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Re: [SCA-Archery] Strings

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  • Bill Tait
    A better term would be low stretch synthetic . Fast Flight is only one of many low stretch fibers. Some bows can use FF, Dynaflite 97, or some others that
    Message 1 of 29 , Jun 24, 2013
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      A better term would be "low stretch synthetic". Fast Flight is only one of many low stretch fibers. Some bows can use FF, Dynaflite 97, or some others that have more give. At the other end, I have one string that is BCY 452X. This is typically used for compound bow bus cables. It has extremely low stretch and creep properties.

      I know that for the lay person, any modern string is "Fast Flight", just as we all use KLEENEX  and Q-tips...

      William

      (Loving my 8190 and 019 Halo serving)

      On 2013-06-24 3:54 PM, "jdrago75" <jdrago75@...> wrote:
       

      Brownell B50 or BCY B55. All of the other synthetic strings I make are only for bows that specifically made to use Fast Flight string material. My next major project is a English War Bow and I'm going to use Irish linen thread to make the string and hope it survives the first use. 

      -Lord William Douglas


      On Jun 24, 2013, at 5:17 PM, richard johnson <rikjohnson39@...> wrote:

       

      My new 45# longbow arrived Saturday from GI Bow for $55. And I
      bought a couple extra strings for when I wear these out. Am adding
      nock-supports (I have NO idea of how to add bone or horn tips), dying
      the wood mahogany & red, wrapping a grip and arrow-shelf... the
      usual...

      Then I collected a bunch of Beeswax Candle stubs and melted them in an
      old crock pot, poured the melted wax into a cheap zip-lock container
      to cool and while it was still soft, popped it from the mold and cut
      it into blocks so I'd always have bowstring wax. Note: Beeswax
      candles, not parrafin!

      While doing this and examining the new bowstrings I realized that
      every one of my bowstrings is synthetic! I also discovered that the
      threads are exactly the same as a large spool of black dacron I have
      in my sewing kit save for the color.

      This got me thinking.

      For those of you who make bowstrings, what do you use and why?

      --
      Rick Johnson
      http://Rick-Johnson.webs.com
      "Those who give up a little freedom in return for a little imagined
      security will soon find that they have neither."

    • Taslen
      William, When you make the linen string write it up with pictures and I will run it in the Quivers and Quarrels Gaelen O Gradaigh Co Editor Quivers and
      Message 2 of 29 , Jun 24, 2013
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        William,

        When you make the linen string write it up with pictures and I will run it in the Quivers and Quarrels

        Gaelen O'Gradaigh
        Co Editor Quivers and Quarrels the official SCA archery publication



        From: Bill Tait <arwemakere@...>
        To: sca-archery <SCA-Archery@yahoogroups.com>
        Sent: Monday, June 24, 2013 7:38 PM
        Subject: Re: [SCA-Archery] Strings

         
        A better term would be "low stretch synthetic". Fast Flight is only one of many low stretch fibers. Some bows can use FF, Dynaflite 97, or some others that have more give. At the other end, I have one string that is BCY 452X. This is typically used for compound bow bus cables. It has extremely low stretch and creep properties.
        I know that for the lay person, any modern string is "Fast Flight", just as we all use KLEENEX  and Q-tips...
        William
        (Loving my 8190 and 019 Halo serving)
        On 2013-06-24 3:54 PM, "jdrago75" <jdrago75@...> wrote:
         
        Brownell B50 or BCY B55. All of the other synthetic strings I make are only for bows that specifically made to use Fast Flight string material. My next major project is a English War Bow and I'm going to use Irish linen thread to make the string and hope it survives the first use. 

        -Lord William Douglas


        On Jun 24, 2013, at 5:17 PM, richard johnson <rikjohnson39@...> wrote:

         
        My new 45# longbow arrived Saturday from GI Bow for $55. And I
        bought a couple extra strings for when I wear these out. Am adding
        nock-supports (I have NO idea of how to add bone or horn tips), dying
        the wood mahogany & red, wrapping a grip and arrow-shelf... the
        usual...

        Then I collected a bunch of Beeswax Candle stubs and melted them in an
        old crock pot, poured the melted wax into a cheap zip-lock container
        to cool and while it was still soft, popped it from the mold and cut
        it into blocks so I'd always have bowstring wax. Note: Beeswax
        candles, not parrafin!

        While doing this and examining the new bowstrings I realized that
        every one of my bowstrings is synthetic! I also discovered that the
        threads are exactly the same as a large spool of black dacron I have
        in my sewing kit save for the color.

        This got me thinking.

        For those of you who make bowstrings, what do you use and why?

        --
        Rick Johnson
        http://Rick-Johnson.webs.com
        "Those who give up a little freedom in return for a little imagined
        security will soon find that they have neither."


      • Taslen
        As the newest string maker here (my lady made me a string jig for our anniversary) where do I start looking for how to articles I shoot a 35pound pull ELB that
        Message 3 of 29 , Jun 25, 2013
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          As the newest string maker here (my lady made me a string jig for our anniversary) where do I start looking for how to articles I shoot a 35pound pull ELB that I had made for me.

