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Posted: 8/29/2004 3:26:50 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/29/2004 3:28:43 AM EDT by AvengeR15]

This is my left arm after practicing for the last two days on my new bow. The giant bruise is from the bowstring twanging off my forearm because of poor stance and draw.

I bought a traditional - not a compound, with about a 30lb pull, plus 8 cheap arrows. I didn't want to spend a ton of money on something I may or may not like. It is pretty fun so far, although I don't have any kind of accuracy with it yet. I can barely hit a 3'x3' target at five yards most of the time. Soon though, I will move it out to ten yards, then fifteen, etc.

I am enjoying it, since I can shoot in my backyard, without the cops being called, or disturbing the neighbors. One day, in the distant future, I would like to buy a SERIOUS wooden longbow, but I am nowhere near strong enough or accurate enough to make any real use out of it at this point. Maybe one day, though.

By the way, any seasoned archers who feel like sharing tips or advice - by all means, share away!

And yes, as you can probably tell from the photo, my interest in archery is partly inspired by the paperback I am currently reading.

Link Posted: 8/29/2004 3:29:38 AM EDT
[Snagglepuss mode on] Mmmmm...that smarts [Snagglepuss mode off]
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 3:30:27 AM EDT
While trying to learn how to use a quick release trigger, I touched it too early and punched myself in the jaw so hard that my teeth didn't line up for several days. I stand in awe of you. You were able to draw back the bow and let fly. I never got that far before slugging it out with myself. BTW, I lost that fight.
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 3:47:22 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/29/2004 3:50:40 AM EDT by Aimless]
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 3:53:04 AM EDT
Dont feel bad, all archers start with a bruise like yours.

The best advice I can see you need right now is : That bruise is caused by locking your elbow to hold the bow away from you , point your elbow parrallel to the ground, NOT DOWN . It will feel strange at first but muscles will develope that makes it easy.

BTW, Archery is extremely addictive
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 4:03:45 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Aimless:

That book is by the "Sharpe's Rifles" author?

Sure is - Bernard Cornwell, one of my favorite authors. I have read just about everything he has written.

Link Posted: 8/29/2004 4:42:05 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/29/2004 4:42:22 AM EDT by Bobby_the_Hun]
A Crossbow will fix that problem
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 4:46:23 AM EDT
make sure your draw length is matched to that of the bow.id say that you need to shorten it up some.once you get it right and perfect your form that will not happen.hitting your arm with the string can cause some nasty habits.correct it immediately.
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 4:54:44 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Bobby_the_Hun:
A Crossbow will fix that problem

Better get a rifle. There is a very good reason the military doesn't supply Bows and Arrows anymore....

Link Posted: 8/29/2004 5:03:43 AM EDT
aimless is correct about the elbow bend,,i had the same issue,, but after 2 smacks,,i put a gaurd on,, and then i figured out how to hold my arm,, i dont bow hunt anymore,,, to damn hot and nasty down here for me,,,, but id like shootin my bow and was pretty good at it,, specially for only going at it for teh short time i did,,

anyway,,, do you have someone that bow hunts that you hang out with or talk to,, they may be able to help.?? i had a buddy that bow hunted every year and he was the biggest help ever,,,reading is good and all but i liked theone on one,, try it this way kinda help...
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 5:24:44 AM EDT

Like other have said, it will develope with time.

I don't grip my bow at all when drawing, just let it rest between my thumb and forefinger (with a wrist strap)

Link Posted: 8/29/2004 5:28:58 AM EDT
You also should know a 30# bow is a toy and prolly no where near the correct draw length for you.
A grown man should really be shooting 55#-80# pull at his drawlength.

My 11 y/o son shoots a 57# @28" recurve
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 5:32:38 AM EDT
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 5:34:11 AM EDT
son, that there is called "experince"
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 5:57:42 AM EDT

Second the technique - elbow pointed to nine o'clock with a slight bend in it and do not close your hand around the handle of the bow. You are more likely to torque the bow and reduce consistency. Keep your hand open and let the bow sit in the pocket formed by your thumb and hand.

