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Home > Books > Bows and Arrows for Boys > Making the Bowstring
Chapter II

Making the Bowstring

Part 3 of 5

Bowyer's wax is needed in making this string. Get a cake of pure beeswax at the drug store and remelt it in a mold with about one-third rosin. The rosin hardens the wax, and it is not as sticky on the finished string. Pick up each of the six strands made, at the center, and wax from the center toward the ends, slightly—just enough to hold the threads together well. Follow Figures 17 to 23 inclusive for the last steps in constructing the bowstring. The twisting must be tight and as uniform as possible. After making a few strings, the uniformity of twisting becomes very easy. A string that is not uniform is apt to break very soon, as all parts are not sharing equal amounts of stress.

fig14-16_small
Figures 17 to 23. Details of making the bowstring loops
Click for a larger image

When the string is finished, slip the loop over the upper nock and then tie the plain end to the lower nock with a timber hitch. (Fig. 23.) The string will be bound to stretch somewhat when used and this amount can readily be taken up in the timber hitch.

There is one further detail that adds to the life of the bowstring, and which is also an aid in shooting. At the nocking point on the string, there is considerable wear, and experienced archers usually "serve" this part of the string with fine linen thread. Mark the exact point where the arrow nocks, then wrap both ways about 1 inch above and 2 inches below this point. The ends of the serving thread should be pulled under the last wrapping, thus leaving a smooth finish. Directly at the nocking point, a serving of silk thread will save the string from wear, and some bright-colored silk will aid in quickly finding this point each time an arrow is nocked. This serving should be thoroughly waxed.

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