          Gaelen






        • jdrago75
          Flemish Twist is at http://www.stickbow.com/stickbow/features/flemishstring/flemishstring.html -Lord William Douglas
          Message 4 of 29 , Jun 25, 2013
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            -Lord William Douglas


            On Jun 25, 2013, at 5:06 AM, Taslen <taslen2000@...> wrote:

             

            As the newest string maker here (my lady made me a string jig for our anniversary) where do I start looking for how to articles I shoot a 35pound pull ELB that I had made for me.

            Gaelen






          • Doug Copley
            Yes please do! And also please include a couple of test shots and if it stretched from those, or if it blew up:-) Vincenti Ansteorra
            Message 5 of 29 , Jun 25, 2013
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              Yes please do! And also please include a couple of test shots and if it stretched from those, or if it blew up:-)

              Vincenti
              Ansteorra


              On Mon, Jun 24, 2013 at 10:20 PM, Taslen <taslen2000@...> wrote:
               

              William,

              When you make the linen string write it up with pictures and I will run it in the Quivers and Quarrels

              Gaelen O'Gradaigh
              Co Editor Quivers and Quarrels the official SCA archery publication



              From: Bill Tait <arwemakere@...>
              To: sca-archery <SCA-Archery@yahoogroups.com>
              Sent: Monday, June 24, 2013 7:38 PM
              Subject: Re: [SCA-Archery] Strings

               
              A better term would be "low stretch synthetic". Fast Flight is only one of many low stretch fibers. Some bows can use FF, Dynaflite 97, or some others that have more give. At the other end, I have one string that is BCY 452X. This is typically used for compound bow bus cables. It has extremely low stretch and creep properties.
              I know that for the lay person, any modern string is "Fast Flight", just as we all use KLEENEX  and Q-tips...
              William
              (Loving my 8190 and 019 Halo serving)
              On 2013-06-24 3:54 PM, "jdrago75" <jdrago75@...> wrote:
               
              Brownell B50 or BCY B55. All of the other synthetic strings I make are only for bows that specifically made to use Fast Flight string material. My next major project is a English War Bow and I'm going to use Irish linen thread to make the string and hope it survives the first use. 

              -Lord William Douglas


              On Jun 24, 2013, at 5:17 PM, richard johnson <rikjohnson39@...> wrote:

               
              My new 45# longbow arrived Saturday from GI Bow for $55. And I
              bought a couple extra strings for when I wear these out. Am adding
              nock-supports (I have NO idea of how to add bone or horn tips), dying
              the wood mahogany & red, wrapping a grip and arrow-shelf... the
              usual...

              Then I collected a bunch of Beeswax Candle stubs and melted them in an
              old crock pot, poured the melted wax into a cheap zip-lock container
              to cool and while it was still soft, popped it from the mold and cut
              it into blocks so I'd always have bowstring wax. Note: Beeswax
              candles, not parrafin!

              While doing this and examining the new bowstrings I realized that
              every one of my bowstrings is synthetic! I also discovered that the
              threads are exactly the same as a large spool of black dacron I have
              in my sewing kit save for the color.

              This got me thinking.

              For those of you who make bowstrings, what do you use and why?

              --
              Rick Johnson
              http://Rick-Johnson.webs.com
              "Those who give up a little freedom in return for a little imagined
              security will soon find that they have neither."



            • The Greys
              I make my own bow strings and have scared my dogs with a few well placed adjectives during the process a time or two. But having said that I ll share what
              Message 6 of 29 , Jun 25, 2013
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                I make my own bow strings and have scared my dogs with a few well placed adjectives during the process a time or two. But having said that I'll share what I've been told/learned about making bow strings.

                First nomenclature. When I say Dacron, I'm referring to Dacron B-50 type string material. When I say Fast Flight I'm referring to the newer low stretch materials.

                My experience is that older bows were not designed for the low stretch of the newer Fast Flight materials. I was told by my favorite bowyer who puts antler limb tips on his bows, that if the antler is deer you can use fast flight. However, he also uses moose which he says is softer thus should use dacron. So I have always followed the rule of old bow, dacron, new bow fast flight.

                I have a Cold Mountain longbow that was designed for fast flight string and it really does make a BIG difference in bow performance between using a dacron or fast flight string.

                A note on bees wax for strings, mix in a little vegetable oil. It makes the wax a bit softer and easier to work into the string.