Make sure you have an anchor point for your draw hand. If your bow is the correct draw length, you should be able to rest your thumb in the corner of your mouth. This too will help your consistnecy. The more things you do consistently the better your accuracy will be.

When releasing the arrow (if using fingers) let the string roll off the tips of your fingers. Don't put the bow string in the first joint of the fingers...it belongs on the middle of the first digit. Like pulling the trigger on a rifle, the release is not a big movement. Don't fling your fingers out of the way to release the string. Let them slowly relax until the string rolls of the tip. To do this you need some good leather shooting tabs.

Good Luck
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 6:13:16 AM EDT
Put a pin sight on the bow. An aperture in the string is okay, but not absolutley necessary.

Shooting a bow by sighting instinctively grow old fast and you will probably give up. Using a sight is a whole 'nother game, and you won't believe how well you can shoot after you try one.

30 pound draw is just fine for learning to hold, sight, release, and follow through. Poor follow through is probably the most common mistake by beginning archers - after you release the arrow, do not drop the bow to watch the arrow.

I would also recomend that you find a soft archery glove; I think this is the easiest release aid to learn. Tabs are the most difficult. Unfortunately, I haven't seen a decent glove in a store in a long time; I bought the one I use in 1974.
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 7:08:38 AM EDT
Repeatability is the key to good shooting. Anchor your hand somewhere on your face and hold your bow the same EVERYTIME and you will hit. It's that simple. Peepsights and pins are good tools for beginers but will cost you deer in the early morning and late evening light. I shoot a #45 recurve and have killed enough deer to say that I know bowhunting.

Get ready to spend some dough on a modern stickbow. There is a website called stickbow.com that has an equipment exchange board. You might find a good bow there. Good luck and don't quit.

You have never known a thrill in the woods like sticking an animal at close range with a well placed bow shot.
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 7:30:07 AM EDT
If you get heavily into it, you might want to try a release.

I stuck to using a Kant-Pinch tab for shooting for the longest time and I had to wear an armguard 100% of the time. I had several, because stretching them over my hunting clothes wore them out fast.

Two years ago I switched to a release and I no longer use an armguard. Ever. I shoot in my back yard wearing a t-shirt, no sleeves, and the string hasn't touched my arm yet since I started using the release.

But then again, the reason I stuck with the tab for so long was that I consider myself somewhat of a traditionalist and a compound bow is cheating enough. But since AZ has a draw system for hunting just about everything except deer I decided I needed to maximize my chances in case I get drawn 'cause it might be years before I get another chance.
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 7:40:25 AM EDT

Originally Posted By RED_5:
son, that there is called "experince"


still got the scar on my left arm from the one time that it happened, learnt to keep that left wrist slightly cocked inward and elbow to the outside so that it won't happen again. See Aimless's description of how to do.
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 7:50:08 AM EDT
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 7:52:06 AM EDT
I did that two years ago, my first time with a bow also. The contact spot swelled up the size of a baseball in roundness and I pushed it back down, the blood then spread all the way past my elbow and down to my wrist and stayed purple for around 2 months. Two years later I still have scaring underneath the skin. It doesn't hurt but it scares the shit out of you.

Link Posted: 8/29/2004 8:04:01 AM EDT
You know they make a arm guard for that...
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 8:13:16 AM EDT
Like ETH I used to shoot many moons ago before compounds and that photo brings back some *PAINFUL* memories.

The forearm protector was a REQUIRED piece of gear in my kit after the first HOLY SHIT THAT HURTS! event.

Gotta find a nice takedown recurve and start shooting again. I loved how it forced you to shut out all the distractions and noise in your head while shooting. Great way to relax.
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 8:15:16 AM EDT
My Grandpa has a nice long bow....
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 8:18:02 AM EDT
At least you didn't have a brass nocking point hit you. Those can slice you open pretty bad.
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 10:50:36 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/29/2004 10:51:20 AM EDT by AvengeR15]

Originally Posted By Inatree:
You also should know a 30# bow is a toy and prolly no where near the correct draw length for you.
A grown man should really be shooting 55#-80# pull at his drawlength.

