Bow staves

For discussion related to primitive bows.

Bow staves

4feathers
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4feathers
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Joined: February 11th, 2018, 12:42 am

February 11th, 2018, 3:25 am #1

Hello everyone,
     New to PaleoPlanet, but it all looks and sounds awesome. Have something of a problem with older bow staves that have dried down to far to be safely used, most likely below 6 percent. I normally dont use a moisture meter but tried it on some red oak staves and it did not register, thus thinking it was lower than 6 percent. First oak bow blew up, seemed DRY, tested it and doesnt register on meter, thinking was over dry. Tested my all wood bows that I use and they do not register either. Worried that the MC is low and may blow up my bows and the future staves that are stored with them. Long story short, how, it possible, can I re-hydrate the staves and finished bows? Is it possible? Thank you to all , in advance.
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George Tsoukalas
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George Tsoukalas
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Joined: May 24th, 2005, 3:38 am

February 11th, 2018, 1:33 pm #2

Where do you live? Jawge
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4feathers
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4feathers
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Joined: February 11th, 2018, 12:42 am

February 11th, 2018, 1:34 pm #3

Hello George, i live in Portage la Prairie, Manitoba, Canada.
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George Tsoukalas
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George Tsoukalas
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Joined: May 24th, 2005, 3:38 am

February 12th, 2018, 1:52 pm #4

Hi, 4 feathers. Winters in NH can get dry too. I've found that the outside of a stave is at 6 % but the inside is fine. I have a moisture meter and use it all the time. I never rehydrated anything. 

I don't live where you do so I can't advise for sure.

Was your oak bow a board?  Usually grain problems break board bows.

Jawge
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4feathers
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4feathers
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Joined: February 11th, 2018, 12:42 am

February 13th, 2018, 3:16 am #5

Hello, yeah dry winters but started the humidifier in the spare room, my bow room, haha. The oak was salvaged trees from the spring flood, where I usually get my firewood from, cut 6 ft pieces from the trees, and split them into rough quarters. Split so nice, almost as nice as ash. Sealed the bark side, no bark, i guess coming down the river during the flood would take the bark off of most things. I am working on a smaller version of that type of bow, wide pyramid bow and it seems fine to about 20 in draw, although the other blew up at 22. It just looks to dry to me but,,,,, just un sure. Either way, it is all a great learning experience. Thinking of recurving an ash or oak or both and sinew backing them. Have a great day, thanks.
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Tim Baker
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Tim Baker
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Joined: May 23rd, 2005, 6:22 am

March 11th, 2018, 1:30 am #6

4 feathers:
 
A good idea is to get two humidity meters and keep one where you store your bows and one where your store your staves. Then try to keep the humidity at about 50%, for roughly 9% moisture content. Once roughed out a stave will reach equilibrium with existing humidity in a few days. The meters are cheap, and save worry, time and broken bows, and by keeping bows at the moisture content they like performance is increased. 
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4feathers
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4feathers
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Joined: February 11th, 2018, 12:42 am

March 12th, 2018, 10:49 pm #7

Thanks Tim, I just purchased a couple of moisture meters and will try to track the humidity and see if that will help or cure my problem.
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