Friday, 31 January 2014

Shooting The Derbyshire Yew

I've had 4 test shots, bearing in mind it's pretty cold and I've not worked up to full fitness I'm only drawing about 28.5" (scaled off the video).
I also didn't warm up... It's only since I reached about 50 that I ever felt the need to warm up, before that I'd dissmissed it as just bull and totally unecessary!
The tiller is looking pretty much as it was before I did the nocks. I'll put it up on the rig and measure the draw weight and length and cast a critical eye over it. Maybe the outer limbs could work a tad more. If I flex the bow I can feel the bend at the grip, but with those relatively heavy arrows there isn't really any hand shock, it's just all a bit of a strain on my elbows, shoulders and fingers. I daresay, by Sunday, with an open field to shoot at I'll be able to do it justice.
The arrows are 767grains, that's heavy compared to my usual target/field arrows but not as heavy as 'standard' Warbow arrows.

Thursday, 30 January 2014

Derybshire Yew Nearly Done

I've got the horn nocks done and the bow cleaned up some more. It's been back on the tiller 100# at 31"
Whilst giving it a good going over and blending the ends of the bow into the nocks I noticed a pin knot was in a very slight depression, I picked at it with a ground down needle file and it just lifted out. It's only about 2.5mm in diameter, but I though better to plug it than leave a weak point and an area that might pinch. Probably unnecessary, but better safe than sorry.
The bow has had a wipe of Danish Oil, but that's all been sanded off as I repeatedly go over it to remove tool marks.
These few pics aren't very good as they are taken under artificial light but the shot of the bow on the bench gives a feel for the nice undulations and a peek at the bottom nock. It also shows how I support a bow while working on it... nice off cuts of woolen carpet protect the bow.
I've got to make a string for it, then see if I can shoot it.

There's very little set, and being so long (85" tip to tip!) it should hopefully feel smooth.

Monday, 27 January 2014

Derbyshire Yew Nearly There

This morning I went over the entire bow rasping off the corners along the edges, then taking out all the tool marks with a scraper. This gives it a much more rounded appearance it looks like a bow now, not like a bit of 2x1 !
I then went over the back with 120 grit paper to remove any scratches or chatter marks from where I'd used the scraper and rasp to take the sapwood down a couple of rings.
Next a quick check with a taut string down the back of the bow let me narrow the tips a tad more.
Careful checking the thickness taper along the limbs with a pair of calipers allowed me to take down any high spots. I wasn't taking actual measurements, I was just pushing the calipers onto the limb and moving them towards the tip watching the gap between limb and caliper open up slowly as the limb get thinner. Any points that look thick can be spot checked.
This was a lot of work, but it didn't take too long as it had all done before and was really just fine detail.
I wanted to give it a good once over before taking all the way to 100# on the tiller, no point spoiling the ship for a ha'port of tar.
I took a couple of pics which show how the sapwood looks thicker on one side of the limb, it also shows where the sapwood has been reduced, it is noticeably thicker under the temporary nock where it hasn't been thinned. This is actually quite useful as it leaves extra wood to blend into a nice circular cross section for the horn nocks. It also means the horn nocks can be fitted slightly angled towards the back giving the jaunty look of a hint of reflex.
You'll see from the still grabbed from the video that the tiller is a tad stiff at the tips especially the left, but the tips will get reduced when I put on the horn nocks.
The video lets you see it actually flexing. I still have a few pounds draw weight to play with to allow me to fine tune the tiller and get the finish right. Whew!

