Picture of How to make a bow and arrow--10 Steps Only

Making a bow and arrow is not difficult, all you need is patience and focusing on the work.

I divide the course into 2 parts, i.e, making a bow and making an arrow.

Let’s get started now.

How to make a bow and arrow

Part 1. How to make a bow.

Here I would like to share the way fo make a simple Glass Fiber Bow.

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Step 1: Step 1--Get a wood

Picture of Step 1--Get a wood

Get a wood and plane the surface first. Then Outline the Bow Shaft and Tip.

Step 2: Step 2--Cutting the wood

Picture of Step 2--Cutting the wood
wood tip and shaft.jpg
bow tip after polish.jpg

Cut the wood according to the outline, after cutting them out, polish the surface.

Step 3: Step 3-Arrange the material to make a bow

Picture of Step 3-Arrange the material to make a bow

Material List:

Glass Fiber Sheet;

Wooden Bow Tip&Shaft;

AB Glue(or Epoxy Resin);



Protective glove ( you don’t want the glass fiber to hurt your hand, right? ) ;

G Clamp;

Half Round File and Broach File(optional).

Step 4: Step 4--Polish the Bow Tip and Shaft for 2 rounds

Picture of Step 4--Polish the Bow Tip and Shaft for 2 rounds

In the first round, use 400 Grit Sandpaper to mill off the edges and corners, especially the on the String Groove.
In the second round, use 2000 Grit Sandpaper to make the Bonding Area of Wood and Glass Fiber rough ( in order to make them bond more firm by AB Glue ).

Step 5: Step 5--Glue the Bow Tip and Shaft onto the Glass Fiber Sheet

Picture of Step 5--Glue the Bow Tip and Shaft onto the Glass Fiber Sheet
unwarp wires and polish.jpg

Use AB Glue to bond the bow tip to the glass fiber sheet, and then wrap it firmly by bandages and wires, and then wait 12 hours to let the glue show its bonding power.

Then unwrap the wires and bandage, polish the bonding area. Spray some water to the File to avoid lots of dust during polishment. After polishment, wash the bonding area by water.

Step 6: Step 6--Glue the Bow Shaft to the Glass Fiber Sheet.

Picture of Step 6--Glue the Bow Shaft to the Glass Fiber Sheet.
polish and glue the shaft.jpg

Use the above mentioned method to glue the Bow Shaft to the Glass Fiber Sheet.

A. Find out the Centre Point of the Bow by measure first, then use G Clamp to fix the boding area.
B. Wait 24 hours after glue, otherwise the Glass Fiber Sheet and Wooden Shaft will easily get apart.
C. You can use some shim to protect the Glass Fiber Sheet.

Step 7: Step 7--Wrap

Picture of Step 7--Wrap
wrap the nylon.jpg
wrap the twine.jpg
shaft covered by cowhide.jpg

Wrap the cowhide first, then wrap the Nylon and Twine
(nylone for fixing the cowhide, Twine just for making the bow seems more traditional).

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o_z3 days ago

You can buy these things at home depot or something.

ehicks710 days ago
Where did you purchase your fiberglass
jasher21 month ago

anything on a pattern?

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ashwindec1110 months ago

For those of you who've made it, where did you get the fiberglass? I've tried searching around but haven't had much success. I've heard


may have stuff but am not sure. Thanks!

u can get it on any hardware shop easily

Which hardware shops? I looked around a bunch of shops and the closest I got was "why don't you try a ship building shop."
Gregbot4 months ago


jlee1785 months ago

are there any specific dimensions. or photos with a ruler. maybe template for wood pieces? I would be nice if there was a little more than here are all the pieces , put them together. Instructables usually have a few more ......instructions.

jlee1785 months ago

dimensions of any kind would have been useful. even a ruler layed down next to the materials would make it easier to use. not to mention a more specific materials list.

dialog11 months ago

what are the sizes of the wooden pieces ?

Do you have a diagram to cut it ?

Matt4281 year ago


howtomakeabow (author)  Matt4281 year ago
In another Instructable
sanejack1 year ago

Whats the length of the fibreglass bar?

seolfor1 year ago

Here's what I found for the fiberglass.

