Info Favorites Register Log in
myArmoury.com Discussion Forums

Forum index Memberlist Usergroups Spotlight Topics Search
Forum Index > Historical Arms Talk > Minimum draw weights Reply to topic
This is a standard topic Go to page 1, 2, 3, 4  Next 
Author Message
Neal Matheson




Location: sussex UK
Joined: 08 Feb 2009
Likes: 2 pages

Posts: 145

PostPosted: Sun 10 Jan, 2016 2:55 am    Post subject: Minimum draw weights         Reply with quote

Hi Chaps,
I don't think this has been raised before. I am trying to work out the minimum useful draw weight for renaissance/ early modern forces. Mostly inspired by the Spencer quote "not withstanding that they are shot forth weakly" about Scottish (highland) bows. There is a very interesting article available online about U.S. experiences with Native Americans. I assume that Native Americans were shooting hunting weight bows they were certainly reported to be effective against unarmoured troops.
My thinking is that the high draw weights of medieval bows was to meet a tactical need of the armies that used mass archers and that in the different tactical milieu of Gaelic Scotland a lower draw weight was acceptable.

http://www.seeknottheancestors.com/
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Gabriele Becattini





Joined: 21 Aug 2007

Posts: 710

PostPosted: Sun 10 Jan, 2016 3:31 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

i believe that the minimum useful draw weight is around 50,

if we are talking about unarmoured warfare adraw weight like this is perfectly adequate to kill or severely injure your opponent

in order to interprete the quote by Spencer abouut gaelic archery , we must consider the following points, in my opinion:

- the gaelic archers were emploied like snipers and skirmishers not in huge pre- ordered formations like the english archers,
this reflect the gaelic war tacticts of raids and ambushes in preference of pitched battles.

- in the gaelic armies (both irish and scots) a small percentage of the comabatants were armoured, and the armour encountered were mostly mail ( i know that there are ecceptions to this rule, like the heavily armoured nobility at Flodden, but in the nornal inter-clan warfare i think that less armours were worn)

- the if we have to trust the contermporary descriptions and depictions, apparently, the gaelic bow was shorter and more recurve than the english bow, and a high draw weight is simply not possible with a self bow of this design.

- Spencer has only the english war bow as a comparison, and so we are talking of a bow with a very high draw weight, that most people set close to 140 (i think that the average draw weight was more close t0 90/100 but his is another story)

so to summarize, a short recurve self bow of about 50/60 pounds is a very efficent weapons (especially if made of yew) to shoot and snipe at a relatively close distance, if your opponent is unarmoured or lightly armoured it is perfectly adequate for your Killing task (or at least for severely injure). in a society with not needs for specialist ranged weapons like the english warbow, this kind of bow can be conveniently used for hunting too (in fact this mirrored almost every tribal society)
lastly, for a foreigner observer accostomed to powerful specialised war weapons, this kind of bow can certainely appear "weak"...

this is my humble opinion BTW i like your blog Neal

cheers

Gabriele
View user's profile Send private message
Neal Matheson




Location: sussex UK
Joined: 08 Feb 2009
Likes: 2 pages

Posts: 145

PostPosted: Sun 10 Jan, 2016 4:35 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks very much Gabriele I very much agree with you and appreciate your comment on my blog......I'm still trying to get it together to write more!!!!
http://www.seeknottheancestors.com/
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Benjamin H. Abbott




Location: New Mexico
Joined: 28 Feb 2004

Spotlight topics: 1
Posts: 1,190

PostPosted: Sun 10 Jan, 2016 8:02 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

70-80lbs was considered the minimum acceptable military draw weight according for various 17th- and 18th-century Chinese sources (both Ming and Qing). This thread has details.

As far as Native American bows go, while the ones the U.S. military encountered may have been in the 50-60lb range (it's hard to say), I suspect some were 150+lbs like their English counterparts based on 16th- and 17th-century Spanish and English accounts. Garcilaso de la Vega described English and Native bows as equivalent in his account of Hernando de Soto's expedition.

Read my historically inspired fantasy fiction in here. I walk along a winding path set by Ludovico Ariosto, William Morris, J. R. R. Tolkien, and Ursula Le Guin.

