Received some old bows as a gift - anyone heard of Western Archery?

jonUK76

Member
I was recently very kindly given some old archery stuff by some relatives, including two one piece recurve bows. I believe the kit dates from some time in the 70's. Certainly that is when I understand they were shooting them, and I don't think the bows have been used in at least 35 years. The first bow seems to be quite well known, a 62" 30# Forest Princess by Marksman/Les Howis Bows. I understand these were very well regarded in their time, and honestly it's still in very good condition now. I plan to try shooting it once I get some new strings made. I've strung this bow and done a few half draws and not noticed anything abnormal, but the string probably dates from the 70's too!

The second one I have found no info about, at all, which is a Western Archery "Miner" bow, obviously bought from Wales Archery as it has their sticker on it. It's 66", and rated at 38 lb @ 28", and states a brace height of 9.5" to 10.5". Now, I'm presuming this is to the back of the bow as it seems awfully high. The string that was on it, is I suspect too short as I got nervous when I tried to test string it after bending it a pretty long way, and still was nowhere near stringing it.

Both are fitted with clickers, stick on arrow rests, Arten sights mounted on the belly side of the riser, and have single stabiliser bushings, but neither take a plunger button.

Also included was a large number of Sherwood Silver Streak and Super 60 aluminium arrows. In my time in archery I've never heard of many non Easton made aluminium arrows, but these were made in Britain at the time. They are in a lovely old school box, sadly the feathers are falling to bits as you might expect after such a long time in storage.

Lots of pictures are here for anyone interested - https://imgur.com/a/HW6bDGR

I would really be grateful for any information about this kit.

Cheers
 


geoffretired

Supporter
Supporter
I have a Quicks catalogue from 1970/71 and it shows items very much like the ones you have. Sight mount on belly is very indicative and no extension sights in the catalogue that year. Silverstreak arrows in there too. Made by Sherwood who also did the fletching jigs that were so much in use at the time.
I think they could be quite brittle by now.
https://www.westernarchery.com/about-us/
Found this on the net.They were around at the time when the other equipment was in use.
 


jonUK76

Member
Thanks very much for that info. They may be even earlier than I thought then. There's a GNAS membership card in there with the other stuff from 1975/76 season. When you say they could be quite brittle now, do you mean the bows or the arrows?
 


geoffretired

Supporter
Supporter
Brittle arrows. They can sometimes look to be in excellent condition, but the ends can go powdery and piles/nocks may be a poor fit.
 


Berny

Member
I have a Quicks catalogue from 1970/71 and it shows items very much like the ones you have. Sight mount on belly is very indicative and no extension sights in the catalogue that year. Silverstreak arrows in there too. Made by Sherwood who also did the fletching jigs that were so much in use at the time.
I think they could be quite brittle by now.
https://www.westernarchery.com/about-us/
Found this on the net.They were around at the time when the other equipment was in use.
Western was a British co. & either became or handed over it's bowmaking to Devon Bowcraft circa '74-'75.
Don't think it was related to a co. in Colorado ;-)
 


Berny

Member
I was recently very kindly given some old archery stuff by some relatives, including two one piece recurve bows. I believe the kit dates from some time in the 70's. Certainly that is when I understand they were shooting them, and I don't think the bows have been used in at least 35 years. The first bow seems to be quite well known, a 62" 30# Forest Princess by Marksman/Les Howis Bows. I understand these were very well regarded in their time, and honestly it's still in very good condition now. I plan to try shooting it once I get some new strings made. I've strung this bow and done a few half draws and not noticed anything abnormal, but the string probably dates from the 70's too!

The second one I have found no info about, at all, which is a Western Archery "Miner" bow, obviously bought from Wales Archery as it has their sticker on it. It's 66", and rated at 38 lb @ 28", and states a brace height of 9.5" to 10.5". Now, I'm presuming this is to the back of the bow as it seems awfully high. The string that was on it, is I suspect too short as I got nervous when I tried to test string it after bending it a pretty long way, and still was nowhere near stringing it.

Both are fitted with clickers, stick on arrow rests, Arten sights mounted on the belly side of the riser, and have single stabiliser bushings, but neither take a plunger button.

Also included was a large number of Sherwood Silver Streak and Super 60 aluminium arrows. In my time in archery I've never heard of many non Easton made aluminium arrows, but these were made in Britain at the time. They are in a lovely old school box, sadly the feathers are falling to bits as you might expect after such a long time in storage.

Lots of pictures are here for anyone interested - https://imgur.com/a/HW6bDGR

I would really be grateful for any information about this kit.

Cheers
Apart from text reference to Western "Miner" (& "Triple-X"), making of these bows accredited to Devon Bowcraft by '75 (makers of the "Klondyke").
Although seem to refer to Western ....
See ads below:
British Archer sep/oct 1975

WAS in British Archer jan/feb 1975.
 


geoffretired

Supporter
Supporter
Hi Berny. Looks like you have found the maker of the bow in the photo.
All I could find on the net was the American one. Nice to get to the truth,
 


jonUK76

Member
Excellent detective work, thank you very much Berny! ?29.16 sounds a bargain, but I'm sure a lot more money than it sounds today!

Geoff I'll check the arrows before trying them, they'll need some work doing anyway as they need fletching. The best ones (boxed Silver Streak II which look unused) look perfect, but I'll bear in mind they could have corroded etc.. I've lots of suitable modern arrows anyway.
 


ben tarrow

Well-known member
The first bow seems to be quite well known, a 62" 30# Forest Princess by Marksman/Les Howis Bows.
My little sister had a Forest Princess in the very early 1980s.
As the name suggests the Princess was a girl/ladies bow and at 62" bowlength, was meant for a shorter draw length, hence the draw weight being measured at 26"

I can see on your images of the arrows in the cardboard boxes, they have suffered a bit. The powdery/marbled appearance of the shafts especially towards the points, in contrast to the bright shiny silver further up the shaft, is evidence of that. Its where the aluminium has oxidised.
 


Berny

Member
Western Archery still exists https://www.westernarchery.com/ and I think they still make bows.

A neighbour of mine when finding out I was into Archery gave me some old western Archery arrows, I refletched them and used them when training the kids.
Western was a British co. & either became or handed over it's bowmaking to Devon Bowcraft circa '74-'75.
Don't think it was related to a co. in Colorado ;-)

See thread below, where this was previously posted!
 


Mav617

New member
Careful with the arrows, I bought some XX75 2114 off eBay that were maybe 7-8 years old and one of them just sheered off right in front of the fletchings, bang! Won't be buying second hand allys no more and shooting them out of 50lb compound.
 


jonUK76

Member
Yes I'm pretty much decided that I'm not going to use the arrows. Unlike modern Eastons they are bare (polished) metal rather than hard anodized so corrode over time. I've shot the Forest Princess so far (using some old alloy 1816's of mine which seem to be a good spine match). It's a nice, smooth shooting bow, I felt I could be quite accurate with it from the outset. I think there's possibly a bit of a twist in one of the limbs.
 


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