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Chapter III

Making the Arrow

Part 4 of 4

Each archer must be able to distinguish his own arrows, and it has been a century-old custom to paint a "crest" on the shaft of the arrow. These colors should be striking and brilliant enough to aid one in locating the arrow in the grass, as well as individual in color scheme.

Figures 32 and 33. Painting device and trimming board for arrows
Click for a larger image

Usually, a color is painted between the feathers, first. Then, several broad or narrow bands of "opposite" colors below, and perhaps just one band above the feathers. The color combination is usually a mat­ter of individual choice, keeping the two foregoing factors in mind. Opposite colors are: yellow—purple; orange—blue; red—green; then there are triangular combinations: yellow-red-blue; or orange-green-purple. Any of these combinations harmonize well when used together. For quick work and fast colors, use any good brand of brushing lacquer. These colors brush on in a thin coat and dry in 30 minutes or less. Colors mixed in oil, such as artists' colors in tubes, may be com­bined with a clear lacquer for shades varying from those standard colors usually sold in the lacquers.

A very fine hair line of black is laid on the shaft between, or at, the overlapping point of every color. This sets each color off in a strik­ing way.

The arrows are now ready for one or two coats of some high-grade varnish, but it is necessary to rub each coat down well with very fine sandpaper and ordinary lubricating oil. There is a tendency to "pull" the colors in the crest if clear lacquer is used to finish arrows. Perhaps one would be successful in using clear lacquer provided it is applied very thin and rapidly, care being taken not to brush repeatedly over the crest.