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Author Topic: How To Strap a Shield  (Read 15437 times)

Sir James A

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How To Strap a Shield
« on: 2013-03-24, 23:13:29 »
http://james-anderson-iii.com/tutorials/pages/strapping-a-shield

Spent some time strapping up my shield blank, so I figured I'd write a tutorial along with it. The concepts apply to almost any shield, except for viking/rotellas.

NOTE: I've used doubled-up straps for the grip/forearm straps since the leather is thinner than I prefer. I did the guige in single strap, which *I think* will work.

Step 1: Acquire a shield, some leather for strapping, rivets, etc

Step 2: Find where you want the shield to sit on your arm when you are holding it. This usually requires a friend, or somewhere you can set it upright to mark; which seems to require three hands.

Step 3: Using the outline for where you want your arm, make a hole on both sides of where the palm of your hand will be.

Step 4: Using the outline for where you want your arm, make a pair of holes on both sides of where the thick part of your forearm will be (closer to the elbow, but not at the elbow).

Step 5: Cut straps to use for the hand grip and the forearm strap. Punch holes accordingly. The hand grip generally does not need any holes or adjustment - just make sure you can still fit your hand through it with your glove/gauntlet. The forearm strap is nice to have some adjustment, but isn't required.

Step 6: Rivet/attach the hand grip and forearm straps. Test the shield to see how it feels and how it moves. If you have holes in the straps, you can use ties or a buckle to adjust the fitment a bit. I chose to go with leather ties.

Step 7: OPTIONAL: If you are using a guige strap (a cross-body strap to carry the shield on your back), find a comfortable position for the shield to sit, and mark for the ends of the straps according. As with the forearm straps, cut, attach, punch holes, and lace/buckle.

Step 8: Any finishing work you want to do on the shield should be done after assembly. Painting, etc. No pictures of the front mine, since I still need to paint it.

Notes: You can use nuts/bolts for a combat shield, or if you need to remove the strapping often for maintenance and/or breakage. I riveted mine since the shield will be non-combat and won't see heavy use. An "acorn nut" with the hex sides filed down to round looks similar to a dome-head rivet, only protrudes a bit further.

Cutting straps:


Hand grip:


Forearm straps, before lacing holes


Just a picture of a rivet


Push the leather down firmly over the rivet to fully seat it


Left side - leather pressed down. Right side - not pressed down. Note the difference, on the same size rivet.


Peened down


Punching lacing holes


Cool, it works!


Guige strap done, lacing holes done, ready for finishing

« Last Edit: 2013-03-24, 23:19:37 by James Anderson III »
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Sir Wolf

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Re: How To Strap a Shield
« Reply #1 on: 2013-03-24, 23:26:43 »
vury nice

Sir William

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Re: How To Strap a Shield
« Reply #2 on: 2013-03-25, 18:34:32 »
You're my kind of guy, Sir James...you keep it to the point and the instructions are such that even I could follow them.  Nicely done.
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Thorsteinn

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Re: How To Strap a Shield
« Reply #3 on: 2013-03-25, 19:49:41 »
Did you hang the shield from a string to find the right angle for your arm?
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Sir James A

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Re: How To Strap a Shield
« Reply #4 on: 2013-03-25, 20:59:28 »
Did you hang the shield from a string to find the right angle for your arm?

No, just guesswork, luck and some prior experience. Stuck it on the steps, held it where I wanted it for height, and marked. I did a few plywood shields with rope handles back as a teenager, so it wasn't the first time I've done it. It was slightly different since this is an aluminum blank and the one Allan made that I own is wood with steel trim, but the adjustability of the straps takes care of the little tweaks (an idea blatantly stolen from Allan). Sir Nathan brought a shield over to rework last year that helped clear some of my memory cobwebs from 15 years of not doing anything with shields. :)

I've found the most comfortable position to be where the forearm is almost horizontal, and only slightly upward. It's a natural way to position that doesn't sit too low, not so high that it strains the elbow, and still feels natural to move the shield around (karate instinct of vertical blocking aside, of course). That's just what works for me, it might vary for others.
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SirNathanQ

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Re: How To Strap a Shield
« Reply #5 on: 2013-03-26, 04:47:45 »
Good set of instructions Sir James! Yeah, the angle seems to vary. I prefer almost a 45 degree angle to mine. And also, when making the straps, remember to either make them very adjustable, or accommodate space for armour.
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Sir Brian

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Re: How To Strap a Shield
« Reply #6 on: 2013-03-26, 12:34:30 »
Excellent post which I will study in great depth whenever I get around to strapping the shield Sir Nathan made for me! ;)
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SirNathanQ

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Re: How To Strap a Shield
« Reply #7 on: 2013-03-26, 21:32:50 »
How's that thing coming by the way? I can't wait to see it finished.  :)
"The maximum use of force is in no way incompatible with the simultaneous use of the intellect." -Carl Von Clausewitz
"He is truly a fearless knight and secure on every side, for his soul is protected by the armor of faith just as his body is protected by armor of steel." -Saint Bernard of Clairvoux

Sir Brian

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Re: How To Strap a Shield
« Reply #8 on: 2013-03-27, 01:03:15 »
Well you'll have a bit of a wait I'm afraid! I might be able to still get to it before MDRF. ;)
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SirNathanQ

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Re: How To Strap a Shield
« Reply #9 on: 2013-03-27, 04:48:14 »
It's ok, I'll use my "Bingo Wings" policy and pester you incessantly until you get to it!  ;)
"The maximum use of force is in no way incompatible with the simultaneous use of the intellect." -Carl Von Clausewitz
"He is truly a fearless knight and secure on every side, for his soul is protected by the armor of faith just as his body is protected by armor of steel." -Saint Bernard of Clairvoux

Sir Brian

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Re: How To Strap a Shield
« Reply #10 on: 2013-03-27, 15:48:48 »
Truly we are harsh task masters to our brethren! ;)
"Chivalry our Strength, Brotherhood our sword"
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Sir William

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Re: How To Strap a Shield
« Reply #11 on: 2013-03-27, 19:34:04 »
It's ok, I'll use my "Bingo Wings" policy and pester you incessantly until you get to it!  ;)

UGGHHHH...he's never gonna let me live that down.  lol
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Sir Brian

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Re: How To Strap a Shield
« Reply #12 on: 2013-03-29, 00:56:07 »
It's ok, I'll use my "Bingo Wings" policy and pester you incessantly until you get to it!  ;)

UGGHHHH...he's never gonna let me live that down.  lol

What do you mean BW...err I mean Sir William?  ;D
"Chivalry our Strength, Brotherhood our sword"
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Sir William

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Re: How To Strap a Shield
« Reply #13 on: 2013-03-29, 18:58:25 »
Et tu, Brian?  lol
The Black Knight, Order of the Marshal
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“Pride makes a man, it drives him, it is the shield wall around his reputation.  Men die, but reputation does not.”