Author Topic: Marketable High Performance "Non-Synthetic" Bows  (Read 953 times)

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Offline ibex

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Marketable High Performance "Non-Synthetic" Bows
« on: January 24, 2021, 09:22:12 am »
I have had the pleasure receiving bows from Marc and Steve G. that were tip top performers. Now that I can manage somewhat to build one that holds it's own for my needs, I would be very concerned that it might blow up and hurt someone else. How many others out there have achieved the level of confidently marketing these bows that are built entirely with natural materials?
𝙄𝙩'𝙨 𝙣𝙞𝙘𝙚 𝙩𝙤 𝙗𝙚 𝙞𝙢𝙥𝙤𝙧𝙩𝙖𝙣𝙩, 𝙗𝙪𝙩 𝙞𝙩'𝙨 𝙢𝙤𝙧𝙚 𝙞𝙢𝙥𝙤𝙧𝙩𝙖𝙣𝙩 𝙩𝙤 𝙗𝙚 𝙣𝙞𝙘𝙚.

Offline PatM

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Re: Marketable High Performance "Non-Synthetic" Bows
« Reply #1 on: January 24, 2021, 09:33:00 am »
A few have but not too many people want to put in the level of work needed versus the return they get.

 Insurance is for the unforeseen blow ups.

Offline tradcraftsman

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Re: Marketable High Performance "Non-Synthetic" Bows
« Reply #2 on: January 24, 2021, 10:11:28 am »
Being a professional artisan is tough.  I started making pottery several years ago and only got to the point where I could sell a lot in late 2018.  I only made a decent profit in 2019. 
The setup cost is always more than you expect.  Between materials, outfitting a shop with enough production capacity, developing selling venues, and simply learning the trade you will have to be very committed if you want to make enough money to call it a successful business.

Offline stuckinthemud

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Re: Marketable High Performance "Non-Synthetic" Bows
« Reply #3 on: January 24, 2021, 01:59:33 pm »
This question haunted me when I was made redundant a while back and saw me really appraise my approach. For me it comes down to this. If you are selling something then it has to be of the same quality, or better, than something you can buy from a shop, so, fully a professionally made product. If you can make a professional standard bow then it blowing up wont be an issue. I have not produced many I would be happy taking to a shop to ask them to sell for me.
« Last Edit: January 24, 2021, 02:04:26 pm by stuckinthemud »

Offline Hamish

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Re: Marketable High Performance "Non-Synthetic" Bows
« Reply #4 on: January 24, 2021, 02:50:33 pm »
People have been making bows for thousands of years without needing insurance. How many instances have there actually been with a known bowyer selling bows and then having them break, causing lasting injuries? I can't think of a single one.

"If you can make a professional standard bow then it blowing up wont be an issue." Totally agree, Stuck.

Now if you are someone that sells a product, like a bow full of  chrysals, or other uncompensated weak points it and blows soon after purchase, then that's a different matter, even if no injury is acquired.

Offline scp

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Re: Marketable High Performance "Non-Synthetic" Bows
« Reply #5 on: January 24, 2021, 03:34:40 pm »
Business-wise, it might make more sense to sell bow staves, blanks, or u-finish kits to city people. But that would turn into a rather tedious trade pretty soon.

If you are capable of producing top-dollar high-performance custom bows, you can probably get a liability insurance. If not, at least get a liability waiver signed by the buyer. It appears that the real money is in bow making classes. If you are not into teaching, you would probably become just another starving artisan. Anyhow you need to have a website first. Good luck.

Offline tradcraftsman

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Re: Marketable High Performance "Non-Synthetic" Bows
« Reply #6 on: January 24, 2021, 04:45:00 pm »
That make sense about the staves, kits, and lessons.  That is what works for the established companies like Pine Hollow Longbows.

Offline sleek

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Re: Marketable High Performance "Non-Synthetic" Bows
« Reply #7 on: January 24, 2021, 04:46:56 pm »
I've sold plenty, even managed to pay the bills for a few consecutive months. But man, I put way more time into them than I do at any regular job. I'm about convinced the only way to make money is to price them so high, most folks can't afford them. And in order to do that, you got to make top quality. Im thinking about giving it another go myself, im trying to build up more name recognition with my bow style though first.
Tread softly and carry a bent stick.

