What are LARP weapons made out of? Whether you’re worried about getting hurt at your local LARP event or you want to start making your own props, it’s important to understand what you’re getting into.
Live-action roleplaying, or LARP, is a popular form of interactive gaming that allows participants to immerse themselves in a fictional world. LARP often involves simulated combat using weapons and armor, and as such, LARP weapons are an essential component of the game.
However, unlike real weapons, LARP weapons must be safe and non-lethal while still being able to provide a realistic experience for the players. In this article, we’ll explore the materials used to make LARP weapons, how they’re constructed, and the different types of weapons used in various LARP settings.
What are LARP weapons made out of?
There are many different types of material that can be used to make LARP weapons. The materials you choose should depend on the requirements of your LARP, the way the props will be used, and what your budget can afford.
Foam and Latex
The most common materials used to create LARP weapons are foam and latex. Foam is used to create the weapon’s core, while latex is used to create the outer layer that gives the weapon its shape and texture.
The foam used in LARP weapons is typically made of closed-cell polyethylene foam or polyurethane foam. These types of foam are lightweight, durable, and compressible, which makes them ideal for simulating the impact of a weapon strike without causing injury.
The latex coating is applied over the foam core to give the weapon its shape and texture. The latex is usually colored and textured to make the weapon look like a real sword, axe, or other type of weapon. The latex is also flexible, which allows the weapon to bend and move like a real weapon during combat.
To create a LARP weapon, the foam is cut into the desired shape and then covered with layers of liquid latex. Once the latex has dried, the weapon is painted to give it the desired appearance. The finished weapon is then coated with a protective sealant to prevent the latex from deteriorating over time.
Foam and latex weapons are lightweight, safe, and easy to use, making them a popular choice for many LARPers. They are also relatively inexpensive to make, which makes them accessible to LARPers on a tight budget.
PVC LARP weapons are a popular alternative to foam and latex weapons, and are commonly used by LARPers due to their lightweight, durability, and low cost.
To make a PVC weapon, you will need PVC pipes, connectors, foam padding, and duct tape. You can find PVC pipes and connectors at most hardware stores, and foam padding can be purchased at craft or fabric stores.
The first step is to cut the PVC pipes to the desired length for your weapon, using a saw or PVC cutting tool. Once you have the basic shape of your weapon, you can add connectors and fittings to create a more intricate design.
Next, you will need to pad the PVC pipe with foam to create a safe weapon. You can use foam padding with adhesive backing or wrap the PVC pipe with foam strips and secure it with duct tape.
Finally, you can cover the foam padding with duct tape or other decorative materials to create the appearance of your weapon. It’s important to make sure that the weapon is safe and not too heavy, so it’s recommended to test the weapon by swinging it around and making sure it won’t cause injury to yourself or others.
PVC weapons can be used for a variety of different LARP genres, including fantasy, post-apocalyptic, and sci-fi settings. However, it’s important to check with the specific LARP event or organization to make sure that PVC weapons are allowed and that they meet the safety standards and regulations.
Rattan is a type of palm that is used in the creation of LARP weapons. It is a popular material because it is lightweight, flexible, and strong. Rattan can be found in various thicknesses and lengths, making it a versatile material for creating different types of LARP weapons, such as swords, axes, and spears.
When creating a rattan LARP weapon, the rattan is typically cut to the desired length and then sanded down to remove any rough spots or sharp edges. The rattan is then shaped to create the desired weapon, with additional materials such as foam and duct tape used to create the handle and other details.
One advantage of rattan LARP weapons is that they can be quite durable and able to withstand significant wear and tear during gameplay. However, it is important to note that rattan weapons can still break under certain circumstances, particularly if they are used improperly or if they come into contact with other hard or sharp objects.
It is also worth noting that rattan LARP weapons may require maintenance over time to ensure their continued effectiveness and safety. This may include sanding down any rough spots that develop over time or replacing worn-out foam or other components. Proper care and maintenance can help extend the lifespan of a rattan LARP weapon and ensure its continued safety during gameplay.
Pool noodle LARP weapons are a type of foam-based LARP weapon that can be easily made with materials found at most dollar or discount stores. The basic construction involves using a pool noodle as the core of the weapon, cutting it to the desired length and shape, and covering it with duct tape or pipe insulation foam. The foam covering provides a safe and soft surface for combat, while the pool noodle provides a lightweight and flexible core that can easily bend and twist.
Pool noodle weapons are often used in LARPs that are focused on casual or beginner-friendly gameplay, as they are simple to make and require minimal materials. They are also popular in LARP events where combat is not the main focus, such as roleplaying-focused or puzzle-solving events.
While pool noodle weapons are relatively safe and easy to make, they do have some limitations. They are not as durable or long-lasting as other types of LARP weapons, and may need to be repaired or replaced more frequently. Additionally, they may not be suitable for more advanced or intense combat scenarios, as they are not as rigid as other types of LARP weapons and may not hold up as well under heavy use.
Cardboard is another material that can be used to create LARP weapons. These weapons are typically made by cutting out the desired shape of the weapon from thick cardboard and then layering several pieces of cardboard to add strength and durability. The weapon can be further reinforced with duct tape, foam padding, or other materials.
Cardboard weapons can be a more affordable option than other types of LARP weapons and can be easily customized with paint or other decorations. They can also be easily repaired if they get damaged during play.
However, cardboard weapons are generally not as durable as other types of LARP weapons and may not hold up well to repeated use. They may also not be suitable for more intense combat or heavy hitting. It is important to check with the specific LARP group or event organizer to see if cardboard weapons are allowed and what the specific guidelines are for creating and using them.
Additionally, some LARPers make weapons from more unconventional materials and even recycled materials. However, it’s important to keep safety in mind when choosing materials for LARP weapons, and always follow the rules and regulations of the specific LARP event or organization.
LARPers have a responsibility to ensure that their weapons are safe to use, both for themselves and for other participants. The following are some common ways LARPers make sure that their weapons are safe:
LARPers should make sure that the materials used to create their weapons are appropriate and safe for use. They should avoid using materials that could easily break or cause injury.
You should always be mindful of the impact your materials will have on other players and props.
Weapons should be constructed with safety in mind. For example, the core of the weapon should be padded to avoid injury, and the weapon should be designed so that it is not too heavy to wield safely.
LARPers should test their weapons before using them in a game. They can do this by hitting a target or by sparring with another participant. This will help ensure that the weapon is safe and will not cause injury.
Many LARP events have weapons inspectors who will check weapons to ensure that they are safe to use. LARPers should make sure to follow any rules or guidelines provided by the event organizers.
If you are worried about whether or not your LARP weapon is acceptable, communicating with the event organizer in advance should prevent you from experiencing any unexpected surprises.
LARPers should communicate with other participants about the safety of their weapons. If a participant feels that a weapon is unsafe, they should speak up and let the weapon’s owner know.
Overall, LARPers have a responsibility to make sure that their weapons are safe and do not pose a danger to themselves or others. By following these guidelines, LARPers can ensure that they have a safe and enjoyable experience while participating in LARP events.
Buy LARP Weapons
If you’re uncomfortable making your own weapons, you can buy some beautiful and safe LARP weapons and swords from Dark Knight Armoury!