                cog

                --- In SCA-Archery@yahoogroups.com, richard johnson <rikjohnson39@...> wrote:
                >
                > My new 45# longbow arrived Saturday from GI Bow for $55. And I
                > bought a couple extra strings for when I wear these out. Am adding
                > nock-supports (I have NO idea of how to add bone or horn tips), dying
                > the wood mahogany & red, wrapping a grip and arrow-shelf... the
                > usual...
                >
                > Then I collected a bunch of Beeswax Candle stubs and melted them in an
                > old crock pot, poured the melted wax into a cheap zip-lock container
                > to cool and while it was still soft, popped it from the mold and cut
                > it into blocks so I'd always have bowstring wax. Note: Beeswax
                > candles, not parrafin!
                >
                > While doing this and examining the new bowstrings I realized that
                > every one of my bowstrings is synthetic! I also discovered that the
                > threads are exactly the same as a large spool of black dacron I have
                > in my sewing kit save for the color.
                >
                > This got me thinking.
                >
                > For those of you who make bowstrings, what do you use and why?
                >
                >
                > --
                > Rick Johnson
                > http://Rick-Johnson.webs.com
                > "Those who give up a little freedom in return for a little imagined
                > security will soon find that they have neither."
                >
              • Janyn Fletcher
                I agree with what COG said. I have been making my own strings for over 20 years now. You need to make sure that your bow is able to handle the FF string
                Message 7 of 29 , Jun 25, 2013
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                  I agree with what COG said. I have been making my own strings for over 20 years now. You need to make sure that your bow is able to handle the FF string materials. Every bow is different and this would be important. I prefer endless loop strings over Flemish twist even though they are more modern than the Flemish. Also I use FF strings over Dacron because it performs better and doesn't stretch as much generally. I use 452+ or TS28 for my crossbow strings. You can make a very simple string jig for less than $100 if you get the pre made posts and under $50 if you do it yourself.
                   
                  In Service,
                   
                  Janyn Fletcher, DEM Atlantia

                  From: The Greys <cogworks@...>
                  To: SCA-Archery@yahoogroups.com
                  Sent: Tuesday, June 25, 2013 10:35 AM
                  Subject: [SCA-Archery] Re: Strings
                   
                  I make my own bow strings and have scared my dogs with a few well placed adjectives during the process a time or two. But having said that I'll share what I've been told/learned about making bow strings.

                  First nomenclature. When I say Dacron, I'm referring to Dacron B-50 type string material. When I say Fast Flight I'm referring to the newer low stretch materials.

                  My experience is that older bows were not designed for the low stretch of the newer Fast Flight materials. I was told by my favorite bowyer who puts antler limb tips on his bows, that if the antler is deer you can use fast flight. However, he also uses moose which he says is softer thus should use dacron. So I have always followed the rule of old bow, dacron, new bow fast flight.

                  I have a Cold Mountain longbow that was designed for fast flight string and it really does make a BIG difference in bow performance between using a dacron or fast flight string.

                  A note on bees wax for strings, mix in a little vegetable oil. It makes the wax a bit softer and easier to work into the string.

                  cog

                  --- In mailto:SCA-Archery%40yahoogroups.com, richard johnson <rikjohnson39@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > My new 45# longbow arrived Saturday from GI Bow for $55. And I
                  > bought a couple extra strings for when I wear these out. Am adding
                  > nock-supports (I have NO idea of how to add bone or horn tips), dying
                  > the wood mahogany & red, wrapping a grip and arrow-shelf... the
                  > usual...
                  >
                  > Then I collected a bunch of Beeswax Candle stubs and melted them in an
                  > old crock pot, poured the melted wax into a cheap zip-lock container
                  > to cool and while it was still soft, popped it from the mold and cut
                  > it into blocks so I'd always have bowstring wax. Note: Beeswax
                  > candles, not parrafin!
                  >
                  > While doing this and examining the new bowstrings I realized that
                  > every one of my bowstrings is synthetic! I also discovered that the
                  > threads are exactly the same as a large spool of black dacron I have
                  > in my sewing kit save for the color.
                  >
                  > This got me thinking.
                  >
                  > For those of you who make bowstrings, what do you use and why?
                  >
                  >
                  > --
                  > Rick Johnson
                  > http://rick-johnson.webs.com/
                  > "Those who give up a little freedom in return for a little imagined
                  > security will soon find that they have neither."
                  >

                • lekervere
                  For twisting the string, there are many tutorials online, with video. You will notice not all of them use the same methods. You can pick and choose, and find
                  Message 8 of 29 , Jun 25, 2013
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                    For twisting the string, there are many tutorials online, with video. You will notice not all of them use the same methods. You can pick and choose, and find what works for you. Some people swear by two-strand strings. I prefer three strands.
                    My own experience has shown me a few things, which I will offer here. Lightweight strings shoot faster. Most string tutorials show overbuilt strings, usually meant to achieve a particular diameter, to allow the arrow nock to clip onto the string. With proper shooting form the arrow does not have to grip the string, mostly. Thumb shooters may prefer it. Anyway, the rule of thumb for safety is that a bow string should test at four times the draw poundage of the bow. You don't need to build a whole string and test it to failure. Just take a thread of whatever you want to use for string, tie it to a secure dowel or peg, wrap it around a few times and attach a fish scale to the tail. Now pull it until it breaks. You can repeat this several times to be certain, but it is likely you will come up with a consistent breaking strength. Take your bow weight, multiply by four and divide by the breaking strength, and you will have the minimum number of threads for a bow string. You can add a bit for more safety. The breaking strength of B-50 is 33 pounds. Now you see what I mean by overbuilt. For roundness I make most of my strings from three stands of three threads each. With a center serving, these will catch a nock clip, barely. Natural fiber threads, like linen, will figure out to a lot more threads, but bear in mind these fibers are lighter in weight than dacron, so the overall weight of a linen string may be similar to a synthetic string.
                    Concerning wax, when building flemish strings, you want the string to stay twisted and neatly laid while working. I use a mixture of beeswax and brewers pitch on the ends of the string that form the loop and the tapered tail. This mixture is called palm. Its stickier than beeswax, though once everything is laid up, it doesn't seem to attract more dirt than plain wax. It really keeps those errant treads in line.
                    I use a bowyer's knot at one end of the bow. Some string makers will call this unacceptable, but I've never had one fail. For heavier bows, up in the 60 and 70 pound range it may be better to lay in the two loops.

