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Re: [SCA-Archery] Re: Archery Proposal

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  • James Koch
    ... Nigel is partially correct. This business of including a speed portion to any competition is a tradition in SCA shoots, but doesn t really solve the
    Message 1 of 59 , Apr 1, 2006
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      >But... skill is the overriding factor in any contest, regardless of tackle
      >type. Skill, and also factors at which handbows have the advantage over
      >crossbows. While crossbows are more stable platforms, and more powerful
      >bows, they are much, much slower than handbows. So, anyone designing a
      >course allowing both types need only put in a pinpoint accuracy round,
      >which will favour X-bows, and a speed round, which will favour handbows,
      >in order to achieve a balanced result.

      Nigel is partially correct. This business of including a speed portion to
      any competition is a tradition in SCA shoots, but doesn't really solve the
      problem. In the early days, if a guy with a crossbow showed up and shot,
      he probably won the competition. So speed rounds were tacked on to
      competitions without any real consideration given to the balance
      point. In other words, how many seconds of speed round are needed to
      offset the advantage the crossbow has at a target un-timed with 6
      arrows. My guess is by randomly sticking in a 30 second speed round you
      wind up with a competition where one or the other bow type has the
      advantage. In the early days the speed round probably let the hand bow
      shooters win. Then more and more crossbows began appearing on the range
      and makers began designing them for speed. This is why so many crossbows
      have low poundage prods and self resetting nuts or thumb lever
      releases. Crossbow shooters also began learning to shoot fast. A much
      easier solution is to let the crossbows and handbows shoot side by side,
      but simply tabulate the scores separately and provide two prizes, one for
      each category. This makes the contest entirely fair regardless whether or
      not a speed round is included.

      >As an example of the comparison between the two, I need look no further
      >than the Winter Challenge postal shoot which I have administered for a
      >number of years now. As I say above, X-bows tend to cluster high in scores
      >(which is why I provide in-class divisions, so shooters can compare their
      >scores with those using the same type of equipage). But the highest scores
      >of all have consistently been achieved by recurves. Some years ago the
      >record was a startling 256. Then early this year it became a dizzying 293.
      >Now, the same guy who got that has handed in a numbing 306. I never
      >thought I'd see the day when 300 would be surpassed, but it now has (mind
      >you, this is from a guy whose Royal Round average - average, please note,
      >not all-time high - is in the low 150's). He got this 306 by loosing 15
      >and 16 arrows respectively in the two clocked rounds (30 second timed). I
      >seriously doubt that any crossbowman could possibly get that many bolts
      >off in that amount of time. All three of t!
      > hese records were gained using recurves in the high 30's for poundage.
      There is another problem with using SCA shoots to compare the merits of
      various types of equipment which should be discussed. SCA shoots like the
      royal round and Winter challenge are not in any way scientific experiments
      in terms of comparing crossbows, longbows and recurves. The scores are
      only the averages of the top scores submitted. What this means is, we tend
      to give an advantage to people who shoot often. This is fine for the sake
      of ranking shooters, but is doesn't really tell us who is the best shot or
      which piece of equipment is superior and by how much. To obtain that
      information we would have to require each shooter to declare that he or she
      was about to shoot a competition for points, and then have the scoring
      marshal submit that score regardless how good or bad it might be. The
      results would be factored into a seasonal running average. Of course even
      this would not take into account environmental factors like wind. A true
      test would require shooters to compete on the same range at the same time.
      Jim Koch (Gladius The Alchemist)
    • John edgerton
      Actually a more accurate term would be timed ends rather than speed ends. In the RR or IKAC the intent is to get as high a score as possible in the time
      Message 59 of 59 , Apr 3, 2006
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        Actually a more accurate term would be timed ends rather than speed
        ends. In the RR or IKAC the intent is to get as high a score as
        possible in the time given, rather than just getting off as many arrows
        as possible. It is better to shoot four and get twenty points, than to
        shoot nine and get ten points.

        Yes, when shooting into a mass of tightly packed warriors, where most
        any arrow will hit someone, plain speed is important. But, in the
        instance of less tightly packed targets it is a case of accuracy and
        rapid rate of release. When you are trying not to hit a shield or one
        of your own men while attempting to get an arrow or bolt into a visor
        slot, accuracy is important. And then getting off an other shot as
        fast as possible to take out an other opponent, before they kill you or
        one of your friends is reason to shoot rapidly and accurately. Aside
        from sieges, there were countless small scale engagements, aside from
        major battles where a rapid and accurate rate of shooting was
        paramount. In the hunt, when beaters are driving herds of deer toward
        you, killing as many deer as possible for the larder is also important.

        As to period speed ends. Since there is little documentation of just
        how period competitions or training were done, it is difficult to
        positivity state that they were either used or not used. However, I
        do have a copy of a period illustration of a german crossbow
        competition showing an hour glass in the foreground. If it was using
        for timing the shooting or to indicate when to break for lunch, it is
        impossible to say.


        On Monday, April 3, 2006, at 06:39 AM, J. Hughes wrote:

        > John edgerton <sirjon1@...> wrote: I would like to comment
        > regarding the RR and IKAC. The speed ends were
        > not tacked on later. They were there from the beginning. I wanted the
        > competitions to also test the ability to shoot rapidly and accurately
        > as would have been needed in combat or in the hunt. And on the RR,
        > when I made up the rules for it, I gave little thought to crossbows.
        > Jon
        > Is there any evidence of the use of speed rounds in a period archery
        > competition or a schutzenfest? While rate of fire is useful when the
        > archer is in a defensive position receiving a mounted charge or in an
        > archery counter archery role, it is not at all appropriate for the
        > sort of warfare in most found in period: siege warfare, when only in a
        > storming do you have the target rich environment that rewards speed of
        > discharge.
        > Charles O'Connor
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