Newbie's guide to kit buying

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Dave B
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Re: Newbie's guide to kit buying

Postby Dave B » Fri Feb 01, 2013 10:05 pm

Or don't buy a weapon at all. There will be someone in your group who has more money than sense, buys lots of weapons and will lend you one. The same is not necessarily true of shoes. Or Brais.


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Re: Newbie's guide to kit buying

Postby Fox » Fri Feb 01, 2013 11:40 pm

On the other hand, it's worth remembering that no-one ever has to practice to wear shoes or braise.
[Ok, we all know someone; but you know what I mean].

So even if you're borrowing, it's worth getting to grips with a weapon sooner rather than later.



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Re: Newbie's guide to kit buying

Postby acecat999 » Sat Feb 02, 2013 12:03 am

Fox wrote:On the other hand, it's worth remembering that no-one ever has to practice to wear shoes or braise.
[Ok, we all know someone; but you know what I mean].

So even if you're borrowing, it's worth getting to grips with a weapon sooner rather than later.



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Re: Newbie's guide to kit buying

Postby Ayliffe's Steve » Thu Apr 11, 2013 4:43 pm

Fox wrote:On the other hand, it's worth remembering that no-one ever has to practice to wear shoes or braise.
[Ok, we all know someone; but you know what I mean].

So even if you're borrowing, it's worth getting to grips with a weapon sooner rather than later.


I bought a sword first - before anything else. I would normally recommend it to other too. Partially because it takes practice to fight well and having your own weapon helps immensly with that but also because it is fun, that is what got me hooked and kept me hooked.


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Re: Newbie's guide to kit buying

Postby Mark Griffin » Mon Apr 15, 2013 9:12 am

Its a weird but valid point. Unless you are re-enacting late 20th cent Filipino Dictators wives then no-one is going to get hooked on shoes as you say....


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Re: Newbie's guide to kit buying

Postby Alan E » Mon Apr 15, 2013 12:49 pm

Fox wrote:On the other hand, it's worth remembering that no-one ever has to practice to wear shoes ....

Not sure that one's true? Three separate shoe makers have each told me to beware of wearing the shoes bought from them as if they were modern, heeled shoes. We are accustomed to putting weight heavily on a padded, reinforced heel, which wears out the 'wrong' part of heel-less shoes such as turnshoes and (combined with our reliance on the grip which modern soles give us) can cause many a slip.


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Re: Newbie's guide to kit buying

Postby Brian la Zouche » Sun Apr 21, 2013 10:53 am

I still agree with 'dont rush off and buy anything', and I would say chosing a group is as important as chosing kit, if the group you join has poor standards of kit, then it goes without saying they will also suggest to you kit which is also of a 'low standard',
I've been lucky with medieval groups in that they have had good kit, and as such reccomend the same, BUT there are also groups out there who wear jogging bottoms as hose,

I agree with Alan, its as much how we walk in the shoes, unless all medieval battles looked like benny hill sketches



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Re: Newbie's guide to kit buying

Postby Ayliffe's Steve » Wed Apr 24, 2013 2:27 pm

It might well be the case that medieval shoes require a slightly different walking technique but I am yet to see a regular shoe wearing practice attract new members like a regular fight practice does.

However, people who are not walking correctly in period shoes will have sore feet and wear shoes out quickly. People who are not fighting safely can take someone's eye out.

I understand and agree that proper kit is worth buying and learning to use correctly but in my experience this is not the hook that draws most people. I still advise fighters that a favorite weapon is a good first purchase (or at least an early one) as it is fun to use and will keep them hooked and from there they can proceed to other aspects of the hobby.


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Re: Newbie's guide to kit buying

Postby Biro » Wed Apr 24, 2013 4:01 pm

I'd say it depends a lot on when you start....

We have new members starting now and we're telling them to get shoes/hose/braes... the rest can be loaned by the group.

We had new members starting right at the end of the display season - all they will be doing is training for the next 7-8 months - so we say to look at sword/helmet/gambeson/gloves.. - but beware when the displays start, you'll still need the above, so watch your cash...



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Re: Newbie's guide to kit buying

Postby Dan of Britannia » Mon Jun 24, 2013 9:16 am

I always tell people to start with the footwear and work upwards.

(Outside regular Roman army issue kit or gladiatorial re-enactment) If people were rich enough/clever enough/lucky enough to have a sword after 410AD and up to the late medieval era - then they were certainly rich enough/clever enough/lucky enough to have footwear.

Back in the 80's I saw plenty of re-enactors in the most awful footwear (some even barefoot) but carrying swords - and often just tucked in belts or through metal hoops... no scabbard either.
(If you had a sword, you'd certainly have a scabbard). :roll:


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Re: Newbie's guide to kit buying

Postby Fox » Mon Jun 24, 2013 9:52 am

For later-14th/15thC battle re-enactment, I'd argue against people getting a sword at all [until they have almost everything else they need].

