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Gary T




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PostPosted: Thu 20 Nov, 2014 7:50 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Interesting on the flatbow, Timo, I was not that familiar with them.

I'd guess the "inferior woods" would make it generally a lower poundage bow, and undoubtedly less efficient.

I wonder how the performance of a flatbow compares to a corresponding D-shape bow.
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Philip Dyer





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PostPosted: Thu 20 Nov, 2014 8:44 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Gary T wrote:
Quote:
Same thing, a bow shortness can be short a depectively powerful if the stave is very thick and stiff. Length doesn't necessarily equal to power.


Length does have a huge effect on power Philip, or at least drawlength does.

My issue with a short non composite construction bow - I don't think wood is "springy" enough to get both a long draw AND a heavy draw weight.

For example, I would think it very difficult to make a wooden self bow 36" in length, with a 32" draw and a 120 pound draw weight. I could be wrong, but my guess is this is why composite bows have long drawlengths for their length, and self bows do not from what I have seen.

And if you have a 36" self bow with a 20" draw but with that 120 pound draw, it imparts only 62.5% of the energy to the arrow that the longer draw bow provides. Some other things factor in as well such as bracelength, but even though the calculation is a bit of an oversimplification of the energy imparted, in the big scheme of things it is pretty accurate.

I'm also not sure of the exact mechanics on this, but a shorter bow with a similar drawlength will "stack" faster than a longer bow, further reducing the efficiency.

Quote:
It could be any of the above but Norman warbow would be the least probable option IMO.


My thoughts on that are pretty much the same. While I lean towards Irish because of the later history of Irish "short" bows, we really don't know the size of Welsh bows either to my knowledge, and they are a celtic people like the Irish.

Yes, but cross bow prod, which ulitized the same mechanical principles as a bow, a bent spring, are very short compared to bows staves they can get quite powerful, and light calvary recurve bows in composite and self types. I'm not saying that length is not big factor, I'm saying it seems like the general trend of the is that you can,length = power and all other factors are so neglible as worth to be ignored.
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Timo Nieminen




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PostPosted: Fri 21 Nov, 2014 12:57 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

For a bow drawn by human muscle in the usual manner of a bow, there's a limit to how high the draw weight can be. Since the stored energy is approximately (1/2)*(power stroke)*(draw weight), where (power stroke) = (draw length)-(brace height), once you reach that limit of manageable draw weight, then your energy becomes proportional to draw length.

For a regular bow, if you want to maximise energy, you maximise draw length. (This doesn't come without cost - you take a hit to accuracy, and you might not gain any range (or even lose range), so you don't do it unless you are serious about getting that energy. A similar thing can be said about draw weight.)

For a crossbow, where mechanical aids are available, short draw length and high draw weight can work. But that's not really relevant to a regular bow. (The Chinese approach to high-energy crossbows was to use long prods and long draw lengths.)

"In addition to being efficient, all pole arms were quite nice to look at." - Cherney Berg, A hideous history of weapons, Collier 1963.
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Gary T




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PostPosted: Fri 21 Nov, 2014 11:58 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Quote:
Yes, but cross bow prod, which ulitized the same mechanical principles as a bow, a bent spring, are very short compared to bows staves they can get quite powerful, and light calvary recurve bows in composite and self types


Don't sell crossbows short! (pardon the pun Big Grin ). But really, don't use the drawlength and stave length from later metal hunting bows as an examples of typical proportions for earlier military weapons. If we use maximum draws for stirrup crossbows to be in the 300-500 range, longer draws than those that are commonly seen on the steel hunting bows are needed if the weapons are believed to be as powerful as period literature gives them credit for.

Quote:
I'm saying it seems like the general trend of the is that you can,length = power and all other factors are so neglible as worth to be ignored.


To a point that is true, because as Timo pointed out, certain things are "capped", i.e. the human strength needed to draw a bow caps the draw weight of a selfbow, though a crossbow is not limited by that.

Let's take a 42" and a 72" bow for instance, and give the 72" bow a draw of 150 pounds. A good draw weight, the equivalent of Mary Rose draw weights.

Now I've hated to set forth an example this way, as it almost implies that draw length is tied to bowlength, which is not accurate. But with a wooden bow and a high draw weight, length of the bow does factor into it's maximum draw weight IMO.

Lets again suppose that the 72" bow has a draw length of 32", and the 48" bow has a draw length of 21", same proportions as the 72" bow, and we will assume brace lengths proportionate to bowlength.

