Monday, 11 January 2016

Starting on Two Bows

I'm going to be doing two bows for some friends of mine, one is an American Flatbow (AFB) style self yew bow for Mick the Blacksmith from some wood he got for me last year, the other is a warbow of about 125# for my mate JT (as shown shooting warbows on my Youtube channel)
A couple of very interesting and different builds.

For the AFB I'll be roughly basing the dimensions on a modern Andy Soars bow (laminated with fibreglass or carbon fibre) obviously the limbs will be substantially thicker being a self bow and I'll be maximising the working limb length. I'll take some pics and some measurements from the bow first, then I'll rough out a stave.

Meanwhile I've been roughing out the Yew stave for the Warbow. The stave is a good looking one with fine grain and a clan sapwood layer which has been bought on line from the USA and it's 80" long with a little natural reflex.
With a warbow they are so heavy and difficult to get bending I try to get the roughing out fairly close so that I can get some sort of movement on the tiller when I first put it up.
But where do I start? I cheat!
I use the Mary Rose book "Weapons of Warre" as a start point by finding a bow of the same length and taking the published depth/width dimensions as a guide. I'm aiming for 125-130# and the Mary Rose bow would probably be heavier than that. I also make sure I round up the dimensions, allow extra width and saw well outside the pencil line which I draw on the bow, so I should be ok weight wise.
It's a fine balance between being too cautious and having vast quantities of wood to remove and being too cocky and being under weight before it's even braced!
I'll be doing some video which will get posted up in the next few days.

I had hoped to take some video of me shooting the Yew primitive, but it's raining and I've packed it up to be shipped off to Cumbria. I don't usually ship bows, I like to make 'em for people who can visit or are local so they can try 'em out first.
Sorry no pictures today, but there should be some interesting stuff over the next few weeks.

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