There are usually some on Ebay. Have you tried shaving any yet? I started with some hickory, that I cut first. It wasn't as easy as I thought it would be. I wouldn't spend too much on osage until you have messed around a little bit. The best prices I've seen for osage is at the Traditional shoots. It's nice to see the wood before you buy it. Check out Traditional Bowhunter Magazine or the web site. The magazine has a lot of suppliers and ads for local shoots. There is a big shoot in PA. I think it is in mid summer.
duxman, I have made a couple dozen bows over the last few years. I'm just trying to find some cheaper staves and the only way to do that is ask around. I've run out of osage and all I have left is some hickory that has been stashed away for two years now. My brother has some osage growing on his property and said that he would cut some for me. I hate having to wait for them to cure, thats why I was looking for some to work on.
Thanks for the reply, Worm.
Maybe I can get some tips from you. I haven't worked on any lately. It is e real pain to have to wait for wood to cure. There was a guy on ebay I delt with about a year ago.I think I paid around $30 for a decent stave. He told me to call him anytime for more wood. I'll look around for his #.
Worm do you have a dry box? this speed up the dry time to about two months if they are quartered and the ends sealed so they will not check. go here for plans on dry box. I dealt with other till I found a land owner clearing his fields of them, but after looking at new price listing changed from last years (AVG.for last year $50-$90). I see where stickstone.com and other now charges between $65-$105 per stave. and a lot of others are fallowing pretty close to this in price. http://www.locustcreekbows.com/drybox.htm
you may want to check out his line of products Bows staves and other stuff.
duxman, anything I can help you with just give a holler. Most of my learning was trial and error, with a lot of error. I finally broke down and got the 3 volumes of the Bowyers Bibles. Best investment I have made. I don't build bows to sell, I build them for myself and family and friends.
One of the easiest woods to use is hickory, strip the bark off and your half done. But I love osage orange, makes a beautiful and powerful bow. I have yet to work with Yew, as it is so expensive, but I plan to save my pennies for a few years and by a good stave. I've even considered buying the parts to make a laminated, deflex/reflex bow. After pricing all of the parts nessacary to make one, I have found it is a lot cheaper to buy a stave and go from there.
The Bowhunter, no I don't have a dry box. I have seen a few sets of plans to make one, I'm just to lazy I guess. I saw one where the guy used a couple of sections of 6" stove pipe with a hear dryer for heat. He used it mainly to drop the moisture content down just a few points and not to cure the staves. Although a good steady supply of heat would work pretty good. The hair dryer would wear out pretty fast. I still like to go out and cut my own staves. Theres something about seeing the tree standing there and planing out your bows from different sections of the tree. But you still have to wait for it to cure. I don't think anyone that has ever cut their own staves likes to let it cure. Its very hard to let them cure as long as they should. I'm always pulling them out and looking them over, making sure the ends don't check, basicly just fondling them. Well, I'll get going now, I've rambled on enough. Talk to you later, Worm.
I do, I let them cure. but I have several in the box all the time and always makeing one every now and then. (not just Osage but locust and White Oak) I am cutting wood all the time when I hear about some farmer here in Kansas clearing them out of his fields.
well if you seal them with elmers glue or shelac on the ends it wont check. try the link I put in above it will help you build the dry box it is better than the stove pipe. also this web page is very good with heat boe and selfbow instructions, http://members.tripod.com/~tmuss/osage/osage3.html .
have fun. make-em today shoot-em tommarrow.
The bowhunter, I will check out the web site because I do want to be able to start working on the wood faster than if I let nature take its course.
I have never made one out of Locust or White Oak. Are they pretty good bow woods? I remember cutting a lot of locust for a farmer I worked for when I was in school. It was a lot easier cutting it than planting them in the ground as fence posts. That was over 20 years ago and they are still as good as the day we built the fence. I always thought oak was to hard to make a decent bow. Is oak like hickory, in that you can strip off the bark and that is the back of your bow or do you have to follow a growth ring?
Do you use any kind of bench to tiller your bows or do you use a vise? All the bows I have made to date were made in a vise. I got plans off the internet to build a bowyers bench and I'm going to start building it today after I get done finishing some snares I started. Let me know about some of the characteristics of the locust and white oak you use. Later, Worm.
I use a vise. tried the shaven hoarse for a while I personally did not like it.
My Tiller Board I have Mounted against the wall on a plywood board.
I have this board marked off in a grid pattern every two inches in the middle on the top I have mounted a saddle cradle for the handle and at the Bottom I have pulley system mounted with a dog leash catch on it. I pull the rope at a safe distance in case the wood explodes .
as for Locast it is good but not like osage you realy have to get to the heart wood here to make a good one or back with rawhide or something, oak almost like hickory as for white oak is soft and easy to work with will make you want to work with it all the time after doing one these and then doing one of hard wood Osage . if you look in the trad. Bowyer book it mentions white Oak being prefered wood for eastern plains Indian bows, as shooting they hard hitting and fast you have to make the limbs wider than yew or Osage though. instead of 1 1/2" you go to 2" mid. limb width on Oak and Hickory.
I have two, up state New York Hickory staves that have been cut and drying in my garage for a year. They are 4-5" wide, 70" long and 5" deep. Could be enough in one stave to make two bows if careful. I have two osage, cut last August that are very nice. The Hickory is $40.00 plus shipping and the Osage is $50.00 + Shipping. They are very clean. The osage is with the bark and the hickory has the bark removed and just needs a little work to get to a growth ring. I have made two nice hickory bows with the wood and the osage staves are 2 or 12 that I got from one tree and have use four of them to make nice bows.
These are the only ones I have extra that haven't been spoken for .
Mike, thanks for the reply. I went up north yesterday to do some visiting at my brothers. Lo and behold, he had a huge osage tree blow over. It had knocked over his electric line to his camper so he cut most of it up, but left me a 7' section. It naturally checked on the ends because he left it outside and didn't seal the ends, but I think I will be able to use about 70% of the log. I wanted to split it up right than, but Dan couldnt find his splitting wedges. Its still outside but it's up off of the ground. I will be going up again in a few days and will split it up and bring it home. It's about 12" in diameter so I figure I will be able to get 7- 10 bows out of it. I've been wanting to make a recurve out of osage for some time, but haven't had the time or the wood. At least now I have the wood. I will put it in my gun room to cure, but it will be hard to let it cure without cutting on it. I will try to dry a few staves in the hot box I plan on making. I still have a few hickory staves that are cured but I'm not really thrilled with hickory.
I still have that Indian recurve that I would trade for a stave or two of locust or hard maple. I also have two wooden longbows that pull 50 lbs and a Shakespear 45lb. recurve that I would also trade if anyone out there is interested.Again, thanks for the reply. Worm
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