I picked up my new (first ever) longbow on the weekend from the local maker I found, and it's fantastic. The stave was one the maker had cut for himself and been curing for the last 2 years, so he was sad to see it go, but very happy with the way it came out. It's hand cut, hand split Australian spotted gum, made with hand tools only, has cow horn tips, a Flemish twist string, and a simple leather handgrip. The draw weight is 50lb at 28 inches. I asked for a Mary Rose style bow, so it's a D-shaped profile, and I went for an unstained and lightly oiled finish so it's natural/pine coloured and unsealed rather than dark oak stain and varnished. There's a nice bit of subtle wobbles in the unstrung limbs too where it follows the grain, which I love as it gives the bow character. I'm about 6' 2", and when strung my bow is a tiny bit taller than I am. The brace height is 5.5 inches. He put on a simple leather hand grip and a small waxy nocking point mark on the string for where to notch the arrows, so there's absolutely nothing modern on it at all (apart from the felt tip pen writing describing its poundage etc) It cost me AUD$250 (~USD$185) and it shoots beautifully for a longbow. It's all subjective, but I find his bows a lot smoother than the Turbows I've fired. For those in Australian longbow/re-enacting circles, Turbow is the most well known longbow maker, but he apparently uses machined spotted gum floorboards rather than hand cut staves. Thus his bows look a little too perfect, and don't feel as nice to shoot in my opinion. I shot my new bow for about 45 minutes on the bush field course at the maker's club, killing plastic milk bottles, and it's very accurate too. I normally fire an old wooden-limbed 34lb recurve. I was shooting plastic flighted, wooden shafted arrows, that are not meant to be fired off the back of a bare hand like feather flights. But I was immediately able to draw this baby and fire it accurately. In fact I was matching the maker shot for shot and I never get to practise, which shows how comfortable I felt with the bow In short, I love it. I've now got to make some new arrows, with feather flights!