Life keeps chugging along. I've been doing quite a bit more training recently, which is good for me in a number of ways. Lauren, our head instructor, told us we needed to make some padded training weapons.
Carl and I picked up PVC pipe, two sizes of PVC insulation, and heavy duct tape from Home Depot. We were standing in front of the checkout counter when I turned to him.
You know...we should find a way to add weights, so these will balance like real swords.
We ended up using 6" lengths of 1/4" steel pipe and epoxy for additional weight and balance. The epoxy and steel made the project much longer, more complicated, and more than tripled the cost, but Carl and I were giggling like middle-schoolers most of the time.
The additional weight and balance shift really gives a more realistic feel to our padded long and short swords. The extra weight also means they can deliver a real smack, while the double insulation means the weight is distributed enough to not injure. And Carl and I had a ridiculously good time.