PETE WARD

"WELCOME TO MY OUTDOOR WORLD"



GEAR REVIEW
 
Link to catalogueFloor Tillered Hickory Stave
 

Jim Boswell
8120 Parke Creek Rd.
Ellensburg Wa. 98926
Tel-509-968-3051
www.rudderbows.com
 
e-mail lavonne@elltel.net
 
Important :This is not a "HOW TO"  on building  bows.
 
Review:
 
 This is a diferent kind of review where I am the person building a bow. This review is geared to the  person that wants to try their hand at building a simple Hickory bow with minimal tools ,and if you are like me virtualy no experience at crafting a bow.
 Jim and I had discussed this type of review and we chose the basic Hickory floor tillered stave with a linen backing as a good one for the complete novice to attempt. The initial selection of the board is done for you, and the roughed out shape has been done. The grip is located but untoutched, and limbs are at the point where they will just begin to bend when pressed against the floor.  At this stage the stave roughly resembels a bow but is far from being shootable.
 
 My goal was to turn the very basic shaped stave into a bow that I could shoot and confirm or deny that the U build it kits are actually capable of producing a reasonable bow by a beginner. They are.
 In doing this review I learned a lot of the basics that go into bows and how they are made. The amount of wood working skill needed is very limited, or we would not be reading this.
 The tools I needed and used are the most basic .
Here is a list of what I used to make a shooting bow that has mild hand shock and a nice draw.
  1. Ferriers rasp
  2. Body rasp
  3. Nicholson #49 and #50 Rasp
  4. Cabinet scraper
  5. Bowyers edge scraper
  6. palm sander and paper
  7. glue
  8.  3 x 3" "C" clamps
  9. Tiller tree {I made it in 5 minutes}
  10. Tiller string made from Nylon cord
  11. Bow String
  12. Stain & sealer
  13. I recommend the Video for this project. It helped me.

The stave arrived with the linen strip of backing and a simple written instruction booklet, as well as a DVD that Jim and his friends produced called "Bowmaking the easy way". The DVD is a basic simple to follow light hearted tutorial that I found very usefull. To see someone demonstrate how to tiller is far better than to read about it and try to follow written directions. It is functional and saved a lot of grief for a beginner like me. I think the video is worth getting .

This is the second bow I have made so I did have a bit of knowledge, but I want to emphasize a "BIT".

 The first thing I did was to sand the back side of the bow to clean it and then apply the tite Bond carpenters glue and linen backing strip. When this was dry a second coat of glue was worked in and the stave was left for a couple days to dry completely.

I decided I wanted a higher type grip so I glued on a piece of Bloodwood slat and a block of Hickory to the handle area that was already located.

 The next order of work as I recall was to start reducing the stave and to locate and file in the nocks. I don't have a suitable vice to use , so a plane was not used. It will make the job easy if you can clamp the stave and plane down the thickness. Instedd I did the bulk of the wood reduction with the ferriers rasp. This cuts fast and without much effort.

 As we reduce the limb thickness we want to work both limbs and go slow. Take a bit off and bend the limb to see where hinges and stiff spots  are forming and work them out.It only took a couple reductions and I could start to see the limbs taking shape, so I made up a quick tiller tree. This is just a simple 2X6 screwed to a stud with a ledge on the top and an eyebolt at the bottom.

 The advantage of the tree is that you can stand back and look at each limb as you go about making it bend more and removing the stiff spots and hinges. All of this is explained in the booklet and the DVD.  A hinge is a place in the limb where it bends more than the rest, and a stiff spot is where the limb is not bending . We want an even bend all allong the limb.

 As we remove the excess material to make the limb bend we need to draw the bow a small amount each time and look again for the areas that need work. We also repeat the draw a few times as we go. Start off by drawing it only a few inches and slowly work the limb as we go. The fibers need to be flexed as we go to allow them to bend and not break.  The Video details this better.

 This is a project that you do not have to do at one time. You can work at it for a bit and return when the time is right.

 Progress seems to come fast, and it is not too long before I had a resemblance to a bow and I was able to switch from the tiller string to a real string. The stave is 72" long and I twisted up a 69" string that could be twisted more as the bow is completed. The final length I used is 68" and this gives me a 6 1/2" brace height.

 A band saw would make cutting the handle width and arrow shelf easier and faster, but I do not have one so I did this part with the Ferrier rasp. It took about an hour to have the handle cut to rough shape and the arrow shelf cut in. Now it looked like a bow and I snuck a couple shots from it.

 At this stage you have a shooting bow that you have drawn to your draw length, but it is pretty crude still.

 This is where I started using the cabinet scrapers and Bowyers edge to fine tune the tiller and make a presentable surface to finish. It doesn't take long now and the scrapers make quick work of getting out the small hinges and flat spots that might remain. At every stage I was going back to the tiller tree to look for the areas that might need work and to make sure the scraping did not change the bend I had in the limbs.

 The end result is a bow that draws smooth out to 28" and has reasonable performance at a very low cost. The effort required to build this bow was little, and I think that a project like this is a good place to start for those that want to learn to build a bow. I got a lot of satisfaction from this review and what I was able to accomplish. 

 With what I have learned from this is that building a simple bow is easy. It does not take great woodworking skill or a lot of tools. For a father and son project this would be a good one.

I ended up with a bow that My Grand Children should have fun with. The reason it is such light weight is that I had a runaway with the big rasp and dug a deep gouge in 1 side of the top limb. To save the stave I had to drasticly reduce it's size in thickness and width. 

Lesson here : Pay Attention!!

 I will not go into a lot of chrono testing with this bow. I will do a couple shots , and a draw force curve. I do not have any arrows that are spined for this light weight bow, yet.

AMO Draw length

 Draw weight

Arrow gr

 FPS

Arrow gr

FPS 

Arrow gr

FPS

 

 

  0

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  5

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  6

 6 1/2brace

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  7 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  8 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  9

  2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  10

  4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  11

  6

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  12

  7

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  13

  9

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  14

  11

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  15

  12

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  16

  14

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  17

  15

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  18

  17

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  19

  18

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  20

  20

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  21

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  22

  23

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  23

  25

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  24

  27

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  25

  29

GR

FPS

 GR

FPS 

  GR

FPS 

 GR

 FPS        

26"

  32

 

  

 

 

 

27"

  34

  325

 {9.5GR/#}

149

  576

{16.9gr/#}

125

 

 

 

28"

  36

 

 

 

 

  

 

 

 

 

Jim at Rudderbows will help you out if you are unsure of anything along the way . Do not hesitate to contact him if you find yourself in need of help.

I now feel more confident to tackle a couple other staves I have , as I work up enough knowledge and courage to attempt a Character Osage stave I was given. I want to make a few more bows and gain a lot more knowledge before I attempt the Osage stave.

 

Pete ward

"Welcome to my outdoor world"