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» 12th Century Chinese Crossbow Chronographed
by stuckinthemud1 Fri Nov 24, 2023 3:50 pm

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» [solved]Skane/Lillohus crossbow thread
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» Wood Prods
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» Colletiere a Charavines crossbow
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» Fiberglass H-bows
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» Skane/Lillohus lockbow information needed
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2 posters

    12th Century Chinese Crossbow Chronographed

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    Fangbows
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    Post by Fangbows Fri Nov 17, 2023 12:52 pm

    Mass Produced but Forgotten Medieval Weapon - YouTube

    119lb@24
    113 joules
    half of the weight of Shen Bi Nu

    Laminated Ash prod with fiberglass

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    stuckinthemud1
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    Post by stuckinthemud1 Fri Nov 24, 2023 12:09 pm

    I really admire your project but assomeone who is spending a LOT of time and effort trying to learn to build ancient crossbows in the correct materials and dimensions I deeply resent someone posting a modern replica using modern materials as an authentic ancient weapon and then passing off performance figures as in any way representing the original performance specifications.  People repost this stuff as being correct and fill the internet with mythological rubbish. Please don’t.  If you want to call it a replica in the old style I have no problem and would applaud a lovely crossbow but DO NOT claim ancient performance figures for a hornbow when you are using ash (really? Just WHY?) and fibreglass.


    Last edited by stuckinthemud1 on Fri Nov 24, 2023 4:09 pm; edited 1 time in total
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    Post by Fangbows Fri Nov 24, 2023 1:13 pm

    Actually it’s performing around the same of equivalent gpp of a  Hornbow from ATARN
    Same bolt weight, same bolt speed +~5 fps
    https://www.atarn.org/islamic/Performance/Performance_of_Turkish_bows.htm
    A well made Hornbow performs about the same as a laminated bow, this has been proven with thousands of data comparisons already
    In crossbow terms the slight efficiency difference is almost negligible compared to European crossbows since Chinese crossbow shoot similar draw length as hornbows
    I’ve already said it’s extremely difficult to find a bowyer that makes this draw weight of this dimension. And I’ve communicated clearly it’s a modern laminated bow
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    Post by stuckinthemud1 Fri Nov 24, 2023 2:57 pm

    I am happy to stand corrected ( I do actually mean that, check my signature)  So why did you use laminated ash?  I seem to remember you using other timbers more authentically Asian in past projects? I mean, for instance, a Chinese Summer bow would have been wood, they only used horn bows in Winter. 

    You do point out the draw weight is a bit light, but it’s more than a bit light, a 6 stone bow is seen as an average draw weight and came in about 385 to 400lb. I struggle to see how you can make a reasonable comparison between an ash/fibreglass 119lb bow against a 400lb horn warbow.  Currently, a 119lb bow would not be seen by most as a hunting weight bow.  Did your bow builder design for target, distance or war?  The limb shapes are quite different depending on purpose.

    Can I ask, why no sinew?  Plenty of US bow makers specialise in wood/sinew. At least one significant European manufacturer of horse bows uses a bio-composite approach. I personally find it difficult to claim authentic figures in my own work by extrapolating figures from a bow made in the wrong timber, let alone a modern equivalent. I am finding it very difficult to tiller an accurate Lillo replica, having broken 4 yew bows so far, but it would be easy to have made it in maple, slightly longer and 10mm thinner, I just know if I tried to publish a paper using that data I would be shot down in flames.

    Your project is great, and I do like and admire a great deal about it, but, it’s not a 12th century bow
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    Post by Fangbows Fri Nov 24, 2023 3:01 pm

    You list draw weight but not draw length. These two are fundamental variables for the power equation. 120lb@ European crossbow length is light but these Chinese crossbows are drawn pretty much to hand bow draw lengths so it is as powerful as “English warbows”.


    I told u already extremely difficult to find Hornbow makers. The bow here is a commercial bow made by Serbian bowyer Misko. I’m not a horn bow maker.

    It’s his choice to use fiberglass and ash.

    I made one with bamboo and wood before 120@28 performing slightly worse
    https://youtu.be/edaAm2-ZpBo?si=plD1ZW0IvT4sFo6w
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    Post by stuckinthemud1 Fri Nov 24, 2023 3:50 pm

    True, you are right on all counts and I was wrong in my statement.  Still, I doubt many modern archers would hunt with a modern fibreglass bow weighing under 150lb, and modern bows are pretty efficient.  Ancient Chinese crossbow designs were far more efficient than short draw European types but nonetheless your bow is not quite 2 stone under the 12th century Chinese measurement system and an average infantry bow was rated at 6 stone.  I do feel your pain in trying to obtain correct bows, it is taking me years to learn to tiller heavy crossbows in wood, though wood/sinew is more forgiving

    I actually understand why you would use a commercial fibreglass bow, a hornbow maker will be virtually impossible to find (did you post anything on Primitive Archer - a few horn bow makers post there)- Grozer is a Hungarian company it might be worth talking to

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