Monday, 15 April 2013

Osage Shortie & Patch Finished

I've had a busy weekend, enjoyable field shooting yesterday, doing the patch and last night doing a small repair patch on the side of 'Bonkers'.
Mick the blacksmith had noticed a splinter trying to lift on one edge of 'Bonkers' by the big hole, so he brought it back for some maintenance.
Classic case of a stitch in time saving a broken bow.

For a while I've been toying with making a native American short bow of Osage.
While I was looking through my off cuts for some Yew to patch Bonkers, I came across a 39" length of Osage which had been cut off the side of a billet from which I made my one and only Osage bow.
I set to turning it into a little bow just to give me a feel for the style and the wood. It's also my first time using wood edge grain running back to belly rather than across the bow.
Rich ('Half eye'), one of the guys from Primitive Archer gave me a few pointers an assured me that edge grain was how he did it.
It's not much to look at, almost looks like a wooden school rule !
It's come out like most beginners bows, a bit under weight, but my excuse is there wasn't much wood there in the first place and there was a thin patch in the upper (right) limb.
The top limb shows up as a bit weaker than the left in the video, but considering it was just the work of an afternoon I'm happy enough.

I'll make up some short arrows, and try it through the chrono'.
I've had it briefly back to 20" which is fairly extreme for a 39" bow, but it's only 25# draw weight.

The brace height may need to come up a tad, and I'll probably improve the tiller on the left limb.
Still an interesting afternoons work.
These bows are meant to bend in the handle and can look rather scary. I've improved the tiller since that vid, and narrowed the tips a bit too.

Here's a pic of the finished patch roughly cleaned up too.

Meanwhile over the weekend the 'Big Bow' which I finished the other week for John had an outing at a clout shoot. Here's an extract from the report he E-mailed me.

"Rained all the way there.
Assembly and First arrows at 12.15, didn’t happen until 13.00…in the rain naturally.
Just over sixty of us creep under two small pop-up awnings, both of which are leaking copiously, to drink Amontillado sherry.
Much sideways glancing at my 30” 11/32 barred fletch, modkin headed arrows.
Much glimpsing and muttering at my yew bow, but nothing said directly to me.
As I look round I realise I’m the only guy present without a laminate bow with gaily coloured ribbons slotted through the top nock and a quiver full of wooden knitting needles that have coloured stubble where the fletchings should be.
I feel like Fred Flintstone at an IT convention. 
It’s a two way shoot, 180yds end to end and we shoot in two “details”.
 As I step forward, the guy in front of me steps back from the line, looks at my gear, grins and says, “Good luck with that mate”.
I feel my blood rise a bit, over-egg the draw somewhat  and shoot my first three arrows out beyond 200yds (which surprises me, but stuns the guy and his mates behind me). The line is good, but way beyond any scoring zone. Roy told me afterwards that there were a few quiet “fuckin’ells” from where he was standing.
A sudden change of opinion from the other archers, now they be friendly!
One at a time on the walk up through the mud to collect our arrows, they’re all over to me for details of the arrows, bow and bowyer... "

1 comment:

  1. Nice email! Nothing like saying something without speaking a word!