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Published by archerchick on 17 Feb 2011

Grassland Bucks~ By Ralph Quinn


Bow And Arrow Hunting
October 1990

GRASSLAND BUCKS ~By Ralph Quinn

WHEN bowhunters think of wild, game-filled territory, they
often think of the rugged Rocky Mountains. Yet, some of the our most pristine
and productive big—game country lies in a corridor of grasslands occupying
landscapes west of the Mississippi river.
It begins in eastern Minnesota, with outliers in Iowa and Missouri, the
grasslands stretch westward to the Rockies, plunging south from Alberta to
the Texas Panhandle. Within this geographic zone, there’s a variety of
habitats from high desert plateaus, sagebrush flats to lowland savannas with
marvelously rich soils. Unlike the mountains, grasslands are subtle in nature —
as are the animals that inhabit these unique biomes.

Life here is compressed into a shallow zone between the soil and the tallest
trees. This is a land of arroyos and coulees, cottonwoods, yucca, bunch
grass, prickly pear, wild plum and wild roses. At first glance, this stark, wind-
swept country seems devoid of wildlife; but on second glance, the grasslands
come alive. In the vegetative understory sharptail grouse, rabbit, fox, coyote and
badger scamper about. On nearby prairies and sagebrush flats, sleek prong-
horns roam freely. And somewhere in the rolling flower—specked hills and
cedar edges, if we glass long enough, are deer — both whitetails and mulies.

My first encounter with grassland bucks came in 1985 during an antelope
hunt in the cattle, sheep and coyote country west of Faith, South Dakota.
Duane Bemstein, animal control specialist with the Game, Fish and Parks
Department, had invited Bill Epeards and me to sample the hunting on the prairies in
his jurisdiction. It was here I gained full appreciation of how numerous and how
cagey flatland bucks can be.

During the first three days of our scheduled seven—day outing, we concentrated on decoying
pronghorns, but it was the deer that grabbed my attention. During early—morning and late-evening
stalks, a mix of both whitetail and mulie bucks showed here and there in the dry
creeks and brushy draws that laced the country together. Amazed to find deer in
such open country, I ask our host what we were seeing.

“These whitetail bucks are habitat specific, preferring to mix open spaces
in August and September with the seclusion of cedars, breaks and bottoms in
October and November,” Bernstein explained. “I guess they want privacy
early on and nighttime forays into the grasslands provide it. With browse,
water and bedding cover readily available, the deer stick in this kind of country,
especially the whitetails. They`re highly adaptable and to hunt them successfully
with bow and arrow you have to do the same.” This is an important
lesson for hunters wishing to pursue grassland bucks for the first time.

The following season — 1986 — I traveled is the mixed prairie and sage
country of Wyoming`s Area 24 near Ranchester and bowhunted the Tongue
Creek region adjacent to the Montana border. Leo Dube. of Trophy Connections.
runs an elk and mule deer camp out of Sheridan. but it was the whitetails
that really interested me.
“We have more than a few good bucks roaming the river and creek bottoms near
here.” said Dube. “I’ve collected my share of P&Y specimens.
Why don’t you pack your tree stand and climbers and sample the hunting?”
To make a long tale short, I saw some excellent whitetails along the Tongue
River and Clear Creek around Arvada, but settled for a 3×3 on the final day of
my hunt.

Twenty-five or thirty years ago, this section of Wyoming would have been been
considered mule deer country and still is, yet in the last decade, whitetails have
made a strong showing in the bottomlands. From all indications, they’re there to stay.

According to Roger Wilson, wildlife biologist with Wyoming Fish and
Game, based in the Tongue office, whitetails make up twenty—live percent
of the kill in Area 24, and…”the population is high compared to the previous
eight years.”

Neighboring Montana is experiencing a similar pattern, with whitetails making
up a larger segment of the total herd, with many areas expanding at record
rates.
Other grassland states -— Iowa, Kansas, Nebraska, eastern Colorado — are
showing similar mini booms in whitetail numbers, in spite of near record kills.
“What we have,” comments Kari Menzel, big—game specialist with Nebraska
Game and Fish, “‘is an edge animal that’s adapatable and gets along well in
the eastern prairies. Where we have large blocks of agriculture going on,
he`s at his best, thriving on a number of grain crops, from milo to wheat. Not so
with the mule deer. The more we disturb his nomadic nature, the more we limit
his reproductive potential.”

Another factor directly related to increased whitetail populations is the
food base adjacent to the grasslands. In place of seasonal browse and grasses,
deer have a virtual cornucopia of energy·rich foods to draw on, even during the
roughest winter. As the arms of center~pivot irrigation sweep across the
plains states, the whitetail isn’t far behind, vacuuming surplus grains such
as milo, wheat, beans and corn, plus lush forage like alfalfa, spelts and cane.

A healthy herd translates into increased reproductive potential. The net results
are some pretty heavy—bodied and horned bucks that now roam the
grasslands. If you’re a first—timer at pursuing grassland bucks, I advise, particularly in
new, unfamiliar territory, setting up a 20X spotting scope or tripod-mounted
binocular — 10X — on a high point, then pick the countryside apart. I like to call
this style of bowhunting “bucks by the seat of your pants,” and that’s a pretty
accurate description of the tactic. Watch for activity early and late, keeping in
mind that grassland whitetails prefer to bed low along creek bottoms and feed
high, returning shortly before daybreak.

Mark those points where bucks/deer appear and disappear.
The ideal strategy is to arrive two or three days ahead of your hunt and pinpoint
crossings. traveling, feed plots, etcetera. lf you’re after any deer, set a A
tree stand a minimum of fifteen feet on or near a creek—crossing or grain crop
area and hate at it. But if you are looking for something special, take your
search one step further.

In many grasslands states, both mule deer and whitetail habitats overlap, so
you may have to go with the flow. On private ranch Operations, where access
and harvest are tightly controlled, mulies survive quite nicely, as do whitetails,
in the open prairies and grasslands. Being a habitat generalist, he is comfortable
with foothills, prairie and river bottoms, but prefers open country.

Again, if mulies dominate, set up your glassing operation on a high point and
look for deer movement from 9 or 10 a.m., then concentrate on stationary
objects from 11 to 2 p.m. Mulies usually bed then and, although not entirely
motionless, they’re tough to see. From 3 p.m. on, watch for movement again.
Mule deer like to bed high for visibility, then feed down in evening. Grassland
bucks, whitetails and mulies, have excellent long-range vision, similar to
antelope. So once the game is in sight, it`s still hunting with the emphasis on
“slow.”
If theres one thing trophy bucks have in common, it`s their love of solitude.
Only seldom will a P&Y animal hang around an area where human scent is
present. In searching out these bailiwicks, look along secondary coulees or washes
feeding a creek/river bottom, away from foot traffic. During the rut in late
October or November, bucks hang out around these points creating scrape
lines.

In 1987, 1 returned to Faith, South Dakota, for an either/or mulie—whitetail
hunt in the brushy creeks north of town. On the fourth day of my five—day stay, I
discovered such a hot spot. The area was a strong iifty—minute hike from the
nearest access gate. From scrape and rub activity, I guessed several bucks
were using the same staging area. That evening, I got a glance at one of the
participants. Then, on the last day, I took a chance on a forty—yard shot and tagged a
good 5×5. My ticket then was a brief grunt session using a Quaker Boy tube.
Periodically, you`ll discover a creek bottom that provides whitetails with a
natural corridor to food plots without their being seen. Usually these areas are
jungled with dense undergrowth consisting of plum thickets, waist-high grasses
or willow. With few trees to support a tree stand, the bowhunter must still—hunt
the fringes, slowly and deliberately.

