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    where to find antler for nut construction

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    victortkz
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    Post by victortkz on Tue Apr 09, 2019 5:57 am

    Hi, I'm new to this and I decided in trying to build a crossbow replica.

    This will be my first build of something like this.
    The model is a 16th century german hunting crossbow, and I have some questions that hopefully someone could answer:

    I was wondering if someone could help me find a source of antler for the roller nut and the saddle.
    The required dimensions for the nut are: 
    45mm diameter
    40mm length 

    so I need a cylinder or some piece/s able to accommodate the nut and the saddle.

    What was the most common type of wood used for the tiller?

    I'm from Romania, so sources closer to my region are preferred.

    Thank you in advance, and as soon as i start working I'll create a thread with my build.

    Cheers
    kenh
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    Post by kenh on Tue Apr 09, 2019 6:53 am

    The base of a red stag antler should be just right. Not the part where it enlarges just at the skin, but above that and below the first branch.  You want 'new' antler, not something found lying about on the ground for who knows how long.  

    Any good hard hardwood (not pine) will do -- oak beech, maple, hawthorn, etc.
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    Post by Geezer on Tue Apr 09, 2019 8:03 am

    Moose horn (the stem) will give you pieces large enough. Google Moscow Hide and Fur  (Moscow Idaho, USA) You can see what's available and order online.  Geezer.
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    Post by Geezer on Tue Apr 09, 2019 8:23 pm

    As for wood to build your stock.  Crossbow makers used whatever good hardwood was available in their area.  I have seen cherry, walnut, oak, birch, elm, maple, pear, apple and others.  If you're in Romania, pick a plentiful, yet workable local hardwood and go to it. 
    Geezer.
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    Post by victortkz on Wed Apr 10, 2019 12:58 am

    Geezer wrote:Moose horn (the stem) will give you pieces large enough. Google Moscow Hide and Fur  (Moscow Idaho, USA) You can see what's available and order online.  Geezer.
     Tnx, but they don't seem to ship to europe, i couldn't even register with them (their form is US only)

    Regards,
    Victor
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    Post by kenh on Wed Apr 10, 2019 4:52 am

    Do you know any hunters there?  They may be able to help you find the antler you need.
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    Post by Geezer on Wed Apr 10, 2019 4:09 pm

    Finnish Elk/Moose are closely related to North American moose, though their antlers aren't quite so dramatically palmate.  Do you suppose you could find a supplier in Finnland?  it's certainly closer than Idaho, USA.  Geezer.
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    Post by Gnome on Wed Apr 10, 2019 4:52 pm

    Thanks Geezer! I just had to look up the word "palmate." Any day I learn a new word is a good day.
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    Post by stuckinthemud1 on Fri Apr 12, 2019 10:59 am

    It was suggested to me that the most dense part of an antler is the pedicle - the part that exits the skull below the skin and that that is the most suitable part of the antler for making a nut from?

    I use Highland Horn in Scotland and The Stick Man, and have found both to be excellent, pretty sure they would be able to sort you out
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    Post by 8fingers on Sat Apr 20, 2019 12:13 pm

    Over here, pet shops sell antler pieces as chew toys. Maybe a source your pet shop can look into. I toured German museums and saw that the crossbows that were actually used for hunting used horn, not antler for the nut, and dark woods for the tiller. The bone inlays are too shiny and scare game, and the glare impedes aiming. The horn nut was badly chipped but still serviceable in the crossbow I remember best. Knife maker supply companies offer disks of water buffalo horn 1 1/2" wide and 1" thick. An importer from the Philippines might be able to source water buffalo horn for you too. Other materials could be imported from Africa. Horn from African cattle looked like a good bet.  Also check out Sambar stag. Mercorne in France might be able to help.
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    Post by victortkz on Tue Apr 23, 2019 2:57 am

    Hi,
    I purchased a big red deer antler.
    And now I'm wandering how to cut the cylinder out of the burr to avoid the spongy part.
    Should i cut it axially or perpendicular on the axis of the antler?
    I don't know how the grain is inside the antler.

    Regards,

    Victor
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    Post by victortkz on Thu May 02, 2019 5:48 am

    Here I have some pics of the pieces of antler I was able to purchase
    Where is the highest density?
    how should I cut them?

    Regards,

    Victorwhere to find antler for nut construction 20190512
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    Post by Geezer on Thu May 02, 2019 2:35 pm

    Generally the best/hardest part of the antler is nearest the base. I cut with bandsaw, shave away the ruffly crown bits, and turn it on my lathe.  A drill press can serve in place of a lathe.  Geezer.
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    Post by victortkz on Mon May 20, 2019 4:26 am

    solved the problem... got this instead 
    where to find antler for nut construction 20190514where to find antler for nut construction 20190513
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    Post by stuckinthemud1 on Sat May 25, 2019 9:56 am

    That looks excellent, what species is it?
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    Post by drawknife on Sat May 25, 2019 10:43 am

    Hi,
    What you really need is the part of the skull that supports the antler. This is the hardest and most dense piece and as soon as you go past the coronet up into the antler itself it becomes weaker and fibrous. See if you can source a large skull and you will get 2 nuts from it. The saddle it revolves in can be done in the same way. Good luck. ps I tried Highland Horn in England but the pieces they sent were too small.
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    Post by victortkz on Sat May 25, 2019 10:47 am

    stuckinthemud1 wrote:That looks excellent, what species is it?
    It's moose
    very dense 
    i'll get about 4 nuts out of it

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