Equipment

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Equipment Requirements

All AFF tournaments are fenced using electrical apparatus and require full fencing uniform. All protective clothing and blades must meet with the standards set by the FIE.

Equipment and uniforms must be presented to weapons control officials for approval before being used in a tournament.

Protective Clothing

The FIE has set minimum standards for all competitions, based on the degree of resistance (measured in newtons) offered by the items. Equipment manufacturers submit sample items to the FIE for approval. When an item is approved, it may bear an FIE logo. The manufacturer will normally incorporate the FIE approval into their own logo, and will display it on the exterior of the items. The logo will also state the level of resistance (in newtons) offered by the item.

For AFF tournaments, the following protective equipment is required:

  • FIE approved mask
  • FIE approved jacket and breeches, resistant to 800 newtons. (An exception to this is the National School Individual and Team Championships, which require 350 newton resistance.)
  • FIE approved underplastron, resistant to 800 newtons
  • Chest Protectors

Foil and Epee Blades

The FIE also approves foil and epee blades. The FIE logo is stamped into the forte of the blade, just above the tang, so it is immediately behind the guard of an assembled weapon.

Sabre Blades

Sabre blades do not bear an FIE logo. However, they do have to display an S2000 marking on the forte of the blade, immediately behind the guard of an assembled weapon.
The "S2000" indicates that the blade passes the required standard of rigidity. If Weapons Control personnel feel that a blade has become less rigid with age, they are within their rights to apply an approved test to the blade, and to fail it if it does not pass the test.

News - Equipment rules

Change to mask requirements – AFC events

The AFF would like to remind all fencers that, as previously announced, the new FIE requirements for fastening systems for masks will apply to all AFC events from 1 January 2019. The first event to which the new rules will apply is the Australian Junior Championships, to be held in Melbourne in February 2019. The…
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New mask requirements – 2018/19 FIE season

Fencers who are considering entering international events are reminded that the new mask fastening requirements introduced by the FIE apply from the start of the 2018/19 FIE season (September 2018). Fencers can purchase a new (compliant) mask or can arrange to have their existing mask retrofitted – however, retrofitting can only be carried out by…
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Changes to FIE Equipment Rules – application to AFC events

In late 2017, the FIE introduced new requirements in relation to masks and chest protectors (foil only). Changes to mask requirements The new requirements apply to the fastening systems for masks. These requirements were introduced in response to safety concerns followinng a number of incidents in which masks have fallen off during bouts. Further details…
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Equipment Control

All necessary equipment must be approved by Weapons Control at the tournament according to the AFF Weapons Control Policy. Once approved, equipment will be marked. Referees will usually check equipment for weapons control marks at the start of a fencer's first bout. Presenting to the strip with equipment that does not bear weapons control marks is a black card offence.

It is usual for Weapons Control to check the following:

  • Masks for safety (and conductivity, in the case of sabre)
  • Weapons
  • Lame jackets and bibs/masks for conductivity (foil and sabre only)
  • Gauntlets/gloves for conductivity (sabre only)
  • Bodywires (for conductivity)

Tested prior to competition

Epee

ComponentCheck
BladeFIE notation
GuardNo substantial deformities where points could catch.
No rust
Wires sheathed separately up to the connection with no tape covering them.
Pad in place to protect wires.
No wires projecting from the connections.
Body wireConductivity – 2-4 ohm [FIE: 1 ohm] resistance maximum
No exposed metal cable
Does not exceed maximum resistance when cable is “wiggled”
GloveNo visible holes (inc body wire hole)
MaskFIE notation; no visor masks permitted
Is not permitted to have conductive bib (even if taped at the bottom).
For masks with replaceable bibs, and the mask has already passed though weapons control for foil, bib must be stamped (not mask).
Rubber / tape / cloth seal around edge of face intact and safe and adhering to mesh
No holes in mesh
No rust or oxidisation
Rear strap or clasp intact. Where fixing is Velcro-based, Velcro working and stitching holding it down. Where fixing is spring-based, spring should not be loose
[FIE: No dents in mask mesh]. Small dents acceptable as long as there is no sign of damage to or separation of the wires in the mesh
[FIE: fixing points]. For Leon Paul masks, detachable bibs must also have back strap.

