Make a Steam-Bent Oak + Glass Recurve Bow Pt 2, Limbs

Make a Steam-Bent Oak + Glass Recurve Bow Pt 2, Limbs

this is part 2 of the video showing how to make an oak and fiberglass recurve bow this video shows how to make the limbs you start with two strips of oak there are inch and a half wide by quarter inch thick by two feet long 24 inches long I would actually make them a couple inches longer like two inches longer I was going to do this again because I feel like the limbs came out a little bit too short but they they're okay the way I made them soak them underneath water for a day or two and while you're waiting for that you can cut out a board in the shape roughly like this you just want to curve shape that's out like a side view of a recurve bow once your wood is soaked long enough to where do you think it's got water you know soaked into it as far as it will go just take it out of the water and wrap it up in a wet cloth try to press out most of the air and just have the cloth in contact with the wood because we want it to stay wet during this next part we're going to microwave the piece of wood this is a easy way of steam bending it just going to get it really hot and mopping it going to cook it in a couple sessions of 30 seconds to a minute at about half power take it out rotate it cook it again take it out flip it over rotate it cook it again this way you get it heated more evenly and gradually it will get really hot where it's all steaming and almost burning you to touch it but this point quickly bring it over by your form that you cut out and take it out of the cloth and clamp one end on to the form the exact dimensions of the form are really not important you just want a curved shape like that where it's more curved out towards the end and kind of straightens then just slowly bend it around the curve if you bend it too fast it can break this happened to me a couple times and I have that strip of aluminum on the side that's under tensioned right now the outside of the curve I'm not sure how much it's really helping but I had seen something like that another steam venting demonstration so I thought it might help it's probably really not necessary once you have it fully bent around the forum just keep it clamped on there and leave it for a day or overnight you just want it to be on there long enough to where it will start to take a set and dry out a little bit efforts been on there long enough to take a set like a day I guess just take it off and I have this other piece of wood prepared where there's a block nail to each end at the length of the completed limb so I can just force it onto there and that will hold it in about the same curve that it was but it will be exposed to the air so it can dry and of course you're making two of these so once you have two of them on there you can leave them to air dry for a few days or you can just skip to this part you can see I've nailed on a few more blocks back there that was to try to take out some twists that had come into the limbs you want to avoid twists possible otherwise you're going to have to add shims later to try to compensate for it so we're going to bake this in an oven at a low temperature this will dry it out and help it take a set the rest of the way and it will keep it from taking a set in a new shape later when we have it strung up you want it to be dry I have a set around the boiling temperature of water you can also cook it in a simple solar oven like this just a box with some foil this is how I did the limbs that I ended up using on the completed though the ones in the oven I screwed up in a different way later either way works so once they're dry take them off of that form that clamp a piece of wood whatever you say that is that's holding it right now and compare the limbs I should be pretty similar but they'll probably be a little bit different at least mine were a little bit different if there's a big difference like this where you can see they're about the same shape but some is hanging off at one end I can just trim the extra this is some glass cloth that I got off of ebay it's 8.6 ounces per yard 85% unidirectional and vole and coated the bowl and is just a coating that helps it bond to the resin there's a lot of different coatings but make sure you don't get the uncoated kind I don't know if they even sell that very much but the strips are the same size as the original pieces of wood that we started with for the same length and width anyway I'm cutting four strips so that each limb will get two layers on the backside of the bow which is the inside of the curve and see the glass is about the same size as the piece of wood it's actually a little bit bigger I cut it a little bit bigger than the piece of wood and this is epoxy going to be using epoxy resin on the glass because it's supposed to be a little bit better than the polyester but you can use the polyester resin if you want just but a nice even coating on there doesn't have to be too thick but you want enough to where it's going to soak into the glass then once you've got a coating on there lay on your piece of glass you want to make sure you work quickly during this whole thing just so the epoxy doesn't start to set but it does take a while purchase that so you don't have to really hurry press the cloth on there make sure it's fully touching everywhere you don't want any bubbles but completely getting rid of the bubbles it's going to be almost impossible just try not to have any big bubbles a few small bubbles is probably unavoidable then put another layer of the epoxy over that try to get it to soak down in lay the glass the next layer of glass cloth on then again just press it down and at the after that put a smooth coating of epoxy over the top these are the first limbs I made I put on way more glass than I needed that's kind of what ruined them that's why I had to make a second set just cut it so you can see the taper measurements or on the screen its narrower at the tip and wider at the base such a straight-line taper and stay on the edges and then we're going to drill a hole to match up with the bolt that sticks out of the riser at the base end of the link and this is just a little scrap of oak that I'm gluing on to the tip here doesn't matter exactly how big it is it's just to reinforce the ship so we can cut in the neck sand it so it matches the outline of the tip and you'll want to bevel it and make it nice and round it and get a tip that looks away that you're satisfied with once you've got the tip rounded and made how you want it violin some knocks for the string to rest in at this point your limb is basically done you can just you can attach it to the bow and there's a little bit more that we have to do but it's almost then get the bolts nice and tight and make sure the limbs are on there straight like sight down at lengthwise to check if it's straight you can see on the completed ones I did add some glass to the belly side just at the base because it was bending too much there so it extends from the base out to about halfway out the limb and it's a much heavier glass flop that I used look at a mat and I made a string for it that's 59 inches long is the actual length of it for 63 inches by the measuring standard so once you get your limbs on hook up your string I made the string fall off the side of the limb accidentally there and hopefully your limbs will be bending about the same if they are then you can just be done at this point as far as doing real work to anything but they'll still want to do a fine sanding on the limbs and clearcoat them I don't think it's really necessary to show that here but you can see this part is bending more than this part which means that you should probably sand down the one that's not bending as much that's called tailoring just trying to get the limb to Bend evenly how you want it to but I think that's close enough to where I'm going to leave it since the upper limb that's bending more okay and it's not bending significantly more just a little bit the brace height is about six and a half inches which is fine now this is something called a tailoring tree and it's setting on the scale it's just basically a pole that has markings for showing how far you're drawing it and you'll want to gradually build up to a full draw with this because if it explodes it will be really weird to be stupid if it explodes fortunately this didn't have any problems comes out to a full draw I feel like that's about as far as it should be pulled though that's why I think the limps would maybe be a little bit longer because I don't think there's that much more that it really should go that test was indicating that it was pulling a dry weight of about 35 pounds which I was hoping it would be a little heavier than that but that's fine I'm satisfied with that if you want more you could add more fiberglass or use a broader piece of wood time to shoot this is actually the first time that I'm shooting it I didn't do any tests before this putting the string on it still looks good bending about evenly balanced I really like the way it came out looking it looks like a normal recurve bow I could tell right away that it had decent speed when I shot that it that was pretty fast that arrow that I threw out to the side was missing a fin that's why I threw it over there I'm shooting here I'm not sure exactly how far it is but I think it's like somewhere about eight to ten yards not very far from the target just seemed like it was really easy to shoot it was pretty accurate I haven't shot about okay hasn't been that long but I don't shoot very often they got two arrows right on Center three near Center and two that were off to the side so I consider that an acceptable roofing only the second grouping a shot from this bow so now of course figured everybody's kind of want to know so I had to test the arrow speed these are about 380 gray and arrows 1748 feet per second now that's an error but anyway the arrows are about 10.8 well I'll just say 10 to 11 drains per pound of dry weight shooting about 152 feet per second that was 150 2.7 you can't see the point seven 150 2.5 150 2.7 again at this point I was thinking wow that's really consistent I don't know how it's so consistent and then one hundred forty eight point two which is slightly slower but I figured out on that last shot where it was slower than nock actually broke off of the arrow when I shot it so I think it is really consistent on how fast it shoots this is a 30 pound commercial recurve bow that I had done for a gift a long time ago for comparison only a slightly lower draw way I noticed that the tips of the limbs on this are much less recurved than on that homemade one these go up just almost straight a little bit forward it's straight go to one curve forward a long ways these are the same arrows so it's slightly heavier as far as grains per pound but the same actual arrow weight and the commercial one is shooting about 10 feet per second slower hundred forty three point five one hundred thirty eight point three I think that one I might have not drawn quite as far because the rest won't seem to be well consistent than that one hundred forty one point hi Marty 6 point something 9:42 so it's just a little slower so that bow is done unless you want to like sand the limbs and clearcoat them or paint them or whatever the rest is just aesthetics this is another bone that I'll show you how to make in the next video you'll be using the same techniques and materials basically but it's just a different style of bow so anyway thank you for watching

