Redwood Coast Assault of Arms


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Since 2008 The Humboldt State University Fencing Club in partnership with the AHF has hosted the Redwood Coast Assault of Arms in Arcata, California. Arcata is situated in beautiful Northern California, noted for its sequoia redwood groves and beautiful coastline.


This is an open tournament organized and funded entirely by the HSU Fencing Club. The tournament is structured to include a classical foil segment and a historical (rapier/small sword) segment. The Open format allows the participants to face other fencers of varying ability and experience. The scoring mechanics for the tournament do not rank participants by their victories, but by the touches they deliver and receive. This system awards the individuals who use their skills to keep themselves safe before hitting their adversary; the individuals who deliver the most touches while receiving the least are victorious and continue to the finals. The finals are scored the same way.

The Humboldt State University Fencing Club was established in 1955 and has been endeavoring to cultivate an appreciation for fencing for over 60 years. The Redwood Coast Assault of Arms is designed to highlight the diversity of classical fencing and its enthusiasts to the public. In addition, we also treat this tournament as a great learning opportunity, crucial to a fencer’s education; we strive to give the participants as much opportunity to fence as possible.

* *The following is the 2017 Redwood Coast Assault of Arms Description * *

Tournament Format

The tournament will be held in a round robbin format. Each participant fences all others in their bracket. If volume for an event is too low (1-3 fencers) then then that event may be removed. In the event that the event eliminated brings you down to a single weapon you will be reimbursed for the difference. If the registration volume is such that a round robbin format becomes to lenghty then we may opt for a single or double elimination format. The top four fencers in each weapons bracket will move into the fials. All final bouts will be fenced in the single elimination format and prizes will be awarded to the victors. 

Scoring Mechanics

Our tournament ideology is based on the premise that the individual who fences the best should be the victor. We don’t rank our participants by the number of victories. The winner is determined by an overall aggregate of points delivered minus the number of points received, giving each fencer a net score. The fencer with the least touches against him will be the winner. This format rewards the individuals who are using sound martial principles over those who are just choosing to make touches with no regard to their own safety. The finals will be scored the same way.

Example Tournament: 3 competitors, Round Robin

Bout 1
Fencer A: 1 delivered, 3 received (- 2 net score)
Fencer B: 3 delivered, 1 received ( 2 net score, Victorious)
Bout 2
Fencer A: 2 delivered, 3 received (-1 net score)
Fencer C: 3 delivered, 2 received ( 1 net score, Victorious)
Bout 3
Fencer B: 0 delivered, 3 received (-3 net score)
Fencer C: 3 delivered, 0 received ( 3 net score, Victorious)
(Total Delivered minus Total Received)
Fencer A: (-2 + -1 = -3) Third Place
Fencer B: (2 + -3 = -1) Second Place
Fencer C: (1 + 3 = 4) First Place

Rules & Required Equipment

The Redwood Coast Assault of Arms is an Association for the Historical Fencing sanctioned event. As such this tournament will comply with all AHF rules and regulations including those pertaining to tournament facilitation and required equipment. Briefly, all equipment must be in good condition and safe to use, pants and shoes must be worn with no exposed skin with the exception to the back of the head and unarmed hand (foil & dueling sword and sabre requires no off-hand glove). Some equipment is available for rental through the HSU Fencing club and can be reserved by contacting us after registration. Early registration is encouraged and is $10 cheaper than at door costs.

Participants are responsible for knowing all the AHF rules pertaining to the weapons categories that they have registered for before the event, and complying with ALL equipment requirements!


All accepted variations of foils, dueling swords and sabres are listed in the rules, please read them carefully to see if your weapon qualifies. Smallswords and rapiers are the only weapons allowed in the historical bracket and no companion weapons are permitted (daggers, cloaks, etc). Please, in addition to purchasing your ticket, take some time to fill out our Google form. If an insufficient number of people register for any bracket of arms, it will be cancelled and your fee for that bracket will be refunded.

Schedule of Events

Saturday, April 14th, Arcata Veterans Hall

Preliminary fencing up to the final four competitors in each weapon bracket. Doors open at 12:00 pm for warm up and equipment check with the tournament beginning at 1:00 pm, with free fencing after the tournament till 7:00 pm or departure of all participants.

Weapons fenced in order will be foil, dueling sword, sabre and historical weapons. Weapons order may change due to participation or convenience. Fencing will commence after a brief discussion of the rules and will continue until a half-hour break. Fencing will continue after the break until completion.

Participant’s dinner is scheduled for 7:00 pm at the Ritas. Seat reservations are available for participants and a guest at registration.

Sunday, April 15th, Humboldt State University Kinesiology Building 202A

Venue doors open at 12:00 (noon) to facilitate free fencing of any of those wishing to participate. This portion is open to the public and will feature the top four finalists in each weapon bracket fencing for first place. Before the fencing, refreshments will be served and informational displays & demonstrations will be available for public viewing. Individual weapon champions will be recognized for their efforts, along with a Tournament Grand Champion determined via assaults between the top fencers in each bracket (excluding foil).

Registered participants receive free admission regardless of placement and may bring any guests they desire.


Hotel Arcata – Link – The Hotel Arcata is within 15 minute walking distance of Saturday’s preliminaries and is centrally located in Arcata. From their website: Located on the town square of historic Arcata on the coast of Northern California, Hotel Arcata is convenient to all of the attractions of Humboldt County, within steps of a wide variety of quality restaurants, fitness facilities and other services and only minutes from the regional airport and downtown Eureka. Within a 5 minute stroll of Hotel Arcata is Redwood Park with its walking trails through a majestic and inspiring redwood forest.

Best Western Inn, Arcata – Link – A few minutes drive (not walking distance) from Saturday’s preliminaries and is high in customer satisfaction. From their website: Welcome to the BEST WESTERN Arcata Inn, a family friendly hotel located close to a variety of Northern California activities and attractions. This Arcata hotel offers well-appointed guest rooms with cable satellite television with HBO® and high-speed internet access. This hotel also features a variety of amenities including a complimentary continental breakfast, heated indoor/outdoor swimming pool, hot tub and limited business services. Pets are welcome!

Student Housing – Extremely limited! If you’re on a tight budget and looking to attend the RCAA, some Humboldt State University students and local fencers may have couch / extra bed space available. Please contact us early to make these arrangements.

Membership Status

Participant – AHF Member, Participant – General