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View Full Version : 2 Prong Vs. Bayonet Sockets



Hamley
-18th January 2004, 15:57
What are your experiances with both of these types of prongs. I heard the Bayonets are alot more reliable, but it seems like alot less people use them.

I have a 2 prong foil and wire. But thats no big deal

So if anyone know any Pro or Cons of each i glad to hear it.


Noah

uk_45
-18th January 2004, 16:01
We've had a thread on this a while back i seem to rember that the advise was go with what u are used to. but 2 prongs are proberbly more secure, however i havnt had any problems with my bayonet one!

Rdb811
-18th January 2004, 17:41
Only ever used bayonets and never had a problem - I've never heard of anyone saying there was a difference between the two.

Jambo
-18th January 2004, 17:56
For sabre the two prongs are much better as long as you dont buy the LP bodywire (which is awful, try allstar, very nice). Bayonet sabres die much faster cos they get knocked about so much.

reposte
-18th January 2004, 18:20
2 prong's much easier to maintain failure control wise.
Bayonet are more then often irreparably goen. When they fail, it's for good.

reposte
-18th January 2004, 18:20
2 prong's much easier to maintain failure control wise.
Bayonet are more then often irreparably gone. When they fail, it's for good.

neevel
-19th January 2004, 01:25
Well, first off there's the basic matter of buying quality, no matter which system you use. A cheap, knock-off cord, be it bayonet (I'll assume you mean Leon Paul bayonet specifically, and not one of the Italian bayonet designs) or 2-prong, is going to be much less reliable than a good quality one. For bayonet, this means buying Leon Paul, or a cord which uses a Leon Paul plug, and Leon Paul sockets. For 2-prong, this means Uhlmann or Allstar. I'm not a big fan of the Prieur 2-prong-- the cheesy little plastic clip is all to often inadequate as a retaining mechanism, and gets lost or broken easily.

Once you've eliminated the troublesome cheap stuff, I find that the main trade-off w.r.t. the cords themselve is ease of maintenance versus frequency of maintenance. The Leon Paul plugs need to have the contact screws tightened more often (the pressure of the wire insulation on the penetrating screws causes them to back-out), and the screws at the front of the bayonet plug will occasionally loosen up as well. Tightening those screws takes only a few seconds, however, since the most you have to do to get at them is pull back the rubber boot.

Uhlmann plugs do not need to have their contact screws tightened as frequently, but when you do have to work on them it's necessary to disassemble and then reassemble the plug-- not something you can do on-strip. You also need to make certain that there is adequate stress-relief where the cable emerges from the plug body, otherwise it will fatigue and eventually break there as it flexes.

The 2-prong sockets will hold up more or less forever, while bayonet sockets can wear out with use, chiefly due to the molded retaining nib inside the plastic body being worn away (the plug will then be free to twist and pop out during fencing). You can reduce the amount of wear by making sure that you are pushing firmly down on the plug before twisting when inserting or removing it.

-Dave

kingkenny
-19th January 2004, 14:06
So right (see above)

I have seen these ones in america which had been copied and built in china and both bayonet and 2 prong were so tight that you had to really pull to get them out.

The Little Un
-21st January 2004, 03:07
So many people talking about having the two pin socets, in my club I dont know anybody who has anything other than the bayonet fixing, both Sabruers and Foilists. Whatever a foilist is..........lol

Best wishes,
Judy

Rdb811
-21st January 2004, 08:09
The two prong sockets are pretty rare.

srb
-21st January 2004, 08:53
There has been a previous thread on this.

http://fencingforum.com/forum/showthread.php?s=&threadid=999

In summary, I think that the Uhlmann/Allstar two pin version is much better than the bayonet version.

The two pin is physically thinner so it doesn't clash with your thumb. This becomes more important if someone has both a vertical and a horizontal set on their blade.

Also the method of fixing is much more secure for the 'German' two pin. Not all two pin versions are as good as the German one.

However, they are more difficult to connect the rewire to in the first place, without breaking the rewire, or without it coming loose. However, once you know that, there is no problem.

