The cuisses or cuissarts

5th. July 2005

There was really very little change in the design of the thigh defense from the earlier surcoatless period. Often the cuisses or cuissarts, as they were known at this time, were made of a number of overlapping lames. For this armour I have decided to make the cuissarts in two sections. This would have imparted additional strength to the piece and gives a more interesting appearance than a single plate. Fig. 29 shows the lower lame simply curved to shape -

Fig. 29

- and in Fig. 30 the upper edge has been rolled outwards to give it additional strength. A slight degree of doming has been given to the lower edge, producing a bump, to allow smooth articulation with the upper lame that will form the knee defense.

Fig. 30

The outward roll of the edge is imparted by using the rawhide hammer against the tip of the anvil horn ( Fig. 31 ).

Fig. 31

The two pieces are temporarily riveted together before the outward flare is formed on the top of the upper lame. This is because it is much harder to adapt the curve of the upper piece to fit inside the lower once the edge has been flared. Fig. 32 shows the two lames temporarily riveted together with the hammer work complete prior to finishing.

Fig. 32

Finally the temporary rivets are removed, the pieces polished and steel rivets placed ( Figs. 33 & 34 ).

Fig. 33Fig. 34

On the next page I will be making the articulation at the knee.

Back to the start of this project.