Author Topic: Intro and Stave Dimension Question  (Read 312 times)

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Offline Munkish

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Intro and Stave Dimension Question
« on: April 13, 2019, 09:13:05 am »
Hey all,

I recently stumbled onto this forum after I got the itch to try my hand at building a bow (I've had a modern bow for several years) and learning to shoot more traditionally.  It looks like this will be a great place for me to learn.  Next time I get the chance I'm going to try to find some good trees to make some staves out of (I should be able to find hickory, black locust, and maybe osage on some land owned by family).  Until then I'm thinking of trying to buy a stave to get started with.  What rough dimensions should I look for?  I'm 6'1" and would be looking to make a bow in the 45-55# range at least for my first one.

Also are there any good sources of staves that can be purchased?  So far I've found staves Pine Hollow Longbows, Raptor Archery and eBay.  Any other places I should look?

Thanks for the help!

Offline dylanholderman

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Re: Intro and Stave Dimension Question
« Reply #1 on: April 13, 2019, 09:31:58 am »
be carful buying wood from eBay, it can be tricky to navigate whatís good and whatís not with a seller that may or may not know what you need.
I donít personally know anything about the other sellers you mentioned, but Iíve heard theyíre names here on PA before.

Also Contact Clint, he goes by Osage outlaw here on PA he sells a lot of Osage (and some other woods now and again) at trad archery shoots.

Offline Munkish

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Re: Intro and Stave Dimension Question
« Reply #2 on: April 13, 2019, 09:38:35 am »
Thanks for the response!  With buying staves, is there anything in particular to look for other than relatively straight, lacking knots, and certain dimensions?  Many on eBay have lots of pictures so it seems like you could get a decent idea of what's coming from those.

Offline Woodely

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Re: Intro and Stave Dimension Question
« Reply #3 on: April 13, 2019, 09:39:21 am »
"(I've had a modern bow for several years)"  ..are you referring to a compound bow.  When I started using a Trad bow even a 40# was to much for me until I got use to pulling that weight and conditioning my back and arm muscles.  A lower weight bow like around 30-35# was the norm for a while.  I would go for a bow about 66-68" NTN for starters.  Lots of guys on here have garages full of staves.
"Doing bad work is an exercise in futility, but honestly making mistakes is trying your best."

Offline Munkish

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Re: Intro and Stave Dimension Question
« Reply #4 on: April 13, 2019, 09:42:34 am »
"(I've had a modern bow for several years)"  ..are you referring to a compound bow.  When I started using a Trad bow even a 40# was to much for me until I got use to pulling that weight and conditioning my back and arm muscles.  A lower weight bow like around 30-35# was the norm for a while.  I would go for a bow about 66-68" NTN for starters.  Lots of guys on here have garages full of staves.

Thanks.  I do mean a compound.  I shoot it at about 70# so I went a little lower than that.  Maybe I'm overly optimistic about my own strength... I should probably shoot for a lower weight when I make my first bow.

Offline Woodely

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Re: Intro and Stave Dimension Question
« Reply #5 on: April 13, 2019, 10:15:20 am »
Thanks.  I do mean a compound.  I shoot it at about 70# so I went a little lower than that.  Maybe I'm overly optimistic about my own strength... I should probably shoot for a lower weight when I make my first bow.
"probably shoot for a lower weight'  then again this is me I'm just an old cowboy.  Practice holding a 40-45# dead weight to get an idea of it.  Some of us are a little to hasty in the Club environment because we shoot groups of 3-5 arrows constantly like 100 shots in an hour..   (--)...I have slowed down a lot thinking that quality is better than quantity, and if I'm having an off day its better to pack it up and hit the road.
"Doing bad work is an exercise in futility, but honestly making mistakes is trying your best."

Offline Pat B

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Re: Intro and Stave Dimension Question
« Reply #6 on: April 13, 2019, 07:05:23 pm »
45# would be a good place for you to start if building your first bow but don't get too attached to it. There is a good chance you'll come in under weight or with a bad hinge but there is plenty more wood where that came from. Not trying to discourage you, we've all been there. Make it a fun project and enjoy the journey.
You'll use different muscles drawing a traditional bow than you will a compound so start slow and work up to a comfortable weight.
Make the most of all that comes and the least of all that goes!    Pat Brennan  Brevard, NC

Offline Hawkdancer

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Re: Intro and Stave Dimension Question
« Reply #7 on: April 13, 2019, 07:28:00 pm »
Welcome aboard!  Take your time when working, ask a lot of questions, and remember - "Patience, Grasshopper,  patience!  When in doubt, ask.  The only dumb question is the one you don't ask!
Hawkdancer
Life is far too serious to be taken that way!
Jerry

Offline Munkish

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Re: Intro and Stave Dimension Question
« Reply #8 on: April 15, 2019, 07:23:02 pm »
Thanks for all the replies so far!  How wide should I look for (or make) an osage or hickory stave?

Offline Pat B

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Re: Intro and Stave Dimension Question
« Reply #9 on: April 15, 2019, 07:48:25 pm »
6'x3" would be a good place to start. Wider would be a plus(you can make 2 staves from it). You can build a hunting weight osage bow with a 1" wide stave but that is a few classes ahead of you. For bow building 101 lets start with 3". Straight( ;D), fewer knots( ::)), 1/8" growth rings( :o) and go from there.
Make the most of all that comes and the least of all that goes!    Pat Brennan  Brevard, NC

Offline bjrogg

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Re: Intro and Stave Dimension Question
« Reply #10 on: April 16, 2019, 01:20:27 am »
Welcome to PA Munkish. Don't know your location, but the season for Primitive Archery Meets is soon to be upon us. In fact one was just last weekend in Wisconsin. The Tennessee Classic is coming soon. My State of Michigan will be having the Marshall Primitive Archery Meet. Missouri will have MoJam mid summer. These are all highly recommended for anyone, especially beginners. A great place to get any supplies very reasonable with no shipping charges and the ability to actually run your hands and eyes over them. I always bring my very limited budget $ with me and try to get everything I need for a year. Also lots of very talented bowyers willing to give a hand and share the knowledge and bow building on site. There are a few more meets to. If you scroll down to the section titled something like Primitive Shoots and Events you will get more info.
Good Luck and like Pat said. Just have fun. Don't feel to bad if your first bow doesn't work out. Just learn all you can and enjoy the ride.
Bjrogg
« Last Edit: April 16, 2019, 01:41:22 am by bjrogg »
A hot cup of coffee and a beautiful sunrise

Offline Eric Krewson

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Re: Intro and Stave Dimension Question
« Reply #11 on: April 16, 2019, 03:19:24 am »
When you get started on your bow, have tools and wood in hand and are starting to shape your bow let me know and I will send you a tillering gizmo. This is a very good tool to let you know where to remove wood to get your limbs bending correctly.

I used to send them to people who were "thinking about making a bow" but found thinking about making a bow and actually jumping in and making one are two different things. I suspect many of my earlier gifted gizmos ended up in the trash because the recipients never got past the "thinking" stage.

Offline Hawkdancer

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Re: Intro and Stave Dimension Question
« Reply #12 on: April 16, 2019, 08:19:25 am »
That gizmo is a very valuable tool and gift!  Thanks, Eric!  Welcome to PA, Munkish, these folks have a wealth of knowledge to tap! Ask any question that comes up, even if you think it's "dumb" - the only dumb question is the one you don't ask!  Have fun, be patient!
Hawkdancer
Life is far too serious to be taken that way!
Jerry