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  • thomas bert
    Aug 22, 2010


      I want to thank you again your reply. I am sure that
      everyone could use a little zen nowadays. I am glad
      that archery gives you that.

      Having to practice 5000 times I think that it would
      take me 10,000 times so that I do not end up shooting
      myself! I guess that that is partly why I have other aspects
      that interesting me.

      I have seen Byron Ferguson on t.v. He his really is amazing
      what he can achieve. His passion is certainly deeper than

      If I ever do decide to get into the art of the bow I would
      probably have to save up my pennies if I do consider to take
      it up. As far as cash goes yes the $40 start kit would
      be ideal but I am not very skilled. Although if I did want to
      start I am sure that after gaining experience I would
      develop those needed skills.

      I have always been fascinated with the battles of Crecy and
      Agincourt. I haven't really given the archery aspect much
      thought to be honest. It is quite interesting though.

      Merlin's story is astounding and inspiring. There just is
      nothing that can dampen the human spirit and when
      one has great passion one as the essence of life.

      I shall ponder about getting into the bow. Your help
      has really given me a new respect for this ancient

      You are certainly knowledgeable and very kind. I really
      do appreciate your time and effort in dealing with the
      new guy. You have me gratitude.

      I look forward to many more discussions and I hope to
      learn more and to eventually be able to be a helpful and
      productive member of this list.

      With Much Respect,

      "Bellum Est Pater Omnium"

      To: KingdomofLyonnesse@yahoogroups.com
      From: cogworks@...
      Date: Sat, 21 Aug 2010 17:39:51 -0400
      Subject: RE: [KingdomofLyonnesse] Archery


      Atlantia has a thing they call Royal Rounds.  It is a method for archers throughout the kingdom to compare themselfs as well as with archers in other kingdoms (the Royal Round is standardized throughout the SCA).  A Royal Round is six shafts at 20, 30, and 40 yards untimed and as many as you can get off in 30 seconds at 20 yards.  Scoring is on a standard FITA five ring target 5 - 1 from inner most color to outer most.  Thus a perfect 6 shaft end (shot at the prescribed yardage) would be 30 points.  Using a $100 bow I was able to record an average of 80.  Now my bows cost a bit more with my most expensive being in the $750 range.  However my scores are not substantially higher.  The best average I have ever been able to attain thus far is 90.  So, like my comment in my previous post, skill makes up for technology.  Rudder Bows makes some fine wooden bows for under or around $100.  Should even this be a strain on your budget, and I can fully appreciate that, they offer "finish it yourself" kits starting about $40.  I know several who have purchased these kits and made some very fine bows and are shooting quite well with them.  So my point is one does not need a Black Widow (about $1000 or more) or a Yumi (about $2000 and going up from there) to get great scores.  The entire secret of archery, and something I left out in my previous post of how I got started, is that archery is a zen like experience.  To get good, or to satisfy yourself that you can hit what you aim at with a degree of regularity, all it takes is focus and practice.  When I'm shooting well, whatever is "outside" I am not aware of.  As Mell Gibson said in Patriot "aim small, miss small".
      Shooting involves four basic steps, draw, anchor, aim, release.  The draw takes some strength and you can build up to it (more later on this!).  The anchor defines where you stop the draw.  My instructional starting point is the web of your hand at the base of your thumb goes to the point of your jaw.  Another anchor point is your index finger tip rests at the corner of your mouth.  Aiming is simply a matter of getting your aiming eye over the shaft.  This involves a slight tilt of the head.  The other issue then becomes how much elevation for the distance you are shooting.  This is determined only over time with your bow and your arrows.  The last part is the release.  The release is little more than simply stop holding the string.  You relax your draw hand and let the string pull out of it.  Your draw hand should do one of two things stay at your anchor point or move back to rest on your rear shoulder.  A beginner mistake is for the draw hand to fly away from the face doing what we call the balerina.  This pulls the string away from your face and the back of arrow causing the arrow to waggle ro swim as it goes down range.  Once you determine your personal draw, anchor, aim, release process all that's needed is to do it 5000 times so it becomes automatic.  And that translates into practice.  Of course having a place to practice helps a great deal but it is possible to practice archery in an appratment.  NO!  I am not suggesting you line up a room mate and have them hold paper plates in front of them across the room, although with some room mates I've had in the past I like the idea!!  Get a plastic trash can and put some pillows or a wadded up blanket you don't want any more in the bottom third of it.  Mount it on a wall so it is horizontal.  That is, the open end, top, is facing away from the wall.  Take one arrow and take the point off so it is blunt.  Stand about 3 - 4 feet from the top of the trash can and practice draw, anchor, aim, release.  There you go, practice in an appartment!  Byron Ferguson, the guy who shoots asprins out of the air does this with a burlap bag hanging in a tree.  He stands so close he shoots, steps forward to withdraw the arrow and shoots again.  It really is about the four steps, draw, anchor, aim, release.
      So how much would it cost to get started?  $40 for a finish it yourself bow (or less for a good bow from eBay or garage sale - I've got way more points on how to buy a used bow that I can share if you are interested in this) and 6 arrows at about $6 per arrow max.  Of course you WILL get hooked and want more, but that's down the line.  But for under $100 you're in the game and actually realizing what it meant to be one of those yeoman on the battle field at Crecy or Agincourt.  When we do demos for schools in the area I have the participating archers do a draw, hold, release on command so the kids get an idea of that it would be like to have 5000 to 7000 arrows falling on the target all at once.  It is impressive!
      As for questions or discussions about aspects of the Middle Ages and particularly archery I'm here and obvious, mostly because I type really fast, am more than willing to enter in discussions.
      Now not knowing you but thinking in terms of physical limitations let just share with you one individual who attends Pennsic, the world's largest gathering of SCA folk this year 10,000 but usually more like 15 to 20 thousand.  Merlin suffered a tragic accident some years past and is confined to a wheel chair.  He acts as a marshal, safety officer, on the range at Pennsic every single day.  He still shoots.  Yes, even from his wheel chair and he is a formidable archer.  I know of several folks who have had shoulder operations that used to shoot bows in the 50 pound range or more but are not shooting bows of much less poundage due to the operations.  In fact the latest record breaking arrow flight distance shot was set by a youth in England with a 25 pound bow.  Once does not need high poundage bows to be a good shooter.  Bdugets permitting, I encourage you to join in.
      -----Original Message-----
      From: KingdomofLyonnesse@yahoogroups.com [mailto:KingdomofLyonnesse@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of thomas bert
      Sent: Saturday, August 21, 2010 3:09 PM
      To: kingdomoflyonnesse@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: [KingdomofLyonnesse] Archery


