The Yew from last June has yielded a good few pairs of billets , staves for a couple of primitives and one, maybe two very challenging longbow staves.
Most of the billets are just random pieces selected to roughly match dimension and shape. I've tried to cut one half log to give matched billets, but once sawn, the tension in the wood made it spring open at the middle forming a half inch gap... this shows why you need to rough wood down to size in stages, it can shift as you remove material.
I've not done matched billets before so it is a good opportunity, however, I think I'll probably only manage to get a lightish weight bow.
You can see I've sketched in the cross section of the limbs on the end, not much spare wood to play with, and I wish I hadn't trimmed it so tight first pass through the saw as I may have removed valuable sapwood. Again another reason for roughing out on the cautious side.
No point moaning tho', got to work with the wood you have. Its like the oft' asked question.
What's the best wood for making bows?... The bit you have!
The other pic shows a very challenging stave, the curve is such that I can't just cut it into two straight halves and then splice them together straight. It's one of the few full length pieces so I'll rough it down and see if I can steam straighten it.
It illustrates the problem of finding a decent Yew stave.