Monday, 24 August 2015

Elm Warbow II

I've picked up the Elm Warbow (mk2) again. The aim is to make a bow of about 120# to shoot a long way for my mate JT. The stave isn't perfect, but then wood rarely is. I'll model it largely on "Dennis Elmbow" the mk1 which lobbed an arrow over 300 yards.
The wood is from a piece of Elm give to me back in July 2013, from the same log as the mk 1 Elm bow.

I'd already roughed the stave out as close to dimensions as I dared on the bandsaw, so I filed in a couple of nocks grooves, put on a long string and winched it back, 90# and then up to 100#.
It flexes ok. It looks a bit squareish, but that's down to the shape of the stave, very flat or even slighty reflexed over the central section, the a slight deflex dip and a reflexed outer 1/3.
It's a nice symmetrical shape which will help the tillering but will always be in danger of looking a bit hinged in the middle of each limb. I won't try to straighten those kinks because of the belly knot.

Talking of which, I've left a little extra width there for now and excavated the loose wood, it looked solid to the casual glance, but a bit of a probing showed it to be crumbly stuff.
Once I've got it braced and flexing fairly evenly I'll heavily heat treat belly. That begs the question, what to do with the excavated knot in the mean time? If I fill it, the heat treating will degrade any epoxy based filling, but I don't want to tiller it without the knot filled!
Maybe fill it, heat treat it and then re-do the filling... I dunno, play it by the seat of my pants.

Update:- Having used the spokeshave to tidy the belly and take down some stiff areas I've flexed it some more on the tiller, nearly back to brace height.
Inspecting that knot hole revealed more punky wood, the flexing had loosened it. I excavated it some more and it's just about right through to the back! It just shows how deceptive knots can be. I'm not digging into fresh wood , just picking out crumbly old knot wood. The spike on that probe is 1" long.

I need to sort out my Yew staves too, but up and down the step ladder heaving it all about is a bit too energetic at the moment. Hopefully I'll be back to full energy levels in a day or so.
Not sure what I've got in the way of full length staves and what draw weight they'll make. I know there's not many good clean straight ones.

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