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Re: Dodging arrows (was: Re: (TFT) Targeting Horses and their Riders)

I'd originally (mis-)replied directly...

>>SCA standard is 30lbs @ 28 inches for bows.
> Thanks! Pretty sure I'd read that somewhere, but a while ago.
> Interesting, I'd missed the draw length before. <munchkin> Do they
> let really tall guys that can draw 32 inches use the same bow, and
> draw it up to 36 lbs or so?

No, because munitions are limited to 28 inches. Makes yumi rather less

>>Crossbows vary somewhat. The arrows are slower mostly from the
>>poundage, not the ammunition. There isn't that much padding. I'll
>>occasionally get a bruise, nut nothing big.
> Ouch! Oh, misprint, good.

Stupid portable devices.

> 	Yeah, 150 lbs by some estimates. I've read some of the
> research, and I understand the claims, but I still don't completely
> buy them.

Buy them. Pulling a hundred pound bow isn't really that hard, but it does
require particular technique.

> 	I'm truly no expert, but if those weights were really
> practical I can't help thinking there'd be an Olympic class with a
> draw weight up there. Every other Olympic sport is producing physical
> freaks that do nothing but train for that sport, and every other
> Olympic sport is producing records well in excess of what was ever
> documented in antiquity (or recorded history, for that matter). *All

Well, olympic archery is at 70 yards, and it sure seems like missing the
bullseye is a recipe for losing.

> else being equal*, I think a heavier bow is more accurate because the
> archer has to compensate less for wind, gravity, etc. etc. and
> therefore, the Olympic guys would be at least experimenting with
> them. I never hear of any modern longbows above about 60 pounds, so
> I'm claiming that's close to the upper limit for a bow which produces
> repeatable long-range accuracy.

Not necessarily. It's not exactly true that heavier bows shoot faster.
Bows whose limbs move faster shoot faster. Compound bows, for example. And
a few other sorts. There's also something called the 'archer's paradox'
which might affect the upper practical poundage limit. Look it up. It
relates to the stiffness of arrows and the poundage of the bow as it
relates to accuracy.

> 	I can think of one exception to my reasoning, though. I will
> grant that for some phases of combat, the archer can wait until the
> opponent is close enough that he won't miss even with a really heavy
> bow, and then shoot. I think it's quite possible each archer had
> *two* bows; one about 60 pounds for long-range fusillades where
> accuracy counted, and one 100 or 150 pounds for a desperation last
> shot that really needed to stop the target. That would account for
> the existence of the monster bows, but relegate them to very rare use
> (and might also account for the fact that they still exist, in
> preference to the lighter general-use bows - those bows got worn out
> with practice, while the monster bows were left carefully preserved
> on the shelf).

There's really no evidence for that. And it's close to impossible to get
200 yards out of 60 pounds.

> 	Is this speculation interesting enough to post?

Yes, so I posted it.

Neil Gilmore
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