Author Topic: Hazel staff still green in center -> more waiting?  (Read 707 times)

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Offline Sir Failalot

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Hazel staff still green in center -> more waiting?
« on: November 03, 2017, 04:57:37 am »
I am reading in this forum since a few months and finally got my hands on a few hazel trees on October 7th. I cut 4 staves, kept them at about 17 degree celsius and weighted them every 3 days. They did not loose mass since a week so i thought they might be ready now. I started working on one that was about 4.4 cm (~1 3/4") diameter in the middle. I did not bring it in rough form before drying because I did'nt want to risk cutting too much off. As you might guess, this will be my first bow.

Now to my question: I got my bow in a rough shape now and reduced the belly to a point where I can see the center of the stave. The stave is still green there. Does that mean that I should wait a little more? I dont want to risk string follow by tillering the bow in that condition.

Picture:


https://picload.org/view/drddrapi/wp_20171103_13_59_15_pro.jpg.html

Thank you very much in advance :)
« Last Edit: November 03, 2017, 05:15:50 am by Sir Failalot »

Offline penderbender

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Re: Hazel staff still green in center -> more waiting?
« Reply #1 on: November 03, 2017, 06:24:28 am »
It hasn't even been a month and it was full diameter. Now that you have it roughed out, I would wait some more and continue to monitor the weight. I have had some hazel that was dry and seasoned a year that still has a green color to it. It shouldn't matter. Wait a little more just to be sure. Cheers- Brendan

Offline Sir Failalot

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Re: Hazel staff still green in center -> more waiting?
« Reply #2 on: November 03, 2017, 07:24:57 am »
Hi Brendan,

so you are saying that a hazel stave might need over a year before it has lost the green in the center? I read on a lot of sites that Hazel can dry very quickly (a few weeks) and be ready then. So it is not a bad thing for a hazel staff to be green in the center? (first question)

Nevertheless will I try to hold myself back. :)
I've got another stave that is beautiful but not very thick. Just 3,5 cm (1 3/8") diameter in the middle. The thing is that a hazel bow should be a flat design (or something in that way) because of the attributes of the wood. (At least that is what I read.) The diameter is a little too narrow for a flat bow, is'nt it? (second question)

My target lbs is very low. I am a target shooter and want to shoot the 300th arrow in that evening as precise as the first. That's why i am trying for a 26# @ 28". Is that diameter maybe okay for a flat bow with thar weight? (third question)

Thank you again! Really appreciating the help here :)
« Last Edit: November 03, 2017, 07:33:32 am by Sir Failalot »

Offline Coonst

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Re: Hazel staff still green in center -> more waiting?
« Reply #3 on: November 03, 2017, 07:43:45 am »
It looks to me like you're getting close to the pith. Just reduce the bow a little more in thickness, so the pith won't be in the working limb, and you will be fine.

Coonst

Offline Hawkdancer

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Re: Hazel staff still green in center -> more waiting?
« Reply #4 on: November 03, 2017, 08:18:41 am »
Good luck!  Be patient, and post pictures as you go.  I am just starting a first bow of hickory and will be asking advice as I go as well.  The folks on this post are very experienced bowyers and will be a lot help.  When you are shooting the new one, you may have change your screen name :)!  Welcome to the group!
Hawkdancer

Offline George Tsoukalas

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Re: Hazel staff still green in center -> more waiting?
« Reply #5 on: November 03, 2017, 08:42:39 am »
One month? Yes, wait.
Get a straight grained board and make a board bw.
I can continue if you want.
More on my site.
http://traditionalarchery101.com
Jawge
Set Happens!
If you ain't breakin' you ain't makin!

Offline Sir Failalot

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Re: Hazel staff still green in center -> more waiting?
« Reply #6 on: November 03, 2017, 09:55:47 am »
So many answers :))

The limbs are 2cm (~ 3/4") thick a the moment. I think I will have to reduce the thickness nevertheless. So the green part might not even be in the limbs. But maybe its an indicator for a certain wetness of the stave. I am working on "details" like the handle right now. That will keep me busy :) Let's see how the green center changes. If it can stay that way for a year, then it is not a real indicator and I can ignore it... right?

My Username is okay even after a good shooting bow. I mean there is the saying that a master failed even more than a beginner tried.  ;)

Jawge do you have experience with hazel? The thing is that I do not have the money to make a board bow (no, really. Poor student here) and I am not really interested in a board bow. I want to make a historical primitive bow. :)

Thank you guys. Good luck to your bow too, Hawkdancer!


What about the thin staff and the flatdesign (my third question in post #3)?