With luck and perseverance, you may score.
If you work the rut exclusively — November 8-30, depending on locale —
when trees and brush are bare, camo should be combinations of grays and
browns. And don`t ignore the face and hands. In many grassland states, the
ratio of success usually is measured in how well the bowhunter is camoed.

Again, flatland bucks have eyesight second to none.
About a decade ago, overdraws hit the market with a whimper, but today
they are big business. And, if there’s a place where these devices shine, it`s in
the grasslands. Using an overdraw with cam—powered bows, a 2013 shaft
pushed by seventy pounds drops very little at fifty yards. Thus, accurate sixty-
plus—yard shots are possible. If you don’t own an overdraw, use the lightest-
spined arrow for your draw length poundage. A few grains plus or minus
make a big difference in trajectory at distances beyond thirty-five yards. By
fletching your arrows with four three-inch plastic vanes, you can stabilize
low—profile blades, even in windy conditions.

Another piece of equipment I feel grassland bowhunters shouldn’t be
without is a hand-held rangefinder. They`re light, portable and accurate. By
arriving early, you can “range” and mark a number of points and be ready
for all comers. In dim bottoms and bleak grasslands, it’s tough to estimate
distance, so a large animal usually causes shots to be short. Even though
most bucks are taken within forty yards. there are times when grassland bucks
make their own way.

During my 1988 hunt on the North Fork of the Moreau River at Usta,
South Dakota, I played the odds, placing my stand on a trail leading from a
bedding area. Much to my dismay, an “elevator” buck showed on a path
directly behind me. The rangefinder said fifty—plus yards. Within seconds, the
2013 X—7 was on its way. It was an easy mark and the buck traveled thirty
yards before piling up. If you miss an opportunity, chances are the buck will
avoid the area completely for a time.

Even with overdraws, rangefinders and cam—powered bows, the hunter
needs every advantage to get a leg up on these flag—tailed wizards. Even then,
nothing is sure until the last minute of the hunt. Last season, Wyoming expert
Leo Dube used rattling exclusively and had trouble keeping the small bucks out
of his setup. Duane Bernstein used a bleat call with some success in 1988.
My best performance came from using a combination of grunts and rattling. The
innate curiosity of the whitetail is legend and making it work is a matter of
experimenting.

For readers interested in hunting grassland bucks, the opportunities are
almost endless. Beginning in South Dakota`s Badlands near Belvidere and
continuing west through northeastern Wyoming near Hulett, whitetails roam
wide and free. To the south, central Nebraska’s Platte River region west of
Grand Island is great. Eastern Colorado`s plains south of Sterling is another prime
habitat worthy of consideration. So is northwestern Kansas, west of Hill City.
And so the story goes. <—<<<

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Published by archerchick on 16 Feb 2011

Bowhunting The Third Season ~By Ralph Quinn

Bow And Arrow

Bowhunting The Third Season ~ By Ralph Quinn

LASHES OF GRAY light were beginning to punch
holes in a seamless canopy of inky clouds as I hiked
toward a distant hedge-row. The bitter December wind slowed
my progress. Periodically, l`d huddle against the cold, glass the expanse of
corn stubble, then continue. Twenty minutes later I arrived at the ancient oak
tree.

?

Seemingly for the hundredth time, l`d scale the main stem, anchor my portable
perch in place and watch another day end in the farm country of southern
Michigan. Hopefully, however. tonights hunt would be different.
For three days now the weather had been typical of third-season hunts: rain,
sleet. snow and sub—freezing temperatures; the local deer herd was under
wraps. With the Canadian front passing to the north, the bucks would be on the
move again. Thoughts were still bouncing about when the first whitetails
entered the field from the south. Single file. like ants in a line, the animals
picked their way through the dense cover surrounding the planting, then
flooded across the field.

?

Temporarily distracted, I didn’t notice the entrance of a second group from the
east; four bucks, led by a high—racked trophy. Almost on cue, the big Whitetail
turned south and stiff—legged to the center of the corn stubble. From here, the
buck diverted his attention on the feeding herd. The staredown continued for
several minutes. Satisfied, the big boy put his legs in motion and headed down
the fencerow.

?

Checking the wind as he moved, the buck ambled closer. In a few seconds
the animal would be opposite my stand and I’d have to make a move. As the
buck reached the brushed shooting lane I carefully leaned away from the tree.
The bow eccentrics rolled over. The sight pin found its mark. At the release,
the buck exploded into full flight. I followed the whitetail’s noisy escape.

?

Fifteen minutes later I took the trail. The path was easy to follow in the
drifted snow. In the beam of my flashlight the blood showed bright red.
Fifty yards into the secondary maple growth I found my prize wedged against
fallen timber. If you haven’t guessed it by now, bowhunting the third/ late
season for whitetails in farm country is, in a word, fantastic. Under normal
early—season pressure, dominant bucks are almost entirely nocturnal.
These animals are solitary and avoid contact with man.

?

In mid—October the bow and arrow hunter may get a brief glimpse of a trophy buck
as it makes a hasty retreat from a food plot After a few of these accidental
chance meetings the whitetail begins to pattern the hunter who is at an extreme
disadvantage. The rut in early November changes the picture slightly in favor
of the bowhunter, but you still have to cash in on the temporary distraction.

?

During December, the third season, the story is different. Initially, my interest in
late—season bowhunting centered on avoiding the crowd. A few years back it wasn’t
unusual to run into a few bowhunters in the cornbelt region. Today, however,
that’s changed. Lease hunting, increased numbers of two- and three-season hunt-
ers and a surge in bowhunting numbers has forced the devotee to adopt a different
time slot or give up serious hunting. For me, the solution was simple:
hunt the third season — December —— and eliminate all but the most hardened
whitetailers. There are other, more important considerations, too.

?

When game departments establish seasons on whitetails, top billing is given
to peak rut periods. Bowhunters are given an excellent opportunity to tag a
trophy before the gun hunt. In Michigan, for instance, the peak rut period occurs
during the first full week of November and continues to mid month. Bowhunters
who stick with late fall early winter have a good chance of tagging a buck, if
they are able to tough it out. A few dominant bucks are tagged during the
firearms season, but once the army of redcoats disappears, the late-season fan
can get down to the serious business of buck hunting; not for immature 1 1/2-year-
olds, but breeding bucks in the 3 1/2-to 4 1/2-year class.

?

In December, snow typically blankets the whitetail’s world and after a few
brief flurries of “secondary rut” activity—— when multiple bucks pursue unbred
does — the average buck is primarily concerned with food gathering, not
breeding. Not that the late-season trophy is a dumb goat pursuing such
urges. With fat reserves low. bucks will feed often and travel long distances to
get nutritious high—energy grains like corn, soy beans, milo. It’s this behavior
that puts the Whitetail in front of the hunter’s sights and, in many instances.
during good shooting light

?

Another factor playing to the advantage of the late—season hunter is the
social interaction of whitetails December/ January. Early in the year,
bucks buddy around in bachelor groups. As the rut approaches, they disband
going solo much of the time. ln the mid season, subordinate bucks will rejoin the
herd and even though dominant bucks may not travel with the group. they are
always close by, on the fringes. lt`s the post season yarding or changing of
habitat that makes late hunts so productive. One of my best whitetails came in
1985 from such a setup.

