So, it finally happened. You were at a competition and you broke your first blade during a bout. This wasn’t an issue, of course, because you had your spare saber with you. Now, you’re faced with the task of replacing your broken blade. Unless you don’t plan to be a competitive fencer for a long time, you need to know how to replace a broken blade.
Step 1: Remove the pommel. Insert a t-handle wrench of the appropriate size into the bottom of the pommel and unscrew it. If you don’t have one, most clubs have a few to spare that you can barrow. Alternatively, you can use an adjustable wrench.
Step 2: Remove the broken blade. The blade comes out of the top of the bell guard, allowing you to remove the body cord plugin port, the bell pad, and the handle. Put these aside for now. If the handle doesn’t come off, the lower portion of the blade may be canted improperly or the handle may be bent.
Step 3: Insert the new blade. Any preferred canting to the lower part of the blade should be done before you insert the blade. Don’t put the blade through the hole in the lower part of the bell guard yet.
Step 4: Insert the body cord plugin port, the bell pad, and the handle (in that order) on to the bottom portion of the blade that sits inside the bell guard. Make sure all of the components are turned in the proper direction. Do not put the pommel on yet.
Step 5: You may need two people to do the following step: Take the remainder of the lower part of the blade which is still protruding from the handle and push it through the opening at the bottom of the bell guard. Put the pommel on and the screw it back on with a t-handle wrench or an adjustable wrench. You may need to do the last bit by hand since the bottom portion of the blade sticks through the pommel, preventing the insertion of the t handle wrench.
You MUST be applying pressure to the handle and the blade while doing this. Make sure you are applying pressure to both the handle and the blade so that they are both being pressed towards each other into the upper part of the bell guard. This is to ensure that the body cord plugin and the bell pad are tightly fitted and won’t come loose. If there’s any space between the handle and the bell guard, the components in between will be loose and able to move around. The amount of space between the handle and the bell guard needs to be as small as possible to prevent anything from moving or coming loose.
Step 6: Once the new blade is in and the components are all tightly fitted, cant the upper portion of the blade the way you want it – if necessary – and then you should be good to go.
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