Flemish Twist String Questions

PLEASE HELP TO FUND ARCHERY INTERCHANGE

albatross

Supporter
Supporter
I just made my first Flemish twist string. Having formed the loop I am left with two bundles of strand to twist together (I am going to use a timber hitch on the other end).

My questions are. Should I apply some twists to each bundle before I twist them together? And what should the strand count when using Dacron B50 for a 40lb longbow?

Dennis
 

Del the Cat

Well-known member
Yes.
There are prob some You tube vids on the topic.
If you put a load of twist onto each bundle* with them held apart, as you then put em together they will automatically wrap together as the twist sort of undoes.
Experiment on a short try out piece is the best way to see how it works.
Del
* I think twisting it up until it starts to try and kink up is what's needed. A hand drill with a bit of wire coathanger (or nail) made into a hook and held in the chuck is a big help.
 

albatross

Supporter
Supporter
Thank you for the reply Del.

I agree about the YouTube videos. Some are good at showing the loop construction, but lacking in the rest of the string construction. The ones I have watched seem to be about loops at both ends and just the string being twisted like an endless loop string. I was thinking that if the separate bundles were twisted and then crossed-over (like making the loop) it might make for a better construction. So I think that twisting with a drill and then using the cross-over method would be a better idea.

Any suggestion regarding the strand count. I have seen 14 quoted for 40lb but I am thinking that the thinner the B50 string the more it will stretch. So maybe a higher strand count would be better from that point of view.

Thanks again

Dennis
 

Del the Cat

Well-known member
Strand counts are often ludicrously high especially for a longbow.
I use a 'harder' (stronger and low stretch) string, AstroFlite but I've just done a 100# warbow and used just 12 strands.
I typically use 8 for bows upto about 50# then 10 up to 90#
For B50 I'd suggest 10 was plenty for a 40# bow.
The advantage of a low stretch string are a lighter string adds speed, but you need to lay in extra strands or serving for comfort/nock fit.
Note, I do continuous loop so, my 8 strand string only has 4 strands round the loops and thus I lay in a couple extra (but the loops are served). With a Flemish twist you get full strand count at the loops.
Have a play with the 3 strand Flemish twist which gives a more compact and stronger string per strand count (according to what I've read), but of course you need multiples of 3.
So a 3 plies each of 3 strands would give a nice 9 strand string.
I've only done Flemish Twist occasionally, with linen for a nice authentic medieval string. Linen has a lovely feel when made up as a string.
I followed the info in the Traditional Bowyers Bible vol 4 which has a great section on string making, natural fibres etc.
I've recently made nettle cordage and some from rose shoots too, quite fun and surprisingly strong. Hard to get it even and consistent tho'
Del
 

albatross

Supporter
Supporter
Del. What a mine of information you are! Thanks for sharing.

Based on your comments 12 strand would fit the bill.

Dennis

Edit: I tried this method of twisting the separate bundles with a drill (clockwise) and then put them together and twisted the pair (anticlockwise). A really tidy uniform twist was the result and the twisted string did not attempt to untwist, it stayed exactly as finished.
 
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