RE: [SCA-Archery] Glues
I’m chomping on your food for thought.
The observations several people made about glues are very astute. I am particularly down on the use of cyano-acrylates (Crazy Glue and similar products) for arrows. These glues outgas a residue that leaves a non-removable white coating around the glue joint. I tried Fast-Fletch on my first arrow project years ago, and ended up throwing the arrows away because the glue made such a mess. Since then, I have only used Bohning Fletching Tape. I fix the fletch ends with a dot of Duco cement, and have almost never had this fail. I’ve tried epoxy for this step, but this often runs (my arrows dry standing upright). This may be because I buy the 2,400 lb, 24-hour Devco brand for both nocks and points. A faster setting epoxy would probably work, but would set up before I could finish a dozen arrows.
Good points on our attitudes about historic objects. This isn’t helped by so-called “experts” on the History Channel and other outlets that assure us that our ignorant and buffoonish ancestors could never have built the pyramids or much of anything else without help from space aliens. Especially that fellow who seems to be having a life-long bad hair day. Our ancestors were actually extremely clever, and produced amazing stuff using simple materials and a lot of muscle power.
Your point about the thumb rings is well taken. In my research on Scottish targes, nearly all I can find in museum collections are fancy “gentlemen’s” targes, which were often preserved for their beauty or dynastic significance. Peasants’ targes are extremely rare, even though they represent the vast majority of these shields that were ever made. They just weren’t worth keeping. I know a few do exist in British museums, but they aren’t shown in online catalogs because they are often unattractive and in very poor condition.
Lord Mungo Napier, The Archer of Mallard Lodge
Read “The Tale of Mungo Napier”:
Some very intriguing responses to my initial post about glues used for bows that I would, personally, like more information on (lady who has done a lot of research into glues of period). My point was that glues of period, for the most part, were made of organic materials which are eaten by critters and bacteria, be they hide glue, fish bladder glue, or even gum arabic used in illumination (for gold leafing but a binder not really a glue).
Yes, I understand that a lack of documentation does not justify a "but they could have" mindset. But how many of us have watched some documentary with the "experts" guessing what some item was used for only to be saying "No! That's not what it was for!" because we have done more extensive personal research on the item? I'm NOT proposing that as amateur researchers we are more educated than the "experts", I'm simply saying that it strikes me that as modern people we under judge/expect people of history's abilities and ingenuity. We often fail to remember that what we have for "documentation" is NOT representative of the "average" person but the truly special items of the higher classes that have been kept through time due to their specialness. For example, thumb rings that are on display in the Armor Museum in Vienna Austria are made of precious stones studded with jewels. Would we consider this as documentation that every thumb ring was constructed so?
It's just food for thought,