First self bow help (Update, Finished with Video!)

Discussion in 'Archery' started by Peter M, Dec 17, 2017.

  1. trentu

    trentu Guide

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    I bought a pin dryness tester at Menards for $15.00. Great tool when making bows. If you put some small height blocks under the tips you can give the bow some reflex while it's drying.
     
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  2. kevseadog

    kevseadog Scout

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    Great thread! Been bow making for years and have to echo some comments above. Definitely get the Traditional Bowyers Bible (at least vol 1 to start). You can remove the knocks and re-carve them to adjust the knocks on the bow to get the string centered (or even steam bend it to straighten the limb). We did this with a dogwood bow we carved the other day with all stone tools. I would also suggest lashing some string around the base of the knocks to prevent splitting. The wood should not be drawn until fully seasoned and tillered or you risk compromising and hinging the limbs. Did you work the back or just the belly? In general it is best to avoid carving the bow back unless you are planning on covering it with sinew or rawhide. I coat my staves with solid CRISCO and let it dry in doors. This keeps the wood seasoning from the inside out rather than outside in (prevents cracking)!
     
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  3. kevseadog

    kevseadog Scout

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    Peter, you may also want to narrow the upper limbs below the knock to reduce limb shock which will make the bow shoot faster and improve accuracy. By narrowing the limb tips you will also be reducing wood mass there so it will bend a bit more in those areas. This may then require a bit more tinkering to get your tiller to a perfect arc. Good luck and have fun!
     
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  4. Peter M

    Peter M Plant Nerd and Scatologist Supporter Bushclass III Bushclass I Bushclass II

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    Ok guys, thanks to @OrienM who sent me a copy of TBB Vol1 and i finished reading it.

    Next I been drying my bow indoors the way it was, and clamped to a solid board. I finished refining the bow quite a bit today, i thinned down the tops of the bow limbs width wise, and then i took a lot off the belly tillering. I strung it up with 2 strand dracon 14 strands total. I redid the noches as well so they are correct and beefy.

    It came out at 64" Long 29Lbs, at 27 Inches of draw. And it shots very very nice and straight. I cant detect very much hand shock and it throws the arrow smoothly.

    It ended up a lot weaker than i would of liked, but the main issue i figure from reading TBB vol1 is that i didnt make the bow wide enough. At the widest in limbs its 1 1/2 inches. My next one of cherry will be in the 2 in to 1 7/8 range atleast.

    I made a quick video of me at about 7 paces or more shoting at a stump! First video i have made and posted on youtube.

     
  5. Peter M

    Peter M Plant Nerd and Scatologist Supporter Bushclass III Bushclass I Bushclass II

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    The tiller isn't perfect, I took a bit to much off the mid belly of lower limb, but it shots nice and I don't want to lose any more poundage, so I'm okay with it.

    IMG_8500.JPG IMG_8502.JPG IMG_8505.JPG IMG_8534.JPG IMG_8583.JPG
     
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  6. OrienM

    OrienM Guide

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    Nice work! The tiller looks just fine to me. It seems like it's shooting where you're looking, so you must have even got the spine of your arrows matched up pretty well.:dblthumb:

    You've inspired me actually, I went out a few days ago and cut a juniper stave to make a bow myself.
     
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  7. okapimike

    okapimike Scout Bushclass I

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    Great job on the bow.

    You have some nice tools too, that stack of books in the first post is literally my amazon wishlist.
     
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  8. Peter M

    Peter M Plant Nerd and Scatologist Supporter Bushclass III Bushclass I Bushclass II

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    yeah awesome man! Im pretty hooked right now haha, Im looking around for some nice trees to cut down and try and season some staves properly. I have a white ash in the back yard tht about 6 inches in diameter and really straight, and i might try to rough out the shape and season it like that too!

    From what i been reading some juniper bows can be pretty sweet! And they are kick butt when sinew backed.


    amazing books! life time of projects, im constantly flipping through the pages for my next projects. Defiantly worth the investment. Dave Wescotts are my favorite if you had to choice two for a start.

    And now that i finished TBB vol1 i would recommend it to anyone who has ever thought about bow making. really good stories too about those guys hunting with them.
     
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  9. Peter M

    Peter M Plant Nerd and Scatologist Supporter Bushclass III Bushclass I Bushclass II

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    oh i will have to invest in one of those! and i was going to recurve the tips, but in my head is a Cherokee style bow which were not. But next bow i just want it to shoot like 50lbs and shoot sweet! So i think ill try and reflex it a bit.
     