Out of doubt, out of dark to the day's rising
I came singing in the sun, sword unsheathing.
To hope's end I rode and to heart's breaking:
Now for wrath, now for ruin and a red nightfall!
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Michael Kelly





Joined: 22 Sep 2015

Posts: 57

PostPosted: Sun 10 Jan, 2016 9:17 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Benjamin H. Abbott wrote:

As far as Native American bows go, while the ones the U.S. military encountered may have been in the 50-60lb range (it's hard to say), I suspect some were 150+lbs like their English counterparts based on 16th- and 17th-century Spanish and English accounts. Garcilaso de la Vega described English and Native bows as equivalent in his account of Hernando de Soto's expedition.


Judging by the bows I've seen in museums I find this hard to believe... The bows I've seen from plains tribes look almost like kids bows they're so small. I'd judge them to be around 40-45lbs at most. Now maybe all the bows in the museums are for kids, and maybe the bows used in Mexico and South America are heavier, but judging by what I've seen they're not heavy draw weights at all.
View user's profile Send private message
Stephen Curtin




Location: Cork, Ireland
Joined: 17 Nov 2007
Likes: 110 pages
Reading list: 18 books

Spotlight topics: 1
Posts: 1,153

PostPosted: Sun 10 Jan, 2016 9:59 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

For those who haven't read Spenser here is the quote,

"whose Scottishe bowes are not past 3 quarters of a yard longe, with a stringe of wrethed hempe slackly bente, and whose arrowes are not above half an elline longe, tipped with steele heades, made lyke common broad arrowes heades, but many more sharpe and slender, that they enter into an armed man or horse most cruelly, notwithstanding that they are shott forth weakly."

My take on it is that Spenser is saying that the Irish/Scottish arrows could do damage to an armed man or horse, but the Irish/Scots did not used archery in what he considered the proper way I.e. like the English use of large formations of longbowmen.

Éirinn go Brách
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
Timo Nieminen




Location: Brisbane, Australia
Joined: 08 May 2009
Likes: 1 page
Reading list: 1 book

Posts: 1,493

PostPosted: Sun 10 Jan, 2016 11:43 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Michael Kelly wrote:
Benjamin H. Abbott wrote:

As far as Native American bows go, while the ones the U.S. military encountered may have been in the 50-60lb range (it's hard to say), I suspect some were 150+lbs like their English counterparts based on 16th- and 17th-century Spanish and English accounts. Garcilaso de la Vega described English and Native bows as equivalent in his account of Hernando de Soto's expedition.


Judging by the bows I've seen in museums I find this hard to believe... The bows I've seen from plains tribes look almost like kids bows they're so small. I'd judge them to be around 40-45lbs at most. Now maybe all the bows in the museums are for kids, and maybe the bows used in Mexico and South America are heavier, but judging by what I've seen they're not heavy draw weights at all.


Plains Indian bows (short, sinew-backed or sinew-wood-horn composites, strongly reflexed, recurved) varied. 50-65lb appears typical. But they're often short draw bows, with draw lengths of 22-24" or so. They can't be too low draw weight if you want to use them for hunting bison. They did make lower draw weight bows, for hunting small game, and plenty of children's bows.

Where they had suitable wood, long self-bows were used. Have heard that these would go up to about 80lb for warfare, less for hunting (40-50lb?).

"In addition to being efficient, all pole arms were quite nice to look at." - Cherney Berg, A hideous history of weapons, Collier 1963.
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Stephen Curtin




Location: Cork, Ireland
Joined: 17 Nov 2007
Likes: 110 pages
Reading list: 18 books

Spotlight topics: 1
Posts: 1,153

PostPosted: Sun 10 Jan, 2016 1:01 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

More on Irish bows.

In 1397 Viscount Ramon de Perellos said this about some of The O'Neill's men,

"some of them use bows which are as small as half the size of the English bow, yet they strike as hard as the English."

Éirinn go Brách
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
Dan Howard




Location: Maitland, NSW, Australia
Joined: 08 Dec 2004

Spotlight topics: 2
Posts: 3,190

PostPosted: Sun 10 Jan, 2016 1:39 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Extant bows can't really be used because in many situations it is impossible to determine which were intended for warfare and which for hunting. Even if some cultures used their hunting bows against huimans on occasion, it still doesn't warrant their inclusion in the body of evidence. We would get more useful results if we relied on documentary evidence in this case and restricted the data to bows specifically designed for war.
Author: Bronze Age Military Equipment, Pen and Sword Books
View user's profile Send private message
Paul Ballantyne





Joined: 19 Oct 2015

Posts: 27

PostPosted: Sun 10 Jan, 2016 3:09 pm    Post subject: bows         Reply with quote

Unless I am mistaken, certainly a number of paintings from the 18th century, show the great American prairie hunters riding virtually alongside and shooting at point blank range down into the backs of the buffalos.

