I would build these spaulders in the following order:
- Cut out the plates
- Punch the holes that are marked on the patterns.
- Finish the plate edges and corners.
- Roll the top edge on the shoulder plate.
- Dish the shoulder plate
- Shape the first lames to fit the shoulder plate and
the other lames to fit in the one before it.
- Heat Treating (Optional):
- The outside surface of the plates should be fairly smooth
before doing any heat treating. Put a medium (around a 220 grit)
finish on the outside of any plate that has any marring on it.
- Heat each plate to 1575F/860C in a kiln and quench them
in brine (salt water). You need to quench the plates within
a few seconds of opening the kiln.
- If you want a polished finish or a blackened (fire scale)
finish then skip this step. If you want to heat blue the
plates then put a medium (around a 220 grit) finish on the
outside of the plates. This assumes that you would like
to leave the fire scale on the inside as a rust barrier;
otherwise, you may want to acid clean the plates.
- Heat each plate to 600F/315C in a kiln for 30 minutes to temper
the plates so they will be somewhat flexible and not crack when struck.
It is very important that the temperature stays within 10 degrees
or so of what you set it to. If you don't know for sure that
the temperature control works correctly on your kiln then
you will want to check it with an oven thermometer that can
measure to 650F/350C (don't over heat the thermometer).
- If you want a polished finish on the plates you should do
- Rivet the plates together starting with the shoulder plate
and the first lame working your way to the bottom lame. I use 1/2 inch
diameter washers on all the rivets.
- Add the straps and the holes at the top for tying the spaulders
on. Grommets on the holes used to tie them on will help keep the
ties from breaking.