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Pop/Beer Can Tab Armor

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Picture of Pop/Beer Can Tab Armor
This is a suit of armor made entirely of pop/beer can tabs and copper wire.

It started out as a few tabs strung together after watching Edward Scissorhands, but quickly evolved as my Obsessive Compulsive Nature set in.

It's surprisingly durable, and also has some flex to it.
4 of us couldn't rip the shield apart, trust me, we tried.

You imagination is the limit for using tabs and wire, so start designing!!

 
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Step 1: Pop/Beer Can Tab Armor Phase 1

Picture of Pop/Beer Can Tab Armor Phase 1
Copper Wire.JPG
To begin, you'll need to amass an incredible amount of pop/beer can tabs and copper wire.

I posted ads on Kijiji looking for tabs as well as raiding recycling bins in apartment buildings just to start.
In desperate times, you may be able to hire a hobo to hunt and collect tabs for you.

For the copper wire, I used almost anything I could find that was a decent gauge.
A good source of wire is inside older tube televisions and small electric motors.

The majority of this stuff can be found for free on Kijiji or your local classifieds.

Step 2: Pop/Beer Can Tab Armor Phase 2

Picture of Pop/Beer Can Tab Armor Phase 2
Once you've collected enough pop/beer can tabs and copper wire to start, you'll have to prepare them to save time.

sharp edges where the pop/beer tab were connected to the can should be bent inwards, to prevent slicing the wire and your fingers. 
If you own a pair of pliers or a gerber multi-tool, it will make this job much easier.

Now you'll have to cut the copper wire into manageable pieces.
I cut them into approx 3-4" lengths, this allowed me enough wire to make several wraps around the tabs.

Step 3: Pop/Beer Can Tab Armor Phase 3

Picture of Pop/Beer Can Tab Armor Phase 3
Threading The Tabs 2.JPG
Twisted Tabs.JPG
Now you can start securing the tabs together.

To do this, simply pinch two tabs together that are facing the same direction, and begin looping through the wire.
You can use your thumb to hold the end of the wire for the first few loops through.

This will take time and patience!!  But eventually you'll be connecting these tabs together like clockwork.

Once they've been looped, just twist the ends together a few times to tighten the wire.
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mayday126 months ago
I attempted to make this mail a long time ago. After a week or so, I gave up. Although I used thicker wire, I still I can't even comprehend the patience it must take.
cmarsh49 months ago
Can I just buy it from you
badideasrus9 months ago
ahem..... > http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VufilzHKTqk

instantly reminded of this
poofrabbit9 months ago
I would love to see a picture of this on! VERY cool!
elizruge9 months ago
awesome! i've been wanting to make chainmail for the longest time. i mean, who knows when it'll come in handy, right? this is badass
This is just a little TOO awesome! So epic!
Zetainex1 year ago
I have more than 4000 tabs, Your armor set is what made ​​me decide to do something with them. Thanks for the inspiration. I will send you some photos when I end (maybe never haha).
dtouchet21 year ago
Since you are looking for suggestions, why not make a body to go in the armor. I'm sure that you could pick up some small 1 in PVC pipe to make the basic skeleton and then use the tabs to make a head and hands.
How many can tab you used for the helmet?
GavinAK (author)  metallaro921 year ago
I haven't been counting and have no intention to do so, but a rough estimate would be 900-1000 tabs.
holy s***t!! i have only 45!
GavinAK (author) 1 year ago
I haven't been counting and have no intention to do so, but a rough estimate would be 900-1000 tabs.
HOW LONG DID THISSSSS TAKE?????
may not be cheaper....idk, but it'd be faster if you purchased links from theringlord.com. i'm sure you could find some ideal material/gauge/inner diameter spec for this that'd take a lot less time then winding copper wire around each scale.
GavinAK (author)  kage_no_mozaiku1 year ago
Valid point, but I was more looking to assemble this suit using completely free parts.
If I were to spend money on the project, I would have just made real chain mail.

Cheers!
yeah, you have a good point there. looks great even with recycled parts.
You farging bastige! you stole my idea! Seriously, good work on those. I use 17 gauge aluminum fence wire from Rural King.
GavinAK (author)  navarre10951 year ago
Haha.. very nice! Do you have any pics of your work? Checked out your page, didn't see an instructable on it.

Cheers
http://i48.photobucket.com/albums/f247/navarre1095/poptab.jpg
[IMG]http://i48.photobucket.com/albums/f247/navarre1095/poptab.jpg[/IMG]
you're crazy, dude
GavinAK (author)  venturieffect1 year ago
Like a FOX!! Cheers though
Lord_Vek1 year ago
Very nice, I admire your patience...
GavinAK (author)  Lord_Vek1 year ago
Cheers, I formulated my bucket list while building this suit.... Took a while.. Haha
This is amazeballs. You deserve an award.
GavinAK (author)  scoochmaroo1 year ago
Hahaha Amazeballs.. Love it... So what did I win?
woelfwynde1 year ago
This is actually the best looking set of poptop armor I've seen so far. Good job!
GavinAK (author)  woelfwynde1 year ago
I'm sure you could top it.. I dare you.

Thanks!
boom man561 year ago
soo cool
GavinAK (author)  boom man561 year ago
Cheers!
This is amazing! How long has it taken you to get this far?
GavinAK (author)  jmcconnell51 year ago
It's taken quite a few months of doing small chunks at a time. It's been taken apart and remoulded into something else many times over.

Thanks for commenting!

My jaw hit the floor.
GavinAK (author)  EpicNinjaaa1 year ago
Try to top it... Your project will evolve... trust me.
Dowaine1 year ago
if old tube TVs work like the old monitors and should be regarded very cautiously when taken apart in case of electric shock from charged compactors other wise great project i have tried to make chain mail and failed for lake of patients but i defiantly will try this
GavinAK (author)  Dowaine1 year ago
A VERY good safety point!! Capacitors can hold their charge for a very long time after they've been unplugged. Take care!

Cheers!!
sflemming1 year ago
Gloves and boot covers come to mind. You have way more patience than I do to do this stuff. Ever consider real chain maille?
GavinAK (author)  sflemming1 year ago
Nah, real chain mail doesn't appeal to me. This was more of a hobby.
Yes, I made the gauntlet for the right hand, and the left hand is protected by the shield.

Cheers!
How in the world tit you have the patience ???
I'm in awe.
Wonderful : have you tried it ?
congrats…
GavinAK (author)  vincent75201 year ago
ALOT of movies were watched during the making of this suit. Was still a productive member of society during the day, but this was the temporary hobby I came home to every night for a while.

And of COURSE I've tried it!! How could I not?! Haha

Thanks.
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