                    Edward le Kervere

                    --- In SCA-Archery@yahoogroups.com, Taslen <taslen2000@...> wrote:
                    >
                    > As the newest string maker here (my lady made me a string jig for our anniversary) where do I start looking for how to articles I shoot a 35pound pull ELB that I had made for me.
                    >
                    > Gaelen
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    > ________________________________
                    >
                  • richard johnson
                    now THIS single post was extremely informative!!!! Brewers pitch? Is this common pine sap that can be melted down to make glue? I gather that it can also be
                    Message 9 of 29 , Jun 25, 2013
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                      now THIS single post was extremely informative!!!!


                      Brewers pitch?
                      Is this common pine sap that can be melted down to make glue?
                      I gather that it can also be used to coat the inside of leather or
                      horn drinking vessels?
                      What is the mixture with beeswax.. how much pitch to how much beeswax
                      for archery?


                      On 6/25/13, lekervere <edwoodguy@...> wrote:
                      > For twisting the string, there are many tutorials online, with video. You
                      > will notice not all of them use the same methods. You can pick and choose,
                      > and find what works for you. Some people swear by two-strand strings. I
                      > prefer three strands.
                      > My own experience has shown me a few things, which I will offer here.
                      > Lightweight strings shoot faster. Most string tutorials show overbuilt
                      > strings, usually meant to achieve a particular diameter, to allow the arrow
                      > nock to clip onto the string. With proper shooting form the arrow does not
                      > have to grip the string, mostly. Thumb shooters may prefer it. Anyway, the
                      > rule of thumb for safety is that a bow string should test at four times the
                      > draw poundage of the bow. You don't need to build a whole string and test it
                      > to failure. Just take a thread of whatever you want to use for string, tie
                      > it to a secure dowel or peg, wrap it around a few times and attach a fish
                      > scale to the tail. Now pull it until it breaks. You can repeat this several
                      > times to be certain, but it is likely you will come up with a consistent
                      > breaking strength. Take your bow weight, multiply by four and divide by the
                      > breaking strength, and you will have the minimum number of threads for a bow
                      > string. You can add a bit for more safety. The breaking strength of B-50 is
                      > 33 pounds. Now you see what I mean by overbuilt. For roundness I make most
                      > of my strings from three stands of three threads each. With a center
                      > serving, these will catch a nock clip, barely. Natural fiber threads, like
                      > linen, will figure out to a lot more threads, but bear in mind these fibers
                      > are lighter in weight than dacron, so the overall weight of a linen string
                      > may be similar to a synthetic string.
                      > Concerning wax, when building flemish strings, you want the string to stay
                      > twisted and neatly laid while working. I use a mixture of beeswax and
                      > brewers pitch on the ends of the string that form the loop and the tapered
                      > tail. This mixture is called palm. Its stickier than beeswax, though once
                      > everything is laid up, it doesn't seem to attract more dirt than plain wax.
                      > It really keeps those errant treads in line.
                      > I use a bowyer's knot at one end of the bow. Some string makers will call
                      > this unacceptable, but I've never had one fail. For heavier bows, up in the
                      > 60 and 70 pound range it may be better to lay in the two loops.
                      >
                      > Edward le Kervere
                      >
                      > --- In SCA-Archery@yahoogroups.com, Taslen <taslen2000@...> wrote:
                      >>
                      >> As the newest string maker here (my lady made me a string jig for our
                      >> anniversary) where do I start looking for how to articles I shoot a
                      >> 35pound pull ELB that I had made for me.
                      >>
                      >> Gaelen
                      >>
                      >>
                      >>
                      >> ________________________________
                      >>
                      >
                      >
                      >


                      --
                      Rick Johnson
                      http://Rick-Johnson.webs.com
                      "Those who give up a little freedom in return for a little imagined
                      security will soon find that they have neither."
                    • lekervere
                      I m glad you liked my post. Yes, brewer s pitch is pine sap, and I do also use it to seal leather vessels. I think its a mixture of pine sap and mineral oil,
                      Message 10 of 29 , Jun 25, 2013
                      • 0 Attachment
                        I'm glad you liked my post.
                        Yes, brewer's pitch is pine sap, and I do also use it to seal leather vessels. I think its a mixture of pine sap and mineral oil, mostly pine sap. For the palm, you could use plain pine sap. I think the mixture is one part pitch to four parts beeswax. Its been a while and I didn't take notes. One thumb size lump has done for maybe two dozen bow strings, and is still two thirds unused.
                        I buy brewer's pitch by the pound from the James Townsend and Sons Catalog online. For those working on more period kits, and who have some skill with leather, look up bottels and leather jacks online. You can buy them made up, but some use an epoxy product to seal the inside. The trouble with this is, once its cracked, you can't fix it. When the brewer's pitch develops a leak, you warm it by the fire until the pitch flows and it reseals.

