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Thread: How long should a longbow be ?

  1. #1
    In the White swoop's Avatar
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    Dec 2007
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    How long should a longbow be ?

    I seem to be taking up a lot of space on this forum at the moment

    So here goes another question.

    How long should a longbow be ? The reason for asking is that today I tried out a few bows and found that of them all I preferred a bow which only measured 69" nock to nock. Very light in the hand and a terrific snappy cast compared to a heavier weighted bow which was more like 74".
    It was a great little bow and I'm sure it is capable of that ideal aiming on the boss at 100 yards but for some reason I'm just not happy with the idea of a short longbow !
    I know a longer bow is supposed to be more stable but would I really be missing something important ? (other than the target which I am quite capable of)

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  3. #2
    It's an X AIUK subscriber.
    English Bowman's Avatar
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    May 2005
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    How long is your draw length?
    What wood is it made from?
    Who is the bowyer?
    What style of shooting are you going to use it for?
    All of these questions, and more dictate how long the bow should be, so there is no one easy answer.
    The best thing to do is to contact the bowyer, and have a chat with him, then get him to make the bow for you. Any good bowyer will ask you questions like those above (obviously not all of them) to decide how long to make the bow. One of the advantages of getting a bow custom made. (It shouldn't cost you any more either)

  4. #3
    In the Red madbirdwoman's Avatar
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    Aug 2007
    Central scotland
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    hi my longbow which was custom made by pip is 69" 45lb at 26" i am only 5,2 i prefered it to the longer ones i tried that my friends have.When i tried it it felt better and was more snappy them the ones preiously tried mind you they were 28 draw

  5. #4
    In the White
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    I have heard that a longbow should be a couple of inches of so longer that the height of archer, or something like that. Can't remember where I read that now and I'm not an expert, infact I'm more of a beginner but there might be something in it.

  6. #5
    It's an X Del the Cat's Avatar
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    Harlow Essex
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    It depends on personal preference, draw weight/length and the staves at your disposal.
    With fabricated (laminated) bows you have much more choice.
    My personal preference is same height as the archer, but for big warbows I can see that longer is sensible to accomodate the higher draw weight and longer draw.
    What I don't like is bows which are much taller than the archer with only a short draw length, which appear to be hardly flexing at full draw.
    Just my personal view... I like to see a bow really coming around 'full compass' not just a shallow arc... Ok I know you're unlikely to get an actual semi circle...but I'm sure you know what I mean.
    Health Warning:- These posts may contain traces of nut.

  7. #6
    In the Black I've taken part in an AIUK Ironman Shoot.
    BasicNigel's Avatar
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    Aug 2006
    NW Leics
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    From the GNAS Rules of Shooting
    ......The bow shall be not less than five feet in length for an arrow of
    less than 27 inches and; not less than five feet six inches in length for a 27 or longer
    arrow, this being measured along the back between the string nocks.....

    Don't know if this applies to any other organisations, but it may pay you to check first.
    Twang, zip, thud.... or crunch..or splat

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