Bows?

Discussion in 'General Weapons & Armour' started by AmrasTheArcher, Mar 24, 2009.

  1. AmrasTheArcher

    AmrasTheArcher Woodsman and archer

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    My current longbow is 44lb at 30" draw and I draw 32", I guess pushing the poundage up to nearer fifty and I'm treating myself to 6'6", 60lb at 32", how about you guys?
     
  2. Mububban

    Mububban Administrator Staff Member

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    Just be careful over-drawing a wooden bow or it might turn into splinters and toothpicks :D

    I've got a 50lb longbow made of Australian spotted gum, I don't get to use it much though sadly. Not much free time on the weekends with a little baby to look after.

    I also have a 30lb Yamaha recurve that's as old as me, 30 years old and still shoots beautifully.
     
  3. AmrasTheArcher

    AmrasTheArcher Woodsman and archer

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    I had it made specifically for me by a local bowyer who is the best in the south of England, its a two laminate, hickory and lemon wood, I'll probably have the new one in the same two laminates.
     
  4. Mububban

    Mububban Administrator Staff Member

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    Mine is a traditional one-piece, no laminations or backing. They bow was made by a local guy who is a career carpenter, who started making wooden bows about 15 years ago. Watching him use hand tools is quite amazing for an office worker like myself :D
     
  5. CaPtYnCrOnIc

    CaPtYnCrOnIc The Fighters Guide House Member

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    I'm just getting into bows myself but I wanna make one to use. Stumbled on this site awhile back check it out. Gonna try one of those gemsbok horn bows for my first I think. Just to do it really. A horn composite is what I'm aiming to make eventually tho

    Primitivearcher.com its a msg board for a mag
     
  6. Mububban

    Mububban Administrator Staff Member

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  7. Jingojolene

    Jingojolene Wayfarer, heartlander

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    I don't have a bow yet but I'll be getting one soon, hopefully. Could any of you guys suggest when I should decide what sort of bow to buy because the poundage I'm drawing at gets higher each couple of weeks.
     
  8. Christophe of Grey

    Christophe of Grey Cordwainer to Royals

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    Jingojolene,
    Your question about poundage for a bow has lots of side questions that should be answered first. But let me say at this point I have 14, yes, accurate count, bows hanging in my garage right now. My current favorite is a 38 pound long bow. But to the point, what poundage. The real questions I think are, how long do you want to shoot in one sitting, and how far will you be shooting? If the farthest you will ever shoot is 100 - 150 yards, then a 30 pound bow set up properly can be sufficient. If you want to shoot all day long a 30 pound bow is much easier to handle than a 60 - 80 pound bow. The advantage of a higher poundage bow is that the arrow's trajectory is flater, especially at distances. A 30 pound bow shooting 125 yards is near maximum elevation, whereas a 90 pound bow's elevation is much lower.

    There is also the questions of what type of bow and materials your bow is made out of. Recurve bows typically have faster arrow speeds due to the mechanics of how the bow's energy gets transfered to the arrow. Horse bows are even more efficient at this transfer. Thus a 40 pound horse bow is said to shoot more like a 55 pound bow. Longbows of the same poundge as a recurve, typically, do not have as fast arrow speeds, again, due to the mechanics of how the bow works. Now when you add in materials the bow is made from all this gets a bit cloudy. I have a 46 pound longbow that is faster than my Martin Hunter 45 pound recurve bow. The longbow is faced and backed with action bamboo which makes it a very fast bow. Thus with only a one pound difference between the two bows, the bamboo backed longbow is faster than the recurve.

    A bowyer whom I trust implicitly told me once "never buy a bow without shooting it first". We don't always have this privilege but if you do, exercise it. The second option is to try out as many different bow types as you can to find the one you like best.

    As for shooting characteristics there is a difference between longbows and recurves. Recurves are typically center shoot bows. That is, the arrow passes through the centerline of the bow. Longbows are side shot, where the arrow does not pass through the center of the bow. Thus an arrow coming off a recurve tends to flex up and down upon release whereas an arrow coming off a longbow tends to flex sideways upon release. Sideways flexing causes the arrow to bend around the bow and is called archer's paradox. But all this said, what I find interesting is the best traditional shooters known shoot longbows, Byron Ferguson, Asbell, Bear (he also shot recurves). Technically they are shooting reflex/deflex bows but by modern standards they are called longbows.

    Hope this helps some.
     
