Experimental Weapons and Materials Procedure
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The Society Marshal's Handbook states the following:
- "Before any unapproved weapon or material can be used at Society activities, a test plan and a sample of the proposed weapon or material must be submitted to and approved by the Society Marshal or a designated deputy."
- In Lochac, for armoured combat, the designated deputy is the Earl Marshal or the Kingdom Armoured Combat Marshal. However, they must also have the approval of the Board of SCA Australia Ltd, and Committee of SCA NZ Inc to conduct the experimental programme.
- Before any unapproved weapon, material or equipment can be used at events, a test plan must have been approved by the Earl Marshal. The plan must include:
- specific details of the construction of the item being tested including relevant assembly instructions; and
- details of all of the participants who will be testing the item; and
- an outline of the testing procedure that will be used and the information that will be gathered; and
- the duration of the test; and
- restrictions that will be imposed on the test; and
- samples of the item being tested.
- If it is impractical to send physical samples of the item, the Earl Marshal may at their discretion accept detailed documentation, which must include photographs, sufficient to understand and judge the nature and proposed application of the weapon, material or equipment to be tested.
- Unless otherwise specified, physical samples sent for evaluation will be returned no later than the conclusion of the test period.
- Items under test may be used at fighter practices, tourneys, and in small melees. A small melee is one where there are few enough combatants to gain their individual consent to use the experimental weapon/material without delaying the combat.
- Before any combat where an experimental item is to be used, all combatants and marshals must be informed of the test and that the item is not approved for general SCA use. All combatants and marshals must consent to the use of the item before combat begins. If any marshal or combatant involved objects, the experimental item may not be used.
- All items under test must be marked with alternating bands of red and green tape totalling 15 cm in length. The markings must be visible during normal use. Participants in the test should bear the appearance of these markings in mind and give consideration to whether their appearance is appropriate to a given event.
- The Earl Marshal must update the Society Marshal on the progress and results of any testing that has occurred in their quarterly report.
- At the end of the test period, the Earl Marshal will provide the Society Marshal with a test summary. This summary must include a list of any injuries resulting from the use of the weapon, material or equipment and any concerns from fighters and marshals raised during the testing.
- The Society Marshal, after consultation with the Earls Marshal, must determine if the weapon, material or equipment is suitable for SCA armoured combat activities.