Re: [SCA-Archery] Wooden Arrows , Notches,Combat Arrows
>If you use a nock point on the string, just hold the nock against the nock point. If you want your nock point to be more period than a modern swaged nock point, tie a piece of string around the bowstring at the right place and trim off the loose ends. This is a heck of a lot easier than trying to carve a hold nock.
>The is more of a 'how to' query. I've started to make my own arrows
>but I've run into a problem with the notches. How is the notched
>carved into the arrow shaft so it won't fall of the string?
If you still want to make your own hold nocks and you have power tools you can do this: drill a hole through the shaft about 1/4 in from the end of the shaft. Use a drill press--DON'T try to drill this by hand. Then cut a slot from that hole to the end of the shaft. Just make the hole diameter slightly smaller than the string, and it will be tight enough to hold the nock in place if you let the arrow slip off the bow, but the force involved in loosing will be enough to snap the string loose. You may have to experiment to find the correct hole diameter. You have to be REAL careful during drilling and cutting to hold the shaft still. And of course, you have to make sure both the drilled hole and the slot are properly aligned with the nock feather.
Do you Yahoo!?
Faith Hill - Exclusive Performances, Videos, & more
[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
--- In SCA-Archery@y..., "Terrence Andre Payette" <shaman@s...> wrote:
> The is more of a 'how to' query. I've started to make my own arrows
> but I've run into a problem with the notches. How is the notched
> carved into the arrow shaft so it won't fall of the string?
From the way you state this, I will (I know it's bad but...) assume
that you use pinch nocks. I would start practicing with mercury nocks
(or quick nocks) first. That may save you some frustration with your
self nocked arrows.
All I use is the mercury nock, so stepping over to the self-nock is
not an issue as far as method goes. In training myself for when I
actually get to start shooting my self nocks, I also disregard (or
just file off) any index tab that the nock might have, so that I rely
on the cock feather and 'feel' to get the arrow 'on' right.
> I carve my nocks with parallel sides 1/8 inch wide and 3/8 deep andI do something very similar here but with unpowered tools. I have
> I dont have any problems. I use a 1/8 inch ceramic cutoff wheel
> mounted in my drill press. The stelle is inserted in a hole the
> jig I made for this purpose which is clamped to the drill press
> table and pushed carefully into the wheel until the slot is deep
found that with as much shooting as I do my hand cut nocks do break.
In order to strengthen my nocks here is what I do:
1) I narrow the shaft between the nock and all the way to where the
end of my feathers will go. Because I frequently stagger my
fletching you may want to use a pencil to get this line correct.
2) I get some fresh kill elk, deer or cowhide (elk is the best) and I
cut it exceptionally thin. This takes practice and much more
patience than I usually have. Thin means thin and I cut my hides
thinner than garden twine.
NOTE: I have found the best place to get hide cheap is go to a
facility that destroyes old animals (aka Glue Factory).
Usually you can end up enough hide for a few dozen arrows
and pay nothing. Bring plenty of plastic bags because these
hides will be fresh kill.
3) I soak the hide in water. I add a little salt to make the water
brinelike and heat the water to about 120 degrees.
NOTE: I recommend you get a digital flue thermometer. Taylor or
Cooper sell these for around $10 at any hardware store. You
will need to watch the thread because too much heat for too
long will weaken your thread.
4) I tuck the end of the hide thread down about 1/2" down my narrowed
shaft down where my index feather will be and I wrap over the
thread down all the way to where my nock begins. The last quarter
of the distance I losely wrap the hide so I can tuck the other end
back through the wraps. Then I carefully slide my end of the hide
thread through the wrap and tighten one loop at a time until you
cannot see where I hid my ends.
NOTE: I would recommend that you practice this with something
other than animal hide because I made too many mistakes
learning the technique. I am still slow at making hide
thread it will save you more than a few headaches.
5) I place the thread over my heating duck and let the air blow dry
the wet hide. This will cause the hide to shrink and will
reinforce the shaft.
NOTE: This technique was used for building when metal nails were
not available and there are plenty of old books documenting
Once you get this technique down, try making a longer thread and
wrapping your fletching with the same thread. Makes a wonderful
looking arrow although you need to be shooting 50#+ to make the arrow
- To strengthen the nocks I cut I use a 1/16 inch ceramic cutoff wheel and cut
a notch 90 degrees from the string notch (I do this before I cut the string
nock) and glue in a slice of horn (1/16 micarta) and sand it down flush with
the surface once cured. Then I cut the string nock.
[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
- Just in case you want to use real horn...
I get mine from knife supply catalogs. Water buffalo horn already slabbed
for knife handles. It's easy to cut slices for nock inserts.
Here's one source:
> -----Original Message-----
> From: blockflute1@... [mailto:blockflute1@...]
> Sent: Monday, October 07, 2002 11:19 AM
> To: SCA-Archery@yahoogroups.com
> Subject: Re: [SCA-Archery] Re: Wooden Arrows , Notches,Combat Arrows
> To strengthen the nocks I cut I use a 1/16 inch ceramic cutoff
> wheel and cut
> a notch 90 degrees from the string notch (I do this before I cut
> the string
> nock) and glue in a slice of horn (1/16 micarta) and sand it down
> flush with
> the surface once cured. Then I cut the string nock.
- For inserts in self-nocks, I like purpleheart wood for its
contrasting colour. I use a two or three hacksaws to cut the insert
slot and the nock slot. I use a table saw to cut off the purpleheart
- To reinforce my self nocks I use linen thread tied in a temporary
whipping and finished with a square knot, providing me with an index.
Not as permanent as an insert, but if it comes off I only need about six
or seven inches of thread and about 30 seconds. I position the wrap to
where it finishes around 3/16 forward of the nock.
> To reinforce my self nocks I use linen thread tied in a temporaryFor range arrows I cheat and use Dynaflight 97 instead of animal
> whipping and finished with a square knot, providing me with an
> index. Not as permanent as an insert, but if it comes off I only
> need about six or seven inches of thread and about 30 seconds. I
> position the wrap to where it finishes around 3/16 forward of the
hide. Is more durable than thread and I have enough colors that
depending on how I stain my shafts I can always get the wrapping to
For the Ya that I use for Makiwara and for regular free flight target
practice, I have been using regular deer antler. I shape the nock
and use a drill press of slightly smaller diamater than my string,
then slot it with a hand saw and a jig. The knock has a tang,
much like an arrow head, that gets fitted into a hole drilled out in
the back end of the Ya (like an arrow head).
I reenforce the wood around the base of the nock with silk thread
for thirty turns. Then I lacquer the thread and let it harden. Since I
am using turkey feathers to fletch, I have chosen a brown thread
to compliment the fletching and shaft, but I suppose any color
would be good...
I have made a matched set of twenty of these Ya for both
makiwara and free flight, and have been happy with their results.
When I can afford 20 bamboo shafts I will do the same, but for
now, I must use what is available. I have a steel turning lathe that
I sometimes press into wood-working service...but you will have
Yama Kaminari no Date Saburou Yukiie
Shi wa hei to de aru - all are equall in the grave...