A lifelong longbow maker in England Pip Bickerstaff believes that most practical longbows would have been around the 100 pp mark, having shot the longbow over 32 years now I would also agree with this. Yes, heavier longbows have been found from the Mary Rose, but would these have been reserved for naval engagements and using fire arrows ?

Considering how fragile a human is, is a bow over 60pp really required against an unarmored enemy ? Against an enemy with a Gambeson, mail and possibly another layer of mail or coat of plates on top, I don't believe an extra 30 - 50 pp would make a huge difference re penetration. From serious studies and modern day experiments (not silly sensational hour long entertainment-so called documentaries ) armour provides quite adequate protection against most practical hand powered missiles. The armour makers in history were far more skilled than most people would give them credit for, today even with modern day technology and power tools, few can claim to be their equal. Of course I'm sure people will point out there was munition quality armour as well, and that is also true.

Parts of Scotland were famed for their skill with archery, but here in Ireland the javelin or dart appeared to be more common. Irish warriors have always usually replied on importing weapons of war into the country. They have been used but on a more limited scale. The famous Albrecht Durers drawing of "war men of Ireland dated 1521 shows what I would describe as a self bow approx. 3-4 foot long and 4 arrows with for different piles. under his left arm. One pile appears to be a broad head and another a pile for hunting birds. The Gallowglass is protected by a Maille Hauberk and a Burgonet helmet.

But...... please feel free to disagree
View user's profile Send private message
Harry Marinakis




Location: Kingdom of Æthelmearc
Joined: 30 Jul 2012
Likes: 1 page
Reading list: 13 books

Spotlight topics: 1
Posts: 659

PostPosted: Sun 10 Jan, 2016 4:25 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I'm fairly new to archery, but couldn't you answer that question based upon war arrow weight? Perhaps the question should be: What is the minimum required arrow weight for battle? And then - What is the minimum required bow weight to shoot that arrow?

Or would that be a chicken-and-egg kind of argument (war bows had heavy draw weights to shoot heavy war arrows, versus war arrows were made heavy to accommodate bows with heavy draw weights)?

If you empirically look at bow draw weight and increasing arrow weights for that bow (e.g., 8 to 10 to 14 grains per pound of draw), you can get a pretty good appreciation for your answer.

For instance, a wimpy 50# bow shooting 400 grain arrows could be quite lethal to an unarmored opponent at 20 yards, but out at further ranges I wonder about accuracy and lethality. Shooting 600-700 grain arrows with the same 50# bow greatly improves killing power, but range suffers and you're shooting in a high arc at long ranges.

Continue that thought process with heavier and heavier bows, and heavier and heavier arrows, and you could find an answer.

I don't think 50# is enough to be your minimum. Yeah, maybe 50# would work, but - Would I want to go into life-or-death battle with a 50# bow? No, it can't throw a heavy arrow flat enough and far enough for my taste.
View user's profile Send private message
Benjamin H. Abbott




Location: New Mexico
Joined: 28 Feb 2004

Spotlight topics: 1
Posts: 1,190

PostPosted: Sun 10 Jan, 2016 6:11 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

According to Spanish and Portuguese accounts, many of the Native groups in the land now identified as the U.S. Southeast used mighty bows. Álvar Núñez Cabeza de Vaca described bows from I believe what's now western Florida as thick as an arm and 11-12 spans (palmos, typically given as 20 cm, so 2.2-2.4m bows). That's likely exaggerated, but at least approximates the iconic English weapon and other powerful self bows. Cabeza de Vaca lauded the power of such bows. As mentioned above, Garcilaso de la Vega described at least two English-trained archers who fought in Florida with their bows, apparently equivalent enough to Native bows. De la Vega also wrote that in one case on Hernando de Soto's expedition, no Spaniard was able to fully draw a captured Native bow (I'd have to check whether this included the English-trained archers). De la Vega's account includes numerous feats of penetration from Native bows, including the infamous test against mail. A Portuguese source on the same region claimed Native bows penetrated as deeply as crossbows. Etc.

If these sources are reasonably accurate (de la Vega isn't an eyewitness but had access to eyewitnesses), then I suspect some Native bows were in fact in the 100-180lb range. You additionally have a few sources from what's now known as the U.S. Northeast that indicate powerful bows. In one an English colonist describes taking an arrow hit to the breastplate that was like a pike thrust.