      There are so many things that I want to do but I do not really
      have the skill or money at that moment. I am happy for you. It
      really is a blessing to be able to do what ones loves. I look
      forward to many more enjoyable conversations.

      With Respect,

      "Bellum Est Pater Omnium"


      email is an imprecise method of communication.  Things are often misunderstood via it.  No issues.
      My lady and I have been members of the SCA for over 10 years.  When we first joined we did combat archery, where you actually get to shoot people.  The SCA doodled with the rules which made the cost of amo sky rocket then they went from touch kill for CAs to full contact wherein CAs have no means to protect themselfs nor blunt a killing blow.  As most heavies really hate CAs this opens one up to serious heavy abuse (not that that will happen in all cases).  Most CAs select the activity because they choose not to expose their bodies to the damage experienced by the heavies.  But that started an interest in the bow.
      During my CA time I did a bit of target archery but was not very good.  We were also doing it in Florida and the Florida summer was just to brutal for real interest.  When we moved to NC my criteria for a house was that I could shoot a bow in my yard without freaking out the neighbors.  As it turns out we live on 4 1/2 acres so I have a very nice home range.  I started shooting regularly.  OK, in truth I started shooting with aluminum arrows at hay bales I rather stupidly placed on cinder blocks.  After going through three dozen arrows in short order I learned that if I angled the blocks the arrows would glance off instead of breaking.  DUHH!!  Now days it's not an issue because I don't hit the cinder blocks any more.
      My SCA kingdom is Atlantian which ranges from Maryland to Georgia and is one of the strongest kingdoms in the SCA for archery.  As such, there were lots of opportunities for target archery at events.  I got hooked.  Like everything I get involved with, if I like it I jump all the way in.  Fortunately for me I work out of a home office so when I need a break, several times a day, I go out to my garage, string up a bow and shoot a few arrows.  I also find a basic beauty to a well made traditional bow versus the ugly yet practical appearance of a modern compound bow.  I call the compounds arrow launching machines.  Somewhere along the way I read a line that said that primatives make up for their lack of technology with skill.  I have read this backed up by hunters who use traditional gear.  They are out practicing and warming up while their modern compound buddies are inside drinking and eating.  I'm not here to knock compound bows, I just prefer the skill required and beauty of traditional gear.
      As with anything I'm very interested in, I read everything I can get my hands on.  I ask lots of questions of people I trust and know really know their stuff.  There are a lot of folks in the SCA who hang out at the archery range who really don't know what they are talking about.  On the other hand there are many who really do know their stuff.
      For me it is a hobby, but like all my hobbies, I'm obsessed.  Currently I have 14 bows hanging in my garage.  I also have about 6 crossbows.  Every hand bow has at least one dozen arrows matched to it, in most cases more than one dozen.  I also have a whole bucket full of practice arrows.  For good if not best results, arrows have to be matched to the bow.  I also make my own quivers and other leather stuff.  So I'm in the deep end of the archery pool and loving it.
      -----Original Message-----
      From: KingdomofLyonnesse@yahoogroups.com [mailto:KingdomofLyonnesse@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of thomas bert
      Sent: Saturday, August 21, 2010 12:37 PM
      To: kingdomoflyonnesse@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: [KingdomofLyonnesse] Archery



      Okay that is my fault I did not mean that the jerkin actually
      blunted the arrow. How did you come to be so interested in the
      bow? You have answered questions I have had about the bow
      for a quite a long time.

      The bow has never really been of major interest but your posts
      have given me a new insight  and respect for the weapon. I have
      learned allot. I really appreciate you taking the time with me.

      With Much Respect,

      "Bellum Est Pater Omnium"
      /hide.  In period and today cow hides are either vegetable tanned or chromium tanned.  Veg tanned leather is light beige in color and used for tooling, stamping and most leather craft projects.  Crome tanned

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