Shortening a bow


Steve Rough

New member
I'm making a mollegobet bow. It's currently 68" long. If I shorten it will it make it better. I hear shorter bows can be faster. It just feels a little heavy at the moment. I still have to round off the non working limb parts.

Del the Cat

Well-known member
Insufficient information.
When you say it feels heavy, do you mean physical weight or draw weight?
If you post full draw pic and some stats like draw weight, draw length it may help.
A full draw pic will show a huge amount.
Shortening doesn't often do much, it will raise draw weight a tad, but if the bow is taking set, it will likely just take more.
Sometimes I'll take an inch off a limb or both to improve the tiller and maybe claw back a couple of pounds, but it doesn't do much.
The two key things with any bow are:-
1. Good tiller, so all the working limb is evenly stressed.
2. No excess mass near the ends of the bow.
So are your levers narrow enough? Are they too wide? Try flexing 'em sideways, if they are V stiff you could maybe loose a little width. Thickess can be reduced until there is the merest hint of flex.
It's easy to have excess material at the blend where lever merges with working limb.
You can test the feel of the shortened bow without sawing any off, just bind the string tightly to the lever 1 inch below the nocks, it will give you an idea of what it will do.