Just when you think the body of bowyerism knowledge is exhausted — read the chapter on string making in Vol. II — the authors of the Traditional Bowyer’s Bible open up all new avenues of bowyeristic mysticism.
I just finished the second volume. The G. Fred Asbell chapter on improving accuracy was immediately helpful. The rest….
The rest is at minimum a deep peering into a subculture based on a tool of the past. Or a tool with a past. In the age of compound bow, of naked efficiency and complex ugliness, the TBB authors strive to keep alive not just the bent stick of old, but a way of life and thinking and acting.
As much as I like to poke fun at the “primitives” (I like it almost as much as poking fun at the most self-serious of the compound proponents), while I read TBB, I increasingly feel like I should remove my hat and shut my mouth. The authors are on sacred ground. They know it well. They offer much to learn beyond simply getting a stick to bend.
I’m hooked. I’ve read six hundred plus pages and I can’t wait to bathe in the next 300. A fourth volume, which I do not yet own, awaits. The end is not in sight. Thank God.
Here’s a handy link to the books.
If you’re interested in traditional archery, you should read these books, whether you build bows or not. A few chapters you may want to skip — probably the ones bow-makers read at least twice. If you’re a compounder, you need to read these books. Or find someone to read them to you.
Ah, I couldn’t resist that last line. I am soooo sorry.