Dont seek your happiness through the approval of others

Offline PatM

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Re: Marketable High Performance "Non-Synthetic" Bows
« Reply #8 on: January 24, 2021, 05:05:16 pm »
A Pine Hollow custom is a cool $1200

Offline sleek

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Re: Marketable High Performance "Non-Synthetic" Bows
« Reply #9 on: January 24, 2021, 05:22:00 pm »
A Pine Hollow custom is a cool $1200

And honestly, thats pretty close to what im thinking of going up towards. 50 hrs into a bow and countless hours of marketing,  yeah, thats probably an honest price, assuming good quality.  Im thinking of going from 800-1200 but im going for a few more flight records to prove my bows performance and quality.
Tread softly and carry a bent stick.

Dont seek your happiness through the approval of others

Offline ibex

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Re: Marketable High Performance "Non-Synthetic" Bows
« Reply #10 on: January 24, 2021, 05:36:20 pm »
Good feedback. I'm not at all interested in selling bows, I'm mainly interested in knowing how many of you are currently selling them.
𝙄𝙩'𝙨 𝙣𝙞𝙘𝙚 𝙩𝙤 𝙗𝙚 𝙞𝙢𝙥𝙤𝙧𝙩𝙖𝙣𝙩, 𝙗𝙪𝙩 𝙞𝙩'𝙨 𝙢𝙤𝙧𝙚 𝙞𝙢𝙥𝙤𝙧𝙩𝙖𝙣𝙩 𝙩𝙤 𝙗𝙚 𝙣𝙞𝙘𝙚.

Offline PatM

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Re: Marketable High Performance "Non-Synthetic" Bows
« Reply #11 on: January 24, 2021, 05:48:57 pm »
Quite a few guys seem to sell them here and there.  Only a couple of guys only sell bows.

Offline bassman

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Re: Marketable High Performance "Non-Synthetic" Bows
« Reply #12 on: January 24, 2021, 09:01:08 pm »
Dave mead's simple designed Bamboo horse bows seems to be doing alright for him.. You can buy his kit bow, and put together, at a reasonable price, and they do perform. No bling just a good functional bow to hunt ,and shoot target with. Easy to construct time wise. He also makes pricier sinew backed snake skin bows ,and recurves if you want one. More time consuming to make, and costs more.

Offline bownarra

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Re: Marketable High Performance "Non-Synthetic" Bows
« Reply #13 on: January 25, 2021, 01:40:00 am »
Either do a quicky, cheap bow like those bamboo things or charge a fortune and make something you are proud of. Sleek you have the right idea....go straight in with a top money price tag and don't give discounts to anybody.....your work had better be flawless tho....everytime....good luck if you decide to persue it. Some unique touches/a strong recognizable style will help.

Offline Del the cat

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Re: Marketable High Performance "Non-Synthetic" Bows
« Reply #14 on: January 25, 2021, 03:27:28 am »
I sell very few now, and mostly only fairly locally.
The problem high performance is that it brings with it decreased reliability.
There a lot of people wanting heavy (100# and over) bows, but these tend to have a limited lifespan unless the user (or the person standing next to them) keeps an eye on them.
I've saved several warbows for people by noticing the tiller had gone off and it needed re-working... they were not made by me (my bows just explode ;) )
The other thing is I only make what interests me... churning out endless mid weight ELBs would be rather dull work.
Follow your own path, but beware sometimes bows fail, most people are reasonable and will allow you to make good any problems, but it only needs one mouthy idiot to potentially spoil your reputation.
Case in point:-
I had one guy who wanted me to make a bow from his, not very good Yew stave... I said all the usual about how I'd maintain it if necessary. Well he said it was great and I never hear from him again... until ... a couple of years later. He was asking about flight arrows on FB...
He didn't like my advice and proceeded to say that I knew nothing and the bow I made him was rubbish and bent like a banana!??? (Had that been true, and if he'd sent it back, I'd have fixed it)
He was shut down pretty quickly by some other bowyers and it turned out that he'd gone from bowyer to bowyer with demands for some specific bow/draw weight, then complained (loudly to all and sundry) when they made what he wanted. (I think he was expecting to shoot 1/4 mile or something  ::) )
He was a thoroughly nasty man who spouted racist opinions despite being married to an African woman and having 2 mixed race kids :'(
There are some idiots out there so beware.
Del
« Last Edit: January 25, 2021, 03:33:28 am by Del the cat »
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