Fantasy theme gave a significant push for hobbys in one way or another connected with fencing and armor developing. Of course we can not ingnore this direction. In general, if you want to collect the most realistic fantasy armor - we are at your service! Especially since our armor has a nice design and you can create the necessary image with it.
Part of our armor elements are also suitable for HEMA. But in the future we plan to develop mittens, elbows, knees, etc specially for this direction. Part of our armor elements are also suitable for HEMA. But in the future we plan to develop specially for this discipline mittens, elbows, knees, etc. This direction of fencing is based on medieval fencing books (training books) and special very flexible and light swords are used here.
In fighting stylization, we first of all provide protection and convenience. When developing such armor, we combine the existing elements and parts of the medieval armor existing separately, but in close regions and time frames.
In historical reconstruction, we try to maximally repeat the geometry of the example artifact. The difficulty is that often both the example and the artifact are located far from us. Therefore, such work requires considerable skill.
Armor review by Richard Manns
When I first began fighting I had no Idea what I was set to encounter. I needed protection, but there was such a huge selection of armor and armorers that at the end of a three month’s search I had made little progress towards picking a kit. I spent days going over pictures and videos posted by European armorers trying to figure out which set or time period really fit me the best. At first, I have to admit, I was very hesitant. Sending money to some company I had never heard of halfway across the world in hopes of getting some armor in return? There was certainly some worry that sending money overseas was going to disappear into a black hole. ArmorySmith proved me wrong.
I came across ArmorySmith (who used to be ArtArmor) a long time back and perused their pictures, website, Facebook and YouTube. Their sets and design really stuck with me. The YouTube videos of their armor tryouts and swords were quite impressive. After some short back and forth via email and Facebook they had promised me they could recreate some of the Milanese armor I had been drawn to. I sent them some pictures and we were on our way.
At first there was a lot of communication, where we worked together on some of the sizing. They needed a lot of measurements to get it right! Realizing that I had a large head shape I had to laugh when they asked me to measure it a second time. After the initial dimensions they had begun work and within a few months there was definitely some progress pictures which made me happy. There was a bit of a delay due to them moving to a new shop and some of the problems they had with the construction side, but after some more communication with them and watching their YouTube videos, I understood the reason for the delay and waited. They even posted a video of my kit in action, and from that day forward I was smitten.
When my set finally arrived, it was an awe inspiring. I opened up that box, put on my new kit, and it was a day of reckoning. No more cobbled together pieces borrowed from various people, making a set that would put a Halloween costume to shame. Finally! I’ll be taken seriously when I show up for tournaments! I could fight without having to worry about my helmet coming off! And no more splinted armor!
I have nothing but good things to say about this kit and their build. Their work is top notch and its been something I’ve been really proud to wear to our events and demos. Thank you ArmorySmith for your hard work and dedication to our sport and your efforts to create excellently designed armor.
So, for anyone who’s reading this review, I’d like to talk a little about the pieces they made and how they’ve functioned over the year that I’ve fought in them. Pictures of each piece show how they’ve handled up to a years’ worth of full contact abuse.
Legs and Greaves
These legs are fancy! They really look like they belong. They have some exceptional styling with folds and knurls that give them the right appearance as part of the kit. The leather tops have held up and with an arming belt they do actually stay up. They have a strap at the bottom which slides through strapping on the greaves so that it operates more as one whole piece. The greaves also look shiny and new (still). The legs have excellent overall articulation and full coverage of even the heel and top of foot area. I can run surprisingly fast in these things! Both pieces have multiple levels of strapping and as you can see from the picture even in full fight situations over the last year I haven’t had to replace any leather at all. Now they are one of the heavier pieces of the kit, and if I don’t wear them for a while they feel like a lead weight and can sap your stamina in a melee if you fall and have to get up multiple times. Overall these legs look a 10, operate like a 10 (and really protect those knees!) and weigh a ton.
Chest Plate (Cuirass Full Plate)
Both pieces, front and back look great! As you can see from the picture its taken quite some abuse over the year, only one dent the entire time which was caused by a very large falchion in a melee fight. The shine is still there, the strapping survived, and the articulation of the waist pieces allows for me to pick up things off the floor without cutting off any circulation. It has nicely designed ridges which fit with the whole kit and has saved me from many a sword and polearm, even on 1 v 1’s. I wished it had that strapping on the front to be a little more historically accurate but that’s just being nitpicky. There is some scratching, mostly superficial, but that happens with as much grappling and close combat as I have done over the year. The armorer did do a great job in trimming the arm area in a way so there was minimal pressure on the chest when holding a long sword. It’s not perfect but it’s pretty damn good. There was some real attention to detail at the bottom of the cuirass, the slide pieces and waist protection look awesome. It’s quite noisy when I’m walking, but sometimes that’s half the fun, you really aren’t going to sneak up on anyone in full kit anyway.
These things are just awesome. They have great coverage, articulate in such a way that the entire area of my collarbone/shoulder area is covered, and I can actually raise a sword above my head without much effort. I’d order a hundred of these things if I could. Just make sure you put them on the right way around. I can’t say enough good things about these shoulders, do yourself a favor and look into them.
The arms I’d say might be the weakest point. They look great, operate well and protect your arms in all the right places, but putting my gambeson through the forearm hole without a hinge on the forearm cover is damn near impossible. They slide around a little and even the slightest movement forward can cause cutting to my wrists in places that the armor slide past the gambeson. The gauntlets help with that problem a little bit though. Some minor improvements to keep them in place and a hinge on the forearm would make them perfect.
When selecting a helmet, I wanted an armet type as I wasn’t a fan of many of the other styles available. At first I was nervous about them taking a chance on a new design. How would they make a good armet that could be used for on full combat fighting? But by the time they had done most of the work, I was pleasantly surprised. All their time and effort has truly paid off. It breathes almost as well as my chainmail kettle helm, if not better. It turns in every direction so I don’t have to “batman” any fights, and it has excellent vision due to the way the faceplate is laid out. The helmet lifts up in two sections to reveal the face without having to take it off, which is great. Some chain mail around the throat area would help but I haven’t put that on yet. This helm is on par with the shoulders and gauntlets and gets a high pass in my books.
These things are damn near impossible to break, and work like a charm in every fight I’ve been in. I’d sing high praises of these Tristan gauntlets all day. Every fight I’ve fought with them I’ve had no issues. The padding and fit inside really helps you with those hard punches without breaking anything. I can attest that the thumb sits on top of the fist is made to take top hits without damage. These are top notch pieces, have good movement, and leather strapping that doesn’t get in the way of holding any weapon (thin strips for fingers help you hold onto those really wide diameter polearms). I swear by them, and you should too.
All in all, this entire kit is a magnificent piece of smithing. I’ve already put the good word out to anyone who’s asked me about the level of Armorysmith’s work and will continue to do so.
Armorysmith really outdid themselves with this one. They make great armor and they’d definitely get my business again. I’d recommend Armorysmith in a heartbeat. I can admit I’m even considering a second set from them. Any recommendations?