I changed to an Uhlmann two pin about 6 months ago, and I wouldn't go back.

srb

gbm
-21st January 2004, 10:23
How do the two pin prongs keep contact? I've seen types where the pins have the compressible metal strips on them which are springy, and squeeze against the inside of the socket when they are pushed in, but these wear out quite quickly, and you end up using a small screwdriver to try and put more 'spring' in the strips to avoid bad contacts. The other way would to angulate the two pins, like in the Leon Paul three pin plugs, which keeps pressure on the pins. However, its still not fantastic, as this could lead to quite a small area touching (although I've never had any problems with them). The Leon Paul bayonet, when it works, should keep one large area of contact, held in place by the spring, and one slightly more dodgy contact, where the metal presses against the end of the screw on the bayonet plug. In older designs (I have one) this was a definite problem as they got older, as you had to keep screwing the end in every hour or so (although as you can do it with your fingernail it isn't catastrophic). Also there is a 'right' and a 'wrong' way to plug in your bayonet. When you plug it in you should have it so the larger side of it points in towards your hand at first. This means your hand tends to prevent it from coming out, and so it is a lot stronger. The only problem I can see with bayonets in general is after much use the spring in the guard socket _might_ start to wear down and get a little less strong. Ideally they should be very strong to help hold the clip in more. Also srb, if your sockets were 20 years old, the plastic they were made of is likely to be much less strong than those of today, and it is a bit unfair to compare technology of twenty years ago (if if unused) with the very best of modern European technology.
Personally I like the bayonets. They always get a good contact. The other problems I have seen with them is sometimes they can jam in, but this is quite rare, and usually easy to fix, and sometimes they won't rotate properly because as srb said the plastic can wear. But overall they last much longer than the wires they connect (which always break at the flex points), and cause me (as a sort of armourer) much less trouble than most things (like foil and epee points, spool brushes and sockets, and bodywires).
Who else wants to argue in favour of the two prongs?
(although I am a fan of most Leon Paul stuff, I am willing to be swayed by convincing arguments)

--
The good fencer, the bad fencer and me.

srb
-21st January 2004, 12:12
Originally posted by goodbadandme
Also srb, if your sockets were 20 years old, the plastic they were made of is likely to be much less strong than those of today,

I reckon my 20 year old ones are better made than the ones of today. They are physically stronger, and more robust - but now, unused in a cupboard.

srb

randomsabreur
-21st January 2004, 13:53
I've seen more problems with 2 pins than bayonets, even tho' bayonets are more common in this country!!!! The french version of the 2 pin with the silly little plastic retaining device is dreadful, you see loads of them falling out when their owners take a parry!

The german ones are better, but as they get older, they work less well, just like everything else. I definitely prefer how the Paul's bayonet puts the wires into place, they are so much easier to repair when the resistance has got too high, and the way the wires are wrapped means that there is no strain on the connection which has to be a good thing. Given how paranoid I am about high resistance in my bodywires, ease of maintenance has to be a good thing!

Rdb811
-21st January 2004, 15:25
Originally posted by goodbadandme
How do the two pin prongs keep contact? <snip>
to be swayed by convincing arguments)

--
The good fencer, the bad fencer and me.

Any chance of breaking your text up into a few paragraphs next time - it's a tad hard to read otherwise.

gbm
-22nd January 2004, 20:25
Sorry. I never was very good at English.

sparkymark567
-28th January 2004, 18:06
I use 2 pin, as recommended to me by SRB in the thread that he refers to.

I agree with randomsabreur, w.r.t the bayonnet it's easier to connect the wire (foil) but it does break far more often than with the two pin.

Other advantages I've found with the two pin: it's less bulky so you get more room for your hand.

The plug has a clip so it locks in place and is very secure.

The hole the blade goes through is square, and the socket does not slip arround the guard. The handle always stays tight, as it sits completetly on top of the socket.

Advantage / disadvantage with the two pin, you're in the minority so it's difficult to borrow a body wire from a club mate. and.... on the other hand nobody wants to steal yours either.

Anyway, my advice is:

Two pin: choose Ulhmann / Allstar (as most of the others are rubbish).

Or

Bayonnet: choose Leon Paul (as most of the others are rubbish)

Barry Paul
-4th February 2004, 10:41
The two pin bodywire system has a basic design flaw due to the use of the banjo/banana pins. These pins were never designed for constant insertion and retraction. In order to maintain continuous contact and low resistance between the pin and socket the banjo pins need to be tight fitting. The outer member of the pin is overstressed and fatigue rapidly. My abiding memory of foil finals of the 70/80 was the constant halts caused by faulty bodywires (Two pin) and the small screwdriver kept by every coach used to stretch the banjo elements. Because of pre-testing before finals we donít see the problem so occurring so often. Many of the banjo pins have sharp edges which enlarge the socket and gradually make good contact and low resistance between the pin and socket even harder.

The bayonet system which is universally the Leon Paul system (or poor copies of it) uses compression of two coil springs to maintain contact between mating parts.
To the question which system is better you should not ignore the rest of the body wire its manufacturing quality and design concept/philosophy. The same inherent fault with using the banjo pins on the two pin plug also applies to using these pins on the three pin plug connecting to the spool fencers end socket. (Also at Epee to the epee socket) The Leon Paul solution was to re-invent the three pin socket. The pins are smooth and set into the plastic body of the plug such that they are off set. As the plug is pushed into the socket the individual pins twist the plastic body, It is this deformation which maintains perfect contact and the smooth pins do not wear out the sockets.

