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How to Create a Byzantine Chain

Byzantine chain is a rope-like type of chainmail that will help you create beautiful designs. For Byzantine chain, you can use jump rings in the following sizes: 14 gauge - 7.94mm (5/16 inch) or 16 gauge - 6.35mm (1/4 inch) or 18 gauge - 4.76mm (3/16 inch) or 20 gauge - 3.17mm (1/8 inch). These combinations have the best ratio of inside diameter to wire gauge for the Byzantine chain. This inside opening/gauge ratio is referred to as Aspect Ratio (AR). The best AR for the Byzantine chain is a range from 3.2 to 4.2. It is important to maintain this ratio, or the chain will either be too loose with the pattern spread out or so tight that the chain won't be flexible or worse: it might not be possible to link the jump rings together. One trick to help with this is to use one jump ring as the connector instead of two to make the weave looser. Or, you can triple the connector rings to tighten up the weave.
You will need the desired amount and style of jump rings, two pairs of needle nose and/or bent pliers, two rubber bands and two paper clips.We are using four different colors in our Byzantine chain so you can see how the pattern evolves. Use both pairs of pliers to close two black jump rings and two yellow jump rings. Open two of the silver jump rings. We will start the pattern with these. At this time, you can prepare all of the other jump rings by opening them.Thread two black and two yellow jump rings onto a silver one and then close the silver jump ring. Then, add another silver jump ring next to the first one and close it.
Separte the jump rings. Pull the black ones to one side and the yellow ones to the other side.It can be difficult to manage the jump rings while you work. We clipped rubber bands to the edges of a work tray and then used a paper clip on the end of each rubber band as a hook. This helps to keep the chain stretched out so that you can see the pattern. It also keeps everything in place. Keep one side hooked and then hook and unhook the working end as needed.Fold back the yellow jump rings, one on each side of the black jump rings.
Open the two silver jump rings and hook the two yellow ones inside of them.Link two red jump rings to the yellow ones so that the red ones are between the silver jump rings.Link two yellow jump rings to the red ones.
Link two silver jump rings to the yellow ones.Fold back the silver jump rings, so one is on each side of the red jump rings.Open the yellow jump rings and hook the two silver ones inside of them.
Link two black jump rings to the silver ones so that they are between the two yellow jump rings.Link two silver jump rings to the black ones.Link two yellow jump rings to the silver ones.
Fold the two yellow jump rings back, one on each side of the black jump rings.Open the two silver jump rings and hook the yellow jump rings inside of them.Link two red jump rings to the yellow ones so that they are between the silver jump rings.
Here is the pattern in full. Continue this pattern until you have the length you want. To calculate how many jump rings you need, measure an inch of finished chain and count the number of jump rings used. Multiply for the length you need.A finished Byzantine chain will look something like this!

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