Review: SPES Training Sabre

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Review: SPES Training Sabre

Postby Magnus Hagelberg » 25 Mar 2013 08:09

Object of the review: http://histfenc.com/productcart/training-sabre-heavy

Usage and testing of item: We have been using them for 8h worth of class and light sparring.

Things I like with the Sabre:
The ballance is nice. It's soft on the cut up to a point -there is mass, so if you cut like crazy it might hurt someone. But it allows for doing low intensity sparring with mask only or even using only eye protection.
They look like toys, making them excelent for public areas and calming any notion from the public that we are doing annything dangerous that should be notified to the police.
They are priseworthy, readily available with about 5 workdays deliverytime.
It is well suited for beginners practice. The light weight of 540g allows for most to swing it about for most of the class lenght.
The basket is ambidexterous, catering equaly to left and right handed.

Things I don't like: The rubber on the handle rubbs of to the hand, so gloves are advicable. The gripps is of the straight kind, and don't have a pistol/sabre feel to it -this would increase the price I'm sure.
The padding of some of the sabres feel out of place, so the feeling of the sabre is that of a sligthly bent blade.



Conclusion: I would recomend the heawy SPES sabre for groups looking to start up sabreclasses and want a decent beginners tool that is cheap and readily available. As an instructor, it's a good tool for easing in new students who are hessitant about hitting someone, also, those students who have a tendency to flail about won't bring as much alarm to the class.
Get gripp tape for the handles - pimp them with your own collor to tell them apart in class.

Padded weapons bounce, it is not a replacement for steel weapons, but it is a start.

Note on SPES conduct:
In the batch of ten we bought -the basket of one sabre craked up, apparently material failure.
I took a photo of the basket and sent it to SPES customer service, I got a reply and a tracking number for the replacing shippment the next day. Adding to my sentiment that I will be a returning customer.

Will be back in a coupple of more months to see how they hold up ower time.
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Re: Review: SPES Training Sabre

Postby admin » 25 Mar 2013 12:21

Thanks for that, most useful.
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Re: Review: SPES Training Sabre

Postby KeithFarrell » 25 Mar 2013 15:18

I second this review. A couple of us up in Glasgow used the Spes sabres for a while until we managed to acquire steel sabres. They are certainly not the best training tool in the world, but for the price, they are an excellent introductory weapon and it is easy (and cheap!) to outfit even a sizeable class with these.

Also, they are fun!
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Postby Ulrich von L...n » 28 Mar 2013 10:25

Do we know what kind of material is used as a core for these sabres? Bent PVC pipes?

I have noticed in this picture (http://histfenc.com/design/_gallery/_orginal/114.jpg) that the seam of the covering material is right along the "cutting" edge of the blade. It doesn't seem a very logical solution, isn't?

Do you think that it might be possible to replace the original padding in a DIY way after some usage, wear-and-tear?
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Re: Review: SPES Training Sabre

Postby Thearos » 28 Mar 2013 11:35

I'm interested in the answer, having damaged mine (the "point" tore when stored against something sharp).
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Postby Ulrich von L...n » 28 Mar 2013 17:06

Thearos,
If you post some pictures of the damaged part, I could suggest some possible solutions.
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Re: Review: SPES Training Sabre

Postby Thearos » 28 Mar 2013 21:53

Thanks, I will !
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Re:

Postby Magnus Hagelberg » 29 Mar 2013 16:35

Ulrich von L...n wrote:Do we know what kind of material is used as a core for these sabres? Bent PVC pipes?

I have noticed in this picture (http://histfenc.com/design/_gallery/_orginal/114.jpg) that the seam of the covering material is right along the "cutting" edge of the blade. It doesn't seem a very logical solution, isn't?

Do you think that it might be possible to replace the original padding in a DIY way after some usage, wear-and-tear?


For us, the price makes it less of a hassle to just order new ones.

