How to make a bow.

Mububban

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Hehe, Carlton midstrength, about $30 per carton. And I don't drink so it don't matter to me :D
 

Mububban

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Well due to a major case of the flu kicking my butt this weekend, this didn't happen. So it'll be mid-January at the earliest before I can finish these 2 bows :(
 

~Elladan~

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Cheer up, get well & think positive ~ what a great project to look forward to completing at the start of a new year :)
 

Mububban

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Well it's now the end of March, and one bow is done! I went back on Sunday just gone and we finished the flat bow. It's about 45lb @ 28 inches, and flung a ~450 grain test arrow 135m. This doesn't compare too badly to the 165m from a 48lb bow my mate made with a much better material.

It's already taken about an inch of set in each limb, tiny bit more in the top limb, as I've learnt you want to top limb to be a little softer and the bottom limb a little bit stiffer.

I'll be sure to put a bunch of arrows through it when I get a chance, which doesn't look like happening until the end of April. Who knows if it'll last or if it'll take a massive amount of string follow, but hey, for $10 it made for a great learning experience.

I've got a D-shaped longbow stave to tiller myself, of course that will have to wait until I've got a vice, tillering board, spoke shaves, wood rasps, files, cabinet scraper etc etc etc.......

I also learnt how to make braided strings which are surprisngly easy to make! So now at least if someone's string breaks, I can have a go at making them a new one.

photos to come when I get a chance to take them
 

Soulsmith

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NIce work Mububban. Im making a bow myself tomorrow and just need to know which wood to make arrows out of otherwise i know how to make them completely naturally though i'll probably order heads off the internet.
 

~Elladan~

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Most common arrow material is pine, cedar, red deal or silver fir (well in Europe it is :))
 

Soulsmith

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Well my longbow is literally bigger than me and is basically a stick of yew that has been bent and stringed. i need better string because mine isnt strong enough and I really need a way to get more distance
 

~Elladan~

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Cast (distance) is all down to a combination of the bow itself (wood, draw weight etc), correctly spined/weighed arrows, string & probably most importantly technique (particularly release).

Strings ~ more strands = more accuracy but slower, less = faster. Most common string used is dacron for longbows. A far faster string is fastflight, which if correctly laid in on the loops has been used successfully on longbows. The string is however very unforgiving ie there's little 'give' in it. In most bowyers view this will almost certainly lead to a shorter bow life as the shock is absorbed by the wood rather than shared with the string so use with caution! I have fastflight on a 55lb longbow which I use for target and clout ~ it will easily send the arrow 250yds which is probably 20yds more than it ever achieved with dacron.
 

elrond243

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for anyone who has a question about making bows or arrows. go to buildabow.com
 

The Storm

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I am a bow-maker myself and i have hade some major sucess with just a well chosen tree limb shaped into a bow. I can't really explain the process but it usually takes me about 3-4 months to make a cruddy bow and 6-7 months for a good one.

P.S. Cedar (in my opinion) is the best for arrows. Just store bought dowel rods are quick and easy to to turn into arrows and work decently.
 

Jingojolene

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well, i am a big 'fan' of middle age history and all i know is this:
the longbow first appeared with the pagans (saxons, angles, vikings,e.t.c.) as a simple solution to the problem that a small selfbow (crafted from a peice of wood) could not draw back to the chin, and was made of ash, elm, or yew. when the normans conqured england, william the conquerer demanded the entire saxon army give him their weapons, but not their bws, as archers posed little threat during the invasion of england. this made the longbow the simbol of free english. it was realised that yew was by far and away the best wood of them all, because it had a band of stretchy sapwood on the outside (back of the bow) and heartwood on the inside (belly of the bow) but as and elm were still used as they were more common (over here in britain ash wood is dead easy to find) and they were incredibly powerful.
your bow will almost certainly by asmetric because symmetric longbows are cut from branches about the thickness of logs, and are about 90-180 lbs draw weight.
it should be the length of your armspan, not your height. your bow should be cut from the wood like so the back is sapwood and the belly is heartwood
and being short is not important, a longbow is tailor made to fit the persons size. keep in mind they quite often look ridiculously thin but don't worry they are meant to be.
remember, a longbow is long in proportion to your size, not to other bows. tools i would recommend are:
woodworking hatchet
draw knide
knife
plane
(well, that's what i use and it works very well.)
oh btw in england is illegal to cut yew trees, dating back to the 14th century when longbows were very important.


that's so interesting ^.^
 

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