My 11 y/o son shoots a 57# @28" recurve

Yes, I bought the 30lb bow for familiarization and beginner's practice, and nothing else. I didn't want to spend $400 on a good traditional longbow, only to find out I don't enjoy archery practice. I have done the same thing enough times with firearms to know better by now.

As for hunting, I have never hunted any animal in my whole life, and I don't intend to start now. Nothing wrong with hunting, just not my cup of tea. This is purely for backyard fun, and silently stalking blue helmets.
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 10:55:54 AM EDT
Wear a heavier sweatshirt.
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 11:09:20 AM EDT

i dont miss that..at all.

shooting form will alleviate alot of the slap...i shoot a martin hatfield as well as a few componds and havent had a slap in years.

you need some bagbalm or something..EEEwwwwwee
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 1:02:23 PM EDT
Glad to see some one is using a wood bow. You need a good bracer and shooting glove. Instinctive shooting is not that hard. You just have to practise alot. I use to make traditional bows in the style of the old Neolithic type. Favorite wood is black locust. Osage is the premium wood for bows however, but it is pricey. I also use sinew backing on the bows. Adds power and strength. Another method is to use cherry bark on the back of the bow.(that's the side facing away from you). I was playing around with making composite bows. They are made with buffalo horn and sinew. Very complicated to make.
I don't make bows now as I am remodeling a house I bought. Hard to find time to go to the range, let alone make bows. I have about 8 hanging in the garage right now. Might have one for sale. But they are all in the 50+lb. range. I might let one go for a real reasonable price if you are interested. BTW, I make my own arrows. Use ash for shafts. Makes for a strong arrow. I figure if the balloon doesn't go up before I retire, I will make bows, rather than sitting on the front porch watching cars go by.
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 1:04:57 PM EDT
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 1:10:42 PM EDT
2 words


Link Posted: 8/29/2004 1:15:46 PM EDT

Originally Posted By TheAmaazingCarl:
2 words



My interest is only in traditional bows. If I want something complicated and heavy, I have an M14.

By the way, a question for the serious archers: How many arrows do you fire a day? I have fired about 50 yesterday and 50 today. Is that average for you? Just curious.

Link Posted: 8/29/2004 3:59:49 PM EDT
Arg... there ya go reminding me that another bow season is nearly upon us and I haven't been practicing - I keep telling myself every year that I need to get back out, but can never seem to quite get into it.

Glad to see someone getting into traditional, though. IMHO, the traditional guys always seem to have more "fun", while the guys with the training wheels (jk, guys ) are a bit more serious. Here's my "baby" - one of my most prized possessions, even though I don't shoot it nearly enough (as you can probably tell by the relatively unworn grip).

Link Posted: 8/29/2004 4:06:35 PM EDT
Been there, done that, said similiar string of cuss words.
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 4:10:27 PM EDT
You should invest in a good fore arm guard

And get a more powerful bow, as a child I was shootign a 50# longbow that was @28" which is shorter than my draw

My Longbow is 64#@28" makes me draw around 75# good hunting weight, and yep, when I screw up and hit my arm, I know it, I have scars that will never fade from flemish strings cutting into me

Good job on going traditional, it takes more work, and is more fun, Congrats!!!!!!!!!
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 4:53:05 PM EDT
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 4:56:19 PM EDT
Cheap arrows aren't helping either. Make sure if they are aluminum arrows that they are the prpoer spine weight for the draw weight. If they aren't, you can damage your bow.
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 5:19:41 PM EDT

Originally Posted By 50cal:
Cheap arrows aren't helping either. Make sure if they are aluminum arrows that they are the prpoer spine weight for the draw weight. If they aren't, you can damage your bow.

I will check that out, but it is an extremely cheap bow, so I am not really worried about it all that much.

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