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Performance characteristics of center shot bows as affected by type of release, arrow spine and glove tip thickness
by L. A. Quayle
Cleveland, Ohio
Part 1 of 3

While experimenting with center shot bows to determine the shooting characteristics of several different designs, matched sets of wood and metal arrows grouped consistently in such unexpected places on a large straw butt that a determination of the reasons for these strange performances seemed worthy of investigation.

Center shot bows of four different types were used in the experiments and were shot by four nationally known Cleve­land archers, namely, Wm. Folberth, Sr., Wm. Folberth, Jr., Fred Schweitzer, Jr. and Emil Picula, as well as archers of lesser fame, all with the same type of results.

The different locations in which the various sets of arrows grouped in the butt were determined principally by:

  1. The type of arrow rest used and the width and length of the center slot in the bow. These determined the degree of freedom allowed to the arrows as they passed over or through the arrow rest and/or the opening in the middle of the bow.
  2. The type of release used, whether pinch of three-finger Mediterranean.
  3. The use of a tab or glove, as compared with bare fingers when the three-finger release was used.
  4. Relative spine of the arrows as determined by their deflection with a one pound weight supported half way be­tween nock and pile, the arrows being suspended as close to the nock and point of pile as possible.

The four types of center shot bows used in these experi­ments are shown in the sketches below. They were made by Wm. Folberth, Sr. who is ever ready to devote his time, ma­terials and equipment to any project which promises to in­crease the sum total of archery knowledge even in a small de­gree.

4 types of center shot bows
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4 types of center shot bows

Four sets of matched arrows of the following character­istics were used:

Set Material Diameter Length Deflection with
One Pound Weight
W Aluminum Alloy 7/32 28" 0.74"
X Aluminum Alloy 7/32 26" 0.60"
Y Aluminum Alloy 7/32 24" 0.46"
Z Wood 9/32 26" 0.28"

The metal arrows were made by Wm. Folberth, Sr. and the wood by Earle Meade.

In all of the experiments reported herein the head of the sighting pin was kept in the middle of the center slot of the bow and was adjusted up or down to take care of the different weights of arrows in the different sets. Distance shot was 60 feet.