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How to Make a Bow and Arrows

How to Make a Bow and Arrows

What do Robinhood, The Hunger Games and the new TV series Arrow have in common? All hit stories involve one of the most popular weapons in history, a bow and arrows. As a child I was always attracted to Indians rather than cowboys. I can’t really explain why. I guess the Indians were more mysterious than the guys who wore hats and slung pistols on their hips. And maybe because American Indians are experts in using a bow and a set of arrows.

If you’re into hunting and the great outdoors, here’s a real treat for you. Let’s discuss how you can make a bow and arrows. Let’s aim to make one that can shoot as far as 275 meters.

Make The Bow.

Carefully select a long piece of sturdy but flexible wood for the bow. You can select from the following list: white woods elm, ash, hazel, lemon tree wood, oak, hickory, yew, black locust, or teak. There are some important points to consider when choosing wood for your bow. Get a piece that is about one meter long. Your choice should be almost perfect; without limbs, twists or knots.

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Pick a wood that can bend to your satisfaction. That way, when you release arrows, the string won’t slap the side of your hand. To avoid a painful incident like this, pick flexible choices such as juniper or mulberry—they’re recommended for this purpose. However, I highly recommend bamboo: my personal choice. My advice is also to choose a piece of wood that will fit your grip. A young bamboo stalk is a perfect choice because it’s strong and flexible. Bending it will be easy breezy!

Shape the bow.

The middle of an ideal bow is sturdy, so it’s usually thicker. A bigger center makes a better handle. Moreover, it’s advisable to look for a piece of wood with a natural curve. It’s easier to bend when shooting arrows.

Shave off portions of the wood on the inner part of the curve with a knife, or carve out the side that faces you when shooting an arrow. Make shavings on the thicker half of the stick until its width is identical with the other end. Balance is a crucial factor in this step. If your stick has roughly the same diameter from end to end, it’s recommended that you shave both ends. Your goal is to have a bow with a thick, sturdy center bordered by two slimmer, and more flexible edges that ideally have the same length and diameter.

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Create notches for the bow string.

With a knife, make small notches about one to two inches from each end of the bow. The notches should be shaped like a half moon and located outside of the bow’s curve.

Choosing a bow string.

For the string, you can use nylon rope, hemp cord, rawhide, strands of cotton or silk from caterpillars, fishing line, or ordinary twine. If those materials are not available, then you’ll be forced to use vines or sinew. Let’s imagine you’re stuck in the wilderness, in this scenario it could be difficult to look for material for a string. You might need to do a series of trials and errors before you can settle on a choice that meets your needs. A bow string should not stretch too much since, basically, the power comes from the wood, not from the string.

We’re done with the bow. Now, how do we create arrows?

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Choose materials wisely for your arrows.

Ideally, arrows are straight; the straighter the better. Look for the straightest sticks you can find. While a dead wood is not recommended for the bow, the wood for your arrows must be dry. The length of the arrows is preferably 50% shorter than the bow, or as far as the bow can be drawn backwards. It’s not wise to have arrows that can’t be drawn back to the bow’s full potential. Additionally, you must take these items in consideration:

Construct the arrowheads.

The arrowhead can simply be a point carved out on the front of the arrow stick. Whittle a point with your knife and then harden it by heating it mildly on coals (be careful, don’t burn the wood). Find the right distance from the heat to do this.

You may also choose to construct arrowheads from metal, glass, bone or stone. You can then attach them to the arrow’s tip by notching them to the wood. How? Cut a notch across the tip of the arrow shaft and insert an arrowhead into each notch. Next, to make sure the arrowheads won’t fall off, tightly fasten them to the wood with a strong cord.

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Fabricate the arrows.

Whittle the wood with smooth cuts around the arrow’s circumference. You can harden an arrow by heating the shaft over hot coals gently and then hold the arrow straight while the wood cools down. Create a tiny notch at the back end of the arrows to suit the bow string.

Create fletchings.

Fletchings improve the arrow’s flight. Some will say it’s optional, but personally I suggest you make them. Feathers are the best material for fletchings: simply glue them on the ends of the arrows. Another way is to make a small split at the back of every stick, slide in a feather, and wrap a thread around the fletching.

Now, you can smile. Your bow and arrows are ready for a hunting party. Just make sure you exercise extreme care!

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Anthony Dejolde

TV/Radio personality who educates his audience on entrepreneurship, productivity, and leadership.

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Last Updated on January 21, 2020

The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

Creating a vision for your life might seem like a frivolous, fantastical waste of time, but it’s not: creating a compelling vision of the life you want is actually one of the most effective strategies for achieving the life of your dreams. Perhaps the best way to look at the concept of a life vision is as a compass to help guide you to take the best actions and make the right choices that help propel you toward your best life.

your vision of where or who you want to be is the greatest asset you have

    Why You Need a Vision

    Experts and life success stories support the idea that with a vision in mind, you are more likely to succeed far beyond what you could otherwise achieve without a clear vision. Think of crafting your life vision as mapping a path to your personal and professional dreams. Life satisfaction and personal happiness are within reach. The harsh reality is that if you don’t develop your own vision, you’ll allow other people and circumstances to direct the course of your life.

