supposed to close up more around the neck.
Can't find photo credit.
Steel Mastery
The leading medieval crafts manufacturer in Ukraine.
So...not buying anything from them, shipping would be too dear.

Would my persona have worn any of these? Probably not. Gorgets are a much later period item. But the bosses (and common sense) say neck protection, so we have neck protection. 

I'd prefer the brigandine leather option. Can feel the leather under your fingertips, can you smell it? That's a beautiful scent.

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