The Legendary Longbow

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Published on: Sep. 18, 2013

see how the limbs are bending and where there are still stiff spots. Remove the bow from the tillering tree and continue to fine-tune the bow by removing fine layers of wood as needed until your desired draw length is achieved. Step 7 — Finish Once your preferred draw weight and draw length are reached, stain the longbow as desired, then seal it with gunstock oil, spar varnish, or polyurethane.

Step 8 —Shoot and enjoy!

Making Your Longbow — Do’s and Don’ts


  • Find an experienced bow maker, to guide you through the process.• Attend local bow-making events to learn all you can before you begin.
  • Choose a blank, or stave, that is straight and free of knots, checks, or splits. • Learn how to care for your tools.
  • Bend wood that is properly dried
  • Store your bow flat or hanging.


  • Bend green wood. This will rob the
  • Work on your bow when you are feeling rushed or fatigued.
  • Leave the bow strung when not in
  • Store the bow leaning against a wall.
  • Pull the bow past the intended draw weight at any stage.
  • Choose dead wood.

Get Started With Archery


Missouri’s bowhunter-education program is for everyone who enjoys the outdoors and has an interest in conservation. The course can be an excellent refresher for veteran bowhunters. While it is not required in Missouri, many cities that allow archery hunting inside their city limits require the bowhunter to be bowhunter-education certified to take part. Learn more about the Department’s Bowhunter Education at


Sign up for a Department-led course near you to learn basic and advanced archery, and other hands-on classes that build on the foundation of hunter education to increase your hunting and shooting skills in the field. Check the online calendar for workshops and courses. Learn more at


The Conservation Department has 32 conservation areas with unstaffed archery range facilities, plus an additional two ranges with third-party cooperators. All of the Department’s staffed shooting ranges also have archery ranges and programs. Look for one near you at


The Conservation Department supports international-style target archery in 4th- through 12th-grade physical education classes. Close to 300 schools and more than 80,000 Missouri students now take part in the program. Learn more at


Learn more about fall archery deer, turkey, and small game hunting regulations at

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