To match the 72" bow's power, the 42" bow would need a draw weight of about 230 pounds. This is pretty well impossible, at least to use with any type of accuracy.

There may be other examples that I am not aware of, but the heaviest draw bow I see being used (non compound of course) are in the 180 pound range, and this is Mark Stretton, who weighs a little over 250 pounds, so hardly your typical longbowman of the middle ages.

That is why draw length is so important to the strength of the bow.


Last edited by Gary T on Fri 21 Nov, 2014 3:01 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Glennan Carnie




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PostPosted: Fri 21 Nov, 2014 1:59 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

In case this hasn't been posted before:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0-2KLuAH4GY

Joe is possibly the closest we've got to a medieval archer as he's been shooting 100lb+ bows since he was a teenager. Those who have shot with him will confirm he is as accurate with a 160lb bow as most other archers are with 80lb, so it's a fallacy to think a powerful bow precludes accuracy.

Interestingly, Joe has said his draw length is limited (to about 32") by the compression across his skeleton from the really heavyweight bows.
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Gary T




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PostPosted: Fri 21 Nov, 2014 3:00 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Quote:
so it's a fallacy to think a powerful bow precludes accuracy.


I don't think a powerful bow precludes accuracy, as long as it's a weight the archer can handle. As I mentioned Mark Stretton uses a 180 pounder accurately, and he is going to be larger and probably stronger than about anyone that was born about 800 years ago. But I don't see hardly anyone manually drawing a 230 pound self bow and having any accuracy. Maybe, just maybe they could barely draw it, but they won't be accurate.

I guess one thing too that factors in that we have not touched on is archer fatigue. Obviously a heavier draw will fatigue the archer faster than a lighter draw.
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Will S




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PostPosted: Fri 21 Nov, 2014 5:23 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Marks probably closer than you think to a "normal" medieval man.

I personally think it's a bit of a myth that they were badly fed, weak, unhealthy and small - especially if you consider the household and royal archers. Medieval life was hard working, active and involved. No sitting around watching TV, staring at phones and answering emails like today. I would imagine that Mark wouldn't look out of place in the 1400s. In person he's not particularly large - there are bodybuilders out there far bigger than him who couldn't pull a bow of 100# let alone 180#.

I think too much emphasis is placed on the numbers when talking about draw weight - no matter who you are, if you've spent years practicing with a bow of 150# you'll be just as accurate as somebody who's spent years practicing with a 50# bow. The fact that less people consider training with a medieval Warbow than a 50# target bow is more relevant to the lack of archers capable with a very heavy bow than the weight itself, in my opinion.

It might also be worth noting that up until recently bow weights of more than 100# were considered extremely hard to shoot. Today there are exceptionally talented guys like Joe, Mark and Glennan who are shooting over 150#. Mark still holds the world record at 202# but with Joe already pushing 185# and still in his 20s who knows what he'll be able to achieve.
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Timo Nieminen




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PostPosted: Fri 21 Nov, 2014 7:59 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Higher arrow speeds improve accuracy. Everything else being the same (especially the efficiency of the bow), higher draw weight gives you more arrow speed. Which is why Olympic archers shoot bows of relatively high draw weight for modern target bows.

Once the draw weight approaches the limits of what the archer can comfortably manage, then the archer
(1) won't be able to hold the bow steady at full draw for aiming
(2) will get tired faster (and therefore will shoot fewer arrows in training), and
(3) when tired, might not get to full draw.
But until you get to that point, higher draw weight generally gives better accuracy.

Which is not to say that one can't be accurate with a 150lb bow. But an archer who can draw a 150lb bow at most will probably be more accurate when shooting a 100lb bow; to be most accurate with 150lb, one might want to be able to handle 200lb. (I've seen quite a few people claim best accuracy at about 80% of the highest draw weight they can manage; that's doesn't seem like a bad estimate to me (though it depends on the standards of that "manage" for the highest draw weight).)

"In addition to being efficient, all pole arms were quite nice to look at." - Cherney Berg, A hideous history of weapons, Collier 1963.
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Gary T




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PostPosted: Fri 21 Nov, 2014 8:01 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Quote:
I personally think it's a bit of a myth that they were badly fed, weak, unhealthy and small - especially if you consider the household and royal archers. Medieval life was hard working, active and involved. No sitting around watching TV, staring at phones and answering emails like today. I would imagine that Mark wouldn't look out of place in the 1400s. In person he's not particularly large - there are bodybuilders out there far bigger than him who couldn't pull a bow of 100# let alone 180#.


