Frequently Asked Questions

How much does a full suit of  Armor cost?

A full suit can start at   $15,000 and go up to $50,000.   depending on complexity, style, and decoration.  In general a 14th c. armor will be less expensive than a 15th c. armor  and the 16th c. armors as the most complex are on the higher end.  This is because the earlier styles are more simple in form,  where as later armor has more overlapping plates.  In the 16th c.  armors are roped and have embossed and recessed areas of decoration.  They are also usually decorated with etching,  gilding and bluing.

How long does it take to make a full suit of  armor?

I once made an entire armor in about a month,  and I probably put into it about 200 hours.   But working under pressure like that is not optimal for the kind of detailed work I do now.   Usually the making of an armor will be spread out over 6 to 9 months.  A very complex armor might take over a year!   I am usually working on a couple of different projects at a time, alternating tasks for maximum efficiency.

 

What is your armor made out of?

I make armor out of spring steels that can be hardened and tempered.   Usually 1050 and 4130.  These are the preferred materials.  I do not use stainless steel,  titanium or other "space" metals as they don't make sense for historical reproductions.   I have used bloomery steel to make armor  (see the Nova documentary "Secrets of the shining Knight") and I have also worked with aluminum and stainless steel for movie props.  I would consider other materials in special circumstances depending upon what the project is.

 

How do I commission an armor?

You can commission armor by contacting me in the "contact" section of the website (through e-mail).   Please send  me photos or images of the type of armor you are interested in commissioning,  noting the style,  and time period or particular piece you would like me to reproduce.   I will get back to you with a quote and time frame for the work. 

 

If you decide then that you want to place the order, I would take a 15% deposit to hold your spot on my list.   I do usually have a backlog of work, so it might be some time before I could begin.  When the time comes for me to start your project, we would meet so that I could take measurements.  If making  full greaves, I would make plaster leg castings.   I usually do a monthly payment plan,  so as I am building your armor you are making payments toward it.   Once the armor is roughed out we can do a second fitting to make sure it all interacts properly.   If all is good it will then be hardened and tempered, then the polishing,  assembly, and decoration completed.

 

Can I commission just one part of an armor?

 

Yes you can.  If you are assembling an armour bit by bit over time;  certain parts should be done in conjunction since they may overlap.  For example cuisses,  greaves and sabatons should all be done together.  Or pauldrons over a breastplate. 

"Ask Jeff" 
People often want to know...
How much does armor weigh?
A full "Harness"
(the name for a full suit of armour)  can weigh about 65 pounds.  
Why is Armor so expensive?
All custom armor by WassonArtistry is handcrafted for the best fit.   There are many steps involved to making patterns, cutting out parts,  shaping plates,  getting the armor to fit properly and have it interact so it moves correctly.   Armors are made of hardened and tempored spring steels and are also polished and assembled with handmade rivets, straps and buckles.  The steps add up and so it takes a long time to complete.   Many years of trial and error, study and knowledge go into the crafting of a well made armor.   This is why it can be expensive.   In stock items can be  much less expensive since they are made to proven designs, are not custom fit,  and are usually simpler in design.
 

Medieval Armor, Art and Education

WassonArtistry