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    • rwbowman
      Post count: 119

      In respect to not completely hijack a previous thread:

      I find myself fletching arrows every few weeks or so. My ‘need’ to do so stems from various sources, but number one is the wretched wear my feathers take. I fletch right winged helical and shoot off the shelf on a rug with a super thin leather sight window pad with a tapered toothpick for offset. Am I doing something or not doing something I should be? I’ve tried tuning my nocks to change the contact of my lower hen feather, but cannot seem to fix this. Any advice will be much appreciated.

      Thanks in advance,

      Rory

    • Stephen Graf
      Moderator
      Post count: 2361

      Not sure what sort of wear you are seeing, but some folks put their cock feather in and hen feathers out. In most cases, this will allow total feather clearance. During the shot the arrow will flex off the shelf, which allows the cock feather to clear.

      You can also put some baby powder on your feathers to see where they are contacting the shelf. When you shoot, it should leave tell tale streaks on your riser somewhere…

      I shoot 4 fletch at 90 deg. An advantage to this setup is that there is no orientation. I can have any of the 4 feathers be the inside feather. I align 2 feathers with the string. this gives me the “cock feather in” configuration. And it randomly changes each time I nock the arrow… thus making making wear even between all the feathers.

    • skifrk
      Post count: 387

      I do similar to Steve in that I shoot my cock feather in on a 3 fletch. When i shot with it out I usually saw on my feathers the leading part of the feather would have a small amount of wear for about 0.5″. I heard from someone try the cock feather in and see what you get. I also like his idea of marking with baby powder or even a marker to see where the feather is striking. Also are you shooting field points or BH with these arrows, if BH does the bevel on it match the helical that might cause some problems.

    • rwbowman
      Post count: 119

      I’m only shooting broadheads in the field (if a shot arises) at this point and shoot 150 grain 3 blade double bevel woodsmans. Most of my shooting is practice with target points. I read in trad bow on Rick Welch’s school about leaving a small gap between the inward facing edge of the rug and the riser to allow more clearance of the lower feather. Anybody doing this? Results?

    • Raymond CoffmanRaymond Coffman
      Moderator
      Post count: 1035

      rwbowman-

      that is the rest setup on my Centaur r/d longbows. Seems like a good idea and work’s on that bow. I have other bows that are not set up that way and shoot good too.You might try it. I imagine as usual it depends on the archer/bow/arrow combo.

      Scout

    • rwbowman
      Post count: 119

      Thanks. I’ve been thinking to do so.

    • rwbowman
      Post count: 119

      I tried shooting with the cock feeather in yesterday before the storms rolled through. Result- erratic flight immediately off the bow. Nock end squirreling all over the place, point of impact way off and wherever the arrow wanted to go. safe to assume my bow did not like this method. I shoot 5″ parabolics.

    • tombow
      Post count: 103

      I would guess that you may have arrow tuning issues if you are getting consistent damage to feathers. Have you paper or bare shaft tuned? Just saying, if the feathers are hitting the bow on each shot then something in the arrow paradox is incorrect. ARe you having feather damage issues with field points also or just broadheads? And where is the damage on the feathers themselves, leading edge of the quill?

    • rwbowman
      Post count: 119

      TomBow wrote: I would guess that you may have arrow tuning issues if you are getting consistent damage to feathers. Have you paper or bare shaft tuned? Just saying, if the feathers are hitting the bow on each shot then something in the arrow paradox is incorrect. ARe you having feather damage issues with field points also or just broadheads? And where is the damage on the feathers themselves, leading edge of the quill?

      the ‘damage’ is done to the outer edge of the lower feather as it passes over the shelf. Basically, just fraying the heck out of the tips of the feather fibers.

    • tombow
      Post count: 103

      Is the damage happening on the first shot with a new feather? Again, have you bare shaft tested so see how the arrows without feathers fly? I spine checked my carbon arrows this week and found that what I suspected was true, the arrows on paper (specs from the company) matched what I was looking for but bare shafting said the spines were stiff. The spine tester results showed that my 500 spine shafts were actually showing 400 spine. What arrows are you using? Do you shoot split fingers or 3-under? Maybe your putting alot of downward pressure on the top of the arrow IF shooting split or something is causing the nock end of the arrow to smack the shelf resulting in feather damage. Perhaps move your nocking point around a bit and see if you can get better flight. Feathers are so forgiving but my theory is that there is an extreme amount of pinch pressure between the shaft, the feather and the shelf to cause the damage. So many possibilities. Some bows shoot better with a slight elevation to get the arrow just a bit off the shelf. Put a bit of something under the rug maybe and see if you get better results. Experiment and Good Luck!

    • rwbowman
      Post count: 119

      This happens on new feathers and ‘old’ feathers alike. This ‘damage’ can best be defined as friction born wear on the fibers, making the clean, uniform feather edges appear ratty and ragged. I am shooting Easton 2016 Aluminum from a 45# PSE recurve and have never bare shaft tested them. I shoot split fingered- index above and two under. Arrow flight is clean and straight, however if I am unfocussed and ‘lazy’, I will notice erratic flights due to poor releases and typically break for an hour or more before going back.

      I have a knife tapered toothpick under the bear rug on my shelf and have noticed significant wear on the rug where the arrow shafts pass over the toothpick. Today while shooting, I knocked an arrow and looked at the fletching and saw that the lower feather showed no wear after about a month of shooting. After inspecting closely and comparing to other shafts, it seemed as though the nock orientation relative to the cock feather was a bit different than the rest of my arrows, so I adjusted all others to match the clean featherd shaft and steamed the fletching on all of them. I guess time will tell me if I have found yet another possible culprit of my ratty feathers.

      Thanks for offering so many helpful thoughts and diagnostic solutions. I am learning to tinker and tune more and more until I get it right. At least now nothing is in season here, so I’ve got time to get everything tuned up efficiently.

    • tombow
      Post count: 103

      No problem there-guy. If arrow flight is good, consistent then I’d say that is something to cross off the culprit-list. You could try the powder trick, dust your arrow, feathers and all, shoot it then look at where the powder is missing and for powder on the shelf. That will tell you where the contact is, how much feather is hitting something, how much shaft is hitting something. I would then tune ( tweak brace height, nock point) until I had the least amount of contact. In theory, the least amount of contact means that you could lessen any effects on arrow flight and get cleaner feathers in the bargain.

      DISCLAIMER: I’m by no means telling you what to do. Just putting ideas down to give you something to think about it. Hey, If I say something smart (ya, like that’ll happen~!) and it gives you an idea, well Yipee!

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