New mask (epee)

Discussion in 'Fencing Discussion' started by ifencegud, Feb 9, 2019.

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FIE Mask or nah?

  1. FIE

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  2. Non-FIE

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  1. ifencegud

    ifencegud Rookie

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    Hey all,

    I'd like to upgrade my basic 350N Absolute mask to something more awesome, probably FIE (realized my face will only be so pretty if it doesn't get impaled). Important: $ (as low as can go, but I don't want a plastic bag), comfort, durability.

    Currently considering
    PBT FIE (on their Hungarian website it says 118€, if I ordered from there would it be that price? ~$180 everywhere else)
    Allstar/Uhlmann FIE (on sale around $180-200)
    FWF FIE (around $170 on Fencing Post)
    BG FIE ($130)
    AF FIE ($150)
    Leon Paul (not quite sure about this one. On one hand, the people sing...but for contour fit and x-change, which are both out my price range.)

    I will be going to JO's soon, so I might have a chance to try these on. Any recommendations, reviews etc are appreciated!!
    Might get a new glove or shoes also, so for all those not in the cool kids' (epee) squad, feel free to sit at our table :) but seriously, any advice helps!
    -i
     
  2. dcchew

    dcchew Podium

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    A lot depends on various factors. Which weapon do you fence? What shape is your head?

    Always buy a mask that fits your head shape. Once you find a mask brand that basically fit, don’t be surprised that you’ll need to get it tweaked to get the fit just right.

    If you fence foil for example, it’s wise to get a mask with a replaceable lame bib. In my opinion, the Leon Paul X-Change mask design is one of the best foil mask available. Other brand bib lames are either sewn in or use Velcro to secure the lame material in place.

    The last mask feature I recommend is a mask with a removable padding. A mask padding can get really funky after you use it a lot. The ability to wash it is nice.
     
  3. ifencegud

    ifencegud Rookie

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    I fence epee, and my forehead is the widest point on my face.
    Any quality/longevity differences between brands? Thanks so far.
     
  4. dcchew

    dcchew Podium

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    If you’re willing to spend your money for a FIE quality mask, you’ll get a quality mask regardless of brand. Spend a little extra for a removable inside padding and make sure that it fits properly. Don’t skim.
     
  5. jjefferies

    jjefferies Podium

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    And make sure you are getting a mask that's got the updated FIE strap system. Which BTW, looks like a good idea as we should be able to more readily change/replace the elastic strap. First real change I've seen which I count as benefiting the fencer.
     
  6. SevenDad

    SevenDad DE Bracket

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    My daughter wanted to get a fresh mask for her debut NCAA season. She had been using an LP X-Change FIE that she'd had for years. She tried on pretty much every single other brand, and got a new X-Change with the new "Air" padding. More traditional masks felt too claustrophobic and over-padded (so she was concerned about overheating) compared to the X-Change she'd been using. They are more expensive, but if you get the traditional "spring case" back version, the difference from the top end of your budget outlined in your OP isn't too bad.

    Definitely use JOs as your chance to try stuff on. But don't use a brand new mask for that competition...better to get used to your new one first.
     
  7. ktinoue3

    ktinoue3 Podium

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    I personally like how the Leon Paul masks fits. For saber and foil they are great as you can get a new bib when it inevitably dies. I also like the ICE padding as it isn't as confining in my opinion. But like others have said find a mask that fits you well.
     
  8. bobb121

    bobb121 Podium

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    I have a bucket shaped head. Gary can vouch for me on that.
    I really recommend at JO's try on every mask and see what you like the most. For me, LP was nice but not comfortable. Negrini was the most comfortable for me. Uhlmann/Allstar/FWF did not feel all that great.
     
  9. Gav

    Gav is a Verified Fencing ExpertGav Moderator!!

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    Buy the best quality mask you can afford - FIE masks are fairly standard, if you're worried about fit then wait until you handle one face-to-face at an event. If you can't afford the X-change system then they are much of a muchness.
     
  10. Gav

    Gav is a Verified Fencing ExpertGav Moderator!!

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    Buy the best quality mask you can afford - FIE masks are fairly standard, if you're worried about fit then wait until you handle one face-to-face at an event. If you can't afford the X-change system then they are much of a muchness.
     

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