----- The following content is not suitable for Justin Beiber fans. The following content is very suitable for his enemies. -----
Firstly, this journal is dedicated to Deltios
who has recently made me very proud by taking up the wonderful skill of archery. It's something I'd recommend to anyone, certainly, and in this journal I'll share with you a few cool hi-speed shots of how it works as well as my protips. But first, to draw you in, here's a picture of what I do for training other people: Shooting Justin BeiberLEFT:This is a good shot. The neck is nice and fleshy, carries important bits, and is reasonably large and exposed even when the person is trying to hide. RIGHT: My friend Joe demonstrating my hipster deterrentOkay back on topic...
As a few of you may know, I've had my own equipment taken off me (Bow and both hunting and regular arrows), so whilst I can't show anyone else considering taking up the art an exact "This is how you do it", I DO have some old 500fps footage converted in to gifs which I can accompany with some of the tips from me. I'll not ask why you've suddenly been given a weapon without any training. I dunno, perhaps it's the zombie apocoypse and you chose the bow and arrows for reliability, reusable ammo, and sheer badassery. If you hurt yourself or others from this advice, or think you're competent from reading one journal on the internet, it's SO not my fault. I in no way endorse any of the practices mentioned in this article.
Firstly, I'm not sure what exactly I'm doing in any of these clips, or how old the clips are; I can say that they're at 30fps and 500fps (I.e, normal speed and 16 times slower). I only look about a foot smaller and my draw speed is pretty quick, so I'd think it's recent. Then again, I'm wearing the arm-guard (That polycarbonate shield on my left arm) and using normal arrows, but not the finger guard,which I can't remember doing for at least 6 years, so
I'd guess they're 4-6 years old. I'm guessing the target is high-up or close, because ideally, my elbow should be in line with the arrow, not angled upwards. On the subject of arm guards...
Here's what happened to me one day when I was hunting, turned too quickly whilst firing, and promptly burnt my arm, which brings me to my first lesson for you guys: NEVER SHOOT WHILST YOUR ARMS ARE MOVING. Otherwise you will be shooting your arms. A large amount of swearing is certain.Stance
Your feet should be facing 90 degrees to where you're shooting, as should your chest; the principle here is to make sure you're exposed to the enemy as little as possible, and get maximum draw from the bow. If you're female (or a particularly large-chested male), you NEED to wear body armor across your chest, or you be loosing body parts
. The footage above is good, but ideally you should be able to put a meter ruler on your shoulder blades and have the end touch both your arms (a large meter ruler, if you're like me and have a stupidly long wingspan). Note here how my draw length is longer than the arrow, and so I'm having to not pull ALL the way back, lest I end up with an arrow digging in to the back of my hand. After firing, your bow-holding arm should stay rigid or drop slightly. Rising, or wobbling indicates your grip wasn't secure and the arrow probably won't go where you intendedAiming
It's all very well and good being able to fire the damn thing, but if you don't aim, you're going to run in to issues (and by 'issues', this could mean 'zombies'). Just to get a sense of scale, a typical paintball gun will fire at 200mph, the fastest production car in the world does 267mph, but a crappily shot arrow does 380mph. Whilst this isn't the 750mph a 9mm pistol round can achieve, a pistol round can weigh anything from 5-7 grams. Your average arrow can be anything from 15-30 grams, which is three times the weight at only half the speed: An arrow has more momentum and more destructive power than your typical handgun suck it america
. But an arrow is longer, and that's the important thing to note: Even after you've fired, there's still about 6ms where the arrow is still touching the bow; moving in this time (which a lot of people do when they suddenly release a 30kg deadweight) will still alter the trajectory of the shot. Aim to get your bow-holding-arm dead rigid so that this doesn't happen. If you're using a sight (and there's nothing wrong with that), ensure that the bowstring and the sight dot intersect each other in your aiming eye. The further away you are, the higher up you have to aim, also. Using some projectile equations (see, Latrion
, they do come in useful!), you can figure out that a target that's 10 yards away than it normally is will require an angle adjustment of roughly 0.5 degrees, which is no small feat when your arms are ALSO effectively pulling away from each other with 30kg of force. "yeah good luck with that" - my teacher, when I was trying to grasp this concept at age 11Equipment
*tugs collar*. I own(ed) 2 bows, an aluminium one (the blue on on the top right image), and a wooden one. Wood is much more forgiving on the hands, but aluminium is lighter. Either way, be prepared to spend at least £200, up to £500. Ensure you buy a good one, though, so it's only ever ~£300 ONCE. Replacement limbs (the white bits at the top and bottom of the wooden bit) can cost anything from £60 to £200. Finally, arrows. In the UK, hunting arrows are strictly regulated, so don't bother unless you know a guy who makes them. Arrows for sport (no barbs) cost about £5 per arrow (more if you want carbon fiber, feather fletchings or any other fancy stuff). The ones in these videos are a mix of Aluminium and CF; there aren't any barbed arrows in shot because firing them at a non-squishy target is likely to break them. As you can see in the hi-speed footage above, arrows, when fired, actually wobble. This is because the bow is so powerful, the arrow's from stays stationary for about 0.5 milliseconds, whilst the bowstring compresses the arrow. The bow above is fitted with 32lb limbs, though I now use(d) 60lb limbs (Meaning pulling back takes the same effort as lifting a ~30kg weight a meter off the ground, with one arm), but bow limbs can go all the way up past 150lbs. Then you're entering longbow territory.
So there is a quick-and-dirty lowdown of the top tips and advice for anyone who's just started or considering to start learning how to use the ultimate zombie protection weapon! Leave a comment with any other questions, or just to let me know which bow you preferred! (It's a close tie, 50% like the blue one, 50% like the wooden one, so far)