Aluminum vs Stainless Steel from The Ring Lord
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Aluminum vs Stainless Steel from The Ring Lord
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Posted on Thu Apr 19, 2012 8:40 pm
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I got my first shipment of rings in December. I bought the stainless steel because I've had some bad experiences with aluminum rings not from The Ring Lord. I was hoping to buy a new shipment soon, but first I want to ask you guys what are your thoughts on the aluminum rings from The Ring Lord? Are they easy enough to open, but still stay closed once you've made the piece? (That's my problem at the moment, my hands aren't strong enough to open some of the stainless steel ones, and the aluminum ones I have from somewhere else are fairly bad quality and are very malleable; they break open too easily.)

Also what are your thoughts on gauge and ID? Like what would be a good mix to get for a variety of projects?

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Re: Aluminum vs Stainless Steel from The Ring Lord
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Posted on Thu Apr 19, 2012 9:39 pm
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frozenxdreamer wrote:
I got my first shipment of rings in December. I bought the stainless steel because I've had some bad experiences with aluminum rings not from The Ring Lord. I was hoping to buy a new shipment soon, but first I want to ask you guys what are your thoughts on the aluminum rings from The Ring Lord? Are they easy enough to open, but still stay closed once you've made the piece? (That's my problem at the moment, my hands aren't strong enough to open some of the stainless steel ones, and the aluminum ones I have from somewhere else are fairly bad quality and are very malleable; they break open too easily.)

Also what are your thoughts on gauge and ID? Like what would be a good mix to get for a variety of projects?


TRL's Bright Aluminium is plenty strong enough, yet much easier to work with than Stainless.

In regards to Gauge and ID...
TRL's 16g and 18g (Both SWG) are great starter sizes.

In 18g: 5/32", 3/16", 1/4", 5/16"
In 16g: 3/16", 1/4", 5/16", 3/8"

That gives you a wide range of AR's in two wire sizes to play with... You should be able to weave most common weaves with all those sizes.


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Posted on Thu Apr 19, 2012 9:44 pm
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The 18ga 5/16" and 16ga 3/8" is a bit of a stretch IMO, They barely hold together in stainless.

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Posted on Thu Apr 19, 2012 10:40 pm
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djgm wrote:
The 18ga 5/16" and 16ga 3/8" is a bit of a stretch IMO, They barely hold together in stainless.


In euro 4, if you hit it with an axe, maybe.

Certain other weaves require high AR rings.


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Posted on Fri Apr 20, 2012 1:08 am
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Sort of on-topic:

Is it usual for 18 SWG BA rings in 9/32 to be closed 'perfectly', then somehow open up 'on their own', as it were? And not even while in use. This with reference to E 4-1.

Thanks,

ROGNVALD

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Posted on Fri Apr 20, 2012 6:48 am
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ya I'm a fan of high AR weaves. I find the higher the AR the easier they are to open. So why not use the stronger metal in the links sizes you can.

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Posted on Fri Apr 20, 2012 9:35 am
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i would just like to add - you don't have to be strong to work with stainless, you just need the right tools. if you're using the same pliers to work with both aluminum and stainless, working with stainless will be a nightmare.



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Posted on Fri Apr 20, 2012 12:04 pm
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Rognvald wrote:
Sort of on-topic:

Is it usual for 18 SWG BA rings in 9/32 to be closed 'perfectly', then somehow open up 'on their own', as it were? And not even while in use. This with reference to E 4-1.

Thanks,

ROGNVALD


...
Uhmno... Confused

Edit: Rethinking this... Are these sawcut or machine cut?


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Posted on Fri Apr 20, 2012 10:25 pm
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Rognvald wrote:
Sort of on-topic:

Is it usual for 18 SWG BA rings in 9/32 to be closed 'perfectly', then somehow open up 'on their own', as it were? And not even while in use. This with reference to E 4-1.

