Crossbows - Everything about Building, Modding, and Using your Crossbow Gear

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    Greetings from "The Great White North"

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    locksmithles
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    Greetings from "The Great White North"

    Post by locksmithles on Sun Feb 10, 2013 8:48 am

    This looks like a great forum for crossbow info. I've been making and selling armour (mostly 14th century) for about 10 years and want to try a "balestrino" or hand held crossbow.
    I'm a retired locksmith so I have all the time in the world lol
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    Geezer
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    Re: Greetings from "The Great White North"

    Post by Geezer on Sun Feb 10, 2013 10:18 am

    7 mm steel stock for a tickler? It's probably strong enough, but if you want to put a pin through it for a fulcrum, you'll need a Very Thin pin, and still won't have much iron around it. That's why most of us use thicker iron. Personally, I use 9-10 mm (3/8 inc.) square bar stock, and then flatten it a bit where the fulcrum will go through, so there's plenty of iron on the sides of the hole... at least for a 150 lb. bow. Medieval ticklers are usually about 1/2 in. wide where the fulcrum goes thru. If you can figure a way to use 7 mm stock without drilling a hole thru, it should be allright for light bows.
    In the absence of a really hot torch, you may be able to get your iron hot enough to bend on a gas stove or your fireplace... charcoal in a barbeque pit will work well, particularly if you have a blow-drier to force some air into the coals. The trick then is to get your heat-source and your 'anvil' close enough together for convenient work. If you set up a heat source in your shop, try not to set the whole place on fire!
    Geezer.
    ps. as an alternative, you can get a pre-made and bent tickler from Alchem or Slo-bows for about twenty bucks. In the long run, it could be worthwhile. G
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    Geezer
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    Re: Greetings from "The Great White North"

    Post by Geezer on Sun Feb 10, 2013 10:24 am

    Geezer again: Everybody has their financial limits for hobby stuff, but I've come to the conclusion that any job that's worth spending 40 hours of labor on, is worth getting good materials. Every so often I have somebody tell me they're gonna make their first 'lerner' bow out of yellow pine.... Aaarrrgggh! They're gonna spend the next months tinkering and shaping, and when they get done... it'll still be plain old yellow pine. A piece of mahogany or cherry or walnut sufficient to build a medieval crossbow will cost less than ten dollars. If you do a halfway decent job, your first project will look pretty darned good. If you build in yellow pine or some other cheap wood, and you go to lots of trouble to stain, varnish, paint, or what-have you, it won't look half as good as mahagony, reasonably well sanded with some linseed oil slapped overall. Sometimes you just have to spend enough to get decent materials. Okay, I shut up now. Geezer.
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    Regeis
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    Re: Greetings from "The Great White North"

    Post by Regeis on Mon Feb 11, 2013 4:28 am

    Geezer: The problem I have with the points you raised (at least here in the UK) is that on our side of the pond, that chunk of mahogany, cherry or walnut won't set you back ~£10, it'd be more like £30 or £40, which makes it a somewhat bigger investment. It's an investment that I made (I'm using Sapele) but materials (especially good ones) are just a lot harder to get hold of in the UK than in the states.

    I'm not justifying the use of cheap materials; a bow made of yellow pine is going to be crap compared to a nice hardwood tiller, but I can empathise with folks who have difficulty finding the stuff they need Sad

    It feels like your response on the topic of ticklers was meant to go into my 'tickler on low budget' thread. I'm looking into the possibility of cutting out wedges from the bend-areas in 12mm stock, bending it and then brazing it at that angle, but I'm not sure if my torch would be up to task for brazing or silver soldering. Do you think a gas stove or gas fireplace would heat a joint enough to braze? It seems like it'd be easier and look better than trying to bend it cold or forge it with the wrong equipment and no experience.
    For now, my woodworking equipment is easily up to task, but metalworking is just a whole new world to me.

    It's great that folks who are so experienced are so happy to share their knowledge on here ^_^
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    Geezer
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    Re: Greetings from "The Great White North"

    Post by Geezer on Mon Feb 11, 2013 7:21 am

    Ouch, that IS pricey. It would make sense to do a bit of research and find what decent woods are available in your area, but indeed there may be no choices. Years ago, I had some really nice French walnut that came out of a forklift-pad. Unfortunately, such found wood is often full of nails, or is green. I had some Asian teak like that... it was so knotty and full of iron that is was hardly worth messing with... would have made better fire-wood. Still I stand by the point that money saved on materials often turns out a really inferior product... but if all you can get is pine, I guess that's how the cookie crumbles. Geezer

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