1. How do I pad my armor?

  2. How do I keep my knots tied up?

  3. How do I glue in the padding?

  4. How do I pad my helm?

  5. How do I keep my helm on my head?

  6. The vanbraces fit to tight.  Do I need a new set?

  7. How do I keep cool on the battlefield?

  8. How do you fit different sized people?

  9. What are the most common customizations?

  10. Can women wear it, too?

  11. How did you guys get started making armor?


How do I pad my armor?

Different parts need different types of padding.  We recommend closed cell foam (camp mat) as the basic means of isolating the fighter from battle damage.  We further recommend open cell padding wherever soft tissue will rub against the pad.  Gorget and helmet are good candidates for open cell padding but different people like different things.  We think that street hockey glove are great for under our demi-gauntlets.  Whatever means of padding that you use, talk to your marshals and get their advice.  It must be safe, both to their eyes and to yours.

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How do I keep my knots tied up?

When you are happy with the way your armor is set up with padding, you’ll want to cook each knot in order to permenantly lock it closed.  Take a lighter, match, or blowtorch to each knot.  Cook it until the nylon fibers begin to liquify.  It’s closed for good.

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How do I glue in the padding?

We suggest that you use the “permanant bond” contact adhesive.  Read the instruction on the can and follow them.  It works great!!

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How do I pad my helm?

Okay now, you have to take this info with a grain of salt, as we really don’t know what variety of helm you have, if it is suitable for your head, or if it’s suitable for anyone.  Most folks pad their helms using a layer or two of closed cell foam contact glued to the steel, with a lining of open cell which surrounds their head.  Some folks skip the open cell and opt for a padded coif.  For my own head I prefer using closed cell foam pipe insulation, which has both the springiness of  closed along with the “coosh” of open.  Also it doesn’t get soggy like open cell.  You and your mashalls should have a talk. They can see it better than I can.

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How do I keep my helm on my head?

Most armorers are lawsuit paranoid (or lazy)  therefore don’t complete their armor by including appropriate strapping.  This includes not giving you a strap or lace for holding on your helmet.  Although it’s hard for us to judge what you have, we do make a good basic leather chin strap attached to  a few yards of 550 lb. cord.  We’ll ship you one for $5.

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The vanbraces fit to tight.  Do I need a new set?

Maybe.  But we recommend that you try a trick that we call the “Spagetti Water Tweak”.

1) Invite 4 friends over for pasta.  Only 2 if they are fighters.  One if it’s Jiro.

2) Boil up 1 lb of pasta in some nice salty water.  Let your guests handle the sauce.

3) Strain the pasta off and let them finish preparing dinner, you’ve got some work to do.  In the pasta water dunk your vanbrace cuffs into the boiling water.  Let them simmer for a minute or so.  Take them out, put them on the floor and step on the rivets.  This will deform the plastic into an oval shape that will more closely match the shape of your wrist.  When you’ve found something of the right shape, quench them in cool water.  Voila, you have performed the “Spagetti Water Tweak”  - This works for other parts too....

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How do I keep cool on the battlefield?

Black flash is one of the few varieties that will allow for easy ventilation.  Your objective is going to be drill 1” holes in vertical stripes on the breast & back plate.  You will want to pad in between these stripes with a closed cell foam.  This will serve to a) pad the armor, b) suspend the armor away from your body thus forming “convection chimneys” which will whisk away unwanted body heat.  This trick can also be used on the side plates and on the legs.  Don’t worry about trying it and screwing things up.  Even if you completely mess up a plate, we can ship you a new one for very little cost.  If you wear a tabard with this ventilated configuration, if will also help to redirect sideways breezes through your armor.   Ahhhh...   Click for an example.

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How do you fit different sized people?

Black Flash fits about 80% of the fighting population.  We offer customization services to make our armor fit the other 20%.  We have successfully armored EVERY customer of EVERY size and feel confident that we can make a set for you that you’ll be pleased with.  Here’s how it works.

Ideally, we’d like to see you in person.  We can look at your shape and figure out what will work best for you

Alternatively, we’ll sell/ship you a standard set or piece of armor.  Try it on.  Talk to your marshal.  Generally speaking marshals have a good grasp of armoring and will be able to tell you what plates need to be different. 

Let us know which plates you need customized.  Our standard charge for customization is $8.00 per plate.  We’ll make it and withing two weeks after you pay us we’ll get it shipped to you.
The plate will be set up so that you’ll be able to lace it right into the armor.

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What are the most common customizations?

Here are the top 5 customizations that people want.

  1. “My gut doesn’t fit this armor”  (males with waist size above 36”) replace one breast or back with winged breast for waists up to 44” or two replacements for up to 50”.    Shipped price for a winged breastplate is $15 or $25 for two.
  2. “This stuff is too big” (males 130- lbs) could be a few parts, but generally side plate.
  3. “The vanbraces are really loose” (smaller females or fighters with small bone structure) - Try padding them first!  We do make a variety of vanbrace sizes.  Return the set that don’t fit and pay the shipping ($4.00) and we’ll send you a set that works better.
  4. “Duke Sir Spankalot keeps hitting me in the butt” (newer fighters) Add butt plates shipped price $11.00 - You’ll need to drill 4 holes in the Backplate to add the plates
  5. “ I’m getting hit above the leg armor” (long legged fighters) either customize the legs to stretch them longer or add “cavalry plates” at the front of the breastplate.  Replacement legs - $17.60 shipped.  Cavalry plates - $11.00 shipped. You’ll need to drill 4 holes in the Breastplate to add the plates

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Can women wear it, too?

Female Armor is ready to ship.  We charge $10 extra for the modified armor which will fit moderate sized females with breast cup through D.  Please note that good fit is very important for your safety and that this desgin, although appartently effective is a test desgin.  Don’t sweat it though.  If you hate it, just ship it back.

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How did you guys get started making armor?

Daniel of Stonemarche and Dieterick von Berne have been making fighting and making armor for a total of 30 years between them. Our friends often asked them to “help” put together a fighting armor.. After “helping” about 30 sets together for various folk, we realized that other people who didn’t have the time or facility for making their own might want to buy it. And thus Dark Victory Armory was formed.  We wanted to make affordable and effective armor for our buds so that we could hit them with sticks.

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