Flemish string question

mgpuk
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mgpuk
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March 29th, 2007, 11:22 pm #1

I have been making my own strings for some time out of dacron B50 and have copied the strings that I had on the bows when I first bought them. Flemish twist with the loop laid in by reverse twisting, the last ten or so inches reverse twisted and the main body of the string simply twisted. I recently bought the second volume of the bowyers bible and in the chapter on string making Tim Baker gives directions for making strings which are reverse twisted for their entire length, suggesting the use of a drill to save time putting the twists into the string. What advantage is there in this? I would have thought all those extra twists will make the string more stretchy and therefore slower.

Mike
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toxophileken
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March 29th, 2007, 11:39 pm #2

Mike, I have wondered the same thing, and I have seen the strings Tim makes. I think the advantage is if you are making only a one loop string, and the other end is tied off then looped into a timber hitch.

Hope Tim chimes in.

Ken
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rwelch
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March 30th, 2007, 12:01 am #3

Tim is the one to answer this one .

But I always thought reverse twisting ensures that the individual fibers line up vertically ,making the string much less likely to pull apart,and stronger because fibers are not so strong across ,or shearing.

I don't use a drill, I use a 'twist-a-braid'

secure.igia.com/prodetail.cfm?ID=AT6746


Ralph
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March 30th, 2007, 12:36 am #4

I twist some, but not nearly as much as Tim does.
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George Tsoukalas
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March 30th, 2007, 1:27 am #5

Drills don't reverse twist-clockwise, back over counterclockwise. They twist. Jawgehttp://mysite.verizon.net/georgeandjoni
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Tim Baker
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March 30th, 2007, 1:49 am #6

Mike:

Welcome to the satisfying realm of natural-fiber bowstrings. Maybe by this time next year you'll even be wild-harvesting dogbane or such, or growing and spinning your own flax.

Some reasons for full-length twisting:

If a portion of the string is parallel untwisted strands it's unlikely, do to the manipulations involved in making the string, that all of the strands end up feeling identical strain, this inviting a divide-and- conquer cascade of breaking unless overbuilt. Full-length reverse twisting prevents this.

It's unlikely that each strand has identical strength along it's entire length. Full length twisting binds all together and averages out these errors.

Double-loop strings aren't as strong as single-loop/timber hitch strings [why is another long explanation] so since near-loop string and near timberhitch string must be reverse twisted anyway, it's easier just to reverse twist the whole string.

Possibly loose parallel strands are more prone to snagging and other damage.

Yes, it seems that such extra twisting should make the string more stretchy, but once low-braced and force-stretched a linen string is as tight as a violin string.

But argue back if you see holes in any of this.

Per George's note: each ply is twisted in one direction till near kinking, then both plys are secured together at their ends and twisted the other way.

Tim
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mnewcomb59
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March 30th, 2007, 2:19 am #7

Oops this was up here for a few hours and I came back and hit post. I see your point Tim. What about with dacron or fast flight? Does the twisting matter as much?
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rwelch
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March 30th, 2007, 3:26 am #8

That's what the hair-do tool 'twist a braid' does.



It has 2 switch positions one spins the 3 prongs individually one way.and the other switch position spins the whole thing the other way.

It costs $20 .

Start laughing at me ..... Now.

Ralph
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toxophileken
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March 30th, 2007, 3:32 am #9

I think Sal is going to have to put out a "hit" on you for showing his "secret weapon"...

Ken
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Salvador6
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March 30th, 2007, 3:55 am #10

AAAAAHHHHH!!!! DON'T REVEAL THE SECRET WEAPON!!!
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rwelch
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March 30th, 2007, 3:58 am #11

Sorry Sal..... I thought it was my little secret

Ralph
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tomasaf24
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March 30th, 2007, 5:44 am #12

I thought it was my secret, too. I swiped mine from my niece a couple years ago (she had another). I saw her using it, and said to myself, wow, she's making a bowstring out oh her hair! These things are awesome.

Andy
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toxophileken
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March 30th, 2007, 6:23 am #13

At least you left her her hair...

"Steal a girl's hair and you get only one bowstring. Steal her hair braider and you can make bowstrings for the rest of your life."

Ken
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gianluca100
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March 30th, 2007, 6:37 am #14

question for Tim:

you said above that one loop/timber hitch linen strings are stronger than double looped, why?
is it that when splicing the second loop, the tension is not evenly distributed, at least not as even as with a single loop string?

i made the experience that my double looped strings live longer than my two or three timber hitch experiments. but i didn't reinforce the hitch with extra fiber, so that this resulted in a weak point of the string, fraying rapidly at the knot.

gian-luca
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Tim Baker
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March 30th, 2007, 7:06 am #15

mnewcomb59: Sorry, not enough experience with synthetics to give a definitive answer. A first-draft answer though is that, like **** compared to wood, synthetic strings are stronger per mass, so at near the same mass synthetic strings are overbuilt enough to overcome uneven strand tension and such.

gian-luca: Yes, that's the reason. And yes, where the string makes it's first bend about the nock at the timberhitch, that's the weak point. Adding say 40% more fiber in each ply at that point solves the problem. Also, it's good to pre wax the loop and hitch area before twisting them up. Lubricates and holds fibers together. Also, it's good to make the nocks especially smooth.
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Hin Kraka
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March 30th, 2007, 7:29 am #16

Do you not wax the individual strands of the whole string before twisting and then reverse twisting?

I do this, since the linen is WAY easier to work with after doing that... am I making the string way too heavy? Should I just wax around the loop, and at the end of the string, and then just wax the ready string?

Doesn't waxing a string strengthen it aswell, keeping the fibres closer together, and increasing friction?

Lots of answers. I just made 3 strings yesterday, with 15, 12 and 9 strands (5,4 and 3 in each ply) with my new 8/2 linen string with 13# breaking strength, and funnily, they don't appear that much different in thickness. Am I not twisting them enough?//Jakob - having no life at the present. Call me back in a lifetime or two.
//Jakob - too little time for all interest and hobbies!
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Tim Baker
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March 30th, 2007, 7:50 am #17

Hin Kraka: If you happen to have access to TBB 2, the strings chapter reports effects of varying waxing regimens. Unless shooting in the rain waxing the whole string is no advantage, and even then the string has to be way heavily waxed. Yes, wax adds no strength. It just adds mass. A touch of pre waxing at the loop and hitch is all I personally do, for workability. Possibly a dab, for lubrication, just at the string nock would help durability there. Sorry, I didn't understand this: "...funnily, they don't appear that much different in thickness. Am I not twisting them enough." Please say again. Tim
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Hin Kraka
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March 30th, 2007, 8:01 am #18

I did three strings with same thread, one with 15 threads, one with 12 and one with 9. They all appear to have equal thickness. Is this because I have not twisted the thinner ones enough during the process?

Waxing the whole ply, it is just me taking the easy way creating the thread (It is for me easier to keep a thread twisted if it is waxed) and will only give the string thickness and weight and no durability?

//Jakob - having no life at the present. Call me back in a lifetime or two.
//Jakob - too little time for all interest and hobbies!
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Paleo Pasi
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March 30th, 2007, 8:14 am #19

Use water instead of wax.... works fine for making linen easier to work with.
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Hin Kraka
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March 30th, 2007, 8:40 am #20

Sounds great, gonna try that. Thanks! =)//Jakob - having no life at the present. Call me back in a lifetime or two.
//Jakob - too little time for all interest and hobbies!
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