By: Bears Butt


1:15:15MyScoreMore archery stuff.  You know this archery thing is getting more and more interesting.  I’ve said it before and I’ll probably be saying it until I die:  There is a whole lot more to shooting a bow than I ever thought.

Last night was lesson number 4 for me.  We learned about scoring our targets the official way.  I scored my neighbors target and they scored mine.  Here is something else I have observed about archery.  You have no advantage to be a large framed person.  You have no advantage being a tall skinny person.  You have no advantage being short, young or old.  This is one sport where it is all up to the individual to do good or do bad.    Yes, I see all the fancy stuff attached to a lot of the bows that must help the shooter hold the bow steady or sight on the target better.  I see some with what looks like magnified sights, like a scope on a rifle only not so long and “in the eye”.  There are some with long stabilizers sticking out the front, the side, the back.  Even Weasel has some of that on his bow.  But, if you don’t have all that stuff, you can still put up a pretty good score.  I’ll stick with my recurve bow and wooden arrows (I just made up the wooden arrow thing), no frills shooting.

Back to my lesson and scoring.

Chris is trying to teach us (some of us older than others) the right way to do these things and last night was no exception.  We need to learn what to expect if we ever get into competition shooting.  What are the signals that tell the shooters they can approach the firing line.  What are the signals to tell you it is OK to load (knock or nock) an arrow and take your shots.  What are the signals that stop the line and indicate a problem that needs to be fixed before you go on.  What are the signals that tell you it is alright to go down range and score your target and pick up your arrows.  These are the stinking rules that the archers have developed over the years that keeps things even and up and up….and most of all….SAFE!  HEY!  No RUNNING!

I think as part of a training regiment there should be a movie or a visit to an archery event to see how it all works in the end.  But, she did instill the sense of safe and practical shooting.

My form is coming along as I did manage to hit the paper more often than not last night, so something is coming together in that regard….however…I have developed a BAD HABIT that I had no idea I was developing.  It was pointed out by Lynn, my mentor, that when I shoot, my bow holding hand pushes my bow to my right as I shoot.  This can not be good.  He told me that I MUST hold the bow absolutely rock solid when I shoot and hold that position until the arrow reaches the target.

After being told I was doing that, I actually saw it happen.  Why on earth did I decide (unconsciously) I needed to let the bow move to the right after I shot?  Is there a force caused by the arrow as it proceeds forward that kicks that direction?  I have watched quite a few videos in slow motion that shows the arrow in flight, from the onset of the shot all the way out to the target and believe me there is a whole lot of wiggling of the arrow shaft in the process.

I took the following off a web site called “meta-synthesis dot com”:

An arrow has a massive pile (point) made of high density metal (iron or tungsten), a nock which fits onto the bow string, and fletchings or vanes (UK/USA) that add drag at the rear of the arrow.

An arrow has a centre of mass (centre of gravity or balance point) and a centre of drag:

The centre of drag MUST be behind the centre of mass, and the further behind the better, otherwise the arrow will be inherently unstable in flight. Indeed, if the centre of drag is in front of the centre of mass the arrow will have a tendency to turn round and fly “backwards”.


“Fly backwards”!  Holey crap, there isn’t anything safe about that!!!!

Just kidding.  But my point (Pile, high mass) here is that this whole bow and arrow stuff has a lot of science behind it and I’m just beginning to learn about all of it.  I am convinced there is something behind the arrow leaving the bow and my moving the bow to the right.  I just haven’t put my finger on it yet, but I will and I will conquer the errors of my way.

So, we kept a score of our shooting last night.  We were told not to worry so much about how many points we got, but to learn the “hows” of scoring…no cheating now!  It was my understanding that if the arrow shaft touches the line of the higher score ring and there was no “light” between the line and the arrow shaft, the score is to be the higher of the two scores.  I like that way of doing stuff.  You don’t have to break the line, but you must push the air out of it (so to speak).  With scoring you also have to keep track of the “x”s you hit.  X’s are hits at or very near the exact center of the target.  They still only score the highest score for that target, but “X’s” will be used to break any ties between shooters.  So, last night we kept track of all our “x’s”.

As the song says, “All my “x’s” live in Texas”, as none of them came to visit me last night.  Neither did they come and visit the shooter I kept score for.  I felt lucky to hit my target paper (not the rings in the target, put the paper on which the target is printed) and since I began this journey I did quite well considering all there is to accomplish.  Remember one of my first posts where I hit the paper like 4 times all night?  Well, I only missed it about 4 times last night and maybe didn’t miss it at all.  My goal last night was 30 “x’s”, my actual score looked like this:

FirstArcheryScore96.  96 out of a possible 300.  Zero “x’s” out of a possible 30.  I’d say “There is room for improvement”.  Watch for the improvement as time goes on!  When I get my bow hand to hold that bow still during and after the shot, more “x’s” will be adding up…I have faith!

Bears Butt

January 29, 2015


Written on January 29th, 2015 , Archery stuff

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    bones commented

    Humm, maybe you should stick with the muzzleloader instead. But maybe once you master the bow, you’ll want to not ever shoot your rifle. Who knows, only the Butt!

    January 29, 2015 at 9:03 am | Stories, Ramblings & Random Stuff From an Old Mountain Man is proudly powered by WordPress and the Theme Adventure by Eric Schwarz
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Just some of my old stories, new stories, and in general what is going on in my life.