I suppose you could use tubular insulation that have for heat pipes if it came to changing the foam.
someone suggested using nylon weave for replacing the torn fabric of a blade. I've just put some duct tabe on when this becomes a probblem- it's not a pretty solution. But it works. Silver duct tape can also be used to mark out the sharp edges - just to make the students aware of what the dangerous areas are.
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Re:

Postby Tyler Brandon » 12 May 2013 21:06

Ulrich von L...n wrote:Do we know what kind of material is used as a core for these sabres? Bent PVC pipes?

I have noticed in this picture (http://histfenc.com/design/_gallery/_orginal/114.jpg) that the seam of the covering material is right along the "cutting" edge of the blade. It doesn't seem a very logical solution, isn't?

Do you think that it might be possible to replace the original padding in a DIY way after some usage, wear-and-tear?


Check out Richard Marsden's youtube review here ...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FLmAVfrunzU

He points out how he made repairs/alterations with them.
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Postby Ulrich von L...n » 13 May 2013 12:35

Thank you for the above link.

Richard's repairs are very basic, I have expected something more substantial like removing the damaged nylon covering and foam protection layer, and replacing it with some locally available materials. Anyway it has been interesting to see the freeplay with SPES sabres.

I am absolutely sure it would be great fun to freeplay with the members of Richard's group. Damn distance between Arizona and Hungary :(
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Re:

Postby Tyler Brandon » 13 May 2013 22:02

Ulrich von L...n wrote:Thank you for the above link.

Richard's repairs are very basic, I have expected something more substantial like removing the damaged nylon covering and foam protection layer, and replacing it with some locally available materials. Anyway it has been interesting to see the freeplay with SPES sabres.

I am absolutely sure it would be great fun to freeplay with the members of Richard's group. Damn distance between Arizona and Hungary :(



The electrical tape seems to work really great. You just have to love simple solutions. It might be worth it to just tape the blade up from the get go.

I want to get out there too, but I do have a slight advantage in distance. :wink:
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Postby Ulrich von L...n » 14 May 2013 08:26

I do appreciate simple solutions, but in this case electric tape probably isn't the best solution. It changes the geometry of the blade, after a while the blade will have a lot of bumps. Another way was suggested by Magnus: to use wide (50 mm), reinforced, water resistant duct tape which is used for packaging things.
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Re: Review: SPES Training Sabre

Postby Tyler Brandon » 15 May 2013 01:02

Ulrich von L...n wrote:I do appreciate simple solutions, but in this case electric tape probably isn't the best solution. It changes the geometry of the blade, after a while the blade will have a lot of bumps. Another way was suggested by Magnus: to use wide (50 mm), reinforced, water resistant duct tape which is used for packaging things.


That sounds good as well. Of course they are inexpensive enough to experiment with finding better remedies or a preventative.
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Postby Ulrich von L...n » 15 May 2013 16:12

In his Youtube review Richard mentioned that blades were "chewed up" against helmets and gorgets. Did he mean steel (reenactor) helmets or fencing helmets?

The long-term solution could be to remove completely the damaged cover, and replace it with tubular insulation (foam pipes), used for the thermal insulation of pipes of the heating system, as suggested by Magnus, and cover it with sturdy adhesive tape. This setup works quite reliably against fencing helmets.
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Re:

Postby Tyler Brandon » 15 May 2013 21:54

Ulrich von L...n wrote:In his Youtube review Richard mentioned that blades were "chewed up" against helmets and gorgets. Did he mean steel (reenactor) helmets or fencing helmets?

The long-term solution could be to remove completely the damaged cover, and replace it with tubular insulation (foam pipes), used for the thermal insulation of pipes of the heating system, as suggested by Magnus, and cover it with sturdy adhesive tape. This setup works quite reliably against fencing helmets.



Mostly they just use standard fencing masks with add on BOHP or HEMA masks. I know Richard and a few of his most senior members were steel gorgets. Richard has a steel helmet but it is too big I believe and has no padding.
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