                        Edward le Kervere

                        --- In SCA-Archery@yahoogroups.com, richard johnson <rikjohnson39@...> wrote:
                        >
                        > now THIS single post was extremely informative!!!!
                        >
                        >
                        > Brewers pitch?
                        > Is this common pine sap that can be melted down to make glue?
                        > I gather that it can also be used to coat the inside of leather or
                        > horn drinking vessels?
                        > What is the mixture with beeswax.. how much pitch to how much beeswax
                        > for archery?
                        >
                        >
                        > On 6/25/13, lekervere <edwoodguy@...> wrote:
                        > > For twisting the string, there are many tutorials online, with video. You
                        > > will notice not all of them use the same methods. You can pick and choose,
                        > > and find what works for you. Some people swear by two-strand strings. I
                        > > prefer three strands.
                        > > My own experience has shown me a few things, which I will offer here.
                        > > Lightweight strings shoot faster. Most string tutorials show overbuilt
                        > > strings, usually meant to achieve a particular diameter, to allow the arrow
                        > > nock to clip onto the string. With proper shooting form the arrow does not
                        > > have to grip the string, mostly. Thumb shooters may prefer it. Anyway, the
                        > > rule of thumb for safety is that a bow string should test at four times the
                        > > draw poundage of the bow. You don't need to build a whole string and test it
                        > > to failure. Just take a thread of whatever you want to use for string, tie
                        > > it to a secure dowel or peg, wrap it around a few times and attach a fish
                        > > scale to the tail. Now pull it until it breaks. You can repeat this several
                        > > times to be certain, but it is likely you will come up with a consistent
                        > > breaking strength. Take your bow weight, multiply by four and divide by the
                        > > breaking strength, and you will have the minimum number of threads for a bow
                        > > string. You can add a bit for more safety. The breaking strength of B-50 is
                        > > 33 pounds. Now you see what I mean by overbuilt. For roundness I make most
                        > > of my strings from three stands of three threads each. With a center
                        > > serving, these will catch a nock clip, barely. Natural fiber threads, like
                        > > linen, will figure out to a lot more threads, but bear in mind these fibers
                        > > are lighter in weight than dacron, so the overall weight of a linen string
                        > > may be similar to a synthetic string.
                        > > Concerning wax, when building flemish strings, you want the string to stay
                        > > twisted and neatly laid while working. I use a mixture of beeswax and
                        > > brewers pitch on the ends of the string that form the loop and the tapered
                        > > tail. This mixture is called palm. Its stickier than beeswax, though once
                        > > everything is laid up, it doesn't seem to attract more dirt than plain wax.
                        > > It really keeps those errant treads in line.
                        > > I use a bowyer's knot at one end of the bow. Some string makers will call
                        > > this unacceptable, but I've never had one fail. For heavier bows, up in the
                        > > 60 and 70 pound range it may be better to lay in the two loops.
                        > >
                        > > Edward le Kervere
                        > >
                        > > --- In SCA-Archery@yahoogroups.com, Taslen <taslen2000@> wrote:
                        > >>
                        > >> As the newest string maker here (my lady made me a string jig for our
                        > >> anniversary) where do I start looking for how to articles I shoot a
                        > >> 35pound pull ELB that I had made for me.
                        > >>
                        > >> Gaelen
                        > >>
                        > >>
                        > >>
                        > >> ________________________________
                        > >>
                        > >
                        > >
                        > >
                        >
                        >
                        > --
                        > Rick Johnson
                        > http://Rick-Johnson.webs.com
                        > "Those who give up a little freedom in return for a little imagined
                        > security will soon find that they have neither."
                        >
                      • Taslen
                        thanks for the information I will be starting soon Gaelen ________________________________ From: lekervere To: SCA-Archery@yahoogroups.com
                        Message 11 of 29 , Jun 26, 2013
                        • 0 Attachment
                          thanks for the information I will be starting soon

                          Gaelen


                          From: lekervere <edwoodguy@...>
                          To: SCA-Archery@yahoogroups.com
                          Sent: Tuesday, June 25, 2013 2:06 PM
                          Subject: [SCA-Archery] Re: Strings newbie help?