Sunday, 26 January 2014

Derbyshire Yew Update

I was in danger of running out of heartwood as I was taking wood off the belly, so I took the back down a growth ring or two. To some extent this is because the sapwood looks much thicker on one edge of the bow.
This took most of the day off and on in burst and probably removed about 1 maybe 1.5 mm off the back. I've put it back on the tiller and taken a tiny bit off the belly of the right limb to get the limbs balanced. All of a sudden it's winching back to a 25" draw at 80#...
Blimey! Am I going to make the draw weight now?
A quick calculation:-
80# at 25" is actually 80# at 19" of string movement from brace top draw. E.G Draw minus brace height.
This gives 80#/19" which is about 4.2# per inch. So working that out for a 31" draw which is the target draw length (31-6) x 4.2 =105
Whew, you can see, despite it seeming like I was building a monster and pulling far too much weight, I was pretty much on the money. In fact my estimate of how far it would draw at 100# once braced was far too low, although to be fair, I didn't just winch it straight back as I've been checking the tiller.
In fact you may have noticed I've quoted it's current state as 80# at 25", that's to say I haven't actually taken it back to 100# yet. that's because I need to get the tiller spot on and start actually finishing it and making sure there are no flaws in the back.
I'm not actually worried about coming up short on draw weight as I can always loose an inch of each end if necessary. there is a tiny bit of discolouration at one end which will probably disappear under the nock, but I don't want to risk any rot near the tips.
The point I'm try to make here is, getting a warbow to brace is actually probably 80% of the job.
Hopefully I'll post some video and pics tomorrow.
Just for the record the target for the bow was originally 90# at 31", this was increased to 95-100# at 31"

Saturday, 25 January 2014

Derebyshire Yew Braced

I did some work on the bow this morning, but couldn't quite get the limbs back far enough at 100# to get a short string on it.  The bow is so long I had to make another tillering string last night!
The weather was good so I went to the club for the end of month 3D shoot. I was a bit rusty and it took a few targets to get my eye in.
My shot of the day was a skinny little cheeky standing Meerkat at about 8-9 yards. Missed the damn thing first time round. Second time round we were only taking one arrow at each target. I settled myself, nicely lined up and let fly, I got the horizontal alignment perfect but shot low and the arrow thumped into a rotting log of Silver Birch that the Meerkat was standing behind...
"Oh dear I seem to have shot low" I said, or words to that effect.
We approached the target to find my arrow had penetrated the log completely and skewered the Meerkat nicely in the groin!
That's one advantage of having a bow with a bit of punch to it. I was shooting Twister, may fave' bow 47# at 28", but it's pretty fast.
I got home and worked on the Derbyshire Yew some more, checking the thickness taper on the limbs and eventually got it flexing enough to get a shorter sting on it.
Now it's braced I'll have a good look over it and take it back further V cautiously. I won't just wind it straight back to 100# as that will be putting a lot more force on the bow now it's braced.
Last Year I had a warbow made from spliced billets, It had been winched back to 100#  and beyond on a long string several times, but when it was braced and I started winching it back, it exploded at 100#.
http://bowyersdiary.blogspot.co.uk/2013/07/warbow-explodes.html

I've just tentatively winched it back to 80# and it's drawing 19". You can see how counter-intuitive it is, one minute 100# is just getting it to brace on a long string, then all of a sudden a short string gets it back 19" at 80# ! Hardly surprising that beginners make under-weight bows!

Friday, 24 January 2014

Derbyshire Yew Tillering 2

I've spent some time off and on in bursts today taking some off the belly of the left limb with the spokeshave, (or rasp, where the wood was tearing near small knots or dips in the grain). I've also re-checked the centre line and taken some off the width to narrow the tips a whisker and bring it all straight.
I even cleaned up the sides a little on the belt sander just to take out some slight bumps and tidy it up. Most of the work was just by eye against the string I taped taut from tip to tip along the back of the bow. A straight edge also showed up a few dips.
The shape is still basically rectangular with the corners rasped off. It's 40 x 37 at the centre and 22 x 20 at the tips (that's in mm with width then thicknes)

Putting it back on the tiller you can see the left limb is working more now. In fact it's working more than the right in the middle/end of the limb! It's getting towards brace height too.
A bit of work on the right and I'll be thinking of getting it to a low brace, say 4 or 5"
This nicely shows the process of trying to balance the limbs. It needs to be about right by the time it's braced, once braced the bow is maybe 75% finished. As soon as the short string is on, applying 100# will probably pull it back about to about 15" draw or so. Actually it's interesting to make that guess now, so we can see what the figure really is when I reach that point..
Enough chat, here's the video.

