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Short Bow (Read 2707 times)
Kick
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Short Bow
Nov 26th, 2020 at 3:25pm
 
I've really fallen in love with the idea of making a short bow, these two videos being the main inspiration:

https://youtu.be/v3j396YWnZ4

https://youtu.be/nKUmfwtiw0Y

Hopefully, (if I actually get around to it) I can post my build here. The biggest problem is going to be finding suitable wood. I guess for such a small bow, wood choice is less critical, but I would like something that will last a bit of time. I think I might try and go "full survival" and use some of the nettle cordage I have for the string. Should be plenty strong enough. Any tips and advice appreciated Cheesy One thing I would want to ask is should I go for green or dry wood? I would prefer not to cut down a living tree (mostly because that will be a lot harder to source than dead wood no one cares about...).
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You are a great guy Kick but also slightly scary at times. - Morphy
"Nothing matters, but itís perhaps more comfortable to keep calm and not interfere with other people." - H.P. Lovecraft, in a letter to Frank Belknap Long, 7 October, 1923
 
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Morphy
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Re: Short Bow
Reply #1 - Nov 26th, 2020 at 3:54pm
 
You can use hardwood boards from your local hardware store provided the grain is good.

Standing dead trees can work assuming the wood is not decayed in any way. This often depends on the wood species as some are extraordinarily resistant to rot while others can lose strength even before looking decayed. You will know it's not good wood when it explodes at full draw. Dead giveaway.

A wooden short bow will always be far less efficient than a longer bow assuming both are made right. That being said they are an absolute blast to make and use and deadly in the right hands. I have taken short sinew backed bows to ridiculous extremes to see how far I can push them efficiency-wise and sometimes they will just amaze you.

Look for hardwoods and especially with a first time short bow consider backing.
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Mersa
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Re: Short Bow
Reply #2 - Nov 26th, 2020 at 4:56pm
 
Kick , I promise you that if you contact a local tree company in your area and ask for a specific tree that grows locally not only will you be able to get a nice staff but you will also make something from the waste of the tree removal. You will likely source it within a week or so . you could list some of the trees that are local to your area and your interested in and leave a number, they will likely call you with the goods . Free of charge. Thatís where Iíd start for remorse free free wood.

As for short bows I love them , I have a 48Ē bear supermag .
Morphy also helped me build ďslapstickĒ a very short primitive selfbow that spots surprisingly well for a short stick, Iím currently aiming to harvest a rabbit with slapstick but havenít been hunting a lot lately as itís almost summer and the beach takes priority.

Looking forward to seeing your progress
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Re: Short Bow
Reply #3 - Nov 27th, 2020 at 12:44am
 
Kick wrote on Nov 26th, 2020 at 3:25pm:
I've really fallen in love with the idea of making a short bow, these two videos being the main inspiration:

https://youtu.be/v3j396YWnZ4

https://youtu.be/nKUmfwtiw0Y

Hopefully, (if I actually get around to it) I can post my build here. The biggest problem is going to be finding suitable wood. I guess for such a small bow, wood choice is less critical, but I would like something that will last a bit of time. I think I might try and go "full survival" and use some of the nettle cordage I have for the string. Should be plenty strong enough. Any tips and advice appreciated Cheesy One thing I would want to ask is should I go for green or dry wood? I would prefer not to cut down a living tree (mostly because that will be a lot harder to source than dead wood no one cares about...).


Definitely dry wood.  Green wood will quickly take a set that robs you of most of the power in the bow.

See if your local library has The Traditional Boyer's Bible or can get it from inter-library loan.  If you have money, you can also get them on Amazon.
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Re: Short Bow
Reply #4 - Nov 27th, 2020 at 1:41am
 
You will know it's not good wood when it explodes at full draw. Dead giveaway.
Morphy wrote on Nov 26th, 2020 at 3:54pm:
You will know it's not good wood when it explodes at full draw. Dead giveaway.


This is the best method to determine whether or not wood is bow-worthy. I trusted this method exclusively from the time I was 9 until about 18.  Haven't made any bows lately, but I think I'll probably go back to this method for my next bow. Smiley
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Kick
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Re: Short Bow
Reply #5 - Nov 27th, 2020 at 1:43am
 
Damn I love this forum. Thank you all! This is exactly the advice and help I was hoping for Cheesy Now let's see what I can come up with...
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You are a great guy Kick but also slightly scary at times. - Morphy
"Nothing matters, but itís perhaps more comfortable to keep calm and not interfere with other people." - H.P. Lovecraft, in a letter to Frank Belknap Long, 7 October, 1923
 
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vetryan15
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Re: Short Bow
Reply #6 - Nov 27th, 2020 at 4:11am
 
Definitely take all this advice.† MORPHY has pretty much helped everyone start a bow, even mine. If u need some websites for pointer. Let me know. I have found a ton of information.† I like to see everyone else technique.
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Morphy
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Re: Short Bow
Reply #7 - Nov 27th, 2020 at 4:38am
 
IronGoober wrote on Nov 27th, 2020 at 1:41am:
You will know it's not good wood when it explodes at full draw. Dead giveaway.
Morphy wrote on Nov 26th, 2020 at 3:54pm:
You will know it's not good wood when it explodes at full draw. Dead giveaway.