The other main cause of failure is due to wires breaking, this almost always occurs at the junction between the wire and the body of the plugs. The failure is caused by fatigue of the wire as it is constantly flexed. The Leon Paul solution is to use very flexible outer covers which ensure the radius of curvature of any bending is as large as possible. The hard shelled plastic bodies with multi screw fixings of the majority of other designs is just poor design and shows a complete lack of understanding of basic engineering principles.(but they do look expensive and well made)

Other important considerations are ease of replacement, repair and maintenance. Two pin sockets are difficult to wire and need both a wide blade screw driver and a spanner. The two pin plugs and terminations are difficult and fiddly to repair and put back. The Leon Paul design uses a unique wire piecing system preferred by most modern telecommunication connections. .

Choice of body wire cable is important transparent to see any breaks. Flexibility to ensure long life before fatigue failure. Such fatigue failure is dependant on individual strand diameter, larger diameter wire does not mean longer life, most thicker cables will start to fail quicker.

Sparky complains that the Leon Paul socket can be put in different positions; some thing which I feel is an advantage. His problem of moving socket is more likely to be caused by have a large set on his foil and he needs to grind the end of his handles down so that they match up squarely to the guard.

Coming soon (three months) a new light weight socket which should please Sparky and SRB, with new design features lighter, smaller and harder to break.

Barry Paul M D

sparkymark567
-8th February 2004, 19:01
Blimey, that was so small i nearly missed it:

"A BIASED VIEW"

I agree in some respects, the smooth pins and flexible plug does work quite well. However I still prefer the two pin at the moment
(unbiased view). and LP bodywires are quite good too, that's why I put the ulhmann plug on the end of my old LP bodywires.



Originally posted by Barry Paul

Coming soon (three months) a new light weight socket which should please Sparky and SRB, with new design features lighter, smaller and harder to break.

Barry Paul M D

I can't wait.

oddball
-9th March 2004, 10:04
My bodywire is an LP job from gawd knows how long ago, and it still works good.

uk_45
-9th March 2004, 20:53
Cant wait barry. Any chance of a new sabre blade. pleaseeeeeeee

Barry Paul
-10th March 2004, 07:16
One to two months. Barry Paul

PKT
-14th March 2004, 18:38
barry,

i can't agree with you more.

the one fault i find with the LP bayonet system is that once the base for the in-guard socket gets out of shape - its shape helps the socket assembly in place - it's very difficult to get it back to a working shape.

my solution is to simply tape the whole assembly to the vertical bit of the base.

the most often seen problem with the 2-prong is the screw holding the retaining clip comes out. i know, the manufacturers have put those almost micrscopic retaining washers in an effort to kee them in. i just hot glue it in place. in fact i hot-glue most of the nuts in place. ;)

d'oh! i mean i hot-glue the nuts of the assmebly in place. don't mean to offend the nuts in our readership, do we now?

==)---------------------

another suggestion for the german 2-pin users - for the french 2-pin-with the-plastic-clip users, just replace them with the german, don't waste your time : spread the end of the retaining pin so it has a larger surface area to catch the platform into which the plug goes. as they come fromt he factory, the end is like the letter "u". spread this a bit...

pk

NHCTUSA Fencer
-23rd March 2004, 21:36
Bayonet.

I have yet to experience any problem with using bayonet, and I know from experience with my Team that problems with Bayonet are rare, while fencing 2-Prong users we are constantly annoyed at how their equipment, for lack of a better term, sucks. The Body cord falls out almost every beat or attack, and the overall quality in 2-prongs I've noticed are usually very bad, metal clips broken or lost or bent beyond belief, and in general when fencing, the 2-prong comes loose alot more than a bayonet, plus i find fixing a bayonet eaiser.
:party:

reposte
-29th March 2004, 09:46
When the metal plate at the socket of the Bayonet starts to wobble injside the socket and make the circuit break, what can you do against it?
Is the socket lost?
I've changed because of this problem to 2 prongs and now I'm thinking of changing back because the wire in my 2 prong socket keeps loosning, never having had the problem with bayonet, but what can you do against the aforementioned Bayonet problem?
Is it repairable?

gbm
-29th March 2004, 10:58
The little brass round plate comes out if you stick a screwdriver down the side of the inside of the socket so it is at a funny angle; you can then get it out. There's a big spring behind it, it may be wobbling because this is not strong enough? If that was the case, it can probably be replaced. If the plastic housing has been damaged (it can be worn away on very old guard sockets, or probably under very heavy use for a good long number of years, certainly I can't see it not outlasting a few blades), then you probably have to replace it.
I find the problem that usually occurs at this point electrically is that older Leon Paul bodywires sometimes need to have the screw on the very end of the bodywire plug tightened periodically. Tighten that right up and check there is still some strength to the big chunky spring, and there shouldn't be any more problem.