Thursday, 23 January 2014

Derbyshire Yew Early Tillering

I spent the morning cleaning up the garage, overhauling the bandsaw after having cut a load of wet Yew., and emptying my dust extractor.
Having done that I got back to the fun stuff, working on the Deryshire Yew warbow. The spec' is creeping up a bit and I'm aiming for 95-100#. This will allow some final tweaking and the bow settling down a bit. I've stuck wedges of Yew onto the tips and filed in temporary nocks. It's just being pulled back with some rope as a string for the moment.
I put the bow up on the tiller and pulled it to 100#, one limb flexed a bit but the other was too stiff. I've worked down that limb a bit and put it up again, as shown in the video.
You can see the left limb is still stiff and the tips of the bow are only coming back about a bricks worth. At least it's bending with no nasty surprises.
I'll work down the left limb some more, check the string alignment and start teasing it back towards brace height. By the time the left limb is flexing the same as the right it will probably be back enough at 100# to brace it. Once braced a bow is well on the way to completion, if it's not bending evenly at that point and still at a good weight, there is a danger of coming in under weight.

Further explanation of draw weight on a long string here:-
http://bowyersdiary.blogspot.co.uk/2013/11/warbow-flexing.html

To expand the discussion a bit more.
Say for arguments sake, we knew that on a finished 100# bow it took 60#  on a long string to get it braced.
If wepull 60# on the long string and work on the bow to get it back to brace we won't have any spare wood to play with... If we take off any more wood the bow will go below 60# and end up under weight!
We'd be trying to tiller a bow without ever having seen it flex beyond brace!
Hopefully that illustrates why it's the Devil's own job to get a warbow braced when we first start working on it!
Another problem is string stretch, a couple of guys have found it almost impossible to actually brace the bows they were working on due to the high poundage and string stretch. That's a great reason for making a good quality long string and a toggle to let you shorten it as you progress.
Picture of my string toggle here:-
http://bowyersdiary.blogspot.co.uk/2013/02/left-handed-testing.html

Monday, 20 January 2014

Where Do You Start?

I've been away for a few days visiting family for a belated Christmas dinner... all the fun of Christmas but without the crowded shops (result!) Shortly after we got back home, Tom the guy who gave me the Yew the other week dropped in to ask the question in the title of this post. Excellent, messing with wood a great antidote to a 2 hour drive!
He'd hung onto a very skinny bent yew stick to have a play making a stick bow. It's just the job, not too much wood to remove and no great loss if it breaks, but a great way to learn.
It's only when people come and ask questions that I realise how much thought and experience goes into the process.
As it happens I had a similar curved bit of yew from the same load, but a bit bigger. I'd run it through the bandsaw. I used that to demonstrate the basics. I showed him how the easiest way to make a bow is to leave the back of the bow as the bark and just chop away the belly (or bandsaw it in my case) to leave a flat belly... a 'D' bow, but the opposite way round to the D section of a longbow. I used an axe to improve the thickness taper on my stick, popped a string on it and put it on the tiller so we could see it flex.
First of course is deciding how the bow sits in the bit of wood.
There are 2 main considerations:
1. You want the back to be a clean and free from knots as possible.
2. You want any major bend to be fore or aft, e.g reflex or deflex. That's to say from the archers view point the bow wants to look relatively straight or at least have tips and centre in line like a gentle S, but you don't want a C shape!
Of course 1 & 2 may be mutually exclusive or require some compromise to get the best layout.
His next big question is when do you worry about tapering the width? The answer is, when the bow is drawing about half way, the width and grip etc can be left fairly late as they make less difference than the thickness of the bow.
I needed to width taper the very tips so that I could get an old string on, but I still left 'em plenty wide enough to allow adjustments.
It became obvious that the key message was, remove as little as possible, and generally half as much as you think! This is to allow you to get the bow on the tiller. At that point you can see how it's bending and start to make it do what you want. Also making a bow is a lot of repetition, successive approximation, little and often and similar platitudes. You can't just 'make it' in one go.
This was a revelation to him as he thought you made it look like a bow and then put it on the tiller. Now that might work if you have a nice even laminated stave of machined timber, but it won't work with a natural stave, especially a stick.

