Most other maples will make a bow, some are excellent. Silver maple and boxelder, though, are awfully brittle, light, and weak- very similar to willow or aspen. Wouldn't say you couldn't make a bow out of it, but it would be awfully iffy. I've got a couple silver maples in my yard, and every time it comes a breeze, the whole yard is full of broken limbs. Like Dana said, you can't hardly even burn the stuff, it's like cardboard.