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Thread: Making a Bow

  1. #1
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    Default Making a Bow

    Some friends and I were messing around outside and decided to try and make a bow out of a tree branch and some 550 (survival) cord. It worked out alright but we know it could have been better. Anybody have any suggestions on how we can make a bow to play around with?

  2. #2
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    Default bowyers bible

    buy a copy of the boyers bible, it has all you need to know about makin a bow, just about to try it myself

  3. #3
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    I've made many a stick boy from the time I was six years old on. They can be as simple as a stick with a string tied to either end, or take many pain staking hours to create. Bowers bible volume one has a chapter in it over creating wood bows out of just about anything from hickory pick handels, raton broom handels, hard wood dowels etc etc. Worth picking up.

    I made a realy nice self wood flat bow out of Osage orange a couple of years ago. I used a book called "Hunting the Osage Bow" written by author/boyer Dean Torges as a guide.

    Good luck!

  4. #4

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    Dean also has a video, crafting the laminated longbow. Good stuff!

    Three rivers or kustom king are the places I would go to for resource materials. Three rivers has it all, videos, books etc.

    If you are in the valley, try and get in touch with traditional archers of alaska. You are not the only primitive minded guy out there and I'm sure they can point you to someone near you where ever you live in the state.

    I've tried out of birch however blew both attempts with a loud pop.

    IMHO, you're best bet is to spend 40 bucks on a hickory stave from a fella named Dan Balyzak (not sure if I spelled his last name right). You can find him in the classifieds in primitive archery magazine. Also another good mag to get.

    Two other mags is the bowyers journal and traditional archery magazine though the latter has less and less how to's these days.

    If you're in the fairbanks northpole area I can get you touch with some selfbow folks though I'm sure you know them. I've tinkered with the subject and am no expert though I do have a ton of the books and videos and am into collection old mags and books on the subject.

    Lastly you could also go to homedepot or lowes and find the right hickory board and go to it. This is covered in the bowyers bible's 1 2 and 3. I would however back it with rawhide or a hickory backing on a hickory board. Dan Perry one of the current big names in flight shooting and holder of some records and titles in the subject uses this very recipe for his top end flight bows. You could also do a boo backed osage or yew or....well you get the idea.

    The info is limitless. Look up primitive archery on line, you'll get more then you bargined for.

    Oh before I forget. Try posting some of these questions on tradgang.com for bow building info and more stickbow folks. Some big named bowyers from past and present are there, you'll get all you bargined for and more. Not deriving from this site, however there is no trad forum and very few trad folks on here to help you in your path.

    Good luck!

  5. #5

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    forgot, depending on how far you want to take this. Check this site out for boo backed osage blanks. Comes with a video and with a few tools you'll have a real hunting bow if you want, or just a plinker either way it'll be worth something and last quite some time!

    http://www.dryadbows.com/

  6. #6
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    Thanks for all the info you guys were able to give me....my buddies and i, just yesterday decided to have to contest to see who could build the best all around bow. So i think you guys just gave me a one up on them. Thanks again.

  7. #7

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    by the dryad blank and don't let them know!!! I have three of their blanks that arrived before I left last summer, they are nice!!!

    Or better yet, find a pair of osage boards that are clean, and get a bamboo piece glued onto it. Follow Deans video. Again prestola!

    Or that hickory stave though not as easy to tiller or make then these boo backed bows.

    I need to edit here. Deans torges's video is crafting the bamboo backed osage longbow. Not crafting the laminated longbow as found in three rivers. Mike stevens and another MIke (both live in Anchorage AK) did this video. It's a great video however it's all glass bows. Btw, if you want to build a glass bow, Mike Stevens in the man!!! Great guy and that is a great video, they show how easy it CAN be.

  8. #8

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    Make your way over here to Eielson. Talk to Pete at the wood skills hobby shop. He's made several bows, and holds a class on making longbows. He'll get you squared away with what wood to use. They have all the necessary jigs and know-how.

  9. #9
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    Default

    Google stick bow, there are plenty of great articles out there. If you want to start out on the cheap, go to home depot and sort through the red oak boards to find one with decent grain flow. They'll only be a few out of the stack with such grain. Ripped to 1 3/4" wide and 68-72" long you can make a fine 50# bow. The limbs will end up being tillered down to a bit over 1/2" thick. You can easily bang one out in a day, with some practice in an evening.

    You'll learn the basics of tillering, and be out less than $10 in lumber, most likely the board you find will yield two bows. Get a tillering string from 3 rivers, and once you figure out what length string you need you can order one, or make up your own endless bow string.

  10. #10

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    If you need a tillering string let me know I can build you one. You'll need to learn to tie a bowyers knot or timberhitch pretty simple. You will want whats called a long string, basically a bow stringer with 2 cups one on each end to get you to start bending. You will however want to get off the longstring and onto the tillering string as soon as possible.

    I also have a bunch of b50 strings in a bag, new strings that didnt match up length wise to what I was building or extras for bows I no longer have or shoot, if someones looking for something let me know. THere maybe a few dynaflight strings in there also.

  11. #11

    Default Board bows are a good option

    If you can find the right board, they can make a fairly quick bow. I've made a number of bows out of staves and it's still my preferred method. However, last year I made a gorgeous hickory-backed hickory board bow with a cherry handle as a raffle item for RMEF. Man it was tough giving that one away That was my first board bow and I was surprised how easy it was to make. I have an Osage orange recurve in the works now, I'll post pictures when I'm done. If you need any advice in the building process, I might be able to help. The Bowyers Bible series are probably the best source out there.

    If anyone is looking for bow staves, I may be able to help there too. I just moved up to Alaska back in May and had the moving company move about 25 staves for me. They weren't too happy about it, but I knew how much it would cost to have one shipped up here if I were to get one on the internet. Send me a PM if you're interested.

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