*By popular demand we have reposted the “Bow Press” post. We still get emails about this one…..an amazing project, enjoy!
I don’t know about you, but I’m tired of having to rely on other people when it comes to tinkering with my bow. What if I want to change my own draw string? What if I simply want to adjust my peep sight? Those tasks mean a drive to the local archery shop is in my very near future. Wouldn’t it be great if I had a bow press of my own….?
Christmas was just around the corner, and every year my brother Adam and I love to get each other cool hunting gifts. So, I’m in the gym on a normal Monday trying to think of something rugged that I could get him, and it hit me, “I’m going to buy him a bow press”! Wait, better yet, “I am going to build him one”! Yep, that is exactly what I am going to do.
So my vision began with a get together with my buddy John, who is an excellent welder and an even better artist, to talk about my idea. As I’m blowing him up with this vision I noticed that he too was starting to get excited. Our shared enthusiasm was awesome, especially since we both had never done anything like this before. Excitement turned into brainstorming. We began throwing around ideas, doing research on Archery Talk and using Google images like a road map. The next thing I know, I’m ordering square metal tubing, an acme rod and a bunch of other materials to bring this vision to life.
First we had to fabricate the frame. This part was a piece of cake. We used 2 inch square tubing for the majority of the frame and 1 3\4 inch square tubing for the pressing arm. To create the pressing action, we ran a ¾ inch acme rod through the center of the tubing which threaded into a ¾ inch matching acme nut that was welded 3 inches the pressing arm. It was extremely critical that the nut was perfectly aligned with the acme rod to prevent any binding that may occur while the press opened and closed. This part of the build consisted of a little, “trial and error”, which definitely added some stress.
The next step in the construction, and in my opinion, one of the most interesting, was using Adobe Illustrator to design the press’s fingers. The fingers are the portion of the press that would be used to hold the bow in place. Once the design was finished we then transferred the file to a flash drive and took it to a local machine shop. There they cut the fingers out of ½ inch aluminum on a water jet. It was amazing to see how we were able to transform my design on paper, into actual parts.
After close to a month’s time and 40 hours of fabrication, things were finally coming together and the masterpiece was nearly complete. It took a little bit longer than expected due to all of the trial and error, and it probably didn’t help that I wouldn’t give the “ok”, to a piece that wasn’t perfect. John repeatedly joked about how much of a perfectionist I was the entire time, this coming from a man who gets paid for his extreme attention to detail. What’s that say about me? Ha-ha.
I feel like a gained so much knowledge from this little garage project. I encourage anyone interested in building their own press to do it! If anyone has any questions, I would be happy to provide a materials list, more pictures as well as a few recommendations.
By the way, my brother Adam loved it. He was totally speachless!
Sam | TSD