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Topics: Viking Knit, Wire

Q.
What is Viking knit?
- Diane
A.
Viking knit is a chain-making technique that involves weaving a thin wire into a tube. The wire used for this type of chain is usually round in profile, 26-gauge or finer and is dead-soft in hardness. All of these factors are what allow the wire to be worked as much as it is for this type of technique.

The wire is woven around a sturdy cylinder, most often a wooden dowel. The dowel is recommended to be 3/8 inch in diameter it's large enough to maneuver the wire around, yet thin enough to produce a nice finished chain.

Once the weave is completed, the woven tube of wire is removed from the dowel and the tube drawn through a series of holes, progressive in size, in a drawplate. The tube is first drawn through the largest size hole and then drawn through the successively smaller holes, working your way down to the smallest hole that will match the diameter you want for your finished chain. This process compresses the weave, making the chain stronger as well as neatening up the woven sections for a very professional looking chain.

The ends of this chain need to be finished with a beading cone which can be secured in place with a wrapped loop, using tails of wire extending from each end of the chain or an end cap that can be glued in place.

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