Read my historically inspired fantasy fiction in here. I walk along a winding path set by Ludovico Ariosto, William Morris, J. R. R. Tolkien, and Ursula Le Guin.

Out of doubt, out of dark to the day's rising
I came singing in the sun, sword unsheathing.
To hope's end I rode and to heart's breaking:
Now for wrath, now for ruin and a red nightfall!
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Michael Kelly





Joined: 22 Sep 2015

Posts: 57

PostPosted: Sun 10 Jan, 2016 7:46 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Timo Nieminen wrote:
Michael Kelly wrote:
Benjamin H. Abbott wrote:

As far as Native American bows go, while the ones the U.S. military encountered may have been in the 50-60lb range (it's hard to say), I suspect some were 150+lbs like their English counterparts based on 16th- and 17th-century Spanish and English accounts. Garcilaso de la Vega described English and Native bows as equivalent in his account of Hernando de Soto's expedition.


Judging by the bows I've seen in museums I find this hard to believe... The bows I've seen from plains tribes look almost like kids bows they're so small. I'd judge them to be around 40-45lbs at most. Now maybe all the bows in the museums are for kids, and maybe the bows used in Mexico and South America are heavier, but judging by what I've seen they're not heavy draw weights at all.


Plains Indian bows (short, sinew-backed or sinew-wood-horn composites, strongly reflexed, recurved) varied. 50-65lb appears typical. But they're often short draw bows, with draw lengths of 22-24" or so. They can't be too low draw weight if you want to use them for hunting bison. They did make lower draw weight bows, for hunting small game, and plenty of children's bows.

Where they had suitable wood, long self-bows were used. Have heard that these would go up to about 80lb for warfare, less for hunting (40-50lb?).


"But they're often short draw bows, with draw lengths of 22-24" or so."

They'd have to be considering the length of arrows I've seen.

Off topic, but they didn't use bows to hunt bison.... Prior to the introduction of horses they would use fire to drive them over cliffs. When they had horses they would chuck spears into the herds and then wait for the herds to move on and collect whatever kills they managed to get. If they had guns they would shoot them.

If they did indeed have bows around 80lbs I'm sure some would use them to kill bison, but in general that appears to be more Hollywierd than fact.
View user's profile Send private message
Benjamin H. Abbott




Location: New Mexico
Joined: 28 Feb 2004

Spotlight topics: 1
Posts: 1,190

PostPosted: Sun 10 Jan, 2016 8:08 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

There are lots of sources for hunting bison with bows. According to Roland Bohr's Gifts from the Thunder Beings, guns overtook bows for hunting among Plains Indians only after the widespread destruction of bison herds. Hunting bison from horseback was an establish practice well into the last quarter of the nineteenth century. Bows likewise continued to see some military service alongside firearms among Plains Indians even into the late nineteenth century, including at Little Bighorn 1876. If Plains Indians bows were indeed 50-65lb bows with 22-24in arrows, that's solid evidence for the efficacy of weak bows against at least unarmored troops. (Even assuming high efficiency, such bows would have delivered dramatically less energy than the six-strength [75-80lb] bows the Qing military considered the martial minimum.)

Bohr gives the figure of 14 J at 40 m/s with a 16.85g arrow from a 52lb Northern Plains reproduction. I'm not sure you could hunt bison with that one. A 38lb Apache reproduction managed 26 J with a 28g arrow at 43 m/s. Scaled up to a 65lb draw weight it might manage 45 J or so. That's starting to seem plausible as a weapon.

It's worth noting that the pinch grip apparently used by most/all Plains Indian groups makes it difficult to draw heavier bows and supports the idea of low draw weights. It additionally lends itself to rapid shooting.

Read my historically inspired fantasy fiction in here. I walk along a winding path set by Ludovico Ariosto, William Morris, J. R. R. Tolkien, and Ursula Le Guin.

Out of doubt, out of dark to the day's rising
I came singing in the sun, sword unsheathing.
To hope's end I rode and to heart's breaking:
Now for wrath, now for ruin and a red nightfall!