Having chopped away at my bit of green Yew I told him how it could be strapped to a former to hold it in shape while it seasoned. My bit of Yew has such a huge deflex (about 6") so I though I'd actually do it.
The pic shows before and after I strapped it to a length of 2x2 with some rubber strapping. I'll let it season for a few months and work it down some more and maybe strap it with a bit more reflex at the tips.
It's highly experimental, but that's the joy of having some 'bad' staves. The shape may pull out, but its good to have before and after pics so we can see what happens.
Much better than worrying that you'll ruin some near perfect expensive bit of Yew. Tom's made a Hazel bow before, but of course a well meaning 'friend' over-drew it and snapped it. That's the risk with short experimental bows, they may be short draw, low draw weight... gotta be careful what arrows you give anyone if they are shooting it, and never let it be drawn without an arrow. Unless of course you want 'em to get a whack on the head as it breaks!

Monday, 13 January 2014

Trimming Staves

I was hoping to put some temporary nocks on the Derbyshire Yew but the garage was full of the Yew which I was given the other day.
I sorted it out, and painted the ends of the decent bits, I've probably kept more than is sensible, it's a triumph of optimism over realism, but it can always be thrown or turned in firewood later. There's a bow or two in there, so it's worth the effort.
(You can see it in the background of the lower pic... not much heartwood there, and rather small diameter)

The problem is I have no more room to store it. A reorganisation of staves was called for.
The stuff that was cut last June is stored as half logs, with the corners trimmed off these it has generated an empty shelf for the new wood. From the pic , you can see how I've sawn along the heart sap boundary. Holding the timber flat side up as it goes through the bandsaw allows me to see where I'm cutting, unfortunately having the curved surface on the table allows the log to vibrate, rock, rotate and snag unless it is held very firmly. I actually reach round behind the bade with my left hand and support the log as it goes through I brace my hand firmy againstthe back edge of the table making it into a sort of flexible moveable guide. My right hand feed in the log, but never gets close to the blade (The front edge of the table is close enough!). I use a coarse blade with alternate set teeth when ripping down timber, this helps to stop snagging, as does putting a small wedge in the cut a good way from the blade to hold it open. The tension in the wood can close up the cut and grip the bade, so a little wooden wedge is V handy.

The above practice will doubtless have some people throwing their hands up in horror as being unsafe.
It requires a good deal of care especially when nearing the end of a log. To minimise the danger, I'll generally stop halfway and then saw from the other end. Knowing how to deal with a jam or snag is also key, slight movement of the wood will often free it, or I simply hit the stop button and then free it.
One must not wrench on the log or try to pull it back as there is a chance of pulling blade from it's guides with potentially very nasty results if the blade snaps. Please don't consider the way I work as a recommendation, every man is his own safety officer! I'm simply saying what I do... it's not necessarily best practice or even good practice! It's about the only way of seeing where you are cutting tho' . Out of interest, I have made up various guides for curved timber but they don't really help unless you have perfectly cylindrical logs... it's a bit of a catch 22. Once the timber has been run through it has flatter faces for the next cut, but early on it's rather tricky. A helper can be very useful on long stuff, but they do need to know what they are doing.
If anyone has a design for a good jig for this sort of work (or a link to it) I'd be interested to see it.