Offline mikekeswick

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Re: Hazel staff still green in center -> more waiting?
« Reply #7 on: November 03, 2017, 10:25:32 am »
First off there is no problem making a bow with that wood if you treat it correctly.
First 'green' wood is a term used to describe just cut  wood that is still higfh in moisture content. Green as in fresh.
The different coloured wood you are seeing in the centre of your stave is the heartwood. Look up the terms 'sapwood' and 'heartwood'. It just happens to be coloured greenish. Heartwood varies from tree to tree and there are many possible colours.
So onto how to make a bow out of your wood without having to wait forever!
You need to get it down close to bow dimensions. This is called the floor tiller stage. Leave the handle area full width and the tips about 1 inch wide. The bow is still heavy but it is starting to bend and is therefore as small as it can be to enable quicker drying. Woods thickness is the main determining factor how quickly it dries, along with the r.h. of your area and the temperature. This is useful - http://www.csgnetwork.com/emctablecalc.html   Of course you can carry on using the weighing method to determine when it stops losing moisture.
Once the bow is at floor tiller check the physical weight isn't dropping quickly then put it somewhere warm.  It will then be ready in a matter of a week or two. You are correct that hazel does dry quickly but remember to leave the handle full width and tips wide. I leave handle full width until the bow is first strung you can then shape the handle to match where the string wants to sit with no messing about heat correcting etc.
Good luck.

Offline Sir Failalot

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Re: Hazel staff still green in center -> more waiting?
« Reply #8 on: November 03, 2017, 10:54:37 am »
I needed a while to manage my setup but here are a few pictures. The string nocks will be where I put  the tape. The stave is the one I talked about ^^



@Mikekeswick
Thank you for the clarification. My mother tongue is not English, now I know that it's the heartwood that I am seeing ^^

You can see on the pictures how the handle looks like at the moment. I just took away the thickness as you can see. Hope that its not too far. The tips are already just 3/4" wide. :o

So if the string is not sitting right in the middle, you just put the handle in a different position? Smart, did'nt think about that.
The "bow" is not loosing weight quickly anymore so it should be okay to leave it in my appartment.
With "first strung" you mean right before pitting it in the tiller tree or when you reached brace height? I looked if the middle of the handle and the tips are in line by putting a string in the middle of the tips. That was a factor that led me to the decision that the back of the bow is where it is now. The stave was not really straight as you can see on the lower limb.

So the next step is waiting till it does'nt loose anymore weight. Let's see of I can measure any weight loss over the next days. :)
« Last Edit: November 03, 2017, 11:06:31 am by Sir Failalot »

Offline mikekeswick

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Re: Hazel staff still green in center -> more waiting?
« Reply #9 on: November 04, 2017, 12:11:11 am »
No problem.
Yes 'first strung' means the time that you first brace the bow. At the very start you bend it with a long string. If it isn't losing lots of weight then you are probably fine to start tillering just go very steady and only bend it a small amount. Keeping it near to a heat source is the trick. At the first sign of any set (permanent deformation of the limbs) go back to drying it for a couple of days and maybe increase the temperature slightly.

Offline Sir Failalot

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Re: Hazel staff still green in center -> more waiting?
« Reply #10 on: November 04, 2017, 12:06:38 pm »
All right, then I kbiw what you mean :)

I will follow the tips and wait a little more.
Thank you all for the help!

I've got another question. When one limb of a bow has a curve, is the belly of that limb going to "lean" inti that curve? Because the force is  coming directly from the imaginary line that you could draw between the tip and the handle or is'nt it? Or is the force always coming from the back of the bow?
It is hard to explain, that's why I made a quick 3D model to show what I mean.

The dimensions are just like my bow here. But to show you what I mean, I made the curve of the limb extrem and the distance from the back to the belly is 10cm (~4").



So should the belly lean into the curve or should it be straight and ignore it?

Offline mikekeswick

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Re: Hazel staff still green in center -> more waiting?
« Reply #11 on: November 05, 2017, 06:13:22 am »
First draw a 'centre' line following the grain along the highest part of the crown.
Mark width of the limb either side of this line. Remove wood down to this line.
You will now have sides to the stave.
Mark thickness on these sides measuring from where the back becomes the side (don't try to include the crown).
Always keep thicknesses the same on each side of the limb.
If the back curves or has any dips the belly will follow this if you follow the above method.
Keep the belly square to the back.

Offline Sir Failalot

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Re: Hazel staff still green in center -> more waiting?
« Reply #12 on: November 05, 2017, 07:08:06 am »
Well, then I've got a problem..



The stave was relative small in diameter. That means that I had to take the whole diameter as the whidest part and taper it to the tips. The crown goes therefore to the middle of the bow at the handle (especially at the dent there on the photo)...



...but the crown is just small at the tips, because it is just the highest part of the stave there.



If I would take for example 1/2 inch of where the back becomes the side, then the thickness of the bow will very a lot from start of limb to tip, but a pyramid should have about the same thickness across the whole limb I thought?
If the diameter of the stave /tree would have been bigger, then of course the method u described would be the easiest one.
...or am I not getting something here?

Offline George Tsoukalas

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Re: Hazel staff still green in center -> more waiting?
« Reply #13 on: November 05, 2017, 01:10:03 pm »
Sir, that's ok. Jawge
Set Happens!
If you ain't breakin' you ain't makin!

Offline Sir Failalot

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Re: Hazel staff still green in center -> more waiting?
« Reply #14 on: November 05, 2017, 01:28:42 pm »
Good to hear, Jawge!

So, should the back be following the curve like in my 3d model or should it stay perfectly horizontal despite the force coming from the side then? ^^