Last edited by Benjamin H. Abbott on Mon 11 Jan, 2016 7:49 am; edited 1 time in total
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Bartek Strojek




Location: Poland
Joined: 05 Aug 2008
Likes: 23 pages

Posts: 449

PostPosted: Mon 11 Jan, 2016 1:27 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Benjamin H. Abbott wrote:


Bohr gives the figure of 14 J at 40 m/s with a 16.85g arrow from a 52lb Northern Plains reproduction. I'm not sure you could hunt bison with that one. A 38lb Apache reproduction managed 26 J with a 28g arrow at 43 m/s. Scaled up to a 65lb draw weight it might manage 45 J or so. That's starting to seem plausible as a weapon.

.


Those seem like rather poorly performing bows, especially the first one!

Is this because they're indeed of very short draw?
View user's profile Send private message
Will S




Location: Bournemouth, UK
Joined: 25 Nov 2013

Posts: 161

PostPosted: Mon 11 Jan, 2016 3:10 am    Post subject: Re: bows         Reply with quote

Paul Ballantyne wrote:


A lifelong longbow maker in England Pip Bickerstaff believes that most practical longbows would have been around the 100 pp mark, having shot the longbow over 32 years now I would also agree with this. Yes, heavier longbows have been found from the Mary Rose, but would these have been reserved for naval engagements and using fire arrows


Just quickly - he's wrong. Completely wrong. Pip wrote a book many years ago stating the 100lb drawweight theory based on the knowledge of the time of natural strings and their limits, and his use of American Yew which was far easier to get at the time, but a completely different species to European Yew that was used for the original bows.

What we know today is far, far more accurate regarding these natural strings, and the work of people like Joe Gibbs has raised the likely draw weights of medieval bows well into the 170lb range, as natural hemp strings are very capable of supporting bows this heavy.

Also, you simply cannot send a heavy military arrow capable of penetration of period armour the necessary distance of around 220 yards if you're using a bow much under 150lb.

Amongst the Warbow community Pip is seen as a bit of a joke, and his theory is so old fashioned now that it's been long since disregarded by anybody who shoots proper medieval bows.

100lb is extremely light for a military bow, and will certainly not do much damage when paired with a true medieval arrow, built to medieval standards, and shot to medieval distances against medieval armour. 100lb is something that ladies and teenagers can learn to shoot within a few years, so there's really no reason why healthy, strong men would stop at that poundage. With people all over the world now shooting bows of 150lb, 160lb and up to 200lb it proves that even in our soft modern lifestyle we can learn to control these weights making it highly likely they were used during military archery combat also.

Also, virtually every replica of extant longbows including the Mary Rose bows, the Ballinderry bow and others using good, high altitude European Yew come out well over 150lb. Some replicas of the MR bows came off the tiller around 196lb. In fact it's almost completely impossible to make an accurate replica of the Mary Rose bows using similar timber and identical dimensions that comes out around 100lb. They're just too big and too heavy, and you would need to reduce the dimensions of even the lightest and smallest MR bow drastically to achieve a 100lb bow.

Current expert opinion on MR draw weights puts the lightest in the 120-130lb range, and the heaviest over 200lb.
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
Gabriele Becattini





Joined: 21 Aug 2007

Posts: 710

PostPosted: Mon 11 Jan, 2016 4:19 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

a friend of mine has litterally pierced side by side a wild boar using a 50 pounds bow with a draw lenght of 28'' using a broadhead arrow

in a tribal society with no needs for specialized ranged weapons (to be used against hevily armoured opponents)

a bow fit for hunt was good also for warfare,
View user's profile Send private message
Paul Ballantyne





Joined: 19 Oct 2015

Posts: 27

PostPosted: Mon 11 Jan, 2016 8:07 am    Post subject: bow experience         Reply with quote

Discussions about bow strength especially longbows have a habit of of getting out of control. And I know Will has written extensively on forums.

I can only speak of my own experience of bows. I have shot very heavy bows myself but they are very hard on the joints and tendons, and I'm not exactly a wee or weak chap. There were many bows on the Mary Rose at or below 100 pp. My question would centre around how common would the very heavy bows be. All of our examples of longbows come from the Mary Rose. Would these examples be typical of the general issue to all archers ? Probably or possibly ?

There is quite a good video on youtube with Matt Easton and Tobias Capwell regarding an interview in respect of plate armour and the medieval longbow (watch the three videos) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ukvlZcxNAVY, another good piece of footage by Keith Hicks https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pwKonOdnu0M re rate of fire.

For many years in todays society there has been great discussion about 7.62 NATO v 5.56 ammo, 9mm V .45acp etc. If .50 calibre ammo is so powerful and has such penetration has dos'nt every soldier carry a 50 cal weapon. Because combat weapons is about compromise its about accuracy, weight, how reliable is it, cost, ability of the individual to handle the weapon and many other factors.

