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Blame Canada.
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None. I broke every one. But tons of wood can be used. I have seen lots of nice bows made of red oak, hickory, maple, elm, and so on. Be sure to go slow, and good luck.
 

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Blame Canada.
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i haven't made one, but a young fella on my road just made one, and he used ash.
Ash is another good wood. As for a of acceptable bow woods here are a few I have found over the years and links to them.-

http://paleoplanet69529.yuku.com/topic/42992/Edited-Bow-Wood-List

This guy seems to seek out garbage to make bows out of. I have been reading his stuff since 2000. Be sure to check out his page. Lots of good info there.

http://poorfolkbows.com/woods.htm

That said, if you look, you will find tons and tons of wood folks are using that a year or two before was considered junk.
 

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Blame Canada.
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3,226 Posts
A Red Oak board bow is the only bow that I've made and it's still going strong.
Last red oak I did made it t getting strung. I set it down to look at it and I heard a faint "crack". I'm pretty sure its a gonner. I'm thinking about backing it with fiber glass and dropping the BW down to 25-30 pounds and seeing what's up.
 

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Freedom isn't free.
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Last red oak I did made it t getting strung. I set it down to look at it and I heard a faint "crack". I'm pretty sure its a gonner. I'm thinking about backing it with fiber glass and dropping the BW down to 25-30 pounds and seeing what's up.
My 72" red oak board bow finished at a 50 lb draw weight and it's backed with one layer of fiberglass cloth/30 minute epoxy. The whole bow was saturated with epoxy resin after staining.
 

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there many bow woods that will make a fine bow some will require more skill to make a good bow also what style of bow are you looking to make

heres a list and description of good bow woods
http://paleoplanet69529.yuku.com/topic/42992/Edited-Bow-Wood-List

the best wood here in the usa is arguably osage and black/honey locust in my opinion I have a locust stave im going to be working in the next little bit
 

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Orange Osage staves make some of the best traditional bows. They are not for beginners. It is a great wood for an experienced wood worker though.
 

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Orange Osage staves make some of the best traditional bows. They are not for beginners. It is a great wood for an experienced wood worker though.
it really depends on the stave if you get a straight piece then its fine its there tendancy to be twisty that makes them more difficult locust is a great beginer wood
 

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Blame Canada.
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it really depends on the stave if you get a straight piece then its fine its there tendancy to be twisty that makes them more difficult locust is a great beginer wood
Osage surely makes bows with character though. I like the ones ware the makers pop out a knot and leave a limb with a hole the size of a fifty cent piece in it. Or bows that are so crooked they look S shaped. :thumb:
 

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6 Boys and 13 Hands
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A wood bow is a piece or wood that is 3/4 broke.

I have a nice little book called. "Bows & Arrows of the Native Americans by Jim Hamm. It tells what woods were used locally and even bow wood that some tribes had but the wood wasn't local.

It covers:
Wooden bows
Sinew backed bows
Composite bows. (buffalo horn bows)
and strings and quivers.

It's not really a in depth how to as most of bow making is experience but it does give you the ammunition to proceed.

I don't know if it's in the book or not but it's in one of my books that tell of a tribe of Indians that used green wood for bows and kept it supple by greasing it with animal fat, mostly bear fat.

West Coast:
Yew, Juniper, Ash

Great Basin and Plateau
Bighorn sheep, buffalo or Elk horn

Northern Plains:
Ash

Lower Missouri River
Osage Orange.

Upper Midwest
Ash, Black locust

East Coast:
Hickory, Ash, Black or Yellow locust
 

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Check out ebay for longbows that are pretty much ready to go some with some final finsihing required. I got a nice completed longbow on ebay for about $150 yew and bamboo she shoots really nice in 60# but is a bit light for me i usually shoot glass laminated with wood longbows in the 70# and up range. but be sure not to overbow a lighter bow you can shoot well is the ticket a higher poundage bow you cant shoot well willbe of no use. you can also get great deals on used recurves that will be easier to shoot and the fiber glass makes the bows more durable.
the bow will work really well from a hidden location you wont stand out like after firing a gun. makeing follow up shots possible. honestly most archers arent going to shoot too far so real high poundage isnt needed. a 45 # bow will put an arrow through any human.
 

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I have made many bows. I like osage the best. Hickory makes a good bow. I have a yew stave and I plan on making a bow out of it.
For an easy bow to make, get a quarter sawn pig nut hickory board. A quarter sawn osage bow makes a very good bow but you will have to "back" the bow. I have backed osage board bows with hickory and rawhide.
 
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