I have several friends that live in fear of breaking their wooden arrows, to the point that they only use their ” best” arrows when the targets are backed by straw or the ground has no stones. I can’t see the point of this, all my arrows are good arrows and to be honest I only want to shoot the best, so when I have made a new set and lavished care and attention on getting the recipe just right I shoot them regardless of the target placement, the component parts of a wooden arrow may be relatively inexpensive, but when you consider the time it takes to weigh, spine and prepared a set of arrows and then the build and tuning of them they actually work out very expensive indeed. Consequently breaking a woodie is an emotional and disturbing experience.
The most common way to break an arrow is like the one above, just below the point and this is the type of repair the Reparrow is designed to fix.
The Idea behind these hardwood footings is that they are pre-prepared, all you you need do is fit them. The hardwood footing will be stronger than the original wood but because of the choice of wood available will actually improve the look of the arrow..
The Reparrow footing has been drilled through the centre to accept the exact same size as the taper you would normally use to point an arrow.
In length they are 8cm ( or a tad under 4″ in old money), this allows for the arrow to break some distance behind the point and still offer an effective repair. The joint achieved would be as strong as was possible as the full impact of the shot is passed directly through the whole joint.
The process for footing the arrow is simple enough, first cut back to decent wood on your arrow. In fact if you saved your broken arrows until you had several you could cut them all at the same length, or purposely cut back to the longest length you would end up with arrows that looked matched.
Once the shaft has been tapered in the normal way to accept a point you are ready to glue the joint. I use Titebond 3 as it is the best waterproof glue I have found for these arrow repair jobs.
I have always found a variation in shaft sizes, the pine shaft shown above may be a tiny tad different in diameter than some POC I have used, having said that I have also had POC that is smaller than some pine, we are not talking much but with simple taper tools it can be enough to throw off the taper, I have given up with the cheaper ones and now use a quality taper tool. The point I was going to make was that the real secret to the Reparrow is that it is just a mite larger in diameter than using a portion of shaft exactly the same as the original shaft. The advantage of this is that the joint is very positive and fits flush right up to the end of the taper, leaving no unsightly wood around the joint.
In the picture above you can see that the two sections fit right in to each other, this does however leave a very small lip. It would be fine to shoot as it is but I prefer to sand down the portion around the joint. This needs to be done carefully as you don’t want to sand the original shaft or end up with a “waist” in the arrow. It is much easier to do that it sounds and the best way is to install a point on the shaft and insert it into a drill, some gentle application of various grades of sandpaper will give you a top finish, as shown below.
These are terrific for several reasons, firstly you get an arrow footed in hard wood for a fraction of the cost of purchasing a custom set, secondly they are dead simple to use and require very little effort.
There are a couple of points worth mentioning regarding the fitting of the footing. when tapering the arrow check the fit before glueing up, if the taper is a little long take only small amounts off until the fit is right, if you chop too much off you may end up with a gap at the bottom which would cause the footing to split when pressure is applied, which brings me right on to the second point…. don’t push the joint in too hard, the very edges of the socket part are very fragile and too much force will cause it to split.