This information is provided as a service to assist fencers when purchasing equipment. The views expressed represent the personal opinions of the contributors and do not necessarily reflect the views of Excalibur Community Fencing Club itself. Fencers are advised to research equipment purchases as widely as possible in order to make an informed choice.
Allstar Non-Electric Foil with French grip (MF11F)
This is a solid, well-made weapon, constructed with durability in mind. The blade is perhaps on the stiff side, but this may be a matter of personal preference. The downside is that the youngest fencers may find this foil a little heavy. – Anne.
Leon Paul lightweight foil guard (F70LW)
This guard has copper rivets to distinguish it from the normal guard (F70). Although it is a bit lighter, it is also three times the price and a little too weak for my liking. It dents easily and will deform if you fall on it (!) or close your car boot on your fencing bag. Unless the weight is critical to you, I suggest sticking with the standard guard. – Steve
Foil and Sabre body wires/connectors
I see many examples of loose connections causing white lights and delays on the piste, both in clubs and in competition. The two-pin plugs and connectors that are popular in this state appear to be highly prone to this. I have yet to see a single instance of a Leon Paul bayonet connection causing a white light. The worst thing that I have experienced with these connections is that they can occasionally become stiff to plug and unplug, but generally they are a breeze to use and 100% reliable. There are apparently some non-Paul bayonets that are sub-standard and lead to problems (there was a Paul video about this), but I have no direct experience with them. I also find bayonet ends less bulky and easier to slip down a sleeve that already contains an arm. – Steve.
3-pin body wires/connectors
Another plug for Leon Paul here. The 3-pin plugs on the other end of their foil/sabre wires, and at both ends of their epee wires and ground leads, are very good. The 3 pins are slightly out of line, providing a tension that keeps the electrical connection constant while keeping the plugs very easy to insert and remove, much easier than the spring-pin type. The soft plastic plug covers are less bulky and intrusive than hard plastic screw-connected surrounds used by many other manufacturers. They also mean there is no hard corner for the wire to rub against, meaning these wires last a very long time without maintenance. – Steve.