?

During the pre-rut in late October, I’d located a prime scrape area, adjacent to
a pothole-infested bottom and from the activity I guessed a number of bucks
were using the locale. Rubs, territorial and breeding scrapes lined the trails and
openings leading to and from this hideaway. The weeks prior to the mid-November
firearms season slipped by with only one sighted an eight point, but
I knew there were more. Each time out I guessed wrong and the whitetails some-
how escaped. The gun hunt arrived November 15. The weather was
inordinarily warm and breeding fell off sharply. The rutting bucks went into
neutral and didn`t surface until December 8.

?

When I pulled my bow up the spindly cottonwood the temperature hovered at
a grim l2 degrees F. By sunset, it dropped into the single-digit area. The
whitetails showed at 5:30 p.m., right on schedule. but by the time the buck got
within range it was dark, dark. Three days went by and the story didn’t
change, too late and too dark. On‘the fifth try, however, I got my chance and
temperature played a key role in the outcome.

?

The mid-day high on December 13 was a record low for that date; the thermometer
registered l0 degrees. I thought of canceling the hunt, but by
late afternoon I was bundled in down and wool, waiting. If the whitetails
moved early I’d get the chance. My prediction was correct and the herd showed
at 4:30. By dusk, the herd buck, a good 5×5, fed below my stand. A twenty-tive-
yard shot and I tagged my sixth late-season whitetail.

?

Once you’ve located an area where deer are actively feeding and traveling,
skirt the region and make note of routes entering heavy cover. These will usually
be bedding regions. Now, back up and find a zone that has sufficient cover to
hide a buck’s comings and goings and set up. Too many hunters stand at the
margins of feed plots and expect a buck to drop in their lap. After a Whitetail
enters a food area, he’s on alert, looking for danger. He expects danger in the
open, particularly in good light. Dozens of eyes and ears from herd members
don’t help the cause any. By taking a stand some distance from a grain field
or mast crop, in adjacent covers, you stand a better chance of getting a shot
on a respectable animal.

?

Away from feed areas, whitetails on the move are alert, but not as
easily spooked. Generally, the closer the bedding area is to food plots, the more
alert the animals will be. Stay well back and you`ll be better off.
Of the problems confronting third-season bowhunters, temperature has to
be the biggest obstacle to success.

?

Actually weather can be a two-edged sword. Low temps make whitetails
travel and feed over a wider range to maintain body fats, so the bowhunter has
a better opportunity of scoring. However, grim can and do play havoc with a bowhunter
locked in a tree stand. Cold feet, legs and numb fingers are tough to control under stress.

?

You can ease some of the pain by warming your trunk – chest region – with a down vest, then the feet and head. Insulated felt boot packs are, in my opinion, the best for cold weather bowhunting. I generally layer clothing to to maximize heat retention: cotton and wool socks, plus wool blend underwear, followed by wool pants and sweaters. Cover the head with a quality wool skull cap with eye slits and you’ll endure the cold.

?

If there’s a weakness in a late season clothing system, it’s keeping shooting/release fingers
warm and flexible. I’ve tried a number of cures and found nothing does the job as well as a leather hand-warmer mitt lined with sheep wool. Additionally, this accessory serves as a spare hand to carry climbing spikes, bow cords, tabs, flashlights, scents, etc. While traveling to and from stand areas, I often wear a white disposable coverall made of Tyvek, then zip out of it prior to climbing the tree. I’ve repeatedly stumbled into whitetails feeding ahead of their scheduled time. Quite often
late-season bucks travel during mid-day periods – 9 am to 2 pm- and bed near food plots. If you’re not prepared you’ll blunder into a situation which could spook the trophy of a lifetime.

?

Basically, hunt strategy for late-season whitetails is simple. First, find the feed and you’ll find the deer. Second, if does are gathered, the bucks won’t be far away, particularly if a second rut phase is in progress. Under normal late-season conditions – snow covered landscapes – whitetails prefer corn to forage – alfalfa, rye, etc, but if there’s no snow, they’ll be attracted to these islands of green until forced to switch. If there are no crops in your hunt area, concentrate on mast crops such as acorns and beechnuts.

?

If stand productivity is slow, you might check out the solunar tables, corrected to your geographic area. Scheduling stand periods based on moon phases has merit and is worth checking out. For instance when the moon is full, whitetails feed at night, traveling less in the day. So normal evening and morning stands are not likely to produce well.

?

However, when a new moon – dark of the moon – dominates, deer feed less after dark and often bed near food zones to take advantage of reduced light periods. With the herd feeding to maintain body temperatures, stands near crop areas during the first and last quarter, plus the new moon usually are productive. And the fact that fewer bowhunters are bumping around can’t hurt the strategy.

?

Patience and dedication are two traits the late-season bowhunter must possess in large quantities or it will be a long wait between bucks. When your opportunity comes, move slowly. Even though whitetails are more at ease in traveling areas, they aren’t an easy mark. Pick a point and don’t wait for a standing target. It may never come.

?

Finally, quiet every piece of bowhunting equipment before heading afield. Then you’ll avoid the buck’s second line of defense, his hearing. Bowstrings, eccentrics, quivers, arrow rests, sight windows should be given special attention. In cold weather, sound travels great distances and one false slip could cost you a successful shot.

Third-season hunting is super if you plan well, hunt smart and persevere until the last minute. Remember it’s the persistent bow and arrow hunter who score season after season.

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Published by sliverslinger on 15 Feb 2011

vane clearance problems

Picked up a used 2003-2004 bowtech extreme a few years ago on ebay after my bow was stolen. Have actually wrecked the trophy ridge drop away that came with it and now i can’t index the shorter 4 inch vanes to not make any contact with the trophy taker thats on it now. I either hit the cables or the containment wall of the rest. Cock feather up, i hit the cables. index away from cables i hit the rest wall. any ideas? should i try fletching 4 x 4 inch vanes at 90 degrees? will that work with a three blade broadhead?

Sliverslinger

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Published by murphytcb on 13 Feb 2011

How long should my micro adrenaline last

I got a browning micro adrenaline for free, its an 05/06 swill this bow last for a while. I am just getting into bow hunting but want to practice alot before i go into the field and heard good thins about this bow. It is set to 28” draw and 50lbs. it shoots real nice and has a 4 pin tru glo sight . should this last me a while. thanks for the info

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Published by TikkiMan05 on 12 Feb 2011

Trophy Ridge VS Cobra sights…Pros/Cons

Hey yall,

     I’m looking to purchase a new 5-pin sight and have been looking at the Trophy Ridge Hitman and the Cobra Python. I’m on a limited budget and I’ve been looking around, and so far it looks like I can get either one for around $70. What’s yall’s opinion between the two? Anyone that owns one, how do you like it and have you had any issues with it? Thanks for yall’s help and input.

