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Combat Archery Rules
Revised / Reviewed February 12, 2012
It is the responsibility of every combat archer to be aware of not only their own kingdom rules but the society rules also.
Many people forget that Combat Archery operates under two sets of rules. The base or foundation of the rules for combat archery is the most current set of Society Rules.
The 11/2/2008 revision can be found at the Society Marshal’s page under armored combat. The quick site location is http://www.sca.org/officers/marshal/docs/marshal_handbook.pdf
Remember, the Society Rules can be made more stringent by a kingdom, but they may not be made less stringent.
Middle Kingdom Combat Archery Rules
This is the latest Version (ver. 11) of the Middle Kingdom Armored Combat Fighter and Marshal Handbook (1.2 mb) , dated May 2009 and released July 8, 2009. The majority of the combat archery rules are found in Appendix A but there are additional combat archery rules scattered through the entire handbook. It is your responsibility to find and read all rules that apply to combat archery.
Appendix A: Combat Archery Rules
MIDDLE KINGDOM ADDITIONS TO SOCIETY MISSILE COMBAT RULES
Combatants are considered engaged with a combat archer at all times while in range of the archery whether facing towards or away from the archer.
B. TARGET AREA
The valid target areas for missile weapons are the same valid target areas that thrusting tips have. Arrows and crossbow bolts can be blocked by shields and armored combat weapons.
C. MISSILE WEAPONS CONSTRUCTION
Combat archery arrows and bolts must be made out of 100 PSI irrigation tubing such as Siloflex. The heads can be made with rubber stoppers or Baldar Blunts according to approved construction techniques. The heads must be covered with red tape. Fletching is optional, but if used it must also be constructed according to approved techniques. Combat archers are encouraged to visit the following web site for rule and convention updates: http://www.havenholde.net/35footspear/
D. OUT OF KINGDOM EVENTS
When combatants who are authorized in combat archery in the Middle Kingdom are attending events in other kingdoms they may use missiles made from material other than Siloflex according to the rules in that kingdom.
E. SWITCHING WEAPONS
Prior to picking up another weapon or shield, a bow must be laid aside. A crossbow must be placed outside the combat area or in the keeping of a marshal.
F. LIST FIELD SET UP AND SAFETY MARGIN
The Marshal in Charge shall establish a buffer zone around each field based on the field layout, scenario, equipment being used, and geography of the field area. Prior to the start of combat including combat archery, the marshals shall remind combat participants and spectators about the use of such missile weapons. Combatants leaving the field shall not remove their helms or other armor until they are outside of the buffer zone. Despite this buffer zone, archers are responsible for their missiles and must avoid shooting towards unarmored people such as marshals and spectators.
During a Hold, an archer must un-nock a nocked missile and go to one knee. They may not knock again until the lay on.
H. THROWING WEAPONS (JAVELINS, THROWING AXES, ETC.)
Thrown weapons may be used with a half-gauntlet for hand protection by a combat archer. However, to use a backup weapon such as a sword, the bow/crossbow must be laid aside and the hands must be fully armored. Engagement is the same as for combat archery. Valid target areas are the same as well. The entire head of a javelin and shaft to 12 inches behind the head must be covered with red tape.
I. COMBAT ARCHERY AUTHORIZATION REQUIREMENTS
b) The first round is to test safety, accuracy and appropriate response to return fire. An experienced fighter who is authorized in combat archery will stand 10 to 30 yards away. After the candidate has shot several shots, the fighter will move around and will receive shots fired from the candidate. The candidate should be allowed to discharge up to 24 shots before a pass/fail determination is made, unless it is readily apparent that the candidate is unsafe or inaccurate. If the candidate passes, the second round will be set up.
c) The second round is a full melee combat scenario with four or more combatants per side besides the candidate and the authorizing Marshal. The authorizing Marshal can participate or observe close by. A second Marshal should be observing the round from the edge to watch the run of the test. The candidate shall demonstrate proper engagement of targets, acceptable responses to being pressed and charged, and situational awareness, to include recognition of the limitations imposed by boundaries and spectators on available targets.
To be able to inspect combat archery arrows/bows/crossbows and authorize combatants in combat archery, a combat archery marshal must be authorized in combat archery.
K. COMBAT ARCHERY BOWS / CROSSBOWS
2. All Middle Kingdom Heavy combat archery bows must have a wrap on their upper limb of at least 4 inches of red material (tape, cloth, etc) to show marshals at a glance they are heavy bows and may not shoot fiberglass shafts.
3. All Middle Kingdom Heavy combat archery bows must be a minimum of 35 lbs. to a maximum of 50 lbs. pull at 28 inch draw.
4. All Middle Kingdom Heavy combat archery crossbows must be a minimum of 600 inch pounds and a maximum of 1000 inch pounds.
5. Heavy bows and crossbows MAY NOT shoot fiberglass shaft ammunition. A light crossbow of at least 500 inch pounds may be used to shoot approved tubular ammunition in the Middle Kingdom.
6. There is NO minimum distance at which a combat archer shooting a bow or crossbow may release their ammunition. Arrows or bolts must completely clear the limb or prod before they strike their target to be considered good.
7. The following are not allowed in a combat archery environment in the Middle Kingdom:
b. Stone bows
c. Small pistol style crossbows
L. ALTERNATIVE SILOFLEX EQUIVALENTS
If you decide to make and use combat arrows and bolts using an equivalent you will have to bring the following with you when you have your equipment inspected. A sample of the equivalent material that is marked on the outside of the tubing along with a copy of the manufacturing specifications.
Manufacture Specification Sheet for the product must have:
2. Be manufactured to ASTM D2239 or ASTM D2737 Standards.
3. Be sized as 1" ID (inside diameter) if D2239, or 1-1/4" OD (outside diameter) if D2737
4. Be manufactured from PE3408
5. Must be 100 psi if used for tubular ammo
Marking on the shaft:
ASTM, NSF, and AWWA standards provide that pipe and tubing must be marked at frequent intervals. The labeling must include:
2. The standard to which it conforms
3. Pipe size
4. Material designation code (PE 3406 or PE 3408)
5. Pressure rating
MIDDLE KINGDOM Combat Archery rule additions:
Some clarifications for combat archery. In addition to the standards published in the Society Earl Marshals handbook (November 2008), these rules will be implemented for the Midrealm:
Rule Addition to G., Combat Archery Ammunition (page 17) published in the March 2009 Pale by Count Alaric Lefevre , Earl Marshal for the Middle Kingdom.
This is being added to help secure the rubber stopper within the sil-o-flex.
Additional rule update published in the March 2009 Pale by Count Alaric Lefevre , Earl Marshal for the Middle Kingdom:
To assist in this transition from using Tennis Ball heads there will be an exchange program to lessen the financial impact on those involved. At two events to be announced - North Oaken War Maneuvers and Simple Day - there will be a one for one exchange, an approved rubber stopper for a tennis ball head. The conditions of this exchange are you must present a golf tube shaft or a sil-o-flex (or equivalent) with a tennis ball attached. The tennis ball will be removed and a rubber stopper given in exchange. The tennis ball must be attached to either a golf tube or sil-o-flex shaft.
Other arrangements may be possibly made my contacting the DEM for Combat Archery or Earl Marshal to see what other events we may be at for the exchange.
If you have any questions about combat archery or suggestions, contact Master Erik Erikson.