Monday, April 25, 2011

Square armbinder v2.0

These are pictures of the square armbinder project I recently re-completed this past weekend. Yes, it seems like everything is taking 2 tries these days (welcome to perfectionist central)... Have I mentioned sometimes making leather bondage gear from scratch is a challenging thing to do?

Seriously, there were some problems with the first version of this restraint, and I wanted to make everything as right as I possibly could. In a quest for a tight fit we ended up with a restraint that was too much of a struggle to get into. Note for future reference: If it takes more than an hour to get into your restraint, it is probably too tight!

I also had reservations about the rolled seam around the arm opening. In order to make it as strong as possible, I turned the edge of the opening before applying the leather edging. This created 2 thicknesses of leather, plus the 2 thicknesses of the rolled edge, for a total of 4 layers - I felt it might be too much, but it was something I couldn't be sure of until it was tried on by the client. Sure enough, it seemed like it was a bit too stiff in practice.
So, numerous changes were made to the pattern, some quite minor, others more extreme. The entire body of the restraint was made a little longer - about 3/4 inch. The goal was to loosen things up a bit, without compromising the "inescapability" of the first version. I didn't want to go too far.

The width was increased by about one-quarter of an inch on each side. This means the laces, when pulled tight, should get closer together in the rear, but still not quite touch.

Based on the photos I received from the client, I noticed a little slack at the bottom of the "bag" that encases the arms, so that lower contour line has been straightened out a little, for a tighter fit.

The zipper was made beefier - I am using a custom-ordered (direct from YKK) #10 black-oxidized brass zipper - the entire exciting 2-month process of obtaining this zipper will be the feature of a future post. It was not easy to get that zipper, let me tell you.
Finally, the tongue in the rear was widened by about 2 inches, which should make getting into this restraint much easier... It now opens to about 5 inches wide, compared to about 3 inches before.

Oh, and the grommets have been placed a little closer together - 1 inch spacing, vs. the 1.25 inches used last time.

And just completely list all the changes, the grommet moved up from the size "00" to just plain old "0" - it's a slightly larger grommet. There was a grommet failure on the previous version, where the back part of the grommet became separated from the front part. This probably stemmed from me using a grommet that was too small for the thickness of the leather, which kept the grommet from getting enough of a grip on the rear part. You see, the smaller the grommet, the shorter the length.

It was completely my fault, as I was trying to keep all the hardware as petite as possible on this petite piece. Sometimes slightly bigger is better. And sometimes it takes another try to get to everything "just right". Another lesson learned...

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