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Published by passmaster on 12 Feb 2011

IM READY TO PURCHASE A BOW

I SHOOT WITH FINGERS, IM THINKING OF PURCHASING A HOYT VANTAGE PRO BUT IM NOT SURE WHICH CAM TO USE WITH THIS BOW WHAT DO YOU RECCOMEND

I HAVE A 27IN DRAW

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Published by archerchick on 11 Feb 2011

Tall Texas Tales Of Snake Snicking~ By C.R. Learn


Bow and Arrow

August 1972

Tall Texas Tales Of Snake Snicking By C.R. Learn

Or, A Brush In The Bush With A Rattler Rattled Our Bow Tester

THE PERSPIRATION DRIPPED down my back like a river. We were
working for javelina in the south Texas brush country so thick you couldn’t
walk. Beto Guiterrez, Jack Niles and I were looking for the elusive little pigs,
when the hunter became the hunted! Niles had split to check another
area he thought would produce, and Guiterrez and I had moved on.

Guiterrez had been in front, but stopped and motioned for me to take
the lead. He had his pig hanging. We switched positions; I glanced down
and saw the lethal coils of a Texas diamondback rattler three feet in
front of my leg. What do you do? Scream? Holler? Jump? Not me, I
froze. After I regained my breath I looked for the second snake. They
often travel in pairs. I backed slowly into Guiterrez, who looked at me with
a weird expression that inferred he wanted to go forward. Until now we
had been using hand signals.

“Beto, I think I know why you wanted me to go first this time,” I
remarked as I pointed the tip of my prototype Gordon take-down bow at
the venom-tipped coils lying in wait for a meal. Guiterrez backed a bit,
then we started rattling about what to do. I definitely wanted that snake for
a trophy provided it came to Texas standards. We had hoped to find a
snake to test the bow I was carrying. Gordon Plastics, Inc., of San Diego,
California, is not new to the bow-making business. Years ago they made
a line of bows sold under the Gordon clan emblem. My first hunter was a
Gordon Knight. What I was carrying now was the newest creation from the
lab of the Gordon plant. This bow, a bow scale. Perhaps the best feature, aside
from the under fifty dollars price tag is its light weight. The mass weight — what
you would carry in the field — is three pounds two ounces.

I had tried to fit a number of bow-quivers to the three-piece unit, but
found the only one in my collection that worked was the regular Bear eight
arrow quiver extended to full length. This quiver holds eight Gordon
Glashaft arrows with Ace broadheads left from other seasons.

Guiterrez looked at the weaving head of the diamondback that was
waiting at the trail crossing for a meal. I had no intention of being on the
menu. I had talked with the Guiterrez brothers about the possibility of
getting a snake skin trophy, and they had come up with some typical Texas
tales. Ricardo Guiterrez had a cigar box full of clipped rattler tails killed
on the ranch that spring. He handed me a thirteen rattle trophy to take
back in case I didn’t find my own.

“This spring we had quite a bit of rain,” he started his story. “The
rattlers usually mate in May. They stay on high ground to keep from being
drowned in their holes during the spring rain. They were hungry and we
stomped many every day. One morning I came over a small rise to see
a real Texas monster stretched out on the other side, meandering toward the
bottom and some dinner. That snake was so big it couldn’t coil; it just lay
there and buzzed its tail. I was mounted, so I wasn’t worried. I usually jump
off and stomp them with my boots, but this boy was too big for that. I looked
around for a stick, but couldn’t find anything I thought would be big enough.
I shook a noose into my rope, dropped a loop over the snake, and dragged it
back to the pickup where we shot it with a rifle. Honest!”

The golden beauty coiled in front of me now didn’t come up to those
specifications, but was presentable. I didn’t want to shoot it in the brush,
since I didn’t want to cut the hide. I found a stick about three feet long. I
figured the old girl couldn’t reach over two feet if she did strike. I moved my
stick to her head, nestled in the coils, and touched it. The rattles hadn’t even
buzzed yet. Now they took off at full volume.

She hit the stick with such force I dropped it. She was hungry and mad.
She continued rattling and her forked tongue kept working rapidly in and
out. Guiterrez came struggling up with a small tree, and between us we moved
her into a slight clearing in the brush, so I could get a clear shot at the head.
Actually, we could have clubbed her with either of the trees we were
working with, but that didn’t occur to us at the time. I wanted this to be a
bow kill.

As we moved her out into the open, she struggled to get back into the
brush she had been coiled under. We were afraid she might have a gopher
hole there to crawl into, but we kept at her until she opened up in the
s-coil. They can strike farther from that position. But she stayed where we
wanted her.

My adrenalin was flowing freely. As I drew the arrow the bow could have
been eighty pounds, and I wouldn’t have known it. The sight window gave
me a good angle on the opened s-coiled snake. This window measures
five and one-half inches which is adequate if you want to install a bow·
hunting sight.

George Gordon, president of Gordon Plastics. has been working
with epoxies for many years. The firm decided to make a molded epoxy
riser for a strong and inexpensive bow. The end product I had at full draw was
one of the first off the shelf. The cast epoxy riser, reinforced
with fiberglass strips molded into the casting. measures nineteen and three-
quarter inches. The twenty-two-and one·half-inch limbs are attached with
knurled nuts by two bolts inserted in the molded riser.

These limbs have fiberglass tip overlays and hardrock maple laminates
in the limb. Gordon added a section of fiberglass laminate at the base of the
limb for added strength. The limbs are wide, tapering from one inch and three
quarters at the base to one inch at the tip.

When Gordon designed this bow and limb attachment system he did
something a bit different in bow making. The limbs are close to zero
tiller. There is a one—eighth inch difference in tiller between the upper
and lower limbs. The lower is stiffer. If you buy the bow and one extra limb
of the same poundage, you will have two bows. If you should break a limb,
you could attach the extra one to either the upper or lower section and
continue shooting.

Guiterrez reminded me that if I shot the rattler then, I wouldn’t have a
picture of it. I eased down on my draw kept my eye on the snake to make
sure she didn’t slither away, or worse, closer to me, and handed my camera
to him to record the event. Now began a slight comedy. Guiterrez backed up,
with the camera to his eye until he was stopped by a crucifixion thorn. There
is nothing on this bush that doesn’t have a spine that won’t puncture you
to the bone. He bounced back from the junco and told me to get closer to
the snake, so he could get us both in the frame.

The snake had increased in size from the first small coil. I knew it was
over five feet. Applying some snake lore, I thought it could strike at least
three feet. The basic rule is one third of the length, but that depends on
location and other variables. Four feet was as close as I wanted to get.
Guiterrez moved back until he was nudging the junco again and told me
to ease forward. All the time we were debating about who was going to move
where, the rattling reptile was weaving in the open-s. The head was never still.

Mad and ready to strike. I looked at the oscillating head and
told Guiterrez I wasn’t waiting any longer for a friend to answer her
dinner call. Try shooting at a three inch object in motion at five to six
feet sometime. It’s tricky. I wanted a head shot to keep the hide
intact, so I came to draw, and when my bowlock reached
the corner of my mouth, I let the Glashaft fly. It hit the rattler right be-
hind the eyes in the poison sacs.

Since a snake never knows it is dead until sundown, it continued to writhe
and twist, the tail buzzing ominously. I had my snake, but to be certain I put
another arrow into the neck, about one inch behind the head, almost
severing it when the blade hit. Scratch one dead Texas diamondback rattler
and add a unique trophy to the wall.

With my shooting style I grip the handle of my hunters until the knuckles
turn white, and this small riser gave me a good grip. The circumference of
the handle is a scant four and three quarters of an inch. There is no wood
grain to split. so there is no problem with the small riser. lf you open hand
it, there is little chance of torquing. My hand was dripping with perspiration,
partly from the August heat and partly from nerves. When you
walk into the back country of our western states. you can almost always
figure on meeting one or two of these buzzy tails. They usually rattle before
striking. I have been struck at, past, but never hit. However. they still make the
hair on the back of my neck crawl.

