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Jack Construction

Posted: Mon Nov 05, 2007 11:03 am
by The Methley Archer
Is there any reference for lacing the side panels of a jack together instead of sewing them.

I,ve seen one illustration in a CoStG Dragon magazine.

Is there any more out there before I start to repair mine and possibly go down that route (waist is thickening a bit :oops: ).



Posted: Mon Nov 05, 2007 1:53 pm
by Colin Middleton
I think I've seen something for a side closing being laced shut, but with it sewn up at the front.

Not sure beyond that.

Posted: Thu Nov 08, 2007 2:03 pm
by Chris, yclept John Barber
Colin Middleton wrote:I think I've seen something for a side closing being laced shut, but with it sewn up at the front.

Not sure beyond that.
I hope the thing that's niggling at your memory isn't my C13th gambeson, Colin - I make no claims for its authenticity!

For the benefit of those who don't know it, my gambeson is side-laced down the right-hand side. At the time of making, it seemed like a sensible approach from a safety point of view, giving an uninterrupted protection of the chest. The vulnerable point where the panels lace shut is furthest from the enemy when fighting with a shield.

However, I am clear on its low authenty-rating. I have no provenance for such a design. It is used for a 'Historical Entertainment' tourney and dressing up kids in school classes. Being stuffed with modern quilting fibre, it can be machine-washed and tumble-dried so that they aren't completely repelled by the stench of stale sweat and woodsmoke that hangs around most more authentic garments! I recently washed my C15th jack for the first time (it's only two and a half years old!), and it took nearly three weeks to dry.

When the budget permits, I intend to get a more authentic one made or purchased. I have never doubted the practicality or the safety aspects of the side-opening, and I'm sure that some people in the past would have had the same idea and commissioned their gambesons to that pattern. However, if I am to get a more authentic one it will be front-opening to avoid the re-enactorism of 'Yeah, it's good so someone must have done it even though there aren't any contemporary pictures of it'.

If you do find any other references, Archer, let me know because I'd still like the side-opening even in an authentically heavy, sweaty gambeson.

Posted: Thu Nov 08, 2007 2:59 pm
by Tuppence
not aware of any refs, but if it came from the co of st g there must be one.

my advice would be to ask - their forum used to be open to all, so you could try that - or else just e-mail

Posted: Mon Nov 12, 2007 1:23 pm
by Colin Middleton
No Chirs, I wan't thinking of your gambeson. I think it was in Medieval Military Costume (G Embleton), but it could have been a painting.

I've also seen reference to a 'port peice' fitted to a jack so that the edges can touch, without leaving a gap for blades to slide through.

Posted: Mon Nov 12, 2007 6:01 pm
by Nigel
there ar eindded and as far as Iam aware only one company manufacturing them fits them

wonder who that is ? :D

Posted: Thu Nov 15, 2007 9:21 am
by Steve Stocker
Images on the Bayeux 'tapestry' show mail hauberks being stripped from the dead by being pulled over the head. I assumed the gambeson was fitted in the same way and had no side openings.
Have a look at this; ... n%26sa%3DN

Wiki mentions front lacing but gives no references; ... n%26sa%3DN

Posted: Thu Nov 29, 2007 7:04 pm
by Agnese
I've found good web site with great pictures of gambeson. I think you'll find there well handmade reconstruction of 13th Century or later.