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How to make Boxchain chain mail

Boxchain, as the name suggests, creates a box-shaped weave. It is essentially a tubular version of the flat 4-in-1 weave. There are two methods for working box chain. One method begins with a flat strip of European 4-in-1, and the other creates the boxchain from one end to the other.


Bracelet-length chain

  • 18-gauge (1.0 mm) 5 mm inside-diameter (ID) jump rings in 3 colors
    • 60 color A
    • 30 color B
    • 28 color C
  • paper clip or scrap wire
boxchain 1

Method 1

1. Close all the color A jump rings, and open 15 color B rings and 14 color C rings. Work a strip of European 4-in-1 with these rings.

2. Open another 15 color B rings and 14 color C rings.

3. Pick up the strip, and pinch the outer columns of As together. Look at the chain from one side, and you’ll see a football- or eye-shaped opening where two As from each column overlap. Notice that a B or a C from the center column of rings already goes through that opening. Slide an open B or C through the same opening, and close the ring. 

4. Repeat step 3 along the length of the chain, following the established color pattern of Bs and Cs. This new row of rings pulls the flat chain into a box-shaped tube.

Byzantine 2

Method 2

1. Close all the color A rings, and open all the color B and color C rings. 

2. Slide an open B through four closed As, and close the B. Slide another open B through the same four As, and close the B. This is called doubling. Slide a paper clip or piece of scrap wire through an end pair of As, and spread out the rings to create a 2+2+2 chain.

3. Pick up the chain, and flip back the other end pair of As, exposing the previous pair of Bs. Spread the Bs apart to expose the flipped pair of As. Guide an open C between the Bs, slide it through the flipped As, and add two closed As.

boxchain 3
Close the C. Double the C.
boxchain 4
4. Repeat step 3, but this time flip back the end pair of As to expose the previous pair of Cs. Guide an open B between the Cs, slide it through the flipped As, and add two closed As.
boxchain 5
Close the B. Double the B.
boxchain 6
5. Repeat steps 3 and 4 to the desired length.
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