Guiterrez and I moved up to inspect the writhing snake. I had been
afraid my only encounter would be with a lesser specimen. This was a
respectable snake, if there is such a thing. I picked her up by the tail, and
she was so heavy that the skin started to pull apart from the weight. We had
bashed in the head to be certain she couldn’t grab us in a death swing as
she continued to wriggle in my grasp. I measure under six feet and this snake
was longer than I was tall. We stretched her out before we skinned her, and
she came to sixty-eight inches, not counting the four inches of mutilated
head and neck where I had made the second shot. This didn’t include the
eleven rattles on the tip of the vari-colored tail.

Niles came out of the brush, and we called him over to take a look at our
trophy. We related the ferocity with which she had struck at the poles we
had used to move her into the open. “She’s probably been lying up on
the high ground during these last few rainy days and moved down to get a
dinner,” Guiterrez commented. “She was hungry, and when we disturbed
her, she really fought back with her version of a double bladed broadhead,
needle variety. She doesn’t fight fair, though, since she uses a poisoned
head.”

We tied her to the tail gate of the pickup and opened her belly, slit
around the head, and pulled the hide from the carcass. The reason we know
it was a she, was the number of un-developed embryos in her abdomen. I
salted the hide and rolled it to preserve it for tanning.

We continued the pig hunting, but I was jumpy. Later that afternoon I was
ambling down a cowpath outside the brushy area, stopping to look carefully
in front and to the sides as I walked. My attention was held by a red-tailed
hawk working over a fresh kill when I heard a hiss in front of me. I jumped
straight up and about three feet over. What had spooked me turned out to
be one of the many tortoises that live in that back country. I was walking
toward it on the path and when it hissed, I heeded. I imagine the shell-
back had some tall tales to tell his Texas brothers about how he made
that two-legged monster move out of his way.

The Gordon bow had given me a clean kill at a close range. It proved
itself at longer ranges during the testing period. The draw was smooth
and even; the bow showed no signs of stacking, and the scale proved this by a
gradual build up as I weighed it from twenty-six inches to thirty, checking
the poundage. When it comes out on the market late this year, it will be
priced under fifty dollars. This will buy the bowhunter a sixty-two-inch
takedown bow that will go into a package about twenty·three inches
long. They will offer poundage varying from forty-five to sixty. My
model was equipped with a bristle arrow rest in the past center sight win-
dow and a string that braced at eight and one half inches measuring to the
pivot point of the handle.

“What we want to offer the bow-hunter is a bow with stability, compactness
and price that they can buy for themselves or members of the
family. We are working on a new method of casting that might give us a
lighter bow than the prototype and still as strong, if not stronger,” George
Gordon stated. “The riser will be one color, probably brown, and the limbs
will be finished in the usual manner. Most bowhunters will camouflage it
anyway, but it will be protected as other bows are in the limb sections. The
epoxy riser should be almost impervious to everything a hunter will encounter.”

If the production models prove as smooth and light as the one l had, it
will be well worth the modest outlay of cash. My rattler hide was turned over to
Tartaglia Taxidermy in Albuquerque, New Mexico, for tanning and mounting.
I had thought of a life type mount in full coil, but the head was mashed
beyond that. We decided on a tanned hide with a deerskin trim. It turned
out beautifully. My wife allowed me to mount it over the arch in the house,
and she doesn’t like snakes.

She isn’t alone. I don’t either. That first arrow that hit the diamondback
in the poison sacs stands in a prickly pear down Texas way. I didn’t like the
idea of bringing the arrow back, since it was probably loaded with venom
from the snake, and besides, I can’t hunt with a poisoned arrow, even if
rattlers do.

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Published by archerchick on 11 Feb 2011

Salt Shaker Spirit Saga~ By John Alley


Bow And Arrow
August 1972

Salt Shaker Spirit Saga~By John Alley
Peccary Pursuing Is A Sometime Thing

WHAT ARE YOU doing?” I asked Tom Dalrymple
as he sniffed intently at the ground like an ambitious
canine.

?

“Checking for sign. What do you think!” he replied in a
low sober tone. “Here,” he whispered, pointing to fresh
droppings, and picking up a piece of shredded prickly pear
dripping with moisture. The piles were indeed fresh, and
their depositors weren’t far away.

?

My hand warmer bore a faint red glow, as I grasped it
tightly with my numb fingers. What a way to spend New
Year’s I thought gazing across the vast desert of the
Arizona lowlands. Normally I would be watching parade
queens and bowl games on the boob tube, in the warmth of
my living room.

?

However, I was pursuing a Javelina, a small animal standing
about twenty inches at the shoulders and weighing as
much as fifty pounds. I was bound and determined to
collect one of these wily collared peccaries which had
eluded me in the past.

?

Roaming the Southern borders of the United States, the
peccary acquired the collared name because of the broad
yellowish stripe running from the hind part of the shoulders
to the chest. Some prefer to call him the musk hog. The
musk sack looks like a second navel and is located in the
middle of the back about six inches up from the root of the
tail. When a herd gets separated, the first thing the pigs do
when rejoined is rub scent glands. The gland does emit a
strong odor which can spoil the flavor of the meat if not
handled properly. It is best to leave it alone if you are not
sure of what to do. Skin the animal completely as soon as
possible.

?

Others call them the grey ghost because of their ability
to vanish seconds after becoming spooked. The dark, salt
and pepper grey coloring makes them difficult to spot in
the thick brush and ravines they often frequent. Binoculars
are a must, as javelina can often be spotted in open areas
feeding, providing the hunter can gain a high vantage point
to glass the area.

?

Is the javelina a pig? Many hunters say they are, but
according to experts the javelina belongs to the family
Tayassuidae: Tayassu tajacu. Your wild boar belongs to the
Sus family. Only the white-lipped peccary found from
Paraguay to Mexico is of the same family as the javelina.

?

Several features separate the peccary from the pig
family. The upper tusks curve downward instead of up; the
hind limbs have three toes instead of four. Pigs have many
young, the peccary only two. They also have musk glands
and dewclaws. Pigs have neither. Unlike domestic pigs, their
tails are barely visible.

?

In Arizona, where the javelina has its heaviest hunting
pressure, the animal is considered the most popular with
out-of-state hunters and ranks second only to deer with
residents. The 1970 season saw more than 30,000 hunters
pursuing the grey ghost. This has brought deep concern to
the Arizona Commission.

?

To compound the problem, civilization is taking over a
good many of Arizona’s prime javelina territories. There’s
talk of going to a permit system that would limit the
number of animals taken each season as well as increasing
the license fees.

?

The current non-resident general license is twenty dollars
and the javelina tag, a dollar-fifty. There is a special archery
only license for fifteen dollars available only at the Fish and
Game offices. An archer does not need both. The season
runs statewide, January l – 3l for bowhunters, with the rifle
season February 20-26. Archers may hunt during the gun
season with the limit being one javelina each calendar year
with either bow or gun.

?

I decided to make my first try at the little desert
dwellers. Gil Smith and I were hunting near the Tucson
mountain wildlife area. We were driving out of a dirt road
after another disappointing day’s hunt without seeing any
javelina.

?

