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35424Re: [SCA-Archery] Composite v self bows

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  • Arion the Wanderer
    Apr 23, 2014
      <<The composite recurve has been around almost forever.  Egypt had them, the chinese had them even the Romans had them.
      It is generally in Western & northern Europe that the self-bow is used.

      Self bows go back to the Neolithic.
      <<Was it because the self "long"bow was so easy and cheap to build that no one went to the effort of making composite bows?>>
      Probably not

      <<Is it because those nations that made composite bows had no decent wood for self-bows?>>
      Lack of wood and construction of composite bows does correlate  in some places. It may have been the initial driving factor. However, Composite bows and common in China and other places where lack of good  wood isn't a factor.
      <<Is there any real advantage for the one over the other than it's freakishly difficult to use a Longbow from a running horse?>>

      Long bows are indeed difficult to shoot from a horse. However, not all composite bows are short. Some of the Chinese bows are as long as longbows.

      There really isn't a simple answer to your question. Bows were developed to meet specific needs of specific cultures. Lack of wood probably played into the initial development of composite bows. Once the advantages of these bows was realized, they expanded to fill bow needs for certain cultures. Time to make the bow is also a factor. A longbow can be knocked out of seasoned wood in a couple of hours by a good bowyer.  A composite bows takes a year to make.

      Archos Arion the Wanderer
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