This is the best method to determine whether or not wood is bow-worthy. I trusted this method exclusively from the time I was 9 until about 18.† Haven't made any bows lately, but I think I'll probably go back to this method for my next bow. Smiley


It's never let me down yet.  Wink
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Kick
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Re: Short Bow
Reply #8 - Nov 27th, 2020 at 5:36am
 
Morphy wrote on Nov 26th, 2020 at 3:54pm:
You will know it's not good wood when it explodes at full draw. Dead giveaway.

I think this shows how bad the wood that I picked out is...

I went today and grabbed some suitable size pieces of wood. No idea what types, I feel I can get pickier when I actually know what I'm doing. I got one dead piece and one that was technically green but the short tree had fallen recently and was crushed under a larger tree. I didn't feel guilty taking that one.

I started on the dead wood piece and I was wondering the whole time I was working it "Is this one too far gone?". Got enough material off it to gently pull on it over my knee, just to see what sort of flex it had. The answer was no flex at all. Snapped clean in two with almost no force put on it. Well at least there wasn't a sharp arrow anywhere near it when it did that.

Round two: Green wood piece. Much more promising and it was really starting to look bow shaped. I managed to flex it ever so slightly and it was nice and springy though had a long way to go.Then my knife cut a little too deep in one section and created a hinge. I managed to get the hinge worked out though and it was looking pretty good. It was really looking like I was going to have a usable b- SNAP. Right where the hinge had been. It was around the same area as a knot so I think it was just too thin there for it to handle with the wood also not being ideal.

Even though I "failed" It was really pretty fun and I learnt a lot. What exactly have I learned? Take more time with it, get better wood. Cheesy
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You are a great guy Kick but also slightly scary at times. - Morphy
"Nothing matters, but itís perhaps more comfortable to keep calm and not interfere with other people." - H.P. Lovecraft, in a letter to Frank Belknap Long, 7 October, 1923
 
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Kick
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Re: Short Bow
Reply #9 - Nov 27th, 2020 at 6:37am
 
I've put photos of the breaks up on Instagram:

https://www.instagram.com/kicktheotter/
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You are a great guy Kick but also slightly scary at times. - Morphy
"Nothing matters, but itís perhaps more comfortable to keep calm and not interfere with other people." - H.P. Lovecraft, in a letter to Frank Belknap Long, 7 October, 1923
 
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Re: Short Bow
Reply #10 - Nov 27th, 2020 at 6:43am
 
U will break a few before u get a 'usable` bow.  My 3rd attempt got me a bow,  unfortunately its only a 8lbs pull. Grin. I might be able to take down chipmunk
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Kick
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Re: Short Bow
Reply #11 - Nov 27th, 2020 at 7:29am
 
Surely it's a record though to break two bows within 2 hours Cheesy
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You are a great guy Kick but also slightly scary at times. - Morphy
"Nothing matters, but itís perhaps more comfortable to keep calm and not interfere with other people." - H.P. Lovecraft, in a letter to Frank Belknap Long, 7 October, 1923
 
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Re: Short Bow
Reply #12 - Nov 27th, 2020 at 7:52am
 
That is fast
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Kick
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Re: Short Bow
Reply #13 - Nov 27th, 2020 at 8:10am
 
Quite possibly part of the problem Cheesy The first one really did break quickly though. I should have checked it a bit more carefully I think.
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You are a great guy Kick but also slightly scary at times. - Morphy
"Nothing matters, but itís perhaps more comfortable to keep calm and not interfere with other people." - H.P. Lovecraft, in a letter to Frank Belknap Long, 7 October, 1923
 
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Morphy
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Re: Short Bow
Reply #14 - Nov 27th, 2020 at 8:31am
 
Kick wrote on Nov 27th, 2020 at 5:36am:
Morphy wrote on Nov 26th, 2020 at 3:54pm:
You will know it's not good wood when it explodes at full draw. Dead giveaway.

I think this shows how bad the wood that I picked out is...

I went today and grabbed some suitable size pieces of wood. No idea what types, I feel I can get pickier when I actually know what I'm doing. I got one dead piece and one that was technically green but the short tree had fallen recently and was crushed under a larger tree. I didn't feel guilty taking that one.

I started on the dead wood piece and I was wondering the whole time I was working it "Is this one too far gone?". Got enough material off it to gently pull on it over my knee, just to see what sort of flex it had. The answer was no flex at all. Snapped clean in two with almost no force put on it. Well at least there wasn't a sharp arrow anywhere near it when it did that.

Round two: Green wood piece. Much more promising and it was really starting to look bow shaped. I managed to flex it ever so slightly and it was nice and springy though had a long way to go.Then my knife cut a little too deep in one section and created a hinge. I managed to get the hinge worked out though and it was looking pretty good. It was really looking like I was going to have a usable b- SNAP. Right where the hinge had been. It was around the same area as a knot so I think it was just too thin there for it to handle with the wood also not being ideal.

Even though I "failed" It was really pretty fun and I learnt a lot. What exactly have I learned? Take more time with it, get better wood. Cheesy


I'm very excited for you Kick. Don't ever forget this time when you know almost nothing because if you continue with the process you will look back on this period of constantly discovering new information and skills with great fondness some day.


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"I think this guy is the king of trolls of the forum, he waited 16 years just to say this. please pay your respects in an orderly fashion."-Sarosh
 
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