It was cold with the wind chill factor being around ten
degrees. We noticed a half frozen die-hard archer walking
along the highway and offered him a lift to his car. That
was Dalrymple, as it turned out. His total expression told of
a day like ours. I can still remember him clasping his
Alaskan-like mittens together muttering something about
somebody and their mother behind every saguaro cactus,
and the few kind words he had for each of them!

?

We hunted the next few days together but to no avail.
That particular hunt ended without seeing any javelina, but
I did get an invitation from Dalrymple to return and hunt
with him the following season. During the course of the
year, I received word that my newly acquired hunting
partner had located some super hot spots and our presence
on opening day would bring the javelina festivities to a fine
start.

?

A Tucson resident nearly all his life, Dalrymple had been
bowhunting for three years and had yet to collect a
javelina. His strong determination has brought him to spend
countless hours on research and study of javelina habitat.
As I learned in the days that followed, it takes extreme
patience and concentration to encounter a band of pigs.
Most hunters have their own way in which to hunt. I too
have adopted set patterns. However, in the past few years
after hunting various types of game animals, I have had to
change these patterns to meet the challenge of the species
hunted. The javelina is no exception.

?

The javelina comes quite easy to some. I know a bow-
hunter who has filled his javelina tag for six years straight.
and a rifleman going on his fifth year and who has yet to
see one. I know of at least fifteen archers this year who
blanked out. About one-third of them saw pigs. The average
bow kill ratio has been around one in ten. The most successful
hunters are those who familiarize themselves with
javelina habits and the area they plan to hunt.

?

Dalrymple and others like him firmly agree that the
most prominent areas to locate javelina are those with the
slightest hunting pressure. This was our problem with the
wildlife area the year before. Javelina are gregarious animals
and travel according to set feeding patterns. When they are
disturbed, they leave the area, not returning for days.
Finding an unspooked herd is the whole trick.

?

Most herds have their favorite bed grounds and feeding
areas. A herd may work an area of two square miles often
leaving beds and returning in a few days. An undisturbed
herd will often have a range of a half mile, but the area will
rotate depending on available foods and weather
conditions.

Our scouting party consisted of Dalrymple, his long time
hunting partner Don Dole, and myself. We would enter an
area and look for relatively fresh sign not more than three
days old. It is always quite possible that only a short distance
will separate a good hunting area from a poor one.
lf sign is not evident, move on. Areas which have been
productive in the past are the Tucson mountain area, Santa
Catalina, Santa Ritas, Tumacoris and the San Carlos Indian
Reservation.

?

A javelina’s primary diet is vegetation such as prickly
pear, grass roots and mesquite beans. They frequently eat
prickly pear for filler and moisture, not nutritional value.
This means they can live in areas where there is no permanent
water. Preferred foods are tubers, cactus fruits like
the bisnaga pod and the roots of the Christmas cactus. Like
most animals, they will feed in the early morning and late
evening hours, particularly during the winter time. They are
not cold weather animals as was proved during the extremely
cold winter of 1967 when herds of the northern
part of the state were severely reduced.

?

The New Year found me rising slowly in the pre-dawn
hours. Coyotes were talking in the nearby foothills. The
temperature had been dropping for several nights. The
mercury reading was twenty degrees.

?

The limbs of my fifty-five pound Marauder bow
seemed a bit stiff. I drew back a tew times to warm it up. A
few shots are always helpful in cold weather. l drew back
slowly, concentrating on a small bush at twenty yards, and
released. Wham-Bam-Pow echoes my aluminum arrow
sailing three feet over the bush, striking rocks on its desent
to the badlands. After a few more shots and the killing of
the bush, my numb soul seemed ready, daring a javelina to
appear within shooting range.

?

Our first place of attack was a group of caves in a wash
bottom. Dalrymple’s theory says that, “in rainy weather,
with the temperature below thirty degrees, the chances of
locating pigs around cave areas are fantastically high. They
will also bed down under ironwood and palo verde trees on
the sunnyside to keep warm.”

?

We reached the caves only to End them vacant, with tiny
tracks scattered about. “They must have smelled us,”
whispered Dole. Peccaries do have a terrific sense of smell.
They can smell tubers six inches under the ground. Hunting
downwind of them is a must. The use of artificial scents
does not help matters much and often tends to spook the
animals. The old underarm deodorant trick seems to work
best.

?

We worked about fifty yards apart searching for the
slightest indication of fresh sign. Quite often while feeding,
individual members of a herd will scatter in search of their
favorite item, ranging a hundred yards or so. This explained
why we often found tracks going in all directions. This can
be misleading, however, if followed long enough, quite
often they will join the others.

?

I had to marvel at Dalrymple and Dole’s manner of
tracking. I considered myself a pretty fair tracker before I
met up with these two bloodhounds.

?

While tracking, the prickly pear cacti became the most
evident sign. The cacti will dry quickly depending on the
weather. Most often it will form a white film over the
freshly eaten parts in about an hour. It will usually be
shredded, scattered on the ground near the plant. The
javelina bite the green fruits that are covered with clusters
of half-inch long spines. They will usually remove pear pods
by knocking them off with the front feet.

?

Javelina use their noses, feet and teeth to remove some
of the spines. Once they get started, they chew through
spines and all without difficulty. They can eat century
plants and Lechuguilla (shin dagger) as we would eat an
artichoke, removing the outer leaves and eating out the
heart of the plant.

?

We kept the pace slow, often near a stand still. “You
nearly always hear them before sighting,” mentioned
Dalrymple, pointing at his ear as though committing
suicide. I nodded, listening to the left and right for that all
important grunt or ruckus that javelina often make.

?

We were roughly a half-mile from the caves when we
found the fresh droppings as mentioned earlier. A few yards
farther Dalrymple stopped, pointing his finger to his ear. I
was still somewhat amazed that we could be on the right
trail. Then a faint sound ahead directed my eyes to a wash-
out twenty yards away. There they were, but only for
seconds, as ten to twelve javelina bolted from the brush and
disappeared. It had happened quickly, as many had said it
would. The grey ghosts were gone. Maybe my last step was
a bit hard, but in any case I thought I had blown it. Naturally
my first reaction was to run after the herd and try for
a chance shot.

?

“No” muttered Dalrymple, waving his arms frantically
to get me to hold still. Certainly this man must have a screw
loose I thought, tempted to start the four minute mile. To
my right Dole had his bow up, as though to drill my hide if
I took another step! I was out-voted! A series of woof-like
grunts sounded out from the departed animals. To my
amazement. Dalrymple began imitating these snorts a few
times and the pigs began returning! It is not uncommon for
this to happen. The trick is not to woof before the javelina
does and not over a couple of times as it will spook them.

?

They weren’t totally aware of what had spooked them
and were joining forces once again. Their eyesight is considered
poor, and they will often run into the hunter in
their rush to escape. This is often mistaken for being
charged by a ferocious beast. lf the animals are unprovoked.
they appear to be deathly afraid of human beings.
I quickly spotted two of them coming straight toward
me. Off to my left. Dalrymple was at full draw as a huge
boar trotted past him at twenty feet. The arrow struck the
boar through the shoulders. A piercing scream rang out and
the prized javelina dropped within a few feet. Oddly
enough the others were not distracted by the incident and
kept coming. One of the two I had spotted darted at Dole
while the other stopped behind a bush directly in front of
me. Dole shot at his pig, missing by inches.

?