It's not that I think the medieval man was small and weak. A little smaller than now on the average? Yes. Probably a decent percentage lighter than current man, because of activity. And the body builders and football players of today would not be the norm either, even for fighting men.

I'd picture more like current boxers or hockey players, without quite the muscle mass of those that do progressive resistance training.

Stronger per pound than many of today's men? Yes. Stronger or more muscular than our athletes of today? No way.

Quote:
- there are bodybuilders out there far bigger than him who couldn't pull a bow of 100# let alone 180#.


Yeah, it's a specific thing that is being trained for, just like bench pressing. You work it enough you will build the ability to handle more weight.

But Mark looks fairly fit, meaning not a high fat content.

A 250 pound man would be indeed very rare, more rare than today with weight lifting, protein supplements, steroids, creatine, specific amino acid supplements..

Yes it is indeed our athletes who have a good deal of muscle mass, but take out our professional or professionaly trained athletes (including many that hit the weight room, take supplements but are not "athletes"), and take out the obese, and you will find a 250 man of mostly lean muscle is very rare indeed.

I'm not saying that your top archers of antiquity could not be in Mark Stretton's class in strength - but these will be rare, the elite of the elite when it comes to strength. Not a standard "high guard" type, but more rare.
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Philip Dyer





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PostPosted: Sat 22 Nov, 2014 7:32 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Gary T wrote:
Quote:
I personally think it's a bit of a myth that they were badly fed, weak, unhealthy and small - especially if you consider the household and royal archers. Medieval life was hard working, active and involved. No sitting around watching TV, staring at phones and answering emails like today. I would imagine that Mark wouldn't look out of place in the 1400s. In person he's not particularly large - there are bodybuilders out there far bigger than him who couldn't pull a bow of 100# let alone 180#.


It's not that I think the medieval man was small and weak. A little smaller than now on the average? Yes. Probably a decent percentage lighter than current man, because of activity. And the body builders and football players of today would not be the norm either, even for fighting men.

I'd picture more like current boxers or hockey players, without quite the muscle mass of those that do progressive resistance training.

Stronger per pound than many of today's men? Yes. Stronger or more muscular than our athletes of today? No way.

Quote:
- there are bodybuilders out there far bigger than him who couldn't pull a bow of 100# let alone 180#.


Yeah, it's a specific thing that is being trained for, just like bench pressing. You work it enough you will build the ability to handle more weight.

But Mark looks fairly fit, meaning not a high fat content.

A 250 pound man would be indeed very rare, more rare than today with weight lifting, protein supplements, steroids, creatine, specific amino acid supplements..

Yes it is indeed our athletes who have a good deal of muscle mass, but take out our professional or professionaly trained athletes (including many that hit the weight room, take supplements but are not "athletes"), and take out the obese, and you will find a 250 man of mostly lean muscle is very rare indeed.

I'm not saying that your top archers of antiquity could not be in Mark Stretton's class in strength - but these will be rare, the elite of the elite when it comes to strength. Not a standard "high guard" type, but more rare.
Someone with that amount of raw muscle mass may have been rare, but more adapted , specialized, and fortified skelatal system can act as a subsitutes. If you ever watch and observe proffessional martial arts, you'll notice that many of them aren't really bulky or muscly at all, even when you take into account density training. The rougher, more resitent and more adapted a persons skeletal structure is, the more they physically handle specific type of activity and the more efficient and better attached their muscles are. Dr. A.J. Stirland. Raising the Dead: the Skeleton Crew of Henry VIII's Great Ship the Mary Rose. (Chichester 2002) As cited in Strickland & Hardy 2005, http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1...369_1.pdf. This basically finds that many heavy warbow archers had hyperadapted skeletons. Now take into account Wolf's law Wolff's law is a theory developed by the German anatomist and surgeon Julius Wolff (18361902) in the 19th century that states that bone in a healthy person or animal will adapt to the loads under which it is placed.[1] If loading on a particular bone increases, the bone will remodel itself over time to become stronger to resist that sort of loading.[2] The internal architecture of the trabeculae undergoes adaptive changes, followed by secondary changes to the external cortical portion of the bone,[3] perhaps becoming thicker as a result. All that is really required in Wolf's law is be able tolerate high degrees in pain that comes long term remodeling on your skeletal system. Finally, this doesn't prove commonality but should show that looking at commentary muscle mass,even lean muscle mass and ancient muscle mass building resource available drawing availability simply from that would be to draw a conclusions which overlook very important factors in bodie's power generation potential!
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Gary T




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PostPosted: Sat 22 Nov, 2014 10:51 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Quote:
Finally, this doesn't prove commonality but should show that looking at commentary muscle mass,even lean muscle mass and ancient muscle mass building resource available drawing availability simply from that would be to draw a conclusions which overlook very important factors in bodie's power generation potential!


