The Archery Library
Old Archery Books, Articles and Prints
Home > Books > Archery: The Technical Side > Physics of Bows and Arrows
1. The "weight" of a bow is the force required to draw it the full length of its arrow.
2. Nocking means to place an arrow on the string, with its nock, or notch, in the proper position. Roger Ascham, tutor to Elizabeth, later queen of England, wrote in 1544: "Standinge, nockinge, drawinge, holdinge, lowsinge, whereby commeth fayre shootinge . . ."
3. Hickman, U. S. Patent No. 2,100,317.
4. This discussion of virtual mass appears here as the first publication on the subject. It developed under the editor's benign prodding for an informative paper on bow-and-arrow physics, which caused me to review experimental data that had lain dormant in my work-books for more than ten years. I had previously discovered the empirical relationship, which held for moat bows I had tested, that the velocity of an arrow is inversely proportional to the cube root of its mass. If Eq. (1) is used to evaluate v and m for several values rW and K, corresponding to different bows, and the products of v and m1/3are plotted as a function of m, the curves are flat over the ranges of values of m and employed in practical archery.
5. Until recently archers expressed masses of arrows in terms of shillings and pence, which were used as balance weights by arrowsmiths in England. In this country the grain is now employed as the unit (15.4 grains = 1 g ; 437.5 grains = 1 oz).
6. Cranz, Lehrbuch der Ballistik, vol. 1, pp. 162-166.