I slowly drew back a 2018 aluminum shaft loaded with a
black diamond delta broadhead and waited for the little
fellow to step out. My arm began to tire, and I let up on the
arrow. At that instant, the pig jumped out and trotted in a
parallel line to my right. I eased the arrow back again, and
released. The arrow whizzed past the chest of my quarry in
a beautiful miss! I quickly drew another arrow from my
bow quiver, but another shot was not possible. Realizing I
had just screwed up, I moved toward Dalrymple and his
fallen trophy. It was a beautiful boar, field dressing out at
forty pounds. My victorious companion was elated to say
the least.

?

That afternoon found me contributing a bottle of Cold
Duck to the Dalrymple’s victory party, and toasting the
celebrated javelina woofer. In the days that followed I saw
only one other pig and did not manage a shot. I had been
back in Los Angeles only a few days after that, when the
opportunity came to return to Tucson.

?

Two long-time friends, Midge Dandridge and John
Crump wanted to try their luck. Neither had hunted the
elusive animal before, and they were anxious to give it a
try. I was looking for a way to get my bottle of Cold Duck
back and quickly made the group a threesome.

?

There is always the possibility of calling up javelina with
a varmint call. To the javelina, the call sound is similar to
that of a little pig in distress. The herd will send out
members to investigate the trouble, rushing in with teeth
gnashing and hackles up. It seems to work best with a high-
pitched call, blown about three or four blasts.

?

One evening as Midge and I walked back to the truck, we
decided to try to call. I consider her to be one of the finest
women varmint callers around, better than most men. Midge
blew the call twice and two javelina immediately appeared.
They quickly disappeared, apparently spooked. She blew the
call again. I could hear an animal coming hell bent for leather,
out of the brush ahead. At forty yards I could make out the
silhouette of a pig coming across a rock slide. I shot, only
to have him jump the string! Looks like my luck was still
sour.

?

Two days later it began to change. We met up with a
young fellow. Grant McClain, who had recently returned
from a stint with Uncle Sam. He was gung ho to do some
hunting and had access to some private land. He was persuaded
with not much trouble, to join up with us!

?

The following morning we drove at daylight to an area
where a cowpoke had spotted a large herd of peccaries the
day before. The idea was to work a large wash bottom, with
Midge and I on one side and Crump the other. Grant would
stay in the bottom some thirty yards behind us. I took a
couple of steps and stopped to listen. Things looked barren
with the sound of Gamble’s quail calling in the distance. I was
now in the area where the javelina had been last seen.

?

As I took another step the brush below shook with
frantic movement. I strained my eyeballs on a set of
nostrils, belonging to a pig pointed my way from under a
slumped over iron wood bush.

?

A front on shot isn’t the greatest in the world, presenting
a relatively small target. I maneuvered into shooting
position hoping for him to turn broadside. His nose in the
air and hackles up, he turned slowly. I quickly answered by
sending an arrow his way. The shot was good, passing completely
through the mid section. It is totally unreal how fast
the little critters can move. Javelina bolted in every
direction, nearly mowing down Grant who stood in their
way of retreat. I lost sight of my wounded pig among the
swiftly retreating animals.

?

Half of my arrow was found a short way up the wash
with small splotches of blood nearby. I was dumb-founded.
Where was my arrowed peccary?
“There,” said Midge, pointing at the wounded animal
backing into a bush. I quickly put an arrow through his
chest. He collapsed in his tracks. I had won!

As we drove back to town the sun was setting, illuminating
the once Indian-inhabited mountain ranges with one
of those never-to-be-forgotten Arizona sunsets. That Cold
Duck will sure taste good!!

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Published by archerchick on 10 Feb 2011

Music To Crest By~By Tharran E. Gaines


Bow And Arrow
August 1972

Music To Crest By~By Tharran E. Gaines
An Old Phonograph Can Improve The Appearance Of Your Arrows As Well As Make Cresting Easier!

MANY SERIOUS ARCHERS eventually get the urge
t0 build their own equipment, especially arrows. And to
personalize and give those new arrows you so proudly built
a custom-made look, you will agree that a crestor can be an
invaluable tool.

But if you are in the same situation as I was and wonder
whether you make enough arrows a year to justify spending
between twelve and thirty dollars for a crestor, you may
want to build your own. That’s what I did, using a few
pieces of wood and the parts from an old record player.
Price will probably not exceed four or five dollars, depending
upon how much the record player costs you.

I wanted a motor that I could use permanently and one
that would be cheap and easy to obtain. I finally settled on
the motor from an old record player and eventually got it
to work for my purposes.

Although I don’t guarantee that all record players will
work, you probably will be able to find one that will if you
look for two things. One is to try to find a record player on
which the turntable shaft tums also and not just the turntable.
Nearly all of the single speed or 45 rpm players that I
have seen have a shaft that turns, but many of the stereo
units have a solid center shaft that employs a record
changer. Second, if it is possible to see the underside of the
record player, try to use one that has a rubber drive wheel
attached to the motor. Most record players use a drive
wheel which is connected to the motor and also runs
against the side of the turntable to operate it. If the drive
wheel isn’t attached to the motor it will still work but
perhaps not as well.

A center shaft of the turntable that turns 0n bearings
will be easier to work with, but a shaft that just runs
through a bushing will also work. Because I used the shaft
and the bearings as part of the crestor it is important that
they will turn.

Because old phonographs aren’t much good unless they
play, you can usually get one for next to nothing. I built
one crestor from an old phonograph that a repairman gave
me. It is also possible to pick one up at a garage sale or a
pawn shop pretty reasonably priced. Just be sure that the
motor works and that it still has the turntable and shaft.
About the only tools required for taking the machine
apart (after you`ve unplugged it) are a pair of pliers, a
screwdriver and a set of Allen wrenches to remove some of
the pieces attached with this type of bolt. When the motor
and most of the scrap pieces of metal has been taken off,
next remove the bushing or bearings through which the
turntable runs. In one type that I used, the bearings were
on a solid piece that simply unbolted from the frame, but I
did need to trim off some excess metal arms with a hack
saw. On another type. it was necessary to cut a square piece
out of the chassis frame to which the bushing was attached.
Additional materials for the crestor will include a one
inch piece of lumber about six by twenty-six inches for a
base, two pieces one inch thick by six by seven inches and a
few small blocks about one inch cube. For these pieces I

used a piece of one by six pine board and just cut off the
different length pieces. Plywood that doesn’t split easily
also will work fine. The length of the base can vary, but
twenty-six inches gives good support for the arrow while it
spins. I also used the crestor occasionally for sanding on the
points, and the long length allows for a support near the tip
of the arrow.

You also will need a small sheet of one-eighth or one-
quarter-inch plywood or masonite that can be cut into two
pieces about six by seven inches and one six by six inch
piece, and something to use as a chuck, I used a cylinder-
type chuck with a rubber washer in the center to hold the
nock, but you could also use a piece of surgical rubber
tubing.

The chuck I used was obtained from an archery catalog
for $1.50. All of the record player shafts that I have found
have had a diameter of 9/32, and I was able to buy the
cylinder chuck in this size.

Next, drill a hole in one of the six by seven inch pieces
of pine or plywood for the shaft to fit through. It should be
located about two inches up from the bottom when the
piece is placed on end on the base.

