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How to get a horsehair crest to stand up straight
Hi folks, got a new corinthian for my SCA fighting, and it came with a horsehair crest. Problem is, its well laying to the side and not straight up, like I see everyone elses.

Now this isnt a problem, if they can also be like that. But if not, then I need to figure out, how to get it back to standing up straight. First thing that came to mind was wax, but since I have never done this before, thought I would ask here first.

Here is a pic of the helm. Thanks

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John Tibbs
:-) Try steam from a tea kettle or something like that, and then hang the helmet, or at least the crest, upside down while the hair cools off. When you store it, either build a box for it that prevents the crest from "laying over", or just hang the crest upside down. Should do the trick for you. Confusedilly:
M. Demetrius Abicio
(David Wills)

Saepe veritas est dura.
Brandon Barnes mentioned something about ironing them.
Thanks folks, will give that a shot.
John Tibbs
I have heard that steam or just wetting them, then brushing and letting them to dry in shape on a flar surface works. But then, this was for crests that already stood up and had lost their shape with time. If the hair on your crest are too soft and are unable to stand up i don't know if it would work.
Giannis K. Hoplite
a.k.a.:Giannis Kadoglou
[Image: -side-1.gif]
Will probably end up just buying a new one. But was told that this one stood straight up at one point. Right now having it hanging upside down and its getting better. Will try the other stuff later this week. Thanks for all the help folks
John Tibbs
Yeah, I always irno my crest, be it my short one for my attic helmet, or my tall one for my legionary impression. And it will generally stand up straight for around three days.

Basically all you do is lay it out flat on an ironing board and run an iron with a steam function over it for a while. You can use the steam function to get the hair to cooperate and go where you want it and the heat works to "train" the hair to stand up straight. You can keep ironing it until it is as straight as you want it to be. It's basically the same principal as using a flat iron to straighten human hair...

Typically I don't iron the very tips of the crest, as this will allow the tip of the hair to start to widen. I like the effect it gives.
Brandon Barnes
Legio VI Vicrix
Good suggestion Brutus on getting the crest to proper form in the event it starts to sag. I have not yet experienced any problems with my centurion crest and it has LOTS of hair. If I do have issues, the steaming and ironing sounds ideal.

I leave my crest upside down in a cool storage room in my house. Then before use while still hanging, I gently comb it with a largely spaced out and toothed comb as to not snag and rip the hair out of the wooden box.
"You have to laugh at life or else what are you going to laugh at?" (Joseph Rosen)

I don't think there is much you will be able to do with that horse hair for it is a poorly made crest indeed for by the look of it the hair also appears to be glued of tied well above the box so it has no support at all. Also as a matter of interest just what is that across the eye area of the helmet face and what is it there for. ?
Brian Stobbs
Yeah, I am going to end up getting a better crest, will see if I can at least get this one to work right for now.

As far as the helm, I do SCA fighting, and one of our safety rules, is you cant have any gap larger than an inch, in the face area. The weapons we use have to be at least 1.25" in diameter. So the bar is there to close up that gap.

I got the helm used, so not built to my specifics. I know plenty of guys, who have had them built for our fighting, that there is no need for the bar. When I have a new one made for myself, it wont have that bar.
John Tibbs
I think like you say a better crest is needed maybe a deeeper one such as this one I made some years ago for one of the helmets I made for the sides of the box do help to support a longer hair.

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Brian Stobbs
I"m probably going to spend time in re-enactor Purgatory for this suggestion, BUT......after you follow M. Brutus' suggestion, and the crest is straight, go out and buy a big can of Aquanet hairspray and spray the "Dickens" out of the crest. Based on My Spouse, Jaqui's experience, a crest so sprayed should be able to take gladius cuts and not show a dent...LOL Anyway, hopefully, that should help until , like Brian suggests, You get a new, quality crest.
Vitruvius....aka Larry Mager
Larry A. Mager

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