24 Replies to “Make a Steam-Bent Oak + Glass Recurve Bow Pt 2, Limbs”

  1. I don't have a have a band saw or a belt sander. So would I just cut the limbs to shape at first then steam bend them then cut the fiberglass cloth to fit the limbs?

  2. Nice work Jay. Do you think european oak would work the same? I cant get red oak in my cauntry. Thanx

  3. I used allumumin on mine. I wrapped it around, winding it around and around using thin, on inch wide long strips of fiberglass. I would pull strings out of the cloth which would give me a straight line to cut down. Then I would use those strings to tie the cloth into place. Then I applied the resin. On the last few courses, i went straight along the back and belly of the bow for added strength. I would sand where needed and then build it up once again.

    I love fiberglass. It makes for a very light and powerful bow.

  4. Well, you did a lot of work on that. The same amount of work as if you had used Bubinga or Birds Eye Maple or something much stronger than a fir 2×4 for a riser. What a waste of time for you. Cut those bolts down. They look terrible.

  5. use a hot air blower and it will remove the bubbles,,, and a glue called SMOOTH ON,,, problems solved,,, ole fart that use to build Plains Indian flat bows,,,

  6. thanks for sharing the video very nice! the glasmats are availabel in diff ways of how it woven (correct spelling?) use the ones used for fabricating skiïng ,carbon fibers u can use fore the stiffening of the bow!

  7. Nice and perfect , with nice house ,yard fresh air and un noise fit for create all i want . Very mysweet dream hope fullfil . Amiin

  8. qual e o tipo de madeira que e asada para consiguir a envergadura igual a essa do arcos seu garoto boa noite

  9. A lot of force is going on the area where the blade meets the handle, I would have tapered the handle off gradually down to about 1/2" to take the load off the blades some more. I bet that when it brakes it would be this area.

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