Introduction: Make an Archery Leather Arm Guard
I entered archery classes a while ago. As part of the 'class materials' the instructors lend us bows, arrows and protection gear
Now, I'm not sure of since when these classes have been going, but that protective gear has quite likely seen more hands and arms than what they were meant to endure (and are still in use)
And then, there is also the occasion when there are more students than equipment (and things tend to get far messier then)
Of course people is allowed to bring personal equipment; and if it's personal you don't have to share it
Second problem here was, well, there is only one armory (that I know of) that sells archery equipment; it's in no way an easy place to go to (for a mere student with few time and without car) and it tends to be overpriced....
So, well, why not make my own equipment?
Pen / pencil
Galvanized Wire (or similar)
Cold silicone glue (I recommend, but you can try with another kind) or thread and needle (if you have and can sew leather)
Shoelace (optional) or other
Step 1: Step 1 - Make the Patterns
There are many, many styles out there, look up the one you like the best, or the one you considered the best, or the easiest one you can find, or the one you considered safest. It's your guard, so you decide.
Do take into consideration this, though; the part you really want to protect is the one nearest to your elbow joint (or rather the opposite side of the elbow joint) not the wrist joint, because the bowstring doesn't hit there.
Now, with paper and pen, and your arm, make a draft of your guard.
Cut it and check if the size works for you
The good thing of paper? You can check and modify if you want
Step 2: Step 2 - to the Leather
Now that you have the pattern, go to the leather and cut two replicas of your paper pattern
I'm using a somewhat soft leather (similar to the leather used on belts (if you watch carefully you'll notice it's two straps of leather sawn together). If you have very hard leather, then you might just need a single layer of leather and special cutting materials for it
Do take into consideration what form of tie you are going to use for this
The first one I made; the one on the right of the first image is a bit messy because of that (I planned it one way and change opinion half way through)
Step 3: Step 3 - and the Wire
This guard has suffered through various modifications through a couple of months of use, and a couple of changes in bows
My original design didn't include wire, and, well it turned out that the higher the draw weight of the bow, the harder the bowstring hits your arm (when it hits you)
My old design was good enough up to about 25 lb, after that, it hurt... so I had to modify it.
The idea here is to add from 3 to 5 lines of the wire, to reinforce protection
The wire doesn't have to be extremely thick, but sure enough must not be soft.
here was some leftover wire in my house, so I'm not sure which thickness I used... the wire must be soft enough that you can bend with your hands, but strong enough that you would rather use pliers (just so it's not far to bulky).
Step 4: Step 4 - Putting Everything Together
I really like cold silicone glue for projects, it's a really good glue, and strong enough.
I'm not sure how instant adhesive glue would work for this, I don't really like it (bad memories with sticky fingers), and have the feeling it tends to crack. Cold silicone has worked fine for me.
Now, think of a sandwich, and put the things together
Actually it may be a bit harder than that
First try gluing the wires and extras that will tie the guard, to the first layer of the guard
Then glue the second layer, and press well so that everything pastes well
Step 5: Step 5 - Tying Up
In my case, it’s a matter of tying up like a shoe
now came a second kind of complication, it is rather hard to make knots with a single hand, so I added this little knot, it's a simple square knot, like in the friendship bracelets, so as to be able to tie the guard on by only needing to pull the ends of the shoe lace. You could also find some spring cord stoppers or something similar