Bamboo Walnut Longbow Build, Finish Lines

When we last left the bamboo walnut longbow build, we saw how linseed oil brings wood color to life.handle finished profileBehold, the handle and fades. The limbs are walnut backed with bamboo. The too-thick yellow chunk is yellowheart. And the stripey stuff is aptly named zebrawood, AKA zebrano. If I were to build exactly this bow again, I’d make the yellowheart layer no thicker than the bamboo. I’d also do something truly crazy: extend the handle woods into the fades.

Previous stages in this build: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3

After the linseed oil bath, another color treatment remains. This time, the bamboo gets it. A baptism of fire. Very dangerous business…..

But first, gratuitous bow photos.

bow profile midA wider view of what I hope is a braced bow. Otherwise those limbs have taken a heck of a set. Which is a bad thing in case you don’t speak bowyerese. Brace means the bow is strung but the string isn’t being pulled. Set (which I confuse with string follow … unless they’re the same thing) is when the limbs stay somewhat bent after you unstring the bow. A little set and/or string follow is OK, I gather. But more more than an inch and a half and you’ve shamed the family.

A close up of walnut splendor:limb finish closeThis is my first walnut bow. Doubt very much it’ll be my last.

walnut finish close

OK, that’s the pretty side of the bow. Now, we turn it over and find a different personality.

boo grunge boo grunge close

Poor boo. The steamer sauna and a bad glue decision left it stained and streaked and all kindza funky. There’s only one remedy worth pursuing….

boo burner 1

Burn it.

boo burner full

I concentrate the fire at the nodes and lighten up from there. The bows rarely catch fire. Comforting, I know.

bow burnt closer

The burns can render beauty to the bow. In this case, the effect is more badassian.

Then we splash on linseed oil.

boo burnt
Before

boo burnt oiledAfter.

boo burn v closeOozing with character.

And that is the bow. I’ll include the final dimensions in a critique to follow. The next post covers the string making process and arrow shelf dress-up.

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