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    How to Create Your Life Vision

    Don’t expect a clear and well-defined vision overnight—envisioning your life and determining the course you will follow requires time, and reflection. You need to cultivate vision and perspective, and you also need to apply logic and planning for the practical application of your vision. Your best vision blossoms from your dreams, hopes, and aspirations. It will resonate with your values and ideals, and will generate energy and enthusiasm to help strengthen your commitment to explore the possibilities of your life.

    What Do You Want?

    The question sounds deceptively simple, but it’s often the most difficult to answer. Allowing yourself to explore your deepest desires can be very frightening. You may also not think you have the time to consider something as fanciful as what you want out of life, but it’s important to remind yourself that a life of fulfillment does not usually happen by chance, but by design.

    It’s helpful to ask some thought-provoking questions to help you discover the possibilities of what you want out of life. Consider every aspect of your life, personal and professional, tangible and intangible. Contemplate all the important areas, family and friends, career and success, health and quality of life, spiritual connection and personal growth, and don’t forget about fun and enjoyment.

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    Some tips to guide you:

    • Remember to ask why you want certain things
    • Think about what you want, not on what you don’t want.
    • Give yourself permission to dream.
    • Be creative. Consider ideas that you never thought possible.
    • Focus on your wishes, not what others expect of you.

    Some questions to start your exploration:

    • What really matters to you in life? Not what should matter, what does matter.
    • What would you like to have more of in your life?
    • Set aside money for a moment; what do you want in your career?
    • What are your secret passions and dreams?
    • What would bring more joy and happiness into your life?
    • What do you want your relationships to be like?
    • What qualities would you like to develop?
    • What are your values? What issues do you care about?
    • What are your talents? What’s special about you?
    • What would you most like to accomplish?
    • What would legacy would you like to leave behind?

    It may be helpful to write your thoughts down in a journal or creative vision board if you’re the creative type. Add your own questions, and ask others what they want out of life. Relax and make this exercise fun. You may want to set your answers aside for a while and come back to them later to see if any have changed or if you have anything to add.

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    What Would Your Best Life Look Like?

    Describe your ideal life in detail. Allow yourself to dream and imagine, and create a vivid picture. If you can’t visualize a picture, focus on how your best life would feel. If you find it difficult to envision your life 20 or 30 years from now, start with five years—even a few years into the future will give you a place to start. What you see may surprise you. Set aside preconceived notions. This is your chance to dream and fantasize.

    A few prompts to get you started:

    • What will you have accomplished already?
    • How will you feel about yourself?
    • What kind of people are in your life? How do you feel about them?
    • What does your ideal day look like?
    • Where are you? Where do you live? Think specifics, what city, state, or country, type of community, house or an apartment, style and atmosphere.
    • What would you be doing?
    • Are you with another person, a group of people, or are you by yourself?
    • How are you dressed?
    • What’s your state of mind? Happy or sad? Contented or frustrated?
    • What does your physical body look like? How do you feel about that?
    • Does your best life make you smile and make your heart sing? If it doesn’t, dig deeper, dream bigger.

    It’s important to focus on the result, or at least a way-point in your life. Don’t think about the process for getting there yet—that’s the next stepGive yourself permission to revisit this vision every day, even if only for a few minutes. Keep your vision alive and in the front of your mind.

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    Plan Backwards

    It may sound counter-intuitive to plan backwards rather than forwards, but when you’re planning your life from the end result, it’s often more useful to consider the last step and work your way back to the first. This is actually a valuable and practical strategy for making your vision a reality.

    • What’s the last thing that would’ve had to happen to achieve your best life?
    • What’s the most important choice you would’ve had to make?
    • What would you have needed to learn along the way?
    • What important actions would you have had to take?
    • What beliefs would you have needed to change?
    • What habits or behaviors would you have had to cultivate?
    • What type of support would you have had to enlist?
    • How long will it have taken you to realize your best life?
    • What steps or milestones would you have needed to reach along the way?

    Now it’s time to think about your first step, and the next step after that. Ponder the gap between where you are now and where you want to be in the future. It may seem impossible, but it’s quite achievable if you take it step-by-step.

    It’s important to revisit this vision from time to time. Don’t be surprised if your answers to the questions, your technicolor vision, and the resulting plans change. That can actually be a very good thing; as you change in unforeseeable ways, the best life you envision will change as well. For now, it’s important to use the process, create your vision, and take the first step towards making that vision a reality.

    Featured photo credit: Matt Noble via unsplash.com

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