Did some archers shoot very heavy longbows ? yes. But how common was this ? Would a lower pp bow be more practical weapon to carry considering a higher rate of fire, more accurate, ability to maintain a rate of rate for a longer time before becoming fatigued ? I usually shoot a few hundred shafts at archery practice and my longbow is less than 100 pp, maybe I'm just getting old and have too many old war wounds but its hard enough on the old body.

I don't know Wills heavy war bow friends and I would certainly like to hear their views and experiences. I'm always open to new evidence especially when it comes down to actual practical experiences.

Finally in respect to Pip Bickerstaff, longbowyer.co.uk describes him as

Pip Bickerstaffe – Possibly the highest regarded and most prolific UK longbowyer. Prices from £175-£lots!

under their bow makers segment. Personally I have found Pip to be a gentleman. Always willing to share his knowledge and time with anyone looking for help or advice.
View user's profile Send private message
Benjamin H. Abbott




Location: New Mexico
Joined: 28 Feb 2004

Spotlight topics: 1
Posts: 1,190

PostPosted: Mon 11 Jan, 2016 8:17 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Bartek Strojek wrote:
Those seem like rather poorly performing bows, especially the first one!

Is this because they're indeed of very short draw?


The first one is list as a 22in(55.6cm) draw. No data for the second one, but it's probably fairly similar.

Will S wrote:
Also, you simply cannot send a heavy military arrow capable of penetration of period armour the necessary distance of around 220 yards if you're using a bow much under 150lb.


This assumes that English warbows were supposed to penetrate period armor. Also, at least according to Weapons of Warre, extant Mary Rose arrows were mostly rather light: 40-48g for poplar arrows and 60-67g for birch. Is any physical evidence for heavier European arrows? (Some extant Manchu/Qing arrows exceed 100g, as do some extant European crossbow bolts.)

Quote:
100lb is something that ladies and teenagers can learn to shoot within a few years, so there's really no reason why healthy, strong men would stop at that poundage. With people all over the world now shooting bows of 150lb, 160lb and up to 200lb it proves that even in our soft modern lifestyle we can learn to control these weights making it highly likely they were used during military archery combat also.


At least in eighteenth-century China, drawing 100lb bow wasn't too easy. Records from the Hangzhou garrison show that many soldiers (29-47%) couldn't even pass with a six-strength bow (75-80lbs). This wasn't considered acceptable and was far away from the front lines, but it suggests that drawing a 100lb bow isn't trivial. I'm not sure exactly what the exam required in this case. Only 0.625-2.5% of the garrison passed with 146-173lb bows! (There's some evidence that Manchu bows are harder to draw than English bows, though claimed weights for Manchu bows go up to nearly 240lbs.)

Quote:
Current expert opinion on MR draw weights puts the lightest in the 120-130lb range, and the heaviest over 200lb.


Is this published anywhere? The Great Warbow gives 100-180lbs as the range, and that used to be controversially high. I like the idea of even heavier English bows; given the design's relatively low efficiency, mighty bows would stand consistent with the praise English archers often received from across Europe.

Read my historically inspired fantasy fiction in here. I walk along a winding path set by Ludovico Ariosto, William Morris, J. R. R. Tolkien, and Ursula Le Guin.

Out of doubt, out of dark to the day's rising
I came singing in the sun, sword unsheathing.
To hope's end I rode and to heart's breaking:
Now for wrath, now for ruin and a red nightfall!
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Pieter B.





Joined: 16 Feb 2014
Reading list: 10 books

Posts: 577

PostPosted: Mon 11 Jan, 2016 9:28 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

East Coast native Americans certainly look capable of shooting high poundage bows. Razz

Sketch ca. 1585



But back to plains Indians: Were they horse archers who rode without saddle and stirrup?


PS, does anyone else notice they all got archer bracelets on their right arm?
View user's profile Send private message


Display posts from previous:   
Forum Index > Historical Arms Talk > Minimum draw weights
Page 1 of 4 Reply to topic
Go to page 1, 2, 3, 4  Next All times are GMT - 8 Hours

View previous topic :: View next topic
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum
You cannot attach files in this forum
You can download files in this forum






All contents © Copyright 2003-2018 myArmoury.com — All rights reserved
Discussion forums powered by phpBB © The phpBB Group
Switch to the Basic Low-bandwidth Version of the forum