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Heavy Rapier Rules 01/19/96



Here is the latest version of the Ansteorran Heavy Rapier (Schlager) rules.
This revision is dated 01/19/96 and corrects a few mistakes from the earlier
version. This was given out in paper form to the Dons and many of the cadets
at Ansteorran Coronation last week.

I have also included release notes at the end of the document to answer some
of the most often asked questions. Please look over these documents and send
me your comments. You may send me your comments at


or you may mail them to me at:

James Crouchet
710 Shade Tree Dr.
Austin, TX 78748

In all cases I plan to add your comments to the official files, so if you do
not want your comments on file you must tell me.

Also, feel free to hand this out to anyone who is interested.

you are going to be there to give them to me. This is likely to be the last
chance you have to have input before these rules are signed into law.

To all of you who have already commented, thank you.

Don Savian, Heavy Rapier Marshal for Ansteorra

            ---   ---   ---   ---   ---   ---   ---   ---   ---

                             DRAFT 01/19/96


Please note that if at any place the SCA Rules For Rapier Combat or the
Ansteorra Rules of the List mandate a higher level of protection than these
rules, that higher standard is required. The following is considered the
MINIMUM required safety equipment for any SCA heavy rapier activity within
this Kingdom:

1.) Resistant and Impenetrable Materials
a.) Resistant material - A sturdy cloth that resists tearing under normal
SCA rapier combat stresses.  Not acceptable are cotton gauze, nylon tights
or stockings, or other thin cloth.

b.) Impenetrable Material - Any materials or any combination of materials
that will withstand the punch test outlined below. Some suggested materials
are 5 layers of trigger cloth, or 1 layer of 4-5 oz. leather, however, all
materials must be individually punch tested to be considered impenetrable.

2.) Punch Testing
To perform a punch test a marshal should lay a piece of the material to be
tested on a  penetrable surface, such as soft earth and attempt to punch
through the material 4 times with an untipped or broken practice schlager
blade. The blade should be gripped about 15" from the end and the strikes
should be fairly hard. The end of the blade should be flat and left bare. If
the blade penetrates, the garment fails. Protective garments of impenetrable
material may be punch-tested at any time, at the marshal's request,  to
ensure the safety of the fighter.

3.) Coverage
a.) Minimum Coverage - There will be no exposed skin on any fighter. The
minimum protection for any area of the body shall be "resistant material",
and "impenetrable material" shall cover the areas outlined below.

b.) Face/Head - must be covered by a 3 weapons fencing mask that has been
designated as a "12 kilo" mask or equivalent approved by the marshals. The
mask must not have rust or weak spots. The rest of the head must be covered
in a hood or drape of impenetrable material, with no gaps between the mask
and the material. The mask must be tied or fastened securely to prevent
accidentally coming off during combat.

c.) Neck - The entire neck will be covered by impenetrable material. The
hood or drape must be tucked into OR be part of the torso protection (high
collar). A metal or 8-oz. top grain leather gorget with 1/2" padding is also
required. The gorget must cover the trachea and the soft spot at the base of
the throat.

d.) Torso - must be covered with impenetrable material including chest, back
, abdomen to the V of the Groin, and sides up to and including the armpits. 
The arms must be covered by resistant material.

e.) Groin - Male fighters must wear rigid, impenetrable groin protection.

f.) Hands/arms - must be completely covered by leather gloves that overlap
any sleeve openings at least three inches.  There shall be no holes the

g.) Legs/feet - the legs shall be covered by resistant material, and the
feet shall be covered by closed-toe shoes or boots.  There may not be any
exposed skin at the knee or ankle, regardless of the fighter's stance.

h.) Additional Protection - Helms, high-topped leather boots and other
additional protective gear may be worn if it does not impair the fighter's
ability to call a blow.

1.) General
Weapons and accessories that are likely to trap or break blades, have sharp
edges or points, or that a marshal decides is unsafe will not be allowed. No
weapon or accessory, expect a cloak, may exceed 4 lbs in weight.

2.) Rapiers & Daggers
Rapier blades shall be practice schlager blades with an oval cross section.
Blades with a diamond cross section are not allowed. These blades come in
different stiffnesses and blades too stiff to allow 6 inches of bend with 15
pounds of forward pressure will not be allowed. Each blade must be
individually tested. Blades must be inspected by an authorized marshal at
each event before they are allowed on the field. The end of each blade must
be flat with no sharp edges. Blades with pointed or rounded ends are not

Commercially produced "flexi-daggers" are the only dagger blades allowed. 
No shortened epees, foils or other blades will be used. Flexi- daggers must
have nail-head, barrel-tip or hot-rolled ends. Sharp-ended blades are not

For rapiers,  the end of the blade must be covered by a strip of 4 oz.
leather covered by a soft rubber HTM brand rabbit blunt at least 5/8" in
diameter, or an equivalent acceptable to the marshalate. [NOTE: There are
currently NO acceptable substitutes.] For dagger blades, in addition to the
HTM blunts, tips made of rubber or plastic, at least 3/8" in diameter (i.e.
standard fencing tips) are also acceptable.

All Tips must be securely taped to prevent dislodging. The visible part of
the fastening or tip should be a different color from the blade such that it
is readily evident if a tip comes off during combat. The marshal may ask
that the tip be removed in order to inspect the blade end. After this
inspection the tip should be securely re-attached.

