Review of the Norrlands Waster

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Review of the Norrlands Waster

Postby Roger N » Tue Feb 08, 2011 11:38 pm

The review can be found here. http://www.hroarr.com/articles/reviews-sparring-swords-synthetic-norrlandswaster.php

Feel free to comment on the product or the review.
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Re: Review of the Norrlands Waster

Postby Bobo Krustev » Wed Mar 02, 2011 1:01 am

There is one thing that bugs me, so to speak, in this review. It is the author constant nodding to how good and 'professional' the sword looks. Why would that be so important for a waster, especially a synthetic one? A good steel sword will always be most professional, and I do not see any demonstration without steel. And why else would you need to 'look' professional and stylish? To impress your students? They must be way beyond that and realize that training instruments are no supposed to look good, but to be good for training - to perform and act well in both exercise and sparring.

Well, I must admit that I am generally an enemy of synthetic wasters, except when it comes to polearms (it is just that with a spear you cannot actually do the technique under a certain speed threshold, so you need a synthetic tip. But this is different than the whole body being made from plastic)
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Re: Review of the Norrlands Waster

Postby Roger N » Wed Mar 02, 2011 9:33 am

Thanks Bobo for these comments and a warm welcome to the board!

And since it is I who wrote it I will respond, but I would love to hear comments from others as well!

Yes, I do write a bit about the looks and how professional they look, although I certainly write more about the construction and handling, if you look closer. In fact, I only mention that it looks good and professional twice, and one of them reads "... despite looking and feeling wonderful, it quickly looses its dye when you start sweating on it."

During the last few years we have seen quite a few different synthetic longswords and even today some look like crap and are quite distant from a real sword. This might not matter much in classes, but I am convinced that it does so when the public eye takes a look at us in tournament clips on YouTube etc. If we want to be taken seriously by other martial artists and the general public, we need to behave professionally and look equally professional. And looking professional might just reinforce your own self-regard as a serious martial artist a bit.

In that perspective the build quality and the design actually are important. However, as I hope is clear from the review, that is not what made me give these wasters such praise; it is the handling that is the best of those commercially available that I have tried thus far. And the build is excellent as opposed to several others I have seen and tried. Still, there is room for improvement in several areas. They are not perfect, but it is the best Synthetic right now.

With that said, I will be trying out the new prototype of the Knightshop waster next. The blade just needs to harden for a few weeks more before it is ready.

After that I will turn to steel "federschwert" and then regular steel blunts.
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Re: Review of the Norrlands Waster

Postby Roger N » Wed Mar 02, 2011 10:05 am

Oh, and keep in mind that the review series focuses on tools for sparring and competitions, not technique training or demonstrations. Currently there are three options, synthetics, feders and blunts. The absolute majority use the two former in competitions and much of the sparring, so I believe there is good reason to discuss both the handling, the build and the design of these swords.
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Re: Review of the Norrlands Waster

Postby Bobo Krustev » Wed Mar 02, 2011 1:12 pm

Sorry, Roger, you are right - the notions about the outlook of the sword are not that many, but they somehow caught my eye. I think to look most professional videos on youtube should also be done with steel swords.

I'll wait for your federschwert reviews, good work so far.
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Re: Review of the Norrlands Waster

Postby Roger N » Wed Mar 02, 2011 1:37 pm

No problem! :D

Synthetic longswords cause a lot of emotion, but like it or not, they are here to stay and are the equivalent of shinai. Neither a synthetic or a shinai are perfect sword simulators, but they are safer in some respects and I would claim that the synthetics are more like real swords than a shinai. In fact they are pretty close to a feder in handling, if they are done right. So with this in mind, it is important that we don't look like larpers with home-made boffer swords...

There are of course vital differences between nylon and steel, but the advantages outweigh the disadvantages and training with both a synthetic and steel is a good thing, I think.
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