Foil

ComponentCheck
BladeFIE notation
GuardNo substantial deformities where points could catch.
Wires sheathed up to the connection with no tape covering them.
Grip and pommel insulated, or at least the projecting points of a pistol grip
Has a pad to protect wires from fingers
No wires projecting from the connections.
Body wireConductivity – 2-4 ohm [FIE: 1 ohm] resistance maximum
Earth wire: ‘A’ line soldered to clip, and clip at least 10mm wide
No exposed metal cable
Does not exceed maximum resistance when cable is “wiggled”
Alligator clip must run separately for at least 40cm
Mask wireConductivity – 2-4 ohm [FIE: 1 ohm] resistance maximum
Wire to be soldered in place to alligator clips at both ends
No exposed metal cable
Does not exceed maximum resistance when cable is “wiggled”
Must be straight (not coiled), clear or white, 30-40cm (from AFC1-2017 onwards)
LameNo holes
Conductivity – [FIE: 5 ohms resistance maximum between all points] 5 ohms between each point, though small areas, not exceeding approx. 5x5cm, may have a resistance of up to 10 ohms if they are on the collar or back, excluding the tag for the mask line
GloveNo visible holes (inc body wire hole)
MaskFIE notation; no visor masks permitted
Rubber / tape / cloth seal around edge of face intact and safe and adhering to mesh
No holes in mesh
No rust or oxidisation
Mesh insulation reasonably intact
Rear strap or clasp intact. Where fixing is Velcro-based, Velcro working and stitching holding it down. Where fixing is spring-based, spring should not be loose
[FIE: No dents in mask mesh]. Small dents acceptable as long as there is no sign of damage to or separation of the wires in the mesh
Mask - bibNo holes
[FIE: fixing points]. For Leon Paul masks, detachable bibs must also have back strap.
Conductivity – [FIE: 5 ohms] 10 ohms resistance maximum esp. in stitching ribs.

Sabre

ComponentCheck
BladeS2000 notation
Button (“fold-over”) on tip intact
GuardNo substantial deformities where points could catch.
Insulation on lower part of guard and pommel
Body wireConductivity – 2-4 ohm [FIE: 1 ohm] resistance maximum
Earth wire: ‘A’ line soldered to clip, and clip at least 10mm wide
No exposed metal cable
Does not exceed maximum resistance when cable is “wiggled”
Mask wireConductivity – 2-4 ohm [FIE: 1 ohm] resistance maximum
Wire to be soldered in place to alligator clips at both ends
No exposed metal cable
Does not exceed maximum resistance when cable is “wiggled”
Must be straight (not coiled), clear or white, 30-40cm
LameNo holes, esp under arms
Conductivity – [FIE: 5 ohms resistance maximum between all points] 5 ohms between each point, though small areas, not exceeding approx. 5x5cm, may have a resistance of up to 10 ohms if they are on the collar or back, excluding the tag for the mask line
MaskFIE notation; no visor masks permitted
Conductivity – [FIE: 5 ohms] 10 ohms resistance maximum esp. in stitching ribs.
No holes in mesh
No projecting points which could catch a blade (esp corners of the bib or their covers).
No rust or oxidisation
Rear strap or clasp intact. Where fixing is Velcro-based, Velcro working and stitching holding it down. Where fixing is spring-based, spring should not be loose
[FIE: No dents in mask mesh]. Small dents acceptable as long as there is no sign of damage to or separation of the wires in the mesh
[FIE: fixing points]. For Leon Paul masks, detachable bibs must also have back strap.
Cuff / gloveNo holes
800N notation (from AFC2-2014 onwards)
Minimum 5cm on inside for connection.
Conductivity – [FIE: 5 ohms resistance maximum between all points] 5 ohms between each point, though small areas, not exceeding approx. 5x5cm, may have a resistance of up to 10 ohms

Tested on strip by referee

Foil on-strip

ComponentCheck
BladeWeapons Control mark
Weight (will lift 500g weight)
Bend on blade less than 1cm from guard to tip
Body wireWeapons Control mark
Securing device for wire to weapon
Mask wireWeapons Control mark
LameWeapons Control mark
Covers target; i.e. the flat base reaches top of the hip bone when on guard.
MaskWeapons Control mark
GloveWeapons Control mark
Breeches, Jacket, PlastronFIE notation

Epee on-strip

ComponentCheck
BladeWeapons Control mark
Weight (will lift 750g weight)
Bend on blade less than 1cm from guard to tip
Both grub screws present
Gauge (clearance when tip depressed)
Gauge (clearance when tip not depressed)
Body wireWeapons Control mark
MaskWeapons Control mark
Reaches tips of collar bones
GloveWeapons Control mark
Breeches, Jacket, PlastronFIE notation

Sabre on-strip

ComponentCheck
BladeWeapons Control mark
Weight (will lift 500g weight)
Bend on blade less than 1cm from guard to tip
Body wireWeapons Control mark
Securing device for wire to weapon
Mask wireWeapons Control mark
LameWeapons Control mark
Covers target; i.e. the flat base reaches top of the hip bone when on guard.
MaskWeapons Control mark
GloveWeapons Control mark
Breeches, Jacket, PlastronFIE notation