All blades must be smooth and free of burs and sharp edges. Blades with rust
, pits, cracks, or multiple bends are not allowed onto the field.

The maximum length for quillions is 12 inches tip to tip, and the tips shall
be blunted.  Quillions that could trap and break blades are not allowed.

Open-work hand guards may be used provided they will not easily trap or
break a blade. No pistol grips are allowed.

3.) Bucklers and Targets
Shields for Heavy Rapier Combat that do not exceed 20" in diameter, edging
included, shall be considered bucklers. Those larger than 20" shall be
considered targets. Bucklers and targets are to be made of lightweight
material such as 1/4" plywood or its equivalent. The edge shall be covered
or taped to prevent splintering. They shall not be designed to trap or break
blades, nor may they be used as offensive weapons. The buckler or target
must be free from sharp corners, points or edges.

4.) Cloaks
Cloaks may be whatever size, weight, and shape the fighter chooses, as long
as it is recognizable as a cloak, and not a whip or a flail. Cloaks shall
not be weighted with metal, wood or other rigid material. They may be
weighted with flexible hem weights, such as rolled cloth or rope.

5.) Non-Standard Weapons and Accessories
Improvised parrying weapons such as hats, mugs, stools, sword scabbards,
canes, bottles, fish, etc., may be used upon approval by the marshal and all
parties involved. Improvised weapons may be made of semi-rigid material such
as cloth, foam, or tape.

Rigid items, such as sword scabbards and canes may also be used. They must
not have sharp points or edges, they should be light weight and designed not
to trap blades, splinter or otherwise cause safety problems on the field.
Rigid items shall not be used to strike an opponent.

                            II.) RULES OF COMBAT

1.) Each fighter is expected to abide by the Rules of the List and
Conventions of Combat of the Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc., and the
additional rules set forth by the Kingdom of Ansteorra.

2.) An individual must be 18 years old to participate in Heavy Rapier Combat
in the Kingdom of Ansteorra.

3.) Engaging in combat with the deliberate intent to inflict injury on an
opponent is strictly forbidden.

4.) Fighters will maintain control of their tempers at all times.

5.) Any Fighter may, without dishonor, decline any challenge without
specifying a reason.

6.) It is the responsibility of each Fighter to determine what weapons
his/her opponent is using and resolve any questions prior to combat.

7.) Combatants who become fatigued must remove themselves from the field. At
the discretion of the Master of the Lists and the Marshal In Charge such
interrupted bouts may be rescheduled.

8.) Conduct such as striking with excessive force, consistently ignoring
blows, or deliberate misuse of the rules will result in revocation of
fighting privileges.

1.) The entire body is a legal target.

2.) All Fighters are deemed to be fighting unarmored.  No blow shall be
assumed to have its effect negated on account of actual clothing or armor

3.) Blows are to be struck by thrusting with the point or draw-cutting with
the edge of the blade.

A valid thrust is any thrust that touches. If you felt it point on, it was
good. A valid draw cut is any draw cut using three or more inches of the

An alternate standard, which will only be allowed if all combatants and
marshals agree to allow it, will require a thrust delivering 2 lbs of force
for a killing blow (about the same amount of force that causes 2 inches of
bend in a #5 french foil) to better simulate the effects of a real rapier. A
draw of 3 inches would still be valid.

A kill is any valid thrust or cut to the head, neck, torso, brachial artery 
(inside of the arm between the arm pit  and elbow), or  femoral artery 
(inside of the leg between groin and knee).

A disabling wound is a valid thrust or draw cut to a limb.  If the blow is
to the hand, the fighter may still use that arm for parrying.  If the blow
is to the arm, the arm is considered useless, and should not be used.  If
the blow is to any part of the leg or foot, the fighter cannot stand or walk
on that leg. A fighter on the ground may not jump or walk on his knees.

4.) Circling an opponent who takes a sitting, kneeling or other immobile
position due to the loss of one or both legs is prohibited.

5.) Open-handed parries are permitted and are not considered as wounding as
long as no valid thrust or draw cut strikes the hand. Pushing an opponent's
hand aside is permitted under this rule, so long as the hand is not grasped.

6.) No portion of an opponent's weapons or buckler may be grasped.

7.) A fighter is considered to be armed as long as they retain an offensive
weapon. A fighter who is unarmed is defeated unless his opponent chooses to
allow him to recover a weapon.

8.) A cloak may be used only as a defensive item.  It may be used to confuse
, parry, or obscure the vision of an opponent.  It may not be used to
entangle a blade or an opponent.  A cloak may be thrown, but will not be
used to cover the head or face of an opponent.  A direct thrust will
penetrate a cloak.

9.) Weapons and accessories, other than a cloak,  may not be thrown.

10.) If a "HOLD" is called during combat, all activity will cease
immediately and the Fighters will rest their blades' points on the ground,
and remain in place until the situation has been resolved.

11.) Inspecting Marshals and Marshals On The Field shall have the right and
the responsibility to disallow the use of any particular weapon, parry item,
or protective equipment they decide is unsafe. This decision may be appealed
. Any Fighter may refuse to face any particular equipment he feels is unsafe