Nigel Carren Reproduction Armour

  Historic European armour recreated and restored. 17th century armour and works in miniature a speciality

Armour Restoration

spacer A 001 16th Century Italian Pisan Close Helmet before restoration.

Thought to have been made for a boy, this Italian ‘Pisan’ 16th Century Close Helmet came to me minus the Ventail and the lower half of the upper visor and with many corrosion holes throughout. Showing signs of many old repairs the helmet had also been slightly crushed resulting in a ‘twisted’ skull and owing to the loss of all lame corners by corrosion, all lames had been hard-riveted to each other and excessively overlapped preventing any movement. No doubt this was repaired when the helmet served a purely decorative purpose. Luckily one original brass rosette remained which I was able to copy using 19th century brass. The scalloping on the Gorget lames could suggest that this helmet was once part of an ‘Anime’ armour.
spacer A 002 16th Century Italian Pisan Close Helmet after restoration
spacer B 001 Early decorative Tonlet armour for a boy before restoration
spacer B 002 Early decorative Tonlet armour for a boy after restoration
spacer C 001 3-Bar pot helmet (used as a cement bucket) before restoration
spacer C 002 3-Bar pot helmet (used as a cement bucket) after restoration and lining
spacer D 001 Rare Milanese miniature armour before restoration
spacer D 002 Rare Milanese miniature armour after restoration and re-leathering
spacer E 001 Hunting sword shown bent before restoration
spacer E 002 Hunting sword shown straightened after restoration
spacer F 001 Hunting sword handle before restoration
spacer F 002 Hunting sword handle after restoration
spacer G 001 English Civil War troopers Cuirass before restoration showing missing shoulder straps
spacer G 002 English Civil War cavalry troopers cuirass after restoration and fitting of replacement shoulder straps
spacer H 001 English Civil War once Cuirassiers backplate before restoration
spacer H 002 English Civil War Cuirassiers backplate after restoration and re- blacking
spacer J 001 Left hand 17th century Cuirassier gauntlet before restoration
spacer J 002 Left hand 17th century Cuirassier gauntlet after resoration
spacer K 001 Right hand 17th century Cuirassier gauntlet before restoration
spacer K 002 Right hand 17th century cuirassier gauntlet after restoration
spacer L 001 English Civil War 3-bar pot helmet by rare maker before restoration
spacer L 002 English Civil War 3-bar pot helmet by rare maker after restoration
spacer M 001 English Civil War 3-bar pot helmet shown before restoration
spacer M 002 English Civil War 3-bar pot helmet shown after restoration
spacer N 001 Damaged French patinated bronze figure before restoration
spacer N 002 Damaged French patinated bronze figure after restoration
spacer P 001 Key for a cased pair of duelling pistols before restoration
spacer P 002 Key for a cased pair of duelling pistols after restoration
"Restoration is often just a big word for repair, so please don’t hesitate to contact me for the small stuff too".
Nigel Carren

Like the small restoration projects shown on this page. The small jobs are usually a pleasure, as they are always a nice break from the big projects.

As time goes by I am lucky enough to handle more and more period pieces. Sometimes this is a lesson in how far as an armourer I have yet to develop as sometimes the workmanship making up a period piece is astounding, then other times when working on plain blackened munitions grade armour it is a lesson on how we shouldn’t all be so fussy and worry so much about rivet placing of following too uniformly to a lame edge when embossing a border line. But in any case, it is all about the detail in my workshop. I pride myself on sympathetic restoration work, ultimately resulting in a finished piece with an overall harmonious appearance.

“I found working with Nigel very rewarding. In explaining to readers the problems fighting men faced on an English Civil War battlefield I had to find a non-technical, highly practical but also an entertaining approach. The logistics underlying the opposing armies’ operations were intimately linked with arms manufacture, and the design of helmets and armour was governed by the real requirements of active service. The professionalism, knowledge and enthusiasm Nigel brought to clarifying the problems and demonstrating the solutions led to picture and caption sequences that are as interesting as they are informative. I am in his debt.”
Martin F. Marix Evans , Military Historian & Author  Chairman of the Naseby Battlefield Project

 Please feel free to contact me with any questions or requests at all, whether you’re considering having a missing arm harness recreated to make up a complete suit, or you just need a missing gauntlet thumb replaced, simply click on my contact page, and I will do the rest.

Click here for my contact page

Thank you for your interest, I look forward to our talking in the future.
Nigel Carren

“A fantastic restoration… I am looking but I can’t tell”.
Dave Allen,   Private collector 

“I greatly enjoyed visiting you at your workshop yesterday. I find the whole business of armour construction fascinating so it was a real pleasure to see a true craftsman at work”.
John Kliene ,  Photographer for Osprey publishing

“Thank you again for all of your efforts on our behalf. The armour looks fantastic in the exhibition… I am sure you will agree, it was all worth it!”
Diana Morley,   Imperial War Museum London

“Great work, finished to a very high standard”.
Eric Slyter,   The Arador Armour Library 

Anything at all can be recreated, it’s all quite simply down to time, and therefore ultimately your budget. All I need are a few clues re; period, style and finish and whether the piece is for wear or display, and I will happily do the rest, and trawl through my extensive library and provide images of exactly what it is I think you are aiming for, and as the famous quote by King Maximillian I to his armourer (below) clearly illustrates, I am at your disposal.

“Arm me according to my own wishes, for it is I not you who will take part in the tournament!”
King Maximillian I  to court armourer Conrad Seusenhofer 1504

My method statement is best illustrated by a quote by the greatest writer on the subject:

“For the study of ancient armour to be successfully pursued, it is of primary importance that a careful examination be made of every existing specimen within our reach… Every rivet-hole and rivet in a piece must be studied, and its use and object thought out”.
Charles Ffoulkes  1909

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Nigel Carren Reproduction Armour

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