bowbuilding

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paul
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bowbuilding

Post by paul » Sun Apr 10, 2005 10:56 pm

I started carving a bow out of a hickory stave a while back. Has anyone else done this or interested in doing this? Not looking for help/advice, just trying to start discussion on a potential valuable skill.
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thecheeto
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Post by thecheeto » Mon Apr 11, 2005 12:42 am

I would be interested in it. Also interested in making arrows, I ahve a nice compound and an old recurve, buth need new strings, but I have no arrows. Of course the compound probably requiers aluminum arrows... For my cross bow I have a grand total of two bolts.... hmmmm...

Anyway I am interested...

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Post by Mr_Fubar » Mon Apr 11, 2005 5:51 am

I Worked In An Archery Shop For 2 Years I Can Make Strings And Arrows, And Tweak Bows But Ive Never Actually Made One...
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Post by Tibus » Mon Apr 11, 2005 11:48 am

Ive seen several survival resources describe the process. What do you make the string out of?
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Post by Mr_Fubar » Mon Apr 11, 2005 1:42 pm

In The Shop.... A Lot Of Little Strings.... In An Application Like This.... I Have No Clue...
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Post by JMalone » Mon Apr 11, 2005 4:10 pm

I'm decent at using a bow, so this intrigues me somewhat, although I would rather have a bow that was made in a factory or by a skilled bowyer/fletcher, as opposed to something I threw together.

I'd imagine that getting the right wood is required, otherwise you'll have a bow that will either not bend right or just plain snap when you use it. Also, you need a specific kind of string, as I am pretty sure twine won't do it. Something that'll stretch and go back into its original length, sort of like a rubber band. I'm rambling somewhat, I know.

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Post by bgaesop » Mon Apr 11, 2005 4:45 pm

I've heard that deer gut or veins or tendons or something like that works well.

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Post by paul » Mon Apr 11, 2005 6:08 pm

JMalone wrote:I'm decent at using a bow, so this intrigues me somewhat, although I would rather have a bow that was made in a factory or by a skilled bowyer/fletcher, as opposed to something I threw together.

I'd imagine that getting the right wood is required, otherwise you'll have a bow that will either not bend right or just plain snap when you use it.
Actually, you can make a bow out of almost any kind of wood. Some of the weaker woods can be backed with sinew or thin hickory to keep the limbs from snapping. I plan on bringing a few bow staves to the campout in June along with a drawknife and files to work on a bow.
I see what you mean w/regards to a professionally made bow. I looked at a few earlier today at Bass Pro Shop and they are truly works of art, especially the recurves. I also think it would be awesome to successfully carve a bow and shoot it.
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Post by Bear_B » Mon Apr 11, 2005 9:31 pm

I cant hit diddly-squat with a bow... but I sure would be interested in learning about how to make one.
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Post by jamoni » Tue Apr 12, 2005 7:50 am

JMalone wrote:I'm decent at using a bow, so this intrigues me somewhat, although I would rather have a bow that was made in a factory or by a skilled bowyer/fletcher, as opposed to something I threw together.
Heh. Paul's been chipping away at this thing for about two years. He is Mr. Patient, and he doesn't throw ANYTHING together. :D

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Post by paul » Tue Apr 12, 2005 11:48 am

jamoni wrote:
JMalone wrote:I'm decent at using a bow, so this intrigues me somewhat, although I would rather have a bow that was made in a factory or by a skilled bowyer/fletcher, as opposed to something I threw together.
Heh. Paul's been chipping away at this thing for about two years. He is Mr. Patient, and he doesn't throw ANYTHING together. :D
Thanks, brother. Its true. I work on it when I can. If I put my nose to the grindstone, I could finish it fairly quickly. Anyway, there is a lot of information out there on the subject. It takes patience. On the other hand, there are also articles available about how to "carve" a quick bow out of green wood that could be used in a PAW situation. I have to do a little searching to find it and i'll try to post a link.
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Post by misanthropist » Sat May 14, 2005 7:17 am

I made one from Irish Yew once. It took a few days to carve down, and I used a combination of thickness and grain to determine how best to cut it down. As in, when I tapered the back, I went for a pretty even taper to both ends but made allowances so the rings in the wood would taper out evenly too. I did this because I thought they might have a major impact on the strength of the bow but I don't know if this was the right thing to do or not.

Anyway, I shot it occasionally for a while, but eventually I let it get too close to the wood stove and it cracked. And so I can't tell you anything about the accuracy or longevity of it.