I'm aware of the development of the Mary Rose Skeletons.

I'd also add though that I think we would see the same thing in today's powerlifters and body builders, such as bone adapting to specific types of loads. That is one reason those that work out with heavy weights a lot weigh a fair amount more than they look like they should - they see bone density and growth as part of the workout regimen.

The point here is that in today's world, among athletes or those that commit with both excersize regimen and diet you will see more and/or better growth than you would in the middle ages.

It's not too terribly unlike why are cows are 2-3 times heavier today than Saxon cows. Except we don't practice selective breeding for the most part Big Grin . But we have a better understanding of what is required to gain strength/mass. I used to compete in "Strong Man" competitions and am fairly familiar with what is important for strength and mass gain.

The only issue I see is that archery is a very specialized maneuver, and the amount of time meaning in years that is comitted to it. While muscle may grow rather quickly, the bone/tendon/ligament growth would take years.

But there are limitations t what one can achieve. Mark Stretton is a very large man by even today's standards, and moreso by middle ages standards. 6'3" 250 pounds is a huge frame to work with.

Take an average Mary Rose archer. Maybe 5'10"? I think they were a few inches taller than the norm. If they weigh 218, they would be roughly as massive as Stretton for their height, and that's still pretty massive, above the norm of an average Mary Rose archer I'd certainly hazard to guess.

Now, Stretton does not have as many years of practice, but based on his raw mass of muscle ligaments and tendons I'd say he could more than compensate for missing a few years of training.

Anyway, perhaps the most important point is that Mary Rose bows did not average 180 or 200 pounds - based on estimates, they were in the 150 pound range on average. I would think this would be the customary draw weight for a middle ages archer of an elite unit. Whether other archers of this day averaged 150 pound draws I do not know, based on bow finds the Mary Rose bows are certainly on the heavier draw side by a good margin, though many of these found bows come from a later period of time and may not have been military bows.

Quote:
If you ever watch and observe professional martial arts, you'll notice that many of them aren't really bulky or muscly at all, even when you take into account density training.


A martial artist is a different bird, fast twitch muscles are the more important issue. And if you look at MMA fighters, which is more "real" fighting than tournament type martial arts, you will see that the heavier weights are actually reasonably massive when it comes to lean muscle mass. And drawing a bow is not fast twitch muscle based, but more along the lands of power lifting actually.

But what also illustrates my point - there is a reason for weight classes. Body mass is just too important of a factor when it comes to strength related issues to be ignored, and there are not lightweights who can take out heavyweights assuming both are comparatively skilled, when it comes to an exchange of blows or a grapple they do not have the strength of muscles, ligaments and bones to win out, even though they may be quicker.
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Benjamin H. Abbott




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PostPosted: Sat 22 Nov, 2014 12:13 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The numbers from other regions can possibly help fill in our understanding of how much historical archers could draw. A seventeenth-century Ming Chinese source says that strong archers drew 158lbs, average archers 126-142lbs, weak archers 79lbs, and very strong archers more than 158lbs. It's not clear in the text, but this was almost certainly for infantry archers given the weights. In eighteenth-century China, only relatively small numbers of troops at the less-experienced garrisons successfully tested with bows heavier than about 130lbs. At Hangzhou in 1736, only 80 soldiers out of 3,200 passed examination with 145-172lbs. Of course, that percentage was likely higher at the better garrisons in the north and perhaps in earlier times. And it's unclear how to compare such different numbers, given different bow styles and standards of practices, etc.

However, in my view the weight of the evidence suggests that quality infantry archers typically drew 130-160lbs while quality mounted archers managed 90-120lbs. A small number of especially strong archers drew more than 160lbs on foot or 120lbs while mounted and still shot effectively.

