Friday, 22 August 2014
Better Belly Billets
The sharp eyed amongst you will notice the central pith is visible in the right billet, this will only be present in the grip area of the bow when finished. Once sawn the two billets did move slightly as the internal stresses in the wood were released. E.G if I put 'em back together they touch at the tips but there's a 1/4" gap in the centre. I'll spend some time today cleaning them up to an even thickness taper and so the match nicely for thickness.
It was touch and go if I could cut the two matched billets from the one piece. I carefully planed up one edge so it would run clean and true through the bandsaw. I marked a pencil line down the middle by eye, it was pretty tight in places with no wood to spare. Hopefully the billets will be thick enough. I've been drawing out deflex reflex shapes too, it's hard to know how much will pull out during tillering, but I'm planning on going for 1" of deflex which then sweeps back to about 4" of total reflex (e.g 1" gets back to the centerline level with the grip and then 3" beyond that) . I anticipate maybe loosing 2" of reflex during tillering. That would leave the tips 1" beyond the back of the bow before the bow is braced. I can't be bothered to draw a pic... all will be revealed in the fullness of time.
All this shows how hard it is to answer the question "how long does it take to make a bow?"... well I've already sorted through loads of my Yew and roughed out 5 limb billets not to mention the time getting the wood in the first place... just as well I love doing this stuff!
I'm struggling a bit as I pulled a muscle in my lower back over a week ago, it was easing off nicely, but two days sitting at a desk at work has set it off again. It's ok if I keep moving, worse things happen so I shouldn't grumble (wouldn't get any sympathy anyhow!).