Awesome, thanks mates. Do you think it will be right for this project?

Personally, I think this will work for the project. I linked to the 8 foot piece, as you could get 2 bows out of it. In one of the comments, the author gave the dimensions, in millimeters, for the piece of fiberglass.

With that stated, though, I am not going to make any guarantees as I haven't tried yet. These fiberglass battens are designed to be put under tension. Each end is put into a slot in order to make a "bow" that holds up a tarp that is put over a boat during winter. This means that they are also designed to take a certain amount of weight from snow. They are strong and flexible.

Sure, I will try it out when i gain sufficient funds to try it out.

Hi. I am planning to make one of these bows but i unfortunately do not obtain any fibreglass sheet. Would it be possible to make a bow with a similar design and poundage without it?

Hello, if you have interest in making a PVC take down bow, pls send me a private message, I would like to share a copy of ebook about this to you

How would I send you a private message?

8bitMisfit1 year ago
Could you explain to me how to get more force upon impact? Or at least a blow by blow on how to do so? I'm sorry if it seems like I'm pestering. Just want it to get done right the first time without possible injury.
Tanzer261 year ago
For those who want to make one. The fibreglass bar looks like a 'sail batten' to me. Try a google search for 'fibreglass sail batten'.
n1cod3mus1 year ago

nice, i used to Fletch arrows, proper wooden ones with horn nocks an turkey feather and medieval bodkins which were hardened steel.

I made awesome arrows, but i was crap with a bow lol might start up again and make this bow too ;-)

Jobar0071 year ago

Technically longbows of medieval England were composite bows. They had a layer of linen laminated to the front of the bow for strength and endurance of the wood fibers. Both bow styles have advantages and disadvantages. Ultimately the competition would come down to the more skilled archer, not the "better" bow.

This is a nice instructable, and I for one would like to know more about the fiberglass bar that is used. Could you please elaborate on that?

Some English longbows (have a D shape) were just made out of one material, commonly yew or a similar type of wood. However they would still have a backing of some sort, such as linen.
I seem to remember something about the longbows being cut so that the outer, softer wood, and the harder corewood became a naturally laminated spring.

Right. That's because European Yew (Taxus baccata) is good in that regard. I'm not sure about other species of Yew, but I would assume that they are similar. The sapwood of EY is very good at resisting tension; the heartwood is very good at resisting compression. When combined properly, it made for a very good bow. They were still usually backed with linen because it would help keep the fibers from pulling out as well as provide extra tension on the flat of the D.

Right. If you have more than one material bonded together, then you have a composite. I may be approaching it from an engineering point of view, but a composite is a composite. An unbacked self bow on the other hand...

howtomakeabow (author)  Jobar0071 year ago

The Glass Fiber Sheet is very common in my city. The size of the Glass Fiber Sheet I choose is 6*30*1200mm.

Could you elaborate? There is woven sheet, unidirectional (which if cut along the wrong axis could be disastrous),G-5, G-10, etc. Fiberglass isn't just fiberglass. If you buy a specific brand or type, I for one would appreciate finding out more. This is an area where it could make or break a bow... pun intended.

howtomakeabow (author)  Jobar0071 year ago

Hi, I think its full name shoulde be called: glass fiber reinforced resin matrix composite. For the brand, I'm sorry my supplier is a small Chinese factory and they do not have english name. But I hope the following information would help you to identify the exact type of the material, usually we choose the Glass Fiber Sheet by their color, The sheet with transparant color is the best standard as it has Epoxy resin matrix which means more strength. The second standard is Half Strasparant or Light Green color. The lowest standard is Black/White color, which has Unsaturated polyester composites. But this is only " According To Experience". If you need more photos of the glass fiber sheet, I can show you.

skrahn11 year ago
May I ask what your website is?
howtomakeabow (author)  skrahn11 year ago

In my profile, you can click the" Visit my website ".

Or you can direct enter my website url in your web browser:

Also, what type of wood do you use?
howtomakeabow (author)  skrahn11 year ago

Manchurian ash or beech is ok.

8bitMisfit1 year ago
great. able. any clue how much tension?
Tension on the string is measured by draw weight. For example, it would take at least 35 pounds of force to draw back this bow.
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