XIV-XV century Jack Chains
Historical lightweight arm protection
XIV-XV century Jack Chains
Historical, light, manoeuvrable arm protection
“Jack chains” are an excellent example of the creative armor solutions that emerged in the transitional XIV-XV centuries. Common examples consist of a solid shoulder and elbow pieces, with smaller fragments of metal plates along the forearm and bicep.
If you’re wondering who would wear this kind of armor, think of it like this: jack chains were an excellent way to provide decent armor at a relatively low cost to the armourer. Typically, those depicted wearing this type of armor were basic man-at-arms type people, likely clothed by their lords, though some do believe that armor spotted in earlier effigies can be interpreted as jack chains as well. Jack chains are significantly lighter than a full arm harness, giving the wearer much more manoeuvrability and less bulk to carry around with them.
Our interpretation of jack chains manages to stick close to historical sources whilst still being practical and easy to wear. The elbow cop and pauldron part of these chains are made from 1.5mm steel, while the plates on the forearm and biceps are 2mm. The rings connecting each part are made of 3mm steel wire, with everything being held together with strong solid rivets. You can easily attach them to your armour with the help of holes at the top of the pauldron for lacing, as well as leather wrist and elbow straps.
Jack chains were commonly worn two different ways: laced directly onto the gambeson (as we have done in the photoshoot), or worn over mail to enhance the amount of rigid protection and reinforce the most vital parts of your arms. This is the kind of armor that will protect the bones in your arm from breaking and slow down arrows.
We have forged these jack chains with three different finishes, and it is up to you to decide what kind of look will best suit your character. The first finish is ArmStreet’s signature shiny stainless steel, which looks fantastic and valiant and is also easy to take care of due to stainless steel’s rust resistant nature. The second choice is also stainless steel, but with a satin-finish, which doesn’t catch the light quite as much and has a brushed, matte look to it. Both types of polishing are also available with mild steel.
The third option is our current favorite, and is the result of many hours of experimentation. Some call it “weathered” or “pitted”, but we think it looks a lot like reptile skin. This has been achieved via chemical weathering on mild steel, creating a look that could conceivably fit into history or fantasy just as easily.
Please note that weathered mild steel should be selected with "no polishing" option only!
To check how to measure yourself please click here.
Please contact us if you have any additional questions.
Important note about measurements: please take into account that we need your measurements in gambeson, choses or other under-armour gear you are planning to use with this armor. The only exception is when you are ordering both armour and padding from our company — in this case you can send us your body measurements.
- 1.5mm (16ga) stainless or mild steel;
- 2mm (14ga) stainless or mild steel;
- 3mm stainless or mild steel rings;
- Natural leather straps.
- Historically inspired;
- A number of different surface finishes;
- Light and manoeuvrable;
- Easily laced to gambeson or mail;