The June Yew is pretty marginal too, maybe a couple of full length staves, which are rather wobbly, but a good few billets. There are a couple of odd bits which were screaming 'make me into a crossbow prod' as they were short, fairly wide with a nice curve to give up swept tips.
It's hard work running it all through the bandsaw (I still haven't finished) but some of the off cut sapwood (seen on the floor) may come in handy. I have this idea for maybe cutting it into thin strips and laminating together as a bow backing or making a laminated Yew bow. Dunno if I'll get round to it, getting it all nice and even thickness and then gluing would be tricky. It could give a very good back for bow.
A bit more work and I'll get the garage back to a usable state.

Sunday, 12 January 2014

Mixed Fortunes

An odd couple of days!
I took the Yew Stick bow up to the club and confirmed, it didn't really perform as well as it should... it was merely ok. As such I'm pleased I decided to keep it as a show/demo bow.
The guys were rather amused with the whistling arrows, but I was met by 'Taxi' Dave who cut a sad figure holding the smashed remains of 'Dogleg'!
If you recall 'Dogleg' was the bow that had a nasty crack across it's belly due to impatient and over enthusiastic heat treatment, it was patched and went on to have 8 months of life at a full 32" draw and maybe a tad over at about 80# . It was one of the bows used on the TV shoot and you may well have spotted its Dogleg kink in one shot where my mate Evan, dressed as a Monk is shooting it.
Anyhow, it's an ill wind that blows no good, so I'll be lending the 100# warbow to Dave to see if he can take it in his stride. I was going to make him a 90 pounder anyway. All in all he won't be out of pocket and I won't be worrying myself silly about couriering replacement bows half way up the country.

This morning one of my mates from the club turned up with some Yew which he'd rescued from a tree which was being trimmed by someone he knew. Should be at least 2 bows in there and maybe a primitive, it will need sorting, the ends painted with PVA and storing away, excellent!

Meanwhile I've been further reducing the Derbyshire Yew stave, it has a few minor drying checks running longitudinally here and there on one limb, but looks in pretty good shape. Hopefully I'll get it up on the tiller for a 'look see' during the week. (first pic shows it with the limb nearest the camera tapered)

BORING RANT ALERT!
At the club there has been some reorganisation to accommodate different shooting styles, clout, target and field. Now I have a bit of a bee in my bonnet about how the various archery societies don't mutually cover members of the other societies for insurance purposes during shoots.
Thus as a member of NFAS you can't go as a guest and shoot at a GNAS shoot! (Bonkers!)
This is a total disgrace! The societies are there for the benefit of their members and the insurance companies rake in good premiums for cover. It's up to the societies to ask (nay demand) some sort of guest cover for each other.
Ok you'd need some sort of stipulation like which societies are covered (e.g the local horticultural society wouldn't count) and maybe a limit on the number of guests or number guest appearance by any individual. But considering most of the societies are probably covered by the same underwriters and probably have never had a personal injury claim I think it's time it was sorted.
Without this, we, as archers can end up paying for effectively the same thing multiple times.

As an illustration we were advised that NFAS wouldn't cover us to shoot clout.
Now one reason I belong to a club is so I can test my bows for distance. This is of course vastly different from some guy with a compound wanting to try for distance, and clout distance just about covers it.
We are in danger as a nation of falling into a nonsensical "on size fits all"  "Computer says, No" type mentality.
Where has common sense and initiative gone?

To be fair, I've paid up to join GNAS (or Archery GB as it now calls itself .... an irritating gross misnomer, as it only represents a portion of 'archery' in GB) as it is beneficial to the growth of the club.
However, on studying the NFAS rules I find, we could quite legitimately set up a target at 180 yards as part of a field course as long as the safety consideration were met. This is shows that one has to be very careful what question you ask!
If you ask the NFAS if you can shoot clout, the answer is no! But there is nothing to stop you having a 180 yard shot at a rubber 3D centurion... let me know if you try it and anyone can actually hit him!
Footnote:- To actually be a legitimate NFAS field target it would have to be at an unknown/unmarked range, but it could be say 180 yards plus or minus 10? 20?... how do you define unknown?

