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SCA-T-Archery-art - 4/26/14


"Getting Into SCA Target Archery" by The Honorable Christophe of Grey.


NOTE: See also the files: T-Arch-Child-art, merch-archery-msg, Trgt-les-Prac-art, Arrow-Matchng-art, 16C-Arrow-Bag-art, arch-supplies-msg, archery-msg.





This article was submitted to me by the author for inclusion in this set of files, called Stefan's Florilegium.


These files are available on the Internet at: http://www.florilegium.org


Copyright to the contents of this file remains with the author or translator.


While the author will likely give permission for this work to be reprinted in SCA type publications, please check with the author first or check for any permissions granted at the end of this file.


Thank you,

Mark S. Harris...AKA:..Stefan li Rous

stefan at florilegium.org



You can find more of this author's work on his website at:



This article was first published in the "The Phoenix", the newsletter of the Barony of Sacred Stone, Atlantia.



Getting Into SCA Target Archery

by The Honorable Christophe of Grey


Well, maybe this is a little backwards, and should have been the first article in this series, but I think there is still some good information for those of you already into archery.  So you want to become an SCA target archer?  Let's deal with the first question, "How much is this going to cost me?"  For about $175 you're in!  $100 for your bow, $60 for a dozen arrows, and $15 for arm guard and glove/tab.


Bows – If you can, shoot other people's bows before you buy a bow.  Long bows, recurves, reflex/deflex, and horse bows all shoot differently.  My starting estimate was based on the Victory take down recurve model commonly available.  This is a fiberglass reinforced bow and a very good bow for the price.  The bow breaks down into three pieces making transport easy.  These bows are available from 20 pound draw up to 35 pounds.  Don't let friends "advise" you that you "need" a 40 or 50 pound draw bow.  A 35 pound bow set up correctly can fling an arrow over 100 yards and in the SCA that is the farthest you will ever shoot.  Your bow will come with a string however I would strongly encourage you to get a spare.  Strings do break.


Used bows – You can find some fantastic bows in flea markets and garage sales.  BUT KNOW WHAT YOU ARE BUYING!  Check the bow for fiberglass splitting as evidenced by sharp fibers that stick in your fingers when you run them up and down the limbs.  Check the limbs to make sure they are not twisted. Also check the limbs to make sure they flex the same.  That is the bow should make a consistent arch when drawn. If the bow does not have a string nor an arrow rest, no biggie.  You can get replacements.  Also check the draw weight and if it has a string, string it and draw it a few times.  Check to see that the string lays back down in the center of the limbs after each draw.  Sometimes used bows are slightly twisted and the string "walks" – slowly moves to the edge of the limb.  Ultimately it will pop off, usually at full draw!


Your arrows must be wooden shaft with feather fletches.  The nocks can be plastic or self nocked.  "Self nock" means there is a small groove cut into the back of the shaft for the bow string.  This type of nock is usually not repairable if damaged.  Plastic nocks can often be "worried" off the shaft and replaced.  The arrow points must be of a type that does not destroy the targets.  Most archers use field points.  If you are shooting into new Saunders mats, a very common thing, you may lose points.  They can be replaced.  Shaft, fletch, and nock color is left to personal choice.  The brighter colors are easier to see down range and in the grass should you miss.


You can get an arm guard and glove or tab at most any sporting goods store.  Wallmart usually has all their archery gear on sale after archery hunting season has passed.  I prefer a glove.  Other archers prefer a tab.  Try out both before you buy, if you can.


You should have something to carry your arrows in.  A basic quiver is fairly inexpensive but also very easy to make.  If you don't have any leather laying about, make a quiver out of heavy fabric like denim, put a strap on it and you have a quiver.  It is also a good idea to have a bow stringer until you get very good at the step through method of bow stringing.  You can find plans on-line and they are simple to make.


Copyright 2014 by John Atkins. <cogworks at triad.rr.com>. Permission is granted for republication in SCA-related publications, provided the author is credited.  Addresses change, but a reasonable attempt should be made to ensure that the author is notified of the publication and if possible receives a copy.


If this article is reprinted in a publication, please place a notice in the publication that you found this article in the Florilegium. I would also appreciate an email to myself, so that I can track which articles are being reprinted. Thanks. -Stefan.


<the end>

Formatting copyright © Mark S. Harris (THLord Stefan li Rous).
All other copyrights are property of the original article and message authors.

Comments to the Editor: stefan at florilegium.org