How to make a bow an arrow?

Please dont answer this question if you have no experience…thanks :) How do you make a bow an arrow? I have tried to make them in the past, and please dont just tell me to find a stick and attach a string to it, i wan something that is really going to work- someone to tell me a detailed description of the process, a bowyer.

Answer #1

I did a weekend workshop “making a medieval longbow” a couple of years ago in the Neandertal Museum in Düsseldorf/Germany. You should try finding a museum that offers such a workshop. There’s a lot of difficulties.

First of all, you have to decide what kind of bow you want. A simple wooden bow or a composite (different materials like horn, wood, metal glued together) bow? A straight or a recurve bow? A long or a short bow?

Then you need to get the material. For a simple wooden long bow, that would be a rectangular piece of birch, ash or yew tree wood, about 1inch 1.5inch (your body height), cut out of the trunk of a tree, with no knotholes in it. The annual rings should be parallel to the broader one of the long sides. (Else it will break if you bend the bow) Three pieces of horn, one small two larger. Some leather. And an appropriate cord.

Tools: A knife, rasp, sandpaper… And a board. A board with a checker/scale on it, a ledge and several sticks sticking out in the middle. Like that one

Now you take that piece of wood and grab a rasp. Choose which one of the two sides of your wood that is parallel to the annual rings is the front and which one is the back. Make the edges of the front side slightly round. Make the edges of the back side very round, except in the middle, where the handle is going to be. And thinner towards the ends.

Then saw two cuts into the ends like that and attach a cord.

Now put the bow onto the ledge of your board (front up ) and use the cord to and the sticks to bend it. A little bit at the beginning. See whether it bends evenly. If not, use the rasp and remove some wood where it is too stiff.

The two larger horn pieces will be the ends of the bow…

The leather if for the handle

Answer #2

Ah, the small piece of horn, I forgot that one. It’s flat and it goes on the side of the bow, just above the handle. Where you lay the arrows. So the wood of your bow will not be damaged and scratched there.

Answer #3

Oh. And arrows. You also need arrows. When you’re done making your bow, you need to determine the maximum length of pull-out. The distance between the handle and the string. Your arrow needs to be 2 or 3 inch longer than that. For the arrows, also take knot-less woof out of the trunk of a tree. Pine or spruce wood is good. If you have a wood nearby, cou can go there after a strong storm and take woof from a broken tree that has splinters long and thick enough for your arrow. Cleave it and dry it, then start making round shafts from it.

In the backside of the shaft, you rasp or saw a gap that is large enough for your bows cord. make it smooth with sandpaper. Then take glue and a fine sort of fiber string (for example hemp string that is used to waterproof tube installations) and wrap/glue the string around the shaft just below the gap, so it can’t rip deeper.

Now you need 2 good, large enough feathers. Split the quill and remove some of the feather-“hair” on the upper side. You need three half feathers for one arrow. glue them to your shaft, so that the first one is at right angle to the gap. The other two go at a 60° angle to the first one. Now wrap/glue string around the naked quilt above and below the feather “hair”.

Then you need a tip for the arrow. You can buy a metal tip. You can buy these at several reenactment/ archery web shops. Maybe even at Or you can craft a horn tip. The horn tip has a cotter shape towards the arrow. And the arrow shaft has a matching gap. Fit in the tip and glue it. When that glue is dried, wrap/glue string around the tip… Tip of the arrow:

Answer #4

grrrrr woof wood

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