Friday, 10 January 2014

Slow Work

Over the last few weeks I've been slowly reducing the sap wood and following a growth ring on the back of the Derbyshire Yew stave. It's laborious work, but as it progresses it becomes easier.
First the sapwood is reduced to an approximate even thickness with a spokeshave, trying to follow a ring, which is tricky. Its more a matter of trying to keep any exposed rings running along the bow. Then I start on the area which looks like it's the lowest ring (but it probably won't be), and a I use a rasp lightly, often across the grain to expose that ring slowly along a few inches of the bow, the hard thing is getting the light right so you can see when the crumblier lighter layer comes away to expose the slightly yellower firmer ring beneath.
Once Ive got a small area started I'll use a scraper it I just need to go down one ring, or the rasp if I need to remove more wood. I'm not too obsessive about it initially as I'm just trying to get the whole back roughly down to the same level, which may still be one or two rings above the final back surface.
Of course at some point you find an area which goes down another ring and you can work to that new level instead. Later on you can work back reducing the original work you have done to take it down to the new level or it can be left how it was and blended in.
I generally work in short burst, doing say 6" at a time.
I don't necessarily expose the ring across the whole width of the bow, if I can just expose a thin line of  single ring running down the centre and maybe wandering round knots or going to one side or the other, that's fine for now. As the bow gets worked to shape and ends up on the tiller there will be less back to worry about, and scraping off one ring, or extending the ring to be the entire back isn't so much work.
Yes, it's laborious, but it has a sort of Zen satisfaction to it. The centre, grip area, of the bow also gives an opportunity to step up or down a ring without causing problem. It's V hard to get a good photo showing the effect, but hopefully you can see the back is begining to look good with any exposed rings running along the length of the bow, rather than across it.

Meanwhile the stick bow has had more patching, an arrow plate and a couple of coats of Danish oil.
I'll shoot it for distance tomorrow at the club.

Sunday, 5 January 2014

Shortened Bow + Update

Having removed about 2.5" off the length, the Yew stick bow is still a good length, 74.5" nock to nock. It seems much better proportioned now, the draw weight is back up and the force draw curve still linear. 70# is now at about 27 1/2".
It's surprisingly hard to get a good accurate measurement as the spring scale seems to be a bit twitchy and needs a good rattle to get it to settle. There is also a fair bit of parallax when trying to read the scale and the rule at the same time.
The nock is all done and polished.
Theoretically it should be faster now, the draw weight is slightly higher and the limbs are now lighter. Of course you don't get ow't for now't so the bow must be subject to higher strain... BUT if the tiller is better and the strain spread more evenly then it will be no more fragile.
I took all the length off the upper limb which was slightly weak, this moved the centre line, grip and arrow pass all down about and inch and a quarter. A little wood was removed just above the grip and at the new upper tip. It will need more shooting in now... and a new string... drat!
Shortening a bow to try and gain draw weight can be a waste of time unless you have spare length to play with. A bow which is already at the limit of the wood and is taking set will just take more set and gain nothing.
Well I've made a new string, and the bow feels better, this could be my fond imagining or maybe I'm jusy drawing a comfortable 27" rather than straining for 28". i think it's dangerous to jump to conclusions, the only meaningful test is the chronometer or shooting for distance. Even then one needs to make sure the draw length is consistent to give a fair test.
One minor irritation is a small knot which now is in the grip area and rubs on the lower edge of the hand. I'll do a little work on it and maybe add a leather grip.