  9. ~Elladan~

    ~Elladan~ A Elbereth Gilthoniel

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    Find a local club, take a few lessons. Most clubs will have a qualified coach who would be able to advise on bows etc. A club would also have a selection of training bows of different weights, both L/H and R/H to try. On the L/H and R/H issue, you may find that that is different to your writing hand as it follows dominant eye.

    If you're still growing consider a recurve with replaceable limbs. The limbs can be bought in different lengths and weights so can be upgraded in the future.
     
  10. Prince_Kheldar

    Prince_Kheldar Beard Lover

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    I don,t have one, but my friend does... I wish I had one.
     
  11. Saka

    Saka New Member

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    I have a compound bow.

    its cool.
     
  12. Mububban

    Mububban Administrator Staff Member

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    Training wheels, bah humbug :D

    When the dry weather means I cna return to trying to make bows, I'm aiming to make a 40lb bow, so a bit easier for skinny ol' me to shoot for longer periods than my two 50lb bows. But 40lb still has enough zip for a fairly flat trajectory over middle distance.
     
  13. Christophe of Grey

    Christophe of Grey Cordwainer to Royals

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    As you are pondering which type of bow and weight to get to start don't over look the next most important factor, spine of arrow shaft. The basic rule is match your bow's draw weight with the spine of the shaft. Thus a 40 pound bow would use a 40 - 45 spined shaft (wooden shafts always come in 5 pound ranges). There are charts on-line to match spine to bow for carbon, aluminum and wooden shafting. And, yes, it really does matter. In my group we see lots of new folks coming to the range with 40 - 50 pound bows and 20 - 25 pound kiddie arrows. There is a very good chance those arrows will shater upon release resulting in the shaft going through the archer's hand.

    Now as for compound bows, I realize they outsell traditional bows about 50 to 1 but if you really need that much help hitting the target I guess it's the only choice :) (preceeding was an archer joke).
     
  14. AmrasTheArcher

    AmrasTheArcher Woodsman and archer

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    Okay this is just a personal opinion but I find shooting a long bow far more satisfying as its more intuitive
     
  15. Christophe of Grey

    Christophe of Grey Cordwainer to Royals

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    I would agree with you. As I may have mentioned before I currently have 14 bows hanging in my garage. Some recurves, most longbows, an ELB and a horse bow. I'm with you though. There is a real sense of satisfaction shooting the longbow. My personal favorite right now is my 38 pound longbow. Although I was shooting it's partner the 49 pounder the other day and that was pretty nice too. My two favorite bows are my Martin Hunter and the 38 pound longbow.

    When I say longbow, in truth they are the reflex/deflex type longbow. Not a true Medieval longbow. That is, the limb tips curve back away from the archer just a tad. A true longbow does not do this. But by modern ratings they are still considered longbows.
     
  16. Mububban

    Mububban Administrator Staff Member

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    Well I've got to run our midwinter archery comp this Sunday. I'll be using my trusty old 29lb recurve as I still haven't made the time to make a set of arrows for my 50lb longbow. Pesky babies and their demand for cuddles :)
     
  17. Christophe of Grey

    Christophe of Grey Cordwainer to Royals

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    Interesting shoots?

    So this weekend we had King's Assessment in preparation for upcoming Pennsic. Three populace war point shoots. 1 - clout shot, man sized target at 100 yards inside a 5 yard diameter circle with a safe zone out front from 50 to 70 yards about 10 yards wide. 1 pont in safe zone, 2 points in "castle" circle and 3 points for warrior in circle. 2 - Advancing troops - man sized targets at 40, 50, 60 yards and scouts at 10 yards. Scoring is 1, 2, 3, 4 from nearest to farthest. 6 shafts untimed but only 1 shaft scores per target. Lastly 3 - Slot shot. Slot is 6 X 36 inches, two warrios on each side at 30 yards and one at 15 yards. Scoring 1 point for scout at 15 yards, 2 points for warriors at 30 yards and 4 points for each shaft in slot. This was a 30 second timed shot.

    It went OK but the shooting could have been better. Lots of fun though and good warm up for Pennsic. I also threw out a whole bunch of other taregets at various distances for random shooting. Fun had by all. Typical shooting for us. My favorite randon shot target was an 8 inch square foam block on a fiberglass rod about 4 feet long. The object was to nick or twist the foam block but NOT stick an arrow in it. Call it the near miss shot. Not very easy but lots of fun!