Author Topic: April/May 2015 Issue Miwok Bows  (Read 11816 times)

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Offline ptaylor

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April/May 2015 Issue Miwok Bows
« on: March 29, 2015, 10:56:32 am »
I found the Miwok incense cedar bow article very interesting. I live in California and have always wondered what these trees could be used for. The idea of using a branch for a bow is intriguing. It makes sense, because cutting a trunk with stone tools would be hard.

This article reminded of another tree I have had in the back of my mind. The true firs. I was in the high country in the cascades of Oregon elk hunting. We were making a fire for the evening, and I was trying to break fir branches for fire wood. I had this branch about twice thumb diameter, I could bend it in an entire circle, no joke, without breaking it!

Anyone tried or heard of using true firs for bows?


Offline wizardgoat

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Re: April/May 2015 Issue Miwok Bows
« Reply #1 on: June 23, 2015, 01:41:15 pm »
Apparently doug fir was used for bows up the north west coast. Theres stories of the very top of the tree being used. They also mention using spruce and cypress, but if they were actually these woods or if they were mistaken for yew, who knows. some Inuit cable backed bows apparently used these lesser woods as well.
Incense cedar is not a true cedar, I believe its more closely related to cypress, but I'm not 100%

In my experiences with Fir it seems very brittle, but maybe a branch or tree top would be better. The branch you tied into a knot was probably pretty green