Meanwhile we've taken down all the Christmas decorations and had a little bonfire to burn the greenery in true pagan style, the Holly burns rather well but the Ivy smokes like mad. Some of my Yew shavings and off cuts mde good tinder to get it going, a cheery conflagration and the smell of wood smoke, excellent.

Update:-
The bow is shooting really well, but I've found a little pinch and some cracks trying to lift on the lower limb, these are emanating from the central pith. I've decided the bow just isn't going to be sellable, but I shall persevere with it and keep it as a demo/character bow. I'm happy with that as I don't have a bow with any patches that I can show people.
I'm doing a 5th patch now! ideally it could do with a belly lamination, but I don't have a long clean thin bit of Yew.

Saturday, 4 January 2014

Odds n Ends on a Wet Afternoon

I went up the club to try the whistling arrows, no sooner than I'd loosed them all it started pouring with rain.
Shooting high they all whistled, paused at the top of the trajectory where the arrow speed is virtually zero and then started whistling again on the way down.
The two tone walnut whistle which had the cavity partitioned into two different sizes did give a noticeable two tone effect, one tone started first, then the other joined in. They only whistle at certain velocities and it would be fun to experiment to try and get various effects and volumes of sound. They actually sounded a bit quieter out doors.
I've been shooting in the Yew stick bow some more and actually shot a few arrows from it in the rain. It hasn't taken any noticeable set but has settled down to about 65# at 28". That's not what I want, and the bow is also irritatingly long... just long enough to jam in the garage doorway! I was curious to see what it's force draw curve looked like, as I've been considering losing an inch or so off the upper limb.
I set to and measured it a 10 pound increments, judging the draw length to the nearest estimated 1/10". The 70 pound draw came out to 29.5" which is good in some ways, as it provides reassurance that it will take that draw in its stride and shortening it shouldn't over strain it.
Here are the figures and the plot.
10#  @ 9"
20    12.3
30    16
40    19.5
50    23
60    26.3
70    29.5

It seems a bit drastic to lop off an inch and a half, but I feel it will give a better bow. At the moment it's sort of neither fish nor foul, its a good bow, but not a great bow as it feels a bit cumbersom. Maybe I'm over fussy and obsessive, but maybe that's the difference between good, great and exploded!

Thursday, 2 January 2014

Walnut Pecan and Hazelnut Whistling Arrows

The title says it all. If the weather is ok at the weekend I might be able to get up the club and try 'em out for real.
 I'll also have a good clear out of the garage and take a load of stuff to the council tip. Now't like a good clear out to help you see what you want to pick up next...
There's a couple of 90# bows waiting for my attention, one a stave and one a stick.
The last bow needs more shooting in and an arrow plate, maybe a thin leather grip too.

Wednesday, 1 January 2014

TV Debut

The time spent on the South Downs with the Tudor Monastery Farm cast and crew, finally came to fruition on new years eve in the Christmas Special.
The archery action starts at the 40:0 mark, although the intro has been tacked in and they are not carrying my bows in that short sequence. The real action is all with my bows and has some good footage of me and my friends having fun.
If you are sharp eyed you will see Ruth is shooting a little 'bark on' Hazel primitive rather than a longbow.
Peter Ginn does actually hit the rope quoit we were shooting at! We started shooting into a bank at 20 yards to show the guys how to shoot and to provide better filming. Clout isn't so photogenic!
It was a shame they didn't show any of the bowmaking, but I'm pretty chuffed with what they did show.
I was a bit anxious that I'd look like a pratt. I like the way they left in my exhortations to Peter ginn to loose the arrow, although I'm not entirely sure the expression "Don't Fanny about" is strictly authentic!


Here's a link to it on Youtube. The archery is near the end starting at about 11:07
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LhnLhxVtH4s&list=PLh170l9b06PfTjKa2X6VcgzAFienUnOzn&index=9

Here's a screen grab of the opening shot which gives a view of an archer you really don't want to see. Note, for safety, I had the arrow pinched between my fingers but not nocked on the string.