Monday, 8 July 2013

Hidden Knot

As I feared, the 'good ' knot soon turned into manky wood as I rasped down towards the required thickness. Note 'rasped' rather than used the spokeshave which I'd been using elsewhere. The wood round knots will snag and tear with a drawknife, spokeshave or plane, so a rasp is required. The needle file has been ground to a chisel point for digging out knots, the tape marks the depth of the hole.

The good thing is it doesn't penetrate into the sapwood or come out the side of the bow. I cleaned it right out down to good sound wood and filled it with epoxy and wood dust mix. I may peg it later as a cosmetic measure, but it's good to leave the natural flow of the wood rather than drilling an over sized round hole and pegging.
I recently saw a Yew warbow with some nasty pinches where knots hadn't been pegged and the narrow black line of manky stuff round the knot had compressed allowing the pinch. One knot had been pegged but the smaller ones missed... classic case of "spoiling the ship for a ha'p'orth of tar".

Here's a pic of the back too, work in progress, I'm slowly (and loosely)  following a growth ring from left to right you can see the lines of the rings running roughly along the limb. As the bow progresses this will get further tidied until it is fairly close to a single ring, or a series of rings running along the length.

The upper limb is about to dimension now, I've got to go over the lower one and get it a bit closer before I put it on the tiller.
I've glued on some wedges of Yew (offcuts from the splicing) to cut in temporary knocks. I'll just lash it with rope for the first try on the tiller, but I don't want to rush into it today.
Instead I got my wife to put one foot on the middle of the bow, one tip was on the floor while I held the other tip about 6" off the floor. She just about put all her weight on it making it flex nicely and the splice held firm.
I had asked what she weighed, but I was told a gentleman doesn't ask!
Good progress, but I won't spoil it by rushing.


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