Visibility and light reflections in black vs colored mask

Discussion in 'Fencing Discussion' started by AndI, Oct 19, 2018.

  1. AndI

    AndI Rookie

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    It is my understanding that standard color of fencing mask mesh is black because black paint on the mesh does not reflect light. Therefore, reflections of light from bright light sources on the side on above the head are suppressed.

    Some manufacturers (Leon Paul is an example) also offer masks painted in solid white, red, blue colors, possibly in other colors as well. These masks have the advantage that these colors are relatively rare; if most people in a club use black, mask with colored mesh is much harder to mix up with someone's else mask.

    I am sure there are people who fenced in both, black and white or solid colored. Did you notice any difference? Do colored or white masks reflect more light from the side? Do you find that you can see better in a mask with black mesh, as opposed to white or red painted mesh?

    Sorry if this question has been addressed before. I used the search function, but could not find an explicit answer to this question, especially to the light reflection aspect of it.
     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2018
  2. keropie

    keropie Podium

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    I've never used a non-black foil/epee mask, but I have worn saber masks, and I don't notice any difference. For whatever that's worth.
     
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  3. Downtown

    Downtown DE Bracket

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    Only slightly related. I have heard( Rightly or wrongly.) that white mask make a persons face less visible and that is why they were chosen for the Bond movie,"Die Another Day".
     
  4. Inquartata

    Inquartata Podium

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    In my experience the "standard color of fencing mask mesh" is stainless-steel silver... :p
     
  5. jkormann

    jkormann Podium

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    You need to get out more.
     
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  6. Inquartata

    Inquartata Podium

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    Tell my jailers.
     
  7. SJCFU#2

    SJCFU#2 Podium

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    No - don't tell them. They're already letting you out too much as it is. :p
     
  8. EldRick

    EldRick Podium

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    I sprayed my LP mask with flat-black Krylon on the outside, and it gave better visual contrast, because overhead lighting was reflecting off the shiny painted top of each horizontal wire.
     
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2018
  9. iktovian

    iktovian Made the Cut

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    white masks are harder for me to see through.
     
  10. SevenDad

    SevenDad DE Bracket

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    IIRC, white painted LP masks are painted black on the inside, to minimize glare.
     
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  11. AndI

    AndI Rookie

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    I'd like to thank everyone for commenting.

    We got a white X-change contour foil mask with air padding. The mesh is indeed painted white on the outside, but painted black on the inside. I cannot imagine how they did it so accurately. There is not a trace of black on the outside and not a trace of white on the inside. You would never guess, from looking at the mask from the front, that it is black on the inside. The black paint covers only the mesh on the inside in front of the face, by the way. The part of the mask which goes like a cylinder around the head and ears and under the chin is white on both inside and outside.

    So far, no degradation in visibility was noted, compared to all black mask, if not an improvement in visibility , compared to the Absolute Fencing non-FIE one (which was around $65 - $75) [it appears that the mesh is slightly different, LP mesh has a slightly larger distance between wires; this is the likely cause for improvement in visibility]. No extra reflections were observed so far.

    A much higher level of comfort (after a little bit of tweaking because everything is adjustable) and a huge improvement in the air flow and efficiency of mask ventilation were noted. Also, it is much better balanced on the head when lifted.
     
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2018

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