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T. Kew




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PostPosted: Sat 22 Nov, 2014 4:54 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Timo Nieminen wrote:
Higher arrow speeds improve accuracy. Everything else being the same (especially the efficiency of the bow), higher draw weight gives you more arrow speed. Which is why Olympic archers shoot bows of relatively high draw weight for modern target bows.


I don't believe this is directly true.

Higher arrow speeds do improve target accuracy, because they reduce flight time, which means less other factors act on the arrow in flight.

However, the arrow speed is determined by the return speed of the bow, as long as the arrow is sufficiently light. Obviously if the arrow is overly heavy compared to the draw weight, it will drastically slow down - but there's a plateau where the arrow is light enough relative to the bow's draw that it's essentially irrelevant. Even without an arrow, the string doesn't return quicker with a heavy bow than a light one, because it's the springiness of the material which determines that.

So if you have a bow made of wood at 80lbs draw, which shoots a given arrow at a given velocity, you will only gain a marginal increase in speed by going to a 160lb bow, as long as the arrow was not overly heavy for the bow.

What you will be able to do is shoot a much heavier arrow at the same speed - which is the real niche of longbows in warfare. This also improves your accuracy some from a target perspective, because a heavier arrow has more momentum, and is proportionally less affected by a given force (such as a sidewind).

The other side of this is that a heavier bow from the same materials will have heavier limbs, which (IIRC) move slower, and so that will reduce the velocity a touch.

So to sum up: double the draw weight, double the mass of an arrow you can shoot at the same speed, not double the velocity of your arrow of the same mass.

(I've not looked at bow physics for a while, so this may be incorrect, but it's how I remember the springs and so on working)
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Timo Nieminen




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PostPosted: Sat 22 Nov, 2014 8:13 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

A good summary is that if you double the draw weight of the bow, and double the weight of the arrow, you'll get double the energy (and therefore shoot that double-weight arrow at the same speed). Keep the arrow weight the same, rather than doubling it, and that arrow will come out a little faster out of the bow (assuming that the efficiency, for the same arrow grains per pound, is the same). Not much faster, but still faster. If you double the draw weight and double the mass of the limbs, you'll keep that efficiency for the same gpp the same. (If you dry-fire the original and the double-weight bow, the limbs will move at the same speed. Double the mass but double the force moving them.)

Actually, you can do better than that. The stiffness of the bow is proportional to the thickness cubed, so as long as you aren't near the elastic limit of the bow, you can double the draw weight without doubling the mass of the limb. This means that even though the mass of the limbs increases, the draw weight increases by more, and the efficiency of the bow, for the same arrow grains per pound, increases. (If you more than double the weight of the limbs when you double the draw weight, it isn't a good design. If you keep the thickness of the limb the same, and double the width of the limb, you should get double the draw weight and double the limb mass. If you're at the elastic limit of the material, you have to go wider or longer. Offhand, I don't know how longer scales, but wider is simple.)

But yes, the increase in velocity won't be very big. The speed at which the bow can move its own limbs does limit the maximum velocity, and a light arrow will be moving at close to that velocity already. But a little more speed, a little closer to that maximum velocity, can be achieved. But for that little increase in speed, you incur the penalties of the higher draw weight, so that increase might not be worthwhile. Which likely contributes to why top-level target archers stop at about 50lbs draw. Basically, your "plateau where the arrow is light enough relative to the bow's draw that it's essentially irrelevant" has been reached.

"In addition to being efficient, all pole arms were quite nice to look at." - Cherney Berg, A hideous history of weapons, Collier 1963.
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Gary T




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PostPosted: Mon 24 Nov, 2014 5:36 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Benjamin H. Abbott wrote:

Quote:
However, in my view the weight of the evidence suggests that quality infantry archers typically drew 130-160lbs while quality mounted archers managed 90-120lbs. A small number of especially strong archers drew more than 160lbs on foot or 120lbs while mounted and still shot effectively


I've seen this from you before. Makes sense to me for infantry, not sure about the cavalry side. Not saying I disagree, just don't have enough evidence to agree or disagree. I don't know if it's correct to assume an archer cannot draw as heavy of a bow as a foot archer, I've seen arguments on both sides. One thing that strikes me as correct that I have read, is that you do not draw a bow with your legs Big Grin

I think there are a few things to add as well - I don't think for instance an ancient greek bow would be quite in this range, and perhaps not a Saxon bow either. I don't believe that nations in which archery was not much of a component of war (Saxons, ancient greeks) would have heavy draw bow.