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Post by Nightside_Eclipse » Sat May 14, 2005 10:30 am

bgaesop wrote:I've heard that deer gut or veins or tendons or something like that works well.
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Post by TheLastRifleMan » Sat May 14, 2005 10:57 pm

Not all wood makes good bows. Try making one from pine, bass wood or some other soft wood. Most hardwoods with break when bent too much.

You need pretty straight grained woods that spilt with not to much effort and will not take a set when bent. Cured ash work about the best, as well as some species of elm.

I have several ash staves curing right now in my garage rafters. In about another year, they will be ready.

In the meantime, I am knapping out arrow heads and knofe blades from obsidian and flint.

There are a lot of bow making sites online. They all have useful info on proper bow woods.
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Post by TheShadow324 » Sun May 15, 2005 4:31 pm

thecheeto, as far as your compound arrows go almost everyone has switched to carbon arrows, I've even heard of, though never used titanium arrows as well.
I've been shooting compund for almost seven years now, and though I like the idea of long bow for sport, in a situation where my life depends on it, either for defense against the living dead or hitting that deer that my group is starving for, I would much rather use my compund.
And to anyone planning on bow use, start practicing now. You can get pretty proficient in only a few months, but if you get stuck surviving with a bow you haven't practiced with than you are quite efectively screwed.
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Post by thecheeto » Sun May 15, 2005 5:15 pm

LOL shows how out of date I am (I prefer to think of it as old school) Carbon Arrows you say. Hmmm that sounds expensive, any guess what they go for or directions to a good online store?

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Post by TheShadow324 » Tue May 17, 2005 3:48 pm

Cost...depends a lot, you can get them feathered or plastic, different notches, but you're looking at about $40-60 a dozen. Or was that a half dozen...I forget, I think that's for a dozen but then again...don't take my word for it, my buddy machines them for me now for real cheap. Oh right, I forgot to mention that, if you plan on shooting a lot, you can buy all of the tools for machining your own arrows. It's not to hard, look into it.
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Post by Mr_Fubar » Wed May 18, 2005 6:17 am

TheShadow324 speaks the truth. It is rather easy, I first learned how to do it about the age of ten.
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Post by CLEAR CUT » Wed May 18, 2005 1:27 pm

Fubar is correct. There is a tool called an EZ-Fletch( saw it at bass pro shops) The cost of ready made arrows is high(you'll pay a lot at an archery shop, not only do they have overhead considerations as well as having to help you select the proper diameter and then cut them to length, mix up some epoxy-type cement and glue in either the ferrule for aluminum shafts or an adaptor for carbon)

The price for the raw materials( shafts, fletching, ferrules/adaptors, and arrow heads-field points,broadheads) Versus ready made arrows make this a worthy past-time for anyone who plans to use a bow or crossbow.

If you do decide to make your own I would suggest: Getting the fletching jig, carbon fiber shafts(way more durable than aluminum), feather type fletching( not the plastic vanes) -you will eventually get good enough at practice that you will begin to get tight groups and shoot through the vanes, Then either invest in a good tubing cutter or a band saw to cut the shafts to length. The epoxy cement is readily available at any hardware/ craft/hobby store and is easy to mix up and use. The next thing to consider is the type of arrow head you're going to use( go with field points at first to zero in your sights but ultimately you'll need to add broadheads. These take some practice to get used to their flight characteristics-they tend to plane) Hope this Helps you All out. Check You Later. BOB
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Post by TheShadow324 » Wed May 18, 2005 4:52 pm

These arrow making tools sure as hell aren't cheap, so if you only want a dozen arrows, go out and buy them, but if you're shooting everyday, or hunting everyday, then it's worth it. And as far as surviving zombies goes: it keeps you busy, it's easy ammo, you can hunt, it's silent. And I love my bow.
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Post by TheLastRifleMan » Wed May 18, 2005 6:50 pm

The nice thing about making your own arrows is the same tools allows you to repairs fletching and tips if the are damaged.

I have made my own arrows and with the right tools it is pretty simple.
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Post by paul » Thu May 19, 2005 7:37 am

[quote="TheLastRifleMan"]Not all wood makes good bows. Try making one from pine, bass wood or some other soft wood. Most hardwoods with break when bent too much.

I read some good info about using hardwoods for bows in "The Bowyer's Bible, volume I". Hickory is a good example. Doesn't need backing. Just peel off the bark and de-crown it. No need to work the back of the bow to a single growth ring. Good choice for a classic "D" longbow design. If worried about breaking, back it with sinew.
My only complaint with hardwoods so far is that they're not as nice to work with as softwoods when drawknifing.
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Post by thecheeto » Thu May 19, 2005 10:06 am

Thanks for all the good info guys. I can't afford any expensive equipment now, but maybe in the future.

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