                           
                          For twisting the string, there are many tutorials online, with video. You will notice not all of them use the same methods. You can pick and choose, and find what works for you. Some people swear by two-strand strings. I prefer three strands.
                          My own experience has shown me a few things, which I will offer here. Lightweight strings shoot faster. Most string tutorials show overbuilt strings, usually meant to achieve a particular diameter, to allow the arrow nock to clip onto the string. With proper shooting form the arrow does not have to grip the string, mostly. Thumb shooters may prefer it. Anyway, the rule of thumb for safety is that a bow string should test at four times the draw poundage of the bow. You don't need to build a whole string and test it to failure. Just take a thread of whatever you want to use for string, tie it to a secure dowel or peg, wrap it around a few times and attach a fish scale to the tail. Now pull it until it breaks. You can repeat this several times to be certain, but it is likely you will come up with a consistent breaking strength. Take your bow weight, multiply by four and divide by the breaking strength, and you will have the minimum number of threads for a bow string. You can add a bit for more safety. The breaking strength of B-50 is 33 pounds. Now you see what I mean by overbuilt. For roundness I make most of my strings from three stands of three threads each. With a center serving, these will catch a nock clip, barely. Natural fiber threads, like linen, will figure out to a lot more threads, but bear in mind these fibers are lighter in weight than dacron, so the overall weight of a linen string may be similar to a synthetic string.
                          Concerning wax, when building flemish strings, you want the string to stay twisted and neatly laid while working. I use a mixture of beeswax and brewers pitch on the ends of the string that form the loop and the tapered tail. This mixture is called palm. Its stickier than beeswax, though once everything is laid up, it doesn't seem to attract more dirt than plain wax. It really keeps those errant treads in line.
                          I use a bowyer's knot at one end of the bow. Some string makers will call this unacceptable, but I've never had one fail. For heavier bows, up in the 60 and 70 pound range it may be better to lay in the two loops.

                          Edward le Kervere

                          --- In SCA-Archery@yahoogroups.com, Taslen <taslen2000@...> wrote:
                          >
                          > As the newest string maker here (my lady made me a string jig for our anniversary) where do I start looking for how to articles I shoot a 35pound pull ELB that I had made for me.
                          >
                          > Gaelen
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          > ________________________________
                          >



                        • Caterina Fortuna
                          My lord has experimented some with modern materials, like certain types of fishing line, dacron, fast flight,... What this means it s some of his strings are
                          Message 12 of 29 , Jul 2, 2013
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                            My lord has experimented some with modern materials, like certain types of fishing line, dacron, fast flight,...
                            What this means it's some of his strings are very thin. So thin that I requested a thicker serving to keep my fingers from hurting. The thicker the bowstring the slower it responds. We check our arrow velocity at our local archery shop. This is helpful when tuning your bow...
                            Serving (thread) comes in different thicknesses. You can also add an extra layer or two in the area where your fingers pull.
                            We compromised by making a thin string with a thicker serving where my fingers pull.
                            Cat

                          • Bill Tait
                            There is also a risk of making the string too thin, resulting in what is called a critical string. If it is too thin, it will not react the same from shot to
                            Message 13 of 29 , Jul 3, 2013
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                              There is also a risk of making the string too thin, resulting in what is called a "critical" string. If it is too thin, it will not react the same from shot to shot. I played once with different string thicknesses and brace heights. The guideline for B-50 (Dacron) is 3-4 lbs (bow poundage) per strand. My 30# should have had 8 as a "thin" string. 6 was far too few :) It lasted 13 shots before letting go. Thankfully it didn't fail catastrophically, but rather the brace height dropped to just a few inches.

                              PS: A good finger tab will keep your fingers from hurting, and will improve your consistency.

                              William Arwemakere



                              On Tue, Jul 2, 2013 at 11:52 PM, Caterina Fortuna <cat4tuna@...> wrote:
                               

                              My lord has experimented some with modern materials, like certain types of fishing line, dacron, fast flight,...
                              What this means it's some of his strings are very thin. So thin that I requested a thicker serving to keep my fingers from hurting. The thicker the bowstring the slower it responds. We check our arrow velocity at our local archery shop. This is helpful when tuning your bow...
                              Serving (thread) comes in different thicknesses. You can also add an extra layer or two in the area where your fingers pull.
                              We compromised by making a thin string with a thicker serving where my fingers pull.
                              Cat


                            • The Greys
                              Considering the bow is an ancient weapon it is truly amazing how much physics goes into it s functioning. How many on this list have ever wondered how far
                              Message 14 of 29 , Jul 3, 2013
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                                Considering the bow is an ancient weapon it is truly amazing how much physics goes into it's functioning. How many on this list have ever wondered how far they could throw an arrow? I know I couldn't throw one even 20 yards much less with any degree of accuracy. Thus when a bow is drawn the energy of the bent limbs is stored. Upon release of the string that energy is transferred to the arrow causing it to fly to the bulls eye - or at least that's what we hope! :-) ANYTHING added to the string or bow limbs takes away from the energy going to the arrow. Thus thicker strings, nock points, string silencers, servings all detract from the energy transferred to the arrow. Even things like end caps some folks put on their limb tips detracts. Again, basic physics, it takes energy to move these things, energy that does not go into the arrow.

                                Personally I like string silencers and nock points. I use Dacron B-50 on most of my bows as that is what's recommended by their maker. I have one Cold Mountain longbow that I use FastFlight strings on because, again, that's what the maker recommends. However, I will say one day shooting, I rather stupidly pulled the arrow nock off the string during the draw without knowing it, and fired the bow. Fortunately it did not break but it snapped off a sliver of the limb tip veneer. So "Don't dry fire your bow" means a great deal to me these days!

