Everything an amateur bowyer does to turn a log into a bow throughout the year.
Making bows, longbows and primitive bows with all the tips, tricks and problems.
Thursday, 5 July 2012
Looks a Little Bit Like a Bow!
I grasped the nettle and got it brace height. I had file in an extra pair of nock grooves to use a stringer to overcome the huge reflex whist stringing it.
It told me a lot, and it looked hideous, the natural dip of deflex looked like an awful hinge and the other limb due to the greater reflex looked too stiff, but it got there and it flexed.
A bit of work to try and even it up a bit has got me to 40# at 17" from a reasonable brace.
Ok it still looks ugly as sin, but it's no good tillering to a 'perfect' arc of a circle. The tillering has got to reflect the unbraced shape, which is V difficult to do.
To help in my quest I bough a packet of blackboard chalk and gave the garage wall a brushing down, so I can chalk round the bow to see how it's moving.
As I was winching it back to 40# there were horrid cracking and creaking noises, I could actually see the bark lifting just left of the handle, which is great as it shows I'm getting some bend there (you can see it in the pic if you click on it to see it full size).
It's taken a good bit of set now, probably due to my rough handling of it, but still has a hint of reflex.
You may notice, I have it on the tiller the other way round this time, I'm still uncertain as to which will be the top limb.
I shall get my chalk out now and proceed with a bit more subtlety. My rough handed aproach to heaving back and bracing it was about the only way I'd be able to see what was happening, I was sort of daring the bow to fail or behave itself.
I'll probably be updating this later in the day as it's only 9:45 on a sunny morning.
I've decided the limb with the deflex kink will be the bottom limb (which I will put to the left next time it's on the tiller). I narrowly avoided wrecking the whole thing, I'd done some more and put it on the tiller, I knelt down to wind the winch and watch the scale which meant I wasn't looking at the bow. It seemed to be coming back further and further without the draw weight getting to 40#. The warning bell in my head went off and I glanced up at the bow. Arrrgghhh, the top limb (on the left in the pics above) was bending hugely just out from the grip (you can see it's weak in the pics) and the other limb wansn't moving much. I quickly let it down and I've set to weakening the other limb.
I don't think any damage was done, but its a reminder that lower weigh bows are better pulled on the rope rather than the winch, that way I can watch both bow and scale.
It's looking ok now, I shall stich on some tip overlays to allow me to adust the nock position and thus the string line. I'm hoping it will reach 40# at 20", dunno if there'll be any reflex left. I could always heat treat it to gain a few pounds, but I rather like the simple approach.