This chainmail Lorica Hamata is made from flat mild steel rings that have been butted together end to end .The rings are finished with a zinc coating which is very easy to maintain and does not require greasing or oiling of chainmail and this makes it easy to wear without worry as it will not stain or spoil your other clothing and accessories. The shoulder pieces are lined with leather and the chest hooks are made from brass. Please Note: Belt, sword and all other accessories are not included but are available separately.
The chainmail Lorica Hamata provided good defense for Romes Legionaries and Auxiliaries for centuries. Its design predated the iconic plates of the Lorica Segmentata and was in use for centuries after the Segmentata fell out of use. Its design seems to have originated with Celtic tribes and it was adopted by the Romans in either their conflicts with them or the Iberians. Simple, but effective, the mail tunic has a second layer of mail covering the shoulders for added protection held in place with stylized chest hooks.
Rigorous debate exists to explain the Romans waxing and waning preference for the Hamata in conjunction with the Segmentata, with each having its own advantages and disadvantages. Both offer good protection, though the Segmentata seems to have an advantage in repelling projectiles, but the Hamata has more comprehensive coverage.
Production time and maintenance is also an important aspect to the often mobile Legions. The Segmentata was quicker to manufacture, but its creation required the presence of skillful armorers. The Hamata required many more man hours to create, but the work was simple enough that it could have been done by slaves. Though labor intensive to produce the 10s of thousands of individually riveted rings, a Hamata could last for decades with care. Also, the Segmentata required much effort to ward off rust. and was more difficult to don with its buckles and straps. In contrast, the Hamata can come on and off as if it were a tunic.
Regardless of their pros and cons, the Hamata may have superseded the Segmentata simply because the later Roman military became more barbarized in its greater reliance on periphery barbarian tribes and client states for manpower. They may have preferred their native equipment and mail armor was common to such tribes.
IMPORTANT SIZING TIP: To accurately measure whether you will comfortably fit into this coat of mail it is necessary to first wear the clothing or padded gambeson that you intend to wear beneath the chainmail. Then measure your chest size over these additional layers. This way the additional width of your chest with these accumulated layers is accounted for when determining if the mail will fit properly.