When we last left the bamboo walnut longbow build, we saw how linseed oil brings wood color to life.Behold, 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.
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.
A 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.
OK, that’s the pretty side of the bow. Now, we turn it over and find a different personality.
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….
I concentrate the fire at the nodes and lighten up from there. The bows rarely catch fire. Comforting, I know.
The burns can render beauty to the bow. In this case, the effect is more badassian.
Then we splash on linseed oil.
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.