By that stage, although swords have become relatively widely available to ordinary soldiers, no one, rich or poor, is using an [ordinary] sword as their primary weapon.

They are fun to learn to use, but they are not a first choice weapon for the battlefield.



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Re: Newbie's guide to kit buying

Postby Ayliffe's Steve » Mon Jun 24, 2013 2:53 pm

Fox wrote:For later-14th/15thC battle re-enactment, I'd argue against people getting a sword at all [until they have almost everything else they need].

By that stage, although swords have become relatively widely available to ordinary soldiers, no one, rich or poor, is using an [ordinary] sword as their primary weapon.

They are fun to learn to use, but they are not a first choice weapon for the battlefield.


Funnily ebough this is why I argue for them getting a sword if they can. Polearms are boring to train with and, IMHO, boring to fight with at shows but that might just be me :-) I consider fun to be the top priority especially for beginners.


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Re: Newbie's guide to kit buying

Postby Fox » Mon Jun 24, 2013 3:19 pm

I disagree with you, Steve, about everything, except that it should be fun; of course it should be fun.
However, I don't think it helps to go into that here. Let's agree to disagree.



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Re: Newbie's guide to kit buying

Postby Ayliffe's Steve » Tue Jun 25, 2013 12:22 pm

Fox wrote:I disagree with you, Steve, about everything, except that it should be fun; of course it should be fun.
However, I don't think it helps to go into that here. Let's agree to disagree.


But ... if I agree to disagree and you disagree with me about everything (apart from the 'it being fun' bit) ... then you will not agree to disagree ... which I disagree with ... so you agree ... so I agree ... so you disagree ... :wtf:

We're going to need a bigger stack ....

:wink:


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Re: Newbie's guide to kit buying

Postby Fox » Tue Jun 25, 2013 1:16 pm

Re-examine the scope of each statement; you have a fault in the compiler.



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Re: Newbie's guide to kit buying

Postby LaydeIsabella » Wed Jul 17, 2013 3:09 pm

Take someone with you from you're group! Check you're buying the right material (if you're brave enough to have a go at meking your own kit), shirt/shift, hose and braise or over - kirkle. Next, shoes, if you intend to take the field, BUY A HELMET!
I still own and use the first piece of kit I ever bought, a heavy wool cloak from Saly (via Duke Henry), it doubles as a blanket. :)


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Re: Newbie's guide to kit buying

Postby The Iron Dwarf » Wed Jul 17, 2013 4:08 pm

Mark Griffin wrote:7. i. Traders who say 'its right for any period' are usually wrong. So treat the object in question and all their other wares with some suspicion.

a lot of my stuff is not right, but it is often the compromise to keep to the venues rules, EG fires off the ground.
I try to make a point of not saying it is suitable for XX c or whatever and would rather let the buyer decide or get advice from their group, a lot of them know my stuff and can say if it is up to their standards or not.
im no expert and dont pretend to be unlike some.

ask and get your groups advice before spending



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Re: Newbie's guide to kit buying

Postby ladydetemps » Mon Jan 06, 2014 4:16 pm

AndyandHelen wrote:If you do happen to buy something that in the end proves to be unsuitable don't offload it onto a member of your group instead don't get disheartened and upset be positive and get yourself an eBay account and sell it that way. After all a slightly inaccurate item unsuitable for the living history society you have joined will still get a second life on the fantasy/laarper scene or fancy dress brigade.

I like to think of myself as a historical cosplay-er...rather than fancy dress brigade. ;)



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Re: Newbie's guide to kit buying

Postby Grimblade » Thu Jun 19, 2014 3:22 pm

As a newcomer to the reenactment scene, I have to say there is some solid advice here (between the arguments) :D



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Re: Newbie's guide to kit buying

Postby FelDieha » Mon Dec 21, 2015 7:28 pm

Hello. As a newbie for this thread, what does Kit buying guide implies in the current structure of shoes ( i.e boots, spurs, stockings, etc.)? Could anyone tell me about the whole thing? It will be appreciated!


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Re: Newbie's guide to kit buying

Postby Colin Middleton » Wed Dec 23, 2015 2:19 pm

What period?


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Re: Newbie's guide to kit buying

Postby de Coverley » Mon Dec 28, 2015 8:06 pm

Will you be part of a uniform group (soldiers etc) If so uniformity across the group may be more important than accurately following research of the unit's uniform regulations.



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Re: Newbie's guide to kit buying

Postby Colin Middleton » Mon Dec 28, 2015 8:26 pm

Not necessarily. Prior the the Civil war, there wasn't official uniform. That's why the period being reenacted is so important.


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Re: Newbie's guide to kit buying

Postby Mark Griffin » Mon Dec 28, 2015 10:51 pm

Unless you are in some kind of military order of course..... No good joining a Templar unit as a lowly soldier and turning up as Baldwin of Flanders but without shoes.


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