The other thing, I'm not sure where for instance ancient egyptians or persians would fit in either.

Now, with Mycenean Greek we have a bow which cannot be drawn by others because of it's draw weight, perhaps implying heavy bows in use by some. Of course, Mycenean greek is rooted more in traditions Asia minor as opposed to clssical greek traditions.
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Timo Nieminen




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PostPosted: Mon 24 Nov, 2014 5:52 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

As a mounted archer, you don't always have your body in the ideal position (that would be shooting directly to the left, at 90 degrees from your horse's head). The angles you can shoot at (at full draw; more than this if you draw short) are from the left of your horse's head to over the tail, but I think that the angles where you are more twisted around will stop you from using as high a draw weight bow as straight-to-the-left.

(You also want to be able to change hands and shoot to the right, or, as a Chinese writer advised, be able to turn your horse around very quickly.)

Ancient Persians (as in Persian-Greek wars Persians) used the Central Asian composite bow.

"In addition to being efficient, all pole arms were quite nice to look at." - Cherney Berg, A hideous history of weapons, Collier 1963.
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Gary T




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PostPosted: Mon 24 Nov, 2014 6:46 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Quote:
Ancient Persians (as in Persian-Greek wars Persians) used the Central Asian composite bow.


That I knew, but could the draw weight have changed? Real hard to say, whether there was in evolution in draw weight to armor, or whether that was an ideal weight to use at a 90-120 draw weight.

You would think accuracy, rate of fire and not causing undue fatigue would be an issue, and with all but accuracy that is indeed an issue, accuracy being an issue is debatable.
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Benjamin H. Abbott




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PostPosted: Mon 24 Nov, 2014 10:19 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Various sources suggest cavalry bows had significantly lower draw weights. The Chinese-region military exams recorded in Stephen Selby's Chinese Archery have cavalry draw weights at 55-74% of infantry draw weights. These are from the eleventh through thirteen centuries and go as high as 167lbs for first-class infantry bows. Of course, bows for the battlefield weren't necessarily as heavy as ones for the exam, but these exam records give us a sense of the ratio between infantry and cavalry bows. Beyond such figures, an eighteenth-century proclamation from one of the Qing emperors mentions how it's difficult to use a hard bow on horseback. Finally, reconstructions and estimates of extant pieces suggest an average weight of around 100lbs for a number of different types of composite bows, many or all of which were used while mounted. (Surviving Turkish bows surveyed by Adam Karpowicz average 111lbs.) Roughly 80lbs (a strength rating of six in Qing terms) was apparently the minimum for competent Manchu mounted archers, with elite mounted archers drawing 130+lbs on hunts (not necessarily in combat, though quite possibly so).
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William P




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PostPosted: Tue 25 Nov, 2014 4:44 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

regarding cavalry bows against infantry bows and crossbows

i recently recorded a video about me talking about the crossbow, and how (according to some discussions on myArmoury) suggesting that the steps and systems in place to train and effectively deploy crossbows laid the groundwork for drill and deployment of firearms like the arquebus and musket

in the same video i talked about the use of crossbows supported by sergent spearmen in the 3rd crusade to keep horse archers at bay

is it accurate to perhaps say that crossbows would have been able to outrange horse archers and keep them at a distance, stopping them from riding closer to a target to shoot their arrows at closer ranges (almost like a carocle)

on that note, is there much reference to crossbowmen firing in mass volleys in a similar way as musketeers?

and lastly is there any evidence of companies of mercenary crossbowmen possessing a small percentage of very high capacity crossbows for targeting more heavily armoured targets?

i realise some of this is speculation however and im not sure what was feasable.
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Gary T




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PostPosted: Tue 25 Nov, 2014 10:03 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Well, I'd say you certainly provided some good backup documentation, Ben.

I have heard, but not sure of the veracity of this that Mongol archers used heavier bows than the turkish type bow. Any truth to this that you are aware of? Could possibly even mean a heavier arrow perhaps.

Quote:
is it accurate to perhaps say that crossbows would have been able to outrange horse archers and keep them at a distance, stopping them from riding closer to a target to shoot their arrows at closer ranges (almost like a carocle)


A favorite turkish tactic, and even more favored against infantry would be to ride t a few yards away and loose an arrow. Any bow that the infantry use prevents this, so yes indeed crossbows worked. What it would do is keep them at long ranges where the arrows had little or no chance to penetrate armor.
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