  10. Peter M

    Peter M Plant Nerd and Scatologist Supporter Bushclass III Bushclass I Bushclass II

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    thanks for the narrowing tips i read about that quite a bit in the book and it was one of the first changes i made.
     
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  11. Duncsquatch

    Duncsquatch Heed the call. Supporter

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    That is a great first bow! I have broke two so far. But my attempts have not been that serious.
     
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  12. kevseadog

    kevseadog Scout

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    That bow is looking awesome man! A hell of a lot prettier than my first bow that's for sure! That vid was great too! That was super cool of OrienM to kick down the TBB to you! You have already put that knowledge to good use!

    Here's a little one of me making a shooting an acacia self bow a few years back! Hope you like it!

     
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  13. Seahunter

    Seahunter Scout Bushclass I

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    Your bow looks pretty good and the tiller is pretty even too. My first bow came out to about the same weight and for the same reason.

    @sidmand has spot on advice. My brother @kevseadog has built a lot of bows and has learned the hard way what you can and can't get away with.

    You may want to cut some green staves now, paint wood glue on the ends and squirrel them away for a year so you have dry wood to work with down the road. It is really frustrating when you rough out a bow from a perfect green stave and it checks. When I build a bow I replace the seasoned stave with a few other green staves so there will be seasoned wood to work with the next time I get the urge to build a bow. I have roughed out bows from green wood and let them season then finished them a few weeks later, but I lost a lot to checks.

    If you want a bow in an hour or two a board bow (oak, maple, ash, hickory ect. lumber) is worth building. They don't have the same soul as a bow you cut out of the forest, but you will learn a lot from building it and you will have a very functional hunting weight bow when you are done. If you follow the method they lay out in TBB they are very fast to build. I don't like the way my board bows look, but they shoot great.

    I only work the belly of the bow unless it is osage and I try to avoid osage because it is beyond my skill level right now.

    TBB vol 2-vol 3 are just as good as vol 1.

    How much set did your bow end up taking?
     
  14. Peter M

    Peter M Plant Nerd and Scatologist Supporter Bushclass III Bushclass I Bushclass II

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    Dude awesome video! That turned out to be a awesome shooter with such a simple method! Drums were also killer! Thanks for sharing man
     
  15. Peter M

    Peter M Plant Nerd and Scatologist Supporter Bushclass III Bushclass I Bushclass II

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    My hesitation with getting staves and drying is we live in a 700 sqft house with no garage or shed, and we use to live in a house twice that size with a two car garage, so we have like no room and the wife yells whenever I drag logs into the house haha.

    But I do like the idea of getting a stock pile right now and then keeping it going indefinitely.

    Also my bow did take some set, but it totally happened when I was firing it super green and with way to much wood on the limbs. Since it's been seasoned and tillered properly, it hasn't changed. I'll try and get a picture up soon
     
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  16. Seahunter

    Seahunter Scout Bushclass I

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    I hear you. I live in an 850 sqft house. I had logs under the bed, in the closet, and under the couch. My wife wasn't a fan, especially when she stubbed her toe on them. I probably only used 1/4 of what I cut because I cut stuff that had problems in the wood like propeller twist.
     
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  17. Peter M

    Peter M Plant Nerd and Scatologist Supporter Bushclass III Bushclass I Bushclass II

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    Thats awesome man, Ok ok ill cut some trees!
     
  18. JVS

    JVS Tracker

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    Love your bow.
    I have the same problem with off centre bow string on my latest bow.
    You could fix it by heating you bow and the bending it.
    I put some olive oil on the part where i want to bend it and heat it up over fire.
    You got the right tempurature when the wood is hot on the touch so you can not hold it. Take care not to burn it. Then stick it somewhere to widge it and apply pressure and let it cool. Keep repeating till you are happy.
    But.... most importing is mentioned before, dont fix it if it ain't broken. On my latest bow the string is really of centre but my first few arrows to shoot in my bow the arrows landed all on target and the bow is silent. So i am not going to change it.

    I see that you are shooting arrows with hard plastic feathers. This will throw of you arrow when it hits you bow as it leaves. This is why they shoot wooden arrows with real feathers as they are able to compress as they hit your bow.

    I wish you good luck and fun with your new addiction :)
     

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