Hickory Backed Mulberry Buildalong

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9/13/06 - Clean up

Took the bow out and cleaned it up. I just sanded the sides down until all layers are exposed. Tonight I'll do some measuring and redraw the centerline if needed. I'll take it down to final profile tomorrow. Here are some progress pics.

Where'd my reflex go? :P Deflex didn't seem to be a problem. It is probably good this way if I do decide to put sinew on, as it will pull some more reflex in.
Tips are still in good alignment.
Here's how the glueline ended up. Is this passable? Too much?

Update: I'm told the glue line is fine :)

9/16/06 - Handle

As much as I'm looking forward to pulling this back on the tree (hah!), I should put the handle on first. I'm not going to get a lot of work done this weekend, but I'll get the handle on and get it ready for initial tillering.

My layout. Never tried doing a higher wrist grip, but I know that I always shoot better with one. No better time to try than the present. I'm putting the center of the bow between the pivot and the shelf. I don't really have much reasoning behind it, except that I want the arrow to be close to center and I want to be pushing close to center as well. The limbs will be symmetrical.
Initial cuts done on the table saw. I'm going to wish I had a band saw again when I have to rasp out the rest tomorrow.
Pretty good fit. I was fighting with the belt sander for quite a while. I've been pretty happy with the craftsman so far, but the table angle adjust bolt has a stupidly small radius of 1" from the pivot. If I rest my hand on the table, it will throw it out of square by a few degrees... so frustrating.

9/17/06 - Handle Shaping

Today's been a day of decisions. I'm going to cut off 1" from each tip. I'm going to try to get it to a decent level of tiller and then sinew back it. I don't fully trust the hickory now, as there is so little working limb. I swear I can see places where the hickory grain is running from back to belly at a span of 2 inches. I didn't think the working limb would look this short. I may put on a belly more apt to taking this kind of abuse, provided I get that far.

Since I didn't take any pics of the glueup, here it is out of the hot box. I'll rasp it to basic shape and then clean it up with the belt sander.
Here's how I worked the fades and cleaned up the rasp marks. I bolted on and leveled the work stop to use as a guide to flatten the fades to the belly. I was careful to extend each stroke well past the end of the fade so the drum doesn't grind a hinge.
All cleaned up. I'll do the final shaping later. I wanted to make the fade and limb level with each other and smooth so that if this ends up light (which I think it will), then I have the chance to glue some extra belly on.

9/18/06 - Initial Tiller

The part I hate ;) I can't complain though, this went smoother than usual. Having a nice backdrop with lines on it is priceless. This wall was just repaired and relaid this past summer, so this is the first time I've been able to tiller against it.

I have to find a good way of suspending this by the pivot where my hand would be. I can do it this way, but it's a balancing act.
First pull. Limbs are obviously unbalanced, but it doesn't look like there are any problem areas to start with.
Stopping point for the evening. Looks like brace height too. I think I see a flat spot 1/3 to 1/2 out on the right and another 1/2 way down the left limb. It's at a whopping 28# lol. She's gonna be light. I'll get it to a comfortable level and bulletproof the back with sinew. I will probably only put one layer on to give some relief. My gut says the hickory won't stand up to the bend from a 28" draw, but I could very well be wrong. Better to be safe.

9/21/06 - Braced

School has had me very busy, so I haven't had much time to work. As for progress, I'm stuck. My inexperience is catching up with me now hehe. I can exercise the limb by hand to around 15 inches, I won't go farther until I work out the tiller imperfections. 15 inches isn't enough to lift the string off the curve yet, but it is enough to make the string move to it's natural position on the curves. The top limb is perfectly aligned still, but the bottom is wrong. I have to figure out if it is because the limb is twisting, or that the tip is not centered.

I may also turn these temp nocks into stringing nocks and make the final set another 1/2 inch down. Less chance for alignment issues that way.

Just braced... the left is stiff. On the left you can almost see reflex 1/3 past fade heh... gonna need some work there.
Ok, here's the bottom limb. I can't figure out if it is a simple centering issue or if the limb is torquing. I'll have to think some more on it and take a look with fresh eyes tomorrow.

9/23/06 - More Tillering

Fixed the twist yesterday. I took caliper measurements all along the limb and the sides were within 0.1mm of each other. I figured it must be the tip. I sanded down 3/16 of an inch on the left side (in the pic) and refiled the nocks. String is back on center. Now to get these limbs bending right. I worked most of the day on it, but only took a picture when finished for the night.

Here it is at brace. The top (right) limb is still stiff. I've been working with only this limb all day and it's still stiff. I'm calling it a night before I get frustrated and take off too much (as I've done too many times in the past, heh).
Pulled to 16 inches. Flat spot past the fades on the right. It's wierd how the limbs are actually moving equal amounts even though the right looks so much stronger. Hopefully I can get some feedback... tillering is an art I've not come close to mastering yet :P

9/24/06 - Arrrg

Lesson learned for today: appearances can be very deceiving. After a long day of wrestling with these limbs, I'm almost exactly where I left off yesterday. Well, not exactly, it is now a lot lighter than it was. I started the day taking more off just past the right fade... then too much. Then correcting it and trying to get the left limb to match. Somehow I managed to be in almost the same place as before, but now I finally figured it out.

At brace. I had to redraw the lines on the right.
Here's the trick: although the bow is clamped to the stand, I rounded the stand to fit better in the grip. The allowed rotation of the handle screws up the interpretation. Also, I messed up where to remove... I stacked the limbs in a photo editor with some transparency, and I should be removing from between the first and second line and not from past the fade like I was doing before. Chalk that one up to lack of experience.

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