Making a more authentic helm liner

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The above photos show the helm with the closed-cell foam liner I had originally glued in place.  It is a pain to rip out, and will require a wire-brush attached to my electric drill to get completely out.  If only I had known how easy a period liner was to do...

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The fundamental measurements you will need are the bottom edge of the helm, the circumferance around the brow, the distance from the bottom of the helm to the brow, and the distance from the bottom of the helm to the point of the helm.

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Next, wrap some heavy paper around the helm and tape it in position.  Mark the face opening.  Remove it from the helm, and lay it flat on a table.  Mark the distance from the bottom of the helm to the brow, and the distance from the bottom of the helm to the top of the helm.  Then fold the pattern in half.  Draw one of the pointy sections as shown, and cut it out.  Unfold the pattern.  

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Next place the pattern over two layers of linen, pin, and cut out.  Sew the two pieces of linen together along the crown, leaving the face opening and the bottom of the helm edge open.  After sewing, turn it inside out and iron it flat.

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Next, draw quilt lines using pencil.  I spaced mine 1.5" apart.

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Next, quilt along the lines you have drawn.  Do not quilt all the way to the edge of the open edges of the liner; you will need to leave some room for turning the edge for seam allowance to close up the liner.

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I used 100% cotton batting for the stuffing.  I rolled tubes 10 layers thick (5 turns) to make each tube.  Trim the ends of the tubes to match the profile of the liner, and stuff in place using a stick.  If the rolls want to come undone, you can stitch them to keep them from unrolling.

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Not yet finished, but I put it in place to see how it would look.  Looks good!  Next time I would make the "dags" of the liner a bit fatter so that there is not so much empty space.  All that remains is to add button holes to the tops of the dags to tie them together, and button holes to allow the chin strap to pass through the liner.  Then it gets sewn in place!

I think all in all it is simpler to install a period liner than it is to cut and glue in foam.  It certainly looks better.

UPDATE: 5/1/2002

I have finally gotten around to installing the liner.  The first thing was to punch all the holes around the edge of the helm.

Then I primed and painted the inside of the helm:

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Then I sewed the liner in place:

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That's it!

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