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Normal Topic Making a bow (Read 7456 times)
Radar
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Making a bow
Sep 3rd, 2015 at 7:37am
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Has anyone had a shot at making a bow, I'm giving it a go using a piece of lance wood I had sticking around the house - basing it on an English long bow design.
Plenty of plans and designs on the Internet
Advice?
  

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Re: Making a bow
Reply #1 - Sep 3rd, 2015 at 10:22am
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yup, the lance wood over here is probably a little weak for a bow. There are other woods that are suitable. Its the wood that is the key....the right wood will make a bow...the wrong wood makes firewood that takes you three months to make.
  
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Re: Making a bow
Reply #2 - Sep 3rd, 2015 at 12:09pm
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Radar wrote on Sep 3rd, 2015 at 7:37am:
Has anyone had a shot at making a bow, I'm giving it a go using a piece of lance wood I had sticking around the house - basing it on an English long bow design.
Plenty of plans and designs on the Internet
Advice?


theres a bowmaker in cambridge
  

It is much better to Hit the Animal in the right place, with a Rifle you can shoot well, then to hit it poorly with a Large Calibre..John Nosler
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Re: Making a bow
Reply #3 - Sep 3rd, 2015 at 2:16pm
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the best native timber that I know of for making a self bow is Manuka or Kanuka
Bullock Rd bows make english longbows out of it.
give him a ring,Im sure he would give some advise
  

cheers
Nigel
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Re: Making a bow
Reply #4 - Sep 3rd, 2015 at 3:40pm
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That TOA Hunter Gatherer makes bows doesn't he? He might be OSHunter on here. Or I may have the wrong joker. Just google it and flick an email to one of the trad bow makers like Sam Harrison. They'll set you right id say
  
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Re: Making a bow
Reply #5 - Sep 3rd, 2015 at 4:41pm
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Good advice guys,
Yep firewood is exactly what I've got now. Nice piece if lancewood  which I'd had dried out for about 3 years.
Mucked around and got a basic shape that looked alright, was in the process of tillering, put a bit of pressure on probably around 25lb and CRACK! Firewood.
Might wait until son and partner move out then set up a proper work bench - that might assist but obviously the wood is the heart - thanks guys for the ideas.
  

Fate whispers to the warrior
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Re: Making a bow
Reply #6 - Sep 3rd, 2015 at 8:12pm
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My son and I started by making a PVC pipe bow by stumbling across the back yard bowyer on You tube.

We are planning ahead long term and have staves  from Tasmanian Blackwood, Kanuka and a Kauri tree that blew over.

We are also going to grow some Orange Osage and Black Locust. 

Tawa and Tanekaha would be two more I would try. 

Kanuka gives you a very good chance of finding a suitable tree and staves as there is so much of it around.
  
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Re: Making a bow
Reply #7 - Sep 3rd, 2015 at 9:54pm
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Kiaora Radar- Kanuka is forgiving, if it doesint have to be native then standard American ash has been the beginners go to bow wood- you can purchase it from merchants, have a sift around its fairly cheap and you can purchase in planks , but if you want to go native and split a stave yourself then go for some kanuka, remember to look at the bark, thats a give away that the tree has a twist in it, Pva the ends then....wait a year : ), Samuel Harrison FB may have Staves  seasoned, I have a few but in the Waikato. But again if its just to try make a self bow then American Ash has proven many bows in the workshop, All the best.
  

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Re: Making a bow
Reply #8 - Sep 4th, 2015 at 7:00pm
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I've had a little experience with making some (very) amateur bows.
You'll probably finds boards easier to start with than staves.  I've used massuranduba decking timber with good success.  A flat pyramid design is where I started.
With staves I've had trouble drying them without checking or twisting.  The trick to preventing checking seems to be to either leave the bark on the split stave, seal the ends and wait 6 months to a year, or remove the bark, rough the bow out to floor tillered then seal the back and the ends.  This second method dries the bow quicker, but then they twisted on me, clamping it down might help.
Another wood you could try is tree privet, apparently it works well, it's a pest plant and there's heaps of the stuff growing in the Waikato.
  
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Re: Making a bow
Reply #9 - Sep 4th, 2015 at 9:41pm
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YAHOO I'v got heaps of tree privet,guess were I'm going in the morning  Grin
  

cheers
Nigel
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Re: Making a bow
Reply #10 - Sep 5th, 2015 at 1:12pm
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stickshooter wrote on Sep 4th, 2015 at 9:41pm:
YAHOO I'v got heaps of tree privet,guess were I'm going in the morning  Grin


Yep its good bow wood Nigel jsut get it down now before she blossoms as its not good for your resporatory engine. Very light coloured Timber, go easy when shaving the growth ring.
Smiley
  

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Re: Making a bow
Reply #11 - Sep 5th, 2015 at 1:39pm
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Has anyone played with laminating uni-directional carbon with the wood. Pretty sure it would make a more powerful bow. "spring back response" would be increased a heap.
  
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Re: Making a bow
Reply #12 - Sep 5th, 2015 at 2:26pm
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I once laminated carbon uni on timber - not for a bow, but still relevant.
Because the carbon doesn't let the convex face 'stretch', all of the load goes into compressing the concave side.

The timber buckled and failed under compression, so watch out for that!
  
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Re: Making a bow
Reply #13 - Sep 5th, 2015 at 6:27pm
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yup, backed a bow with uniweft. In fact if you are going to have a go at making a bow can I suggest maple for the belly and backing it with ash. You'll get a decent bow out of this if you stick to a flat bow design. ELB designs are harder to get right starting out. When gluing go for epi glue and wrap it with old old bicycle inner tubes. Not too tight. let it set for a week and then you can shape it.
  
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Re: Making a bow
Reply #14 - Sep 7th, 2015 at 10:12pm
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Has anyone tried totara? Got a large totara that drowned a few years back and so its ready seasoned... Looks like yew in some ways so maybe????
  
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