PKT
-30th March 2004, 02:26
my hamfisted solution to a bent base for the LP bayonet is to tape the red assembly containing the copper plate and spring to the vertical part of the base plate.

Another thing i don't like about the LP bodywires is the small gauge (thin) wire that LP use.

Barry, how about using a thicker wire for the body chords?

PK

gbm
-30th March 2004, 14:01
I have heard that thicker gauge wire can actually break quicker.

srb
-1st April 2004, 10:27
Originally posted by Barry Paul


1. The two pin bodywire system has a basic design flaw due to the use of the banjo/banana pins. These pins were never designed for constant insertion and retraction. In order to maintain continuous contact and low resistance between the pin and socket the banjo pins need to be tight fitting. The outer member of the pin is overstressed and fatigue rapidly.

2. Coming soon (three months) a new light weight socket which should please Sparky and SRB, with new design features lighter, smaller and harder to break.

Barry Paul M D

1. Okay, so I've now had my first banjo/banana pin break as Barry said it would!

2. With anticipation!!!

srb

Barry Paul
-1st April 2004, 11:45
1. Can I say I am not surprised.
2. We are still working on it, also to avoid poor copies from China and other places being passed off as a Leon Paul Product, we are having to protect/ patent the new design which takes time. Barry Paul

Australian
-1st April 2004, 13:07
Originally posted by Barry Paul
2. We are still working on it, also to avoid poor copies from China and other places being passed off as a Leon Paul Product, we are having to protect/ patent the new design which takes time. Barry Paul

is that the one i got the inadvertant sneak-peek at on my first tour of the factory? ;)

Australian
-1st April 2004, 13:08
Originally posted by Barry Paul
2. We are still working on it, also to avoid poor copies from China and other places being passed off as a Leon Paul Product, we are having to protect/ patent the new design which takes time. Barry Paul

is that the one i got the inadvertant sneak-peek at on my first tour of the factory? ;)

Barry Paul
-1st April 2004, 14:02
No, we have gone off on a different tack. Barry paul

bmadigan
-20th April 2004, 21:23
I prefer 2 prong, mostly because I am used to it. Bayonets wear out just as badly, they all will with use. I get annoyed with the bayonet contacting my thumb. Sometimes I find they pop out on their own from rubbing on my the side of my hand during bouts. Two prongs are simple and have a lower profile, for me they dont get in the way at all.

gbm
-20th April 2004, 21:39
How old is your oldest two-prong? And do you put the bayonet in the right way (so your fingers tend to hold it in), as opposed to the wrong way (where your fingers cause it to turn out and unplug)?

PKT
-20th April 2004, 23:41
Originally posted by Barry Paul
1. Can I say I am not surprised.
2. We are still working on it, also to avoid poor copies from China and other places being passed off as a Leon Paul Product, we are having to protect/ patent the new design which takes time. Barry Paul

Barry,

FYI:
In order to distinguish their otherwise undistinguishable product from what is commonly called "blood diamond", the Cdn diamond producers put a laser-cut logo on the rim of the diamond their produce.

Perhaps you can have your logo on all things produced by LP.

How's the LP backplate coming along? Does it need FIE approval?

PK

bmadigan
-21st April 2004, 15:02
I have a newer body wire, but the older ones I have used are pretty worn out and still work fine. Hee hee, well putting the bayonet in the right way certainly helps. Worn out springs make them more likely to fall out, but mostly I feel like they are in the way.

J_D
-21st April 2004, 15:45
quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Originally posted by Barry Paul
1. Can I say I am not surprised.
2. We are still working on it, also to avoid poor copies from China and other places being passed off as a Leon Paul Product, we are having to protect/ patent the new design which takes time. Barry Paul
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Barry,

do you find that protection/patenting works at keeping away chinese copies?

Barry Paul
-22nd April 2004, 07:17
Yes although it is expensive. Barry Paul

PKT
-22nd April 2004, 23:58
Originally posted by J_D
quote:

Barry,

do you find that protection/patenting works at keeping away chinese copies?

One still have to prosecute them, and that, my friends, cost time and money. And where would you like to prosecute them? In China? Forget it.

Remember, China is very much a Communist, authoritarian state still. One can make all the money one can make legally or otherwise - mainly otherwise, just try not to talk politics.

pk

Barry Paul
-23rd April 2004, 07:48
The manufacturers in China would not being doing any thing wrong. It is the re-sellers in USA and UK who I would stop illegally infringing any of our interllectual rights.

J_D
-23rd April 2004, 08:25
is this a big issue in practice, or do you find the the patenting process works in a preventative way?