If the plate containing the bushing does not already have
screw holes for attaching it to the board, drill four or more
holes so it can be mounted on the back of the board. Next,
place the shaft from the turntable through the bushing. In
some cases the shaft will already be mounted in the bearings.
In this case just mount the bearings on the board and
cut the shaft off to the correct length. I discovered on some
45 rpm players the center shaft may be too short. I found a
piece of broken arrow tubing, which is close to a size 1716
aluminum, can be cut to the right length and used as a shaft
through the bushing. It is important that the shaft spin
smoothly in the bushing. If it doesn’t, polish the shaft with
emery cloth or steel wool until it runs smoothly. Thin oil
might also help. The motor will later be mounted on the
board so that the rubber drive wheel will spin the shaft.
Next, you will have to find some way to keep the shaft
from slipping back and forth in the bushing. Using the
cresting chuck on the front of the shaft kept it from slip-
ping forward.

I put two washers on the back of the shaft and behind
this I made a small roll of friction tape about Eve-eighths
inch in diameter. This not only keeps the shaft in place but
it acts as a drive wheel for the crestor shaft to which the
motor’s drive wheel grips, thus spinning the shaft. If you
need to have the shaft longer you can put a spacer made
from a piece of arrow shaft between the washer and the
tape. Rubber tubing or rubber washers probably would
work even better than the tape.

By varying the size of the drive wheel on the crestor
shaft you can also vary the speed that the arrow will spin. A
smaller wheel on the shaft will cause the chuck to spin
faster. One advantage of using the tape is that you can build
up the size of the crestor drive wheel.

On the type of shaft that I used that was already
mounted in bearings there happened to be a gear on the
shaft for a record changer. Taking advantage of this, I
simply used this as a drive wheel on the shaft and ran the
drive wheel of the motor against it.

Next, determine how the motor should set above the
crestor or turntable shaft so that both wheels will come in
contact with each other. Then glue blocks on the back of
the board to build the motor up to the level where the two
wheels will match. I used block out from the leftover pine
board and finished building it up to the correct height with
thin pieces of balsa wood. Then I fastened the motor to the
blocks with screws, in a position so that the two drive
wheels would have enough contact with each other to run
well but not stop the motor.

If the motor doesn’t have a rubber drive wheel, just
mount it so that the motor`s bare metal shaft has contact
with the drive wheel you have made on the crestor shaft.
However. it will tend to slip more and the shaft will turn in
a counterclockwise direction. I also experimented with
putting a chuck directly on the motor shaft, but this tends
to spin much too fast and causes vibration on the spinning
arrow shaft.

Now you can mount the board, to which the motor has
been attached, on the base vertically and about six inches
from one end. I attached the other six by seven inch board
on the end of the base to form a back for the motor, and
used the pieces of masonite to close in the motor compartment
on the top and sides. The two side pieces were six by
seven and the top piece was six inches square.

The motor compartment can be squeezed in even more,
depending upon the size of the motor. Use small nails when
putting on the sides, in case you need to adjust the way the
motor sets later. It isn’t necessary to close in the motor, but
I thought it looked better. It also helps to brace the upright
board on which the motor and shaft are mounted.

If you are not too proud of your carpentry work, you
can cover the motor compartment with contact paper. A
coat of stain or varnish will also bring out the grain in the
wood.

To finish the crestor, I cut a V-shaped notch in two
blocks of balsa wood and mounted these on the base for
the arrow to spin on. Between these I attached a piece of
balsa about eight inches long. This is to attach a card on
which you have drawn your crest design.

I used balsa wood only because it is soft and I can attach
the card with pins. A piece of plastic probably would be
better for the V-notches.

When painting the crest you will be able to slow the
arrow down or make it run smoother by putting pressure
on the spinning shaft into the notching in the blocks. After
a while you will find that the only limit to the designs of
crests that are possible is your imagination and perhaps
your paint supply.

You may choose to vary the plans in many ways and
may have to. You will no doubt find that not all record
players will work as well or like the ones I used, but with a
similar plan you may soon be painting your own pin stripes.
<—<<<<

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Published by archerchick on 10 Feb 2011

A Home Archery Target Range ~ By Walt Knuepfer


Bow And Arrow
August 1972

A Home Archery Target Range ~ BY Walt Knuepfer
How To Build An All-Purpose Archery Cabinet

IN DEVELOPING PROFICIENCY and subsequent love for the bow
and arrow, the necessity for a safe and adequate target becomes more pronounced
as one improves. Generally, assuming one has at least fifteen or
twenty yards of backyard room, the average archer-to-be buys a mat or
equivalent, shoots at it, and has frightening moments when he misses the
entire face.

His neighbors’ reactions will often give him cause to consider the problem
seriously, if he persists in picking up an occasional miscast arrow in their
yard. The seriousness of this problem need not be discussed further.
After a typical progression of events, it becomes increasingly evident
that a safe, practical, and aesthetically acceptable solution to the target
problem is required. After considerable study and design analysis, l decided
that a permanent positioning of the target would be best, since hauling a
three or four—foot diameter mat is a chore.

The evolved design consists of a substantial cabinet. able to accommodate
a four-foot mat. The cabinet illustrated was constructed in a workspace,
placed in position. and fastened with large washered lag screws. into four
cedar posts that were anchored below the frost line.

The cabinet, measuring approximately 4-1/2 feet square, provides a safe
coverage of approximately eight feet width by 6 1/2 feet height, with the
doors in the opened position. The hinged doors are held open by engagement
of long, heavy wire hooks, inserted into a screw eye in each door. When
closed, the cabinet can be secured by a padlock, if desired. The top and bottom
extensions are hinged in their centers and are stored in the cabinet
when it is closed. The top extension is positioned onto two three-inch pins,
emerging on the top of each door.

The initial design contained three- foot and two-foot diameter mats. The
two-foot mat was superimposed on the three-foot mat. This double thickness
of mats stopped 560—grain fiberglass arrows. As the mats wore the arrows
began to hit the Celotex lining in back of the cabinet and, ultimately, some
arrows penetrated into the half-inch plywood cabinet backing.

The layering of mats, which were moistened periodically, caused mildew
between the mats and the contact area with the Celotex backing. This condition
was corrected by building the cantilevered support frame shown,
which provides deceleration space for shot arrows, adequate ventilation, and
requires only one mat, which is a considerable economy.

The previous stackup of two mats evolved through necessity, to reinforce
a center shot mat, and to stop arrow passage. The present arrangement
works well. The mat extension is determined by two chains, anchored at
inside top corners, adjusted in length by a chain link attachment to two
screw hooks in the cabinet back. Two fold—up arms at the inside bottom
corners are dropped down toward the back to keep the mat extended and
free of swing.

The entire cabinet is painted any color desired. The one illustrated is
olive drab, to suite the environment or the archer’s taste.
With an archery range of this construction, you can invite your neighbors
over, demonstrate your proficiency, and eliminate any apprehension
they or you might have about casting arrows in your backyard.

The entire cantilever assembly, holding a four-foot Saunders mat, is
brought forward to contact with the ground. This positioning provides for
comfortable mat installation or removal and provides access to the rear
of the mat, where the two five- sixteenth—inch diagonally tied retaining
ropes can be snugged up and fastened.

The crossed retaining ropes are threaded through a half-inch diameter hole in
the two by four corner mat retainers. In constructing the cabinet doors,
the ones described are of five-eigths-inch outdoor type plywood. Any number
of decorative effects can be applied to the faces of the doors in the
closed position. The various trims applied to garage doors, available at
any lumber yard, will personalize the finished product and allow for
matching to fit with home surroundings. <—<<<

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