350N v 1600N

Discussion in 'Armory - Q&A' started by capa, Aug 6, 2004.

  1. capa

    capa Rookie

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    Hi,

    I have had a cornea trasnplant in my eye and so am very interested about what masks will give the utmost protection. I have found fencing to be very safe however I would still like peace of mind while bouting. :)

    What is the difference between 350N and 1600N? Also, which is better, masks by Leon Paul or Uhlmann? are they the same or is there a difference considering I can obtain Uhlmann masks for $40 cheaper? Which company is more reputable among fencers?

    Thankyou. I would appreciate any comments as I am still very new to the technicalities of fencing equipment.
     
  2. Inquartata

    Inquartata Podium

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    1250 Newtons...:)

    Just kidding. The 1600N mask is more resistant to puncture, at least theoretically. So the mesh is stronger.

    They are equivalent in terms of safety and durability, and both companies are fine to deal with. I haven't worn an LP, but I understand that they have fit and design features which some people prefer to those of Allstar/Uhlmann. I have always used Allstar ( same company as Uhlmann ) and like them fine. Absent specific preference you might as well decide by price...



    But----is it impact resistance, ie cushioning, you're looking for, given your eye situation? The LP may be somewhat better in that regard, though again that's only what I hear...
     
  3. Gav

    Gav is a Verified Fencing ExpertGav Moderator!!

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    Neither is more reputable really.

    I use the new LP comfort fit (1600N) mask. The comfort fit system makes a big difference in my opinion. Less weight. More comfortable. But it is really down to personal preference. If you have the opportunity ask around at your club and try on various peoples masks (before they fence) and see which you like best.
     
  4. Artisan

    Artisan Rookie

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    Consider this:

    350 newton = 35.7 kilogram-force = 78.7 pound-force
    1600 newton = 163.1 kilogram-force = 359.7 pound-force

    And the mask test punch fails a mask @ 12 Kg, but that is a measurement of the mesh's ability to stay in place and not deform laterally as to make the openings wider.

    A 1600 N mask will have a superior bib, which is of more concern to me than the mesh (for some reason, I dunno why)

    Also I think the FIE masks use Stainless steel mesh which will hold up better in the long run.
     
  5. neevel

    neevel Armorer

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    The "1600 N" designation refers to an FIE Homolgated mask (also CE Level 2, which means the same thing). 350 N is the CE Level 1 standard for fencing equipment. The FIE Homologation requires a 1600 Newton-resistant bib (as rated by the dynometer spec'd in the FIE rules). There are also requirements that the mesh be of stainless steel and meet certain manufacturing standards which aren't enforced for non-FIE masks.

    Executive summary: FIE masks will afford a generally superior level of protection both from the mesh and the bib. The Leon Paul contour fit system is very nice (I have one), and the LP FIE mask with it is very comfortable and well-made. If you're comparing a mask bought direct from LP and an Uhlmann mask though a vendor, the extra middleman will account for the price difference.

    -Dave
     
  6. MyraTrue

    MyraTrue Rookie

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    My personal opinion is that you should go with the 1600N (FIE) mask. This is your head, and consequently, your life. Its worth protecting.

    I am somewhat biased, I admit. Early on in my epee career, I got hit in the mask all the time. I'd sit on the floor once a week with a ballpene (sp?) hammer, pounding out the dents. I later bought a new 350N mask, and the first time I ever fenced with it, in the first bout, and the first point, a foil hit my lamee, snapped, and rammed into my mask. It sheered off the top half of the mesh where it hit, and didn't pass the punch test after that. Imaginging if it hadn't held... I decided I didn't want to buy any more 350N masks, because not only was the 1600N mask safer, I wasn't too keen on having to replace a mask again because it didn't pass a punch test.

    Uhlmann or Leon Paul? Both have good reputations. I prefer Uhlmann to Leon Paul in most equipment (I like LP's knickers) but I have something of a bias, having used poorly maintained LP equipment, and well maintained Uhlmann equipment. I SUSPECT that the masks will fit differently, and it will be a matter of preference. Try to try them on, if at all possible.

    But you really can't go wrong with either one. Good luck,.

    (and geez was that a long post!)
     
  7. Barry Paul

    Barry Paul DE Bracket

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    There is a bit of confusion regarding so called 350 Newton and 1600 Newton masks. The european standards which the F.I.E, now follow for F.I.E. equipment has two levels of performance 1 and 2. The performance level 1 must have a bib which withstands high velocity probe at greater than 350 Newtons and a hard shell (Mesh or plactic) which withstands 600 Newton at low velocity and 5.5J impact test all these measured under set conditions Level 2 (F.I.E.level) the figures are 1600 Newtons 1000 Newtons and 8.5 J. I hope this is now clear. Barry Paul
     
  8. capa

    capa Rookie

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    Thanks everyone for your reply. I have purchased the Uhlmann 1600N mask. I'm still waiting for the product to be delivered so am hoping I made the right choice.

    Your posts were very helpful. Thankyou :D
     
  9. MyraTrue

    MyraTrue Rookie

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    Capa- if its any consolation (well, you don't need consolation, but...), I've got the Uhlmann 1600N mask. I like it, hope you like yours! (And did you decide to go with the washable removable pading? Also nice.)
     
  10. Artisan

    Artisan Rookie

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    Its a good choice. My previous mask was a Triplette FIE 1600 N (although there's some debate as to its certification) and I now have the Uhlmann 1600. The mesh of the Triplette dented WAY more easily than the Uhlmann, which has not been dented yet, despite a couple good chin-knockers I've taken wearing it.
     

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