                                cog

                                --- In SCA-Archery@yahoogroups.com, Caterina Fortuna <cat4tuna@...> wrote:
                                >
                                > My lord has experimented some with modern materials, like certain types of
                                > fishing line, dacron, fast flight,...
                                > What this means it's some of his strings are very thin. So thin that I
                                > requested a thicker serving to keep my fingers from hurting. The thicker
                                > the bowstring the slower it responds. We check our arrow velocity at our
                                > local archery shop. This is helpful when tuning your bow...
                                > Serving (thread) comes in different thicknesses. You can also add an extra
                                > layer or two in the area where your fingers pull.
                                > We compromised by making a thin string with a thicker serving where my
                                > fingers pull.
                                > Cat
                                >
                              • Siegfried
                                Your rule is simpler than mine. Mine has always been walking through the following mention formula: 1. B-50 is rated at 50 lbs 2.1 However on an endless loop
                                Message 15 of 29 , Jul 3, 2013
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                                  Your rule is simpler than mine. Mine has always been walking through
                                  the following mention formula:

                                  1. B-50 is rated at 50 lbs

                                  2.1 However on an endless loop string, you have half as many at the ends
                                  2.2 On a Flemish string, the 'weave' is only 50% as strong.

                                  3. Therefore, you need to at least double it.

                                  4. Now, multiply by 4 for a safety factor. Because, ummm, yeah. BE SAFE.

                                  ;)

                                  So that meant to me: 30# bow? means I need at least 2 strands, so I
                                  make an 8 strand string.

                                  80# combat crossbow? I'd need 4 strands. So I make a 16 strand string.

                                  130# crossbow? I'd need 6 strands, so I make a 24 strand string.

                                  ... It's a lot more rough of math, and if I'm close to a limit (50, 100,
                                  150), I'll add an extra bundle of 4. So a 50# bow gets 12 strand, 100#
                                  crossbow gets 20 strand, and 150# crossbow gets 28.

                                  Siegfried


                                  On 7/3/13 3:06 AM, Bill Tait wrote:
                                  >
                                  >
                                  > There is also a risk of making the string too thin, resulting in what is
                                  > called a "critical" string. If it is too thin, it will not react the
                                  > same from shot to shot. I played once with different string thicknesses
                                  > and brace heights. The guideline for B-50 (Dacron) is 3-4 lbs (bow
                                  > poundage) per strand. My 30# should have had 8 as a "thin" string. 6 was
                                  > far too few :) It lasted 13 shots before letting go. Thankfully it
                                  > didn't fail catastrophically, but rather the brace height dropped to
                                  > just a few inches.
                                  >
                                  > PS: A good finger tab will keep your fingers from hurting, and will
                                  > improve your consistency.
                                  >
                                  > William Arwemakere
                                  >
                                  >
                                  >
                                  > On Tue, Jul 2, 2013 at 11:52 PM, Caterina Fortuna <cat4tuna@...
                                  > <mailto:cat4tuna@...>> wrote:
                                  >
                                  > __
                                  >
                                  >
                                  > My lord has experimented some with modern materials, like certain
                                  > types of fishing line, dacron, fast flight,...
                                  > What this means it's some of his strings are very thin. So thin that
                                  > I requested a thicker serving to keep my fingers from hurting. The
                                  > thicker the bowstring the slower it responds. We check our arrow
                                  > velocity at our local archery shop. This is helpful when tuning your
                                  > bow...
                                  > Serving (thread) comes in different thicknesses. You can also add an
                                  > extra layer or two in the area where your fingers pull.
                                  > We compromised by making a thin string with a thicker serving where
                                  > my fingers pull.
                                  > Cat
                                  >
                                  >
                                  >
                                  >
                                  >

                                  --
                                  Barun Siegfried Sebastian Faust, OP - Baron Highland Foorde - Atlantia
                                  http://hf.atlantia.sca.org/ - http://crossbows.biz/ - http://eliw.com/
                                • Fritz
                                  ... Argh! The dreaded string jig! OK _I_ dread it. I have enough STUFF already and this bulky item only does _one_ thing. BTW, the infinitive of the verb for
                                  Message 16 of 29 , Jul 3, 2013
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                                    > Flemish Twist is at
                                    > http://www.stickbow.com/stickbow/features/flemishstring/flemishstring.html

                                    Argh! The dreaded string jig!
                                    OK _I_ dread it.
                                    I have enough STUFF already and this bulky item only does _one_ thing.

                                    BTW, the infinitive of the verb for the twisting we do to make one of
                                    these strings is "to twine".

                                    -----------------

                                    "FLEMISH" BOWSTRINGS - WITHOUT THE JIG

                                    All you need to make a bowstring is the string material, some beeswax,
                                    the bow, a sharp knife (scissors will do if you aren't safe with a
                                    knife), and two hands (though I know a kid who I bet can do this with
                                    his only hand.)

