Can you tailor the size of magical armor using skill checks?

Rules Questions

In RotRL there are a lot of large hide shirts. I was wondering if it would be possible to tailor a hide shirt (or hide, or leather) smaller using leather working/armor crafting checks without losing the magical properties of the armor?

If so what kind of DC would you set, and how much would it cost (would it require special tools?



I believe the general rule is that magic armor, as with cloaks and rings, resizes to fit the wearer, and I know there's a spell somewhere to resize things that are not magical.

However, poking around on the web for other rules and rulings, I found this:


Ice Armor of the Northlands

Ice armor of the northlands wreathes you in a supernatural icy mist that deals cold damage to nearby creatures. A DC 20 Knowledge (arcana) or Knowledge (history) check provides the following information: Brynja Skjaldvor, the infamous frost giantess, crafted the first ice armor of the northlands for herself, jealously guarding the secret of its creation. With her fearsome warbands in tow she scourged the northlands, conquering settlement after settlement. The bards of the northlands sing forlorn tales of her cruelty, noting her ferociousness in battle and her legendary freezing armor.

This full plate armor is ice-blue and shrouded in frost. The interior is lined with thick fur. When worn, it exudes an extremely cold white mist. Donning the armor activates it.

Ice armor of the northlands is +1 full plate that wreathes you in a supernatural icy mist at all times that deals 2d6 points of cold damage each round to all creatures within 10 feet of you (if Large or larger) or to all creatures within 5 feet of you (if Medium or smaller). The armor deals the same damage to you each round.

Moderate evocation, CL 7th. Craft Magic Arms and Armor, fire shield, 30,650 gp, 2,240 XP, 6 days.

Variants: Fire giants have also realized the potential for this armor, and thus variants that wreathe the wearer in flames and deal fire damage instead of cold damage exist. Characters can resize Large armor to fit a Medium wearer by succeeding at a DC 20 Craft (armorsmithing) check. Weight: 100 lb. (Large) or 50 lb. (Medium). Price: 58,650 gp.

Dragon #345

This seems a reasonable check to give. Personally, I might also require there to be someone with Craft Magic Arms and Armor present, but a DC 20 armorsmithing check seems more than sufficient to take armor up or down one size.

In reality, you'd be making multiple small suits out of one large one, basically just using the big one for materials, but for fantasy, this sort of handwaving works well enough.

Kevin Andrew Murphy wrote:
I believe the general rule is that magic armor, as with cloaks and rings, resizes to fit the wearer...

'Fraid not

PRD, Magic Items wrote:

Size and Magic Items

When an article of magic clothing or jewelry is discovered, most of the time size shouldn't be an issue. Many magic garments are made to be easily adjustable, or they adjust themselves magically to the wearer. Size should not keep characters of various kinds from using magic items.

There may be rare exceptions, especially with race-specific items.

Armor and Weapon Sizes: Armor and weapons that are found at random have a 30% chance of being Small (01–30), a 60% chance of being Medium (31–90), and a 10% chance of being any other size (91–100).

This has been a bane of many a party, like those with Halfling or Gnome characters, or fighter-types with the Powerful Build trait.

As a one-off ruling, I ruled that a Medium mithril chain shirt could be permanently modified to fit a Small character by a reasonably skilled armorsmith. The smith would do the job at no cost and just keep the excess mithril for himself.

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