Fencing Repairs

I’ve discovered one of my limits as a fencing coach: when the weapon breaks, I have no idea what to do. Currently, I have about twelve weapons belonging to the team, and maybe another four belonging to team members, which do not work. Sixteen weapons is a substantial investment of time and resources for this team — It’s a spare weapon for every team-member with three extras. If they were working, it would be the difference between going to the Novice tournament this weekend, and not going.

Yeah. Not going. I have six ninth graders who are eligible to compete, and of them — four don’t want to go. They have working weapons. The other two do want to go, but have broken weapons. When do I learn this? During last night’s fencing match. So, I try to order the right weapons today. BUT — I call after the end of their ship cycle for the day. I’ve e-mailed a few of the local fencing clubs to find out about armory services, but mid-season like this, I’m not hopeful.

I’m frankly envious of the other schools I’ve seen — Waterford had twenty novices and a dozen JV and varsity players, and three or four parents deeply interested in the equipment and repairs. The same with St. Bernard’s and some of the other schools. Here, it’s just me.

I did go through all our broken body cords last night, and repaired twelve. That feels good at least. I can fix body cords easily enough. They’re definitely repairable with a few simple tools. The issue of repairing a foil, though, seems to be something I’m going to need a few classes on. Maybe over March break; I’m unlikely to get much slack before then.

16 comments

  1. WOuld you be up for…

    Would you be up for being a director of a strip a week from Thursday, 22 February? It’s our first (and last) home meet that’s actually going to happen.

    I hope.

  2. You want Rudy Volkmann’s book, “Electrical Fencing Equipment, How it works, What goes wrong, How to fix it”. It’s supposed to be the definitive work on the subject.

  3. You want Rudy Volkmann’s book, “Electrical Fencing Equipment, How it works, What goes wrong, How to fix it”. It’s supposed to be the definitive work on the subject.

    • WOuld you be up for…

      Would you be up for being a director of a strip a week from Thursday, 22 February? It’s our first (and last) home meet that’s actually going to happen.

      I hope.

  4. Get with Bill. The man has fire and is not afraid to use it. 😉

    Hope you guys can get things worked out. Much praise to you for keeping a fencing program going for kids who wouldn’t otherwise have an opportunity to learn that skill.

    What can I say, I have a soft spot for helping kids who don’t have as much as some other kids. I need to find out if there are schools in Worcester that have people who coach their Special Olympics teams – we did that in my unit when I was in the Air Force, and seeing those kids get to go to State games, have uniforms and most importantly, have the positive role models and attention the overworked teachers didn’t have time to give each and every one was a great thing to see. There’s nothing like getting out of your car in the schoolyard and having eight or ten kids come running to you for hugs and telling you a million things that have happened in the two days since you last saw them. LOL

  5. Get with Bill. The man has fire and is not afraid to use it. 😉

    Hope you guys can get things worked out. Much praise to you for keeping a fencing program going for kids who wouldn’t otherwise have an opportunity to learn that skill.

    What can I say, I have a soft spot for helping kids who don’t have as much as some other kids. I need to find out if there are schools in Worcester that have people who coach their Special Olympics teams – we did that in my unit when I was in the Air Force, and seeing those kids get to go to State games, have uniforms and most importantly, have the positive role models and attention the overworked teachers didn’t have time to give each and every one was a great thing to see. There’s nothing like getting out of your car in the schoolyard and having eight or ten kids come running to you for hugs and telling you a million things that have happened in the two days since you last saw them. LOL

  6. That may be so…

    that may be so… yet so far I’ve broken more weapons further, than I’ve fixed. I’ve also discovered that most foil parts, bought from different companies, are non-interchangeable. Argh.

  7. Yeah, certainly as a teenager I used to fix my own and my club’s weapons. It’s really not as hard as it looks like it will be.

  8. drop me a line at javabill[AT]gmail.com & let me know what needs to get fixed. one of the women who works in admin is a high-level fencer who fixes her own equipment. i bet between the three of us we could get the stuff up & running for you. (i’ve workd on her stuff before)

  9. drop me a line at javabill[AT]gmail.com & let me know what needs to get fixed. one of the women who works in admin is a high-level fencer who fixes her own equipment. i bet between the three of us we could get the stuff up & running for you. (i’ve workd on her stuff before)

    • Yeah, certainly as a teenager I used to fix my own and my club’s weapons. It’s really not as hard as it looks like it will be.

      • That may be so…

        that may be so… yet so far I’ve broken more weapons further, than I’ve fixed. I’ve also discovered that most foil parts, bought from different companies, are non-interchangeable. Argh.

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