[Loch-Ruadh] FYI Ruling from Scoiety Combat Archery Marshall regarding Pennsic incidents

Aingeal clan_mac at charter.net
Mon Aug 11 13:56:04 PDT 2008


From: SCA-Chirurgeon at yahoogroups.com [mailto:SCA-Chirurgeon at yahoogroups.com]
On Behalf Of chrish19572003
Sent: Monday, August 11, 2008 3:23 PM
To: SCA-Chirurgeon at yahoogroups.com
Subject: [SCA-Chirurgeon] FYI Ruling from Scoiety Combat Archery Marshall
regarding Pennsic incidents


Below you will see the new ruling and an explanation of the situation 
from the Society Combat Archery Marshal.

The short version is, all CA arrows must now be 1.5 inches in 
diameter and no more than 1 inch of foam in front of the head.

It is required that the extra foam be wrapped around the foam disks 
that are already on your arrows in order to stiffen the foam up.

This is effective immediately as of 8-10-08. No exceptions.

Please forward this missive in it's entirety anywhere you think it 
might be relevant.

Official message follows:


Effective immediately by the Society Earl Marshal & the Deputy 
Society Earl Marshal for Combat Archery, the following changes to 
equipment are required due to repeated incidents of helm penetrations:

* Combat Archery ammunition may have at most 1" thick padding on the 
tip after taping.

* All UHMW & Siloflex/Rubber Stopper ammunition must have a side wrap 
of foam added that brings the total diameter of the blunt to at least 
1.5" after taping. This wrap must extend from the tip to at least 
1/2" over the UHMW or Siloflex itself.

* All fletches on any arrows, bolts, or thrown weapons can project no 
further than 1/2" from the shaft, or must be 1.5" thick.

* NOTE: All Marshals need to be rigorous in their inspections of all 
tips (arrows & thrusting) and mass weapons. Ensure that the foam is 
firm, will not bend over, returns to shape when compressed, and can 
not be easily pushed into a legal helm more than 1/2".


The Explanation:

For those that do not know, there were a couple of incidents of the 
foam/tape of UHMW combat arrows touching the face/eyes of people at 
Gulf Wars this year. There were more incidents at a West/AnTir war, 
and at another event recently. Much discussion has therefore been 
going on at Society Level about this potential issue ever since Gulf 

At Pennsic in the Town Battle on Wednesday, there were 4 incidents 
of foam/tape penetrating helms that were reported. Yes, 4 in one 
battle. Two of them resulted in minor injury. One was a busted 
blood vessel in an eye, the other resulted in a bruise (black eye). 
All of these penetrations happened to be UHMW/RubberStopper style 
ammo. In one case, the rubber stopper itself had penetrated a bit.

In all of these cases, the UHMW or Siloflex respectively did it's 
job and didn't let any hard parts of the arrow enter the helm. But 
obviously the force involved with just the foam/tape, from max 
poundage bows at close range, is significant enough to be concerned 

At Pennsic, when this happened, CA was cancelled for the next 
battle (Mountain Pass) that was scheduled for that day. Especially 
because that battle had been scheduled to be face plate only so it 
didn't seem to be a good idea at the moment.

The MiC Pennsic made a ruling that for Siloflex/Rubber ammo to be 
allowed for the rest of pennsic that they would need to add a side 
wrap. The Local Wal-Mart was bought out of Camp Mats, and much 
taping happened that night so that archers could shoot the next day.

Later in the war, meetings were held since many Kingdom Earl 
Marshals were in attendance, as well as myself and the Society Earl 
Marshal. These issues were discussed, as well as the fact that Low 
Profile Thrusting tips & Mass Weapons depending on their construction 
can be forced into a helm. Also it was brought up that there was an 
incident of a polearm entering a helm in the Woods Battle and 
contacting someone's cheek.

After much discussion, the rulings above were developed. 
Basically, we already have a rule that weapons should not be able to 
enter a helm more than 1/2", and that people need to be constructing 
their weapons such that this doesn't happen, and the marshals 
ensuring that weapons are done this way.

Additionally the other rules were added to ammunition. This is 
because ammo travels with such velocity that we need to be extra 
vilgiant to ensure that we do not cause any injury. The rules as 
designed were done specifically so that they are easy RETROFITS.

Noone should need to remake any ammunition from scratch. Instead 
just add a side wrap of foam overtop of existing ammo, and tape it 
down good. To meet the letter of the law, a 1/8" wrap of foam will 
not be sufficient, since after taping down, it will compress and be 
less than 1.5" in diameter. Therefore two layers of 1/8" foam, or a 
layer of 1/4" foam would need to be added and taped down well.

Note that this side wrap IS required, you cannot just use bigger 
diameter UHMW or Siloflex. The reason is that by adding the 
sidewrap, you are making the foam on the tip much stiffer, protecting 
the edges of the UHMW, etc.

If archers have more than 1" of foam on the tip, it needs to be 
taped down tighter, or a little bit cut off.

Also in general archers need to think about their arrow tips as 
thrusting tips and building them 'solid' like you would a sword tip. 
Using high quality dense foam, and/or using oversized foam and 
compressing it as you tape it down so that it ends up a very firm tip 
that doesn't compress much, especially circumferentially.

In Service,
Siegfried - Society Combat Archery Marshal

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