                                    Cut all your strands the same length; about a hand-span longer than the bow.

                                    Cut enough strands for their total strength to equal four times the
                                    poundage of the bow. This number is X. Make sure it's an even number,
                                    have an extra instead of going short.

                                    Make two bundles with equal numbers of strands.

                                    Shift the strands in each bundle relative to each other, 1/8", 3/16",
                                    even 1/4".
                                    It depends on the size and number of the strands and the sort of taper
                                    you want.

                                    Draw the strands over the wax in a group until you have wax enough on
                                    them to keep them in order.

                                    Add X/4 10" strands at one end of each bundle, these will strengthen the
                                    loop.

                                    Stagger their ends too.

                                    Wax them in.

                                    Lay the reinforced ends of the bundles next to each other with the
                                    remaining strands headed in opposite directions.
                                    (This is more awkward than having the bundles heading in the same
                                    direction, but I'm more comfortable with the idea of the actual bundles
                                    pulling _against_ each other. Same direction may be fine, but I don't
                                    know it.)

                                    Twine the center until you have enough for the loop to slide partway
                                    down the top of the bow.

                                    Join the legs together, long with short, and twine about an inch past
                                    the end of the last reinforcing strand.

                                    Leave the strands straight (and _equally_ tensioned) until about four
                                    inches above your expected nocking point. (Everything's going to
                                    stretch, you may even have to re-twine this string once it has. It's a
                                    learning experience.)

                                    Twine the bundles for an inch.

                                    Add in a 12" or 14" strand by its center. Adding half of it to each bundle.

                                    Twine about 1/4".

                                    Add another such strand by its center.

                                    Continue adding strands in this manner until you have achieved the
                                    thickness required to fit the nocks of your arrows.
                                    (Do a test beforehand so you know how many to cut.)

                                    Twine about an inch past the end of the last reinforcing strand.

                                    About 11" from the ends of the bundles, twine the bundles for an inch.

                                    As with the nocking area, add in X/4 20" strands by their centers. These
                                    will reinforce the area that will become the bowyer's knot or timber
                                    hitch, your choice.

                                    Twine until there's nothing left.

                                    I often finish with the smallest figure-8 knot I can manage at the very tip.

                                    Ta da! Bowstring!
                                    One that you need not worry about untwisting.

                                    -----------------

                                    I leave the straight parts as long as I can, a string that is entirely
                                    twined is springy and less efficient than otherwise. And it's faster to
                                    make.

                                    Make your major brace-height adjustments by altering the knot. When the
                                    string has stretched (in the heat of the day (can we not talk about how
                                    I know this)) you can make fine adjustments by twisting the string
                                    tighter. And if need be, looser.

                                    I have made strings in this manner _on_the_range_ at Pensic for myself
                                    and for others. No jigs, just wax, string, and a knife. 30 to 45 minutes.
                                    You can do it too.
                                    Amaze your friends.


                                    Fritz, Sagg, OL, etc.


                                    P.S. I once watch Edward the Grey make a quick string in about 3
                                    minutes. Two colors at that! It was heavy, but it worked.
                                  • ladyjohannatrewpeny
                                    Share some Pictures next time you make one that way Fritz. It sounds interesting! I have forgotten my jig when I was running an archery repair night but
                                    Message 17 of 29 , Jul 4, 2013
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                                      Share some Pictures next time you make one that way Fritz. It sounds interesting!


                                      I have forgotten my jig when I was running an 'archery repair' night but found that one can make twisted loop flemish strings without it. We wrapped the strings around two chair backs to get the proper length (bow length + about 10 inches per end) and used scissors to nip 1/2 inches off creating that frayed end which allows the bundle to fade into the string rather than leave a clump.
                                      It worked better than I thought and we had several loaner bows up and ready by that evening.

                                      When teaching new string makers I give them a mnemonic that helps me remember which way I'm going. "Twist away, fold back."

                                      I do advise new stringmakers to use two different colors. It's much easier to match which bundle is which when weaving the ends back in to form the loop and this is one thing that can make your string fail if you get it wrong......and they're pretty! Baronial or Kingdom colors if you're using the Dacron make a nice touch to your loaner gear. Black stays looking nicer than white due to the dust and stuff the wax picks up, but a red/white striped 'candycane' string is almost worth remaking occasionally for the kids.



                                      Ladies can also use this twist for their hair with a long scarf. Split hair in half, drape scarf on neck, lean forward. Starting at the nape of the neck and working toward the temple on each side fold hair around scarf until the temple is reached. Now separate scarf from hair and 'Flemish Twist'. Twist the other side of the hair in reverse. Cross the two, Making sure the 'rope' is laid on the downhill side of the roll that's attached to your head. Wrap the finished 'ropes' around and tie them in the back. No pins are needed, if done properly it will last all day. It's great for keeping that lovely hair out of the way of your bow's string, is cool for summmer, makes a good foundation for a hat or something to pin your veil to without killing your scalp. Gentlemen need not wait for your maid to braid your locks for 3 hours as it can be done in 3 minutes or less with practice!

                                      Brightly,
                                      Lady Johanna
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