Rotary Club of Bathurst East

    The Friendly Club

Toxophily anyone?

Bob Wilson, bowyer, explains the intricate process of creating a customised bow for an archer, or toxophily.
Inspired by the breathtaking feats of the legendary Howard Hill, in 1963 Bob studied the archer’s book on bow