Yes, i have sketched it multiple times.
swotavator wrote:I intended on grooving it but i don't know if this will weaken its back. it might be better to glue the horns straight on. Maybe i will just roughen the surface.
It is clear from the pictures of sectioned bows that grooving is universal. The horn plates are grooved. The wood (if any) is grooved. The surface which will take the sinew is grooved. What is not clear, is how much the grooves ae intended to serve are "finger joints" and how much they are intended to give the surfaces "tooth" or perhaps ease the transition from one material to the other. Usually, the sections show the ridges and vallys fitting pretty neatly into one another but sometimes there is a mismatch, and the pieces are fitting "tooth to tooth". My current guess is that the intention was to make the pieces interdigitate, but at the ends of the horn plates, things get a bit haphazard. That is to say, I think the plates were all grooved an uniformly and as straight as possible, but at the tapered ends of the plates, things don't always match up. In the final analysis, though, a certain amount of mismatch must be permissible.
swotavator wrote:That is a very good hint on the recurve. The idea of progressive layers of sinew taking different amounts of strain makes sense. I think i will glue in the recurve in steps. perhaps 1" at the horn, 2", 3" at different parts of the sinewing.
If I understand what you are saying, you intend to *increase* the recurve at each sinew layer. To achieve the effect I was thinking of, you would need to *decrease* the recurve somewhat for subsequent layers of sinew.
swotavator wrote:Already bought the cowhorn, so no going back on that. Though i thought i heard of people using that, historically. Also were there water buffalo in medieval france?
I suspect that buffalo horn was an expensive import commodity from the East. My understanding is that it was the horn of choice for Asian and Middle-Eastern bows.
We have documentary evidence for goat horn being supplied to a crossbow maker (Peter the Saracen) in 12th C (?) England. We also have modern descriptions of bows that suggest the use of whalebone (baleen).
I have read modern accounts that suggest that cow horn is somewhat brittle, when compared to buffalo horn. On the other hand, I bet it will work better than nothing, and you can use what you have to learn a lot about working with horn.
swotavator wrote:Wondering if I really need the rawhide wrapper. It is very thick. perhaps i can get away with a linen wrapping between the paper and sinew?
I think some sort of circumferential constraint is probably necessary to keep the plates of the horn core from buckling and becoming unglued.
I don't think linen is going to do it for you: it has very little elasticity. Here, again, it is probably best to go with the traditional material. This hedges your bets on the success of the project.
swotavator wrote:Progress is good. I am almost done with the roller nut (4.8cm by 3.6cm ipe with horn reinforced prongs), and have all the pieces of the stock (walnut, ipe, wenge, maple).
I, personally would use iron for the reinforcing pins, if I thought they were necessary at all. Have you got the grain of the wood oriented vertically? I don't think that horn has the shear strength you want for this. Historical nuts typically made of antler, and the ones for the biggest bows have iron pins through the "teeth" or "fingers".
swotavator wrote:The ipe is such a bitch to work, I had to make a macguyver lathe with a drill, rat tail file, and sand paper.
We didn't have MacGiver
when I was a kid....I call that the "poor man's lathe".
You can make an adequate nut using a "hole saw" and a drill press. If you take the pilot drill of the saw, and grind it down to about 5/32", you can make a nut with a concentric hole in one go.