Home Forums Bows and Equipment tapered wood arrows

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    • Greg RaganGreg Ragan
      Member
      Post count: 201

      Who else likes them?

      Some food for thought:

      Here is a quote by Bob Burton (avid Hill collector and of Whispering Wind Arrows) –

      “Lets talk tapered shafts. Dr. Robert Elmer in his book “Target Archery” made the following statement. “I believe the parallel arrow shaft is a product of modern American technology, I don’t know of a race of men that lived by the bow that shot anything other than tapered shafts.”

      Tapering has nothing to do with fletch clearance, or weight forward. The primary benefit is overcoming paradox faster. By removing weight from either one or both ends of the shaft, the shaft stops its oscillations faster and begins spinning on its axis quicker. That will allow the arrow to retain its velocity longer(Less drag) and have more remaining energy, and flatter trajectory at impact. Its not something that will be observed by the shooter, because it happens so quickly. Its especially beneficial on bows cut less than center, where the arrow goes through a great deal of paradox. Past center bows have much less paradox to the arrow and its benefit is minimal.

      I have arrows in my collection that go back to the 1800’s every one of them are tapered. To give you an extreme example. Elmer did some testing, in the 1940’s, using a barrel tapered arrow and a Breast tapered arrow of the same spine and physical weight. He had one of the best target archers of the day shoot them at 100 yards at a 48″ American round target. He stated that the breast tapered arrow consistently printed 1/2 (24″)a target higher than the barrel tapered arrow. Now that’s comparing a taper against another taper, I can’t even imagine what the difference would between a taper and a parallel arrow. So don’t discount the tapered arrow, they are well worth the time and effort. I’m sure some will say, I only hunt and don’t shoot at animals a 100 yards away, true but quick recovery allows the arrow clean passage thru tight spots and a arrow spinning on impact allowing deeper penetration. I know a lady who was shooting a 40# bow at 25″ shooting tapered arrow in Africa several years ago who shot 17 animals most being pass through’s”

      I am also a believer in the benefits of a good nock tapered arrow.

    • Stephen Graf
      Moderator
      Post count: 2361

      Dave,

      You can strengthen the self nocks. Once you have determined the orientation of the nock, but before you have cut them in… You can cut a slot 90 deg to the orientation of the nock that runs say 1/2 in deeper than the nock. Then glue insert a piece of osage wood or plastic, or antler that is the same width as the kerf you just cut. Let it cure. then cut your nocks in as usual. Your “composite” wings will be stronger. But they won’t be self nock’s anymore.

    • Ptaylor
      Member
      Post count: 573

      Dave,

      Are you shooting self nocks because they fly better or just cause that’s what “you’re supposed to do” out of wood bows?

    • David Petersen
      Member
      Post count: 2749

      Steve — Thanks for the good reminder. In fact I did that many years ago but like so very much else, I’d plumb forgotten. To me, if you use a natural material for the spline it’s still trad enough to rate as a self-nock.

      For the first time I wrapped this batch with deer sinew, and can’t say why such a totally simple material to use has until now seemed not worth messing with. In fact it is far easier to use, stronger and goes on much nicer than fake sinew, serving string, etc. Henceforth I’ll be saving sinew from every animal I kill and maybe some road-kills too.

      Ptaylor — There is no physical reason whatsoever not to shoot carbon or even alum arrows from a wood bow. It’s purely a “what feels right thing.” I guess there are some folks who have come into a selfbow and shoot it because they have it and it shoots well. But for the overwhelming majority who do it, it’s an overt attempt to descend back along the scale of technology as far as possible and still be able to hunt ethically, that is, be totally confident in our gear to get the job done. So this same “primitive” mindset that craves a wood bow also craves wood arrows, and self-nocks add yet another small degree of “doing more with less.” It’s rather like the decision to go trad in the first place, taken a bit farther. It’s all for fun.

    • Ptaylor
      Member
      Post count: 573

      I agree with you completely Dave, but wanted to be sure you and the gang of test everything until it fails or works hadn’t figured out some benefit to nocks on wood arrows.

      At some point I have to draw the line, or I’ll have to dropout of school to have enough time to go All the way back…:wink:

      Anyway, to keep this on topic, when I was getting my arrows from AMAW, Bill considered tapering them. But he decided against it cause the bow/spine was so heavy and he thought the self nocks would be weak. So I have parallel shafts. I’m interested to know if any of you have used tapered shafts from a heavily spined arrow and had the work. Waiting for your results Dave…

    • Forresterwoods
      Member
      Post count: 104

      I personally use 5/16 shafts spined at 70# with a short footing up front for s bigger broadhead. Also I find the hardwoods a much quicker to recover from paradox than softwoods.

      Dave I saw some guys doing some horsebow shooting and the nock end was 11/32 which made for better grabing of the arrow. wonder if you could do that for a self noc?

      Kevin Forrester

    • Stumpkiller
      Member
      Post count: 193

      I like ’em enough to hand plane the last 12″ of my wood shafts (all I shoot) down to 5/16″ at the nock. Seems to work for me.

    • Stephen Graf
      Moderator
      Post count: 2361

      Looks like 2 threads got put together here? This looks like most of it is a thread Dave started, and got amended to a thread 2fer started? Maybe I am just confused…

    • bumma
      Post count: 5

      Hello everyone. New guy here with an opinion on the tapered shafts…Love em! I shoot nothing else now. With the weight forward and the right BH (or field point) recovery time is greatly reduced. My groups are tighter and I have been able to increase my distance to the target.

    • Robin ConradsRobin Conrads
      Admin
      Post count: 907

      Steve Graf wrote: Looks like 2 threads got put together here? This looks like most of it is a thread Dave started, and got amended to a thread 2fer started? Maybe I am just confused…

      I didn’t do it! 😆 But you are right, it does look like two threads were crashed together. 😯 At least you know you aren’t confused…

    • RalphRalph
      Moderator
      Post count: 2544

      A hardwood, self-nocked, tapered shaft with non-synthetic sinew. What I miss? 😆 With which I probably miss with anyway.

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