Thanks,

ROGNVALD


The resulting AR of these rings after springback would be between: AR of 6.5 and AR of 6.7; would be fairly high for aluminum of this small wire size and these rings would be fairly weak. I don't personally go past a 1/4" mandrel for bright aluminum of this size. (Stainless takes over at this point.) I can see rings tending to want to push back to their originally manufactured state unless they are very over-corrected during closing.

Rings generally become easier to close as the AR is increased in a specific metal type and wire size. But only up to a certain point. Past this point they become harder to close properly because more springback is experienced as the MD/AR (and the rings' weakness) increases.


Tell a mailler what ring sizes to use and they'll weave for a day. Teach them AR and they'll weave forever.
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Posted on Sat Apr 21, 2012 1:05 am
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The rings in question are sawcut, DL.

Thank you for the information, Chainmailbasket_com.

Perhaps these rings were 'too' easy to close, and I didn't push/pull enough past the point of closure... before closing...

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Posted on Sat Apr 21, 2012 1:36 am
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Oh - shear/boltie/machinecut vs. sawcut really seems to be the explanation.

The former cutting methods have no material loss due to the cut, so there isn't any significant gap when simply closing them. OTOH sawcut HAS a gap as wide as the blade thickness, so when closing these the ring must be distorted a bit to let the wire ends touch each other to 'bridge' the gap - if this is not done, there will be a gap at the closed ring. Usually this distortion is done when OPENING the ring, by simultaneously pushing the ends towards each other, and a bit more, so when closing the ring the ends fit tight, and even with a bit spring pressure. An audible 'click' when closing is a good sign that all is ok.

But don't worry - many maillers that were used to kerf-less cut rings first, had a learning phase, before they adjusted to sawcut rings - I was no exception...

-ZiLi-


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Posted on Sat Apr 21, 2012 12:58 pm
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Thank you, ZiLi.

mithrilweaver, would you expand a bit on proper tools to use when working with stainless? I was under the impression these would be the same regardless of material, so long as they were appropriate for size of rings... thanks! I did think it had to do with hand strength, or lack thereof, when I had no success using titanium or stainless.

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Posted on Sat Apr 21, 2012 2:37 pm
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Rognvald wrote:
Thank you, ZiLi.

mithrilweaver, would you expand a bit on proper tools to use when working with stainless? I was under the impression these would be the same regardless of material, so long as they were appropriate for size of rings... thanks! I did think it had to do with hand strength, or lack thereof, when I had no success using titanium or stainless.




the image above shows 3 different kinds of pliers that i use. the small bottom ones are my craftsman pliers for 18swg and smaller aluminum and stainless steel. the top right ones are my knipex pliers for 16swg aluminum and stainless steel. they also cross over into 18swg stainless. the big pliers are my linesman pliers for 14swg and 12swg stainless steel. i do not use them for aluminum at all. they also cross over into 16swg stainless steel if the rings are too tough for my knipex pliers.

i've found that many pliers cross over and work with multiple metals in multiple gauges. so, i can't say that certain pliers only work for certain metals. but, i will say that there is a right tool for the job. i custom grind all of my pliers to my specific needs. as i'm weaving, i always have about 4 different sets of pliers on my table for whatever the job calls for. i usually weave for about 4 hours every day, so i have to make sure that my hands aren't straining too hard. my big custom linesman pliers bend stainless steel like it's soft butter, but their size doesn't allow for getting into tight places. many times i will open stainless with my big linesman pliers and then weave with my knipex pliers. this gives my hands a small rest between opening and closing. this transferring of pliers is not the fastest way to weave, but it's great for endurance. i've been weaving for 16 years now and i don't have any long term problems with my hands.

so, my best advice would be to increase the variety of the pliers you work with and pay attention to how hard you are straining when you open and close rings. take lots of small brakes and stretch your hands often.



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Posted on Sun Apr 22, 2012 12:08 am
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And if you find you aren't he-man in the end there is nothing wrong with the softer metals, they count too.

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Posted on Sun Apr 22, 2012 12:14 am
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djgm wrote:
And if you find you aren't he-man in the end there is nothing wrong with the softer metals, they count too.


I suspect frozenxdreamer AKA "Brittany H." isn't he-man Coif LoL


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