As I mentioned at practice the other day, if we intend to compete with other schools in meets and tournaments, we have to start thinking about purchasing electric equipment. For USFA tournaments, the requirement is that you have a minimum of two electric weapons and two body cords in addition to any other electric gear such as a lamé (foil and saber only), special mask (saber), overglove or cuff (saber), mask cord, etc. For the upcoming tournament in April, you can probably get the minimum in order to compete:
Foil – 1 electric weapon, 1 body cord, 1 foil lamé
Épée – 1 electric weapon, 1 body cord
Saber – 1 electric weapon, 1 body cord, 1 electric saber mask w/mask cord, 1 overglove
I’ve taken the time to do some comparative shopping for everyone. Attached to this post is a chart of vendors and the different sets they offer for beginning electric equipment. The chart is grouped according to weapon type. There are some obvious deals (cheap prices), but it all depends on what you can and want to purchase at this time. If you intend to continue with fencing next year, I would suggest you consider buying a set that will provide you with the minimum USFA requirements for competitions.
Why two weapons? Murphy’s Law runs rampant at meets and competitions. With the use and abuse that weapons go through during the course of a bout or competition, it is not uncommon for a weapon to fail or get damaged. (Sarah would be happy to recount her experience with this for you!) If that should occur, you would be given a limited amount of time to come up with a replacement weapon (but not enough time to repair it). If you do not have a back-up weapon, you will be forced to forfeit the bout.
Click the link below to download the electric starter sets information (PDF) When ordering sets, there are often multiple options based on the type of weapon (type of point, type of grip, etc.). If you have any questions about equipment, please do not hesitate to contact me (phone, text, email, FB, comments on this blog).