It seems that this is the project that will not die.
Our last foray into this area included a possible design based on the discussion that come out of earlier posts. This is the post with the design notes
Kes put his comments to use via Facebook. This is what he had to say
The tip could be an issue in weapons passing, it would need to be perhaps a piece of leather that you could replace as it became worn.
Leather end dies last quite a while. So its no big thing to stick another on. Even if you do not intend to hit with Ferrell end its too risky in the heat of battle. I have known swords to be failed because of a small gem in it as its hard same as a Ferrell
The big and legitimate concern being that a Ferule that impacts the group could become be see as too hard. and a big risk in combat.
Drew went a bit further with a longer discussion on the design and also a new design document that he has given me permission to share. The diagram is the main image for this post – and I’ll also post it at the end. This area Drews points.
As I mentioned, it’s an interesting idea and probably a good option for people wanting to give some range for accessibility in a Larp game.
As it stands it would certainly work for smaller games I think where Refs could be convinced of the design but it poses an inherent degree of un-safety. Primarily from the exposed foot. I’d agree that the addition of a handle lower down directs people to hit with the head of the staff but the fact that people’s natural inclination would be to strike in the normal way they use the stick (if surprised etc). Also I don’t like weapons that are ‘safe’ for one user who knows the weapon, as there is always risk that some random will pick it up and use it.
I had some ideas based on a staff I made for an old character who, whilst I might be hale-and-hearty, relied on a stick for walking.
Though I didn’t need it I figured that I would be putting some weight on it so wanted it pretty resilient. It was used in the LT, so was checked reasonably well without issue. That said this is a modification of the design so for it to pass everywhere isn’t 100%.
In principle the only difference between this and a normal LARP weapon is that the foot is a wholly encapsulated affair with a nylon (or similar) internal foot and neoprene/rubber backstop to stop the core projecting into the foam of the foot. Then there is an outer wrap to take off the hard edge of the neoprene disk, then a final outer covering of foam. Depending on load I’d go with 12mm rod or 16mm tube, 16mm rod is pretty heavy so I’d definitely go for tube unless it really needed the strength (hopefully not). Too big a core OD and you’ll be looking at a very chunky weapon.
Perpendicular top handle etc are all pretty much decorative and could be supported with leather wraps similar to an axe does:
http://rpg-elements.com/index.php/tutorials/10-let-s-make-a-post-apocalyptic-lrp-axe-part-1 (bottom of the article)
I should probably caveat that it’s going to make a big difference how much this staff is needing and what it will carry is really going to effect the life of it. 9 stone of Larper is a big difference to 20 and someone putting all their weight on it rather than just relying for some extra stability will again strongly effect the usage level.
I don’t think and staff would live forever but with this design a degree of preventative maintenance every few years replacing the tip of the foot (and if a wrap was positioned low down allowing just the base to be re-skinned) it as a whole weapon would have a long life.
If you wanted to do something properly clever I’d go for various densities of castable foams, maybe something like FlexFoam-iT 25 but as it stands I went for materials everyone would be familiar with.
As you can see the load bearing “foot” end or cap is encapsulated inside a replaceable section. The original discussions seemed to be around different end materials. This one though – of a load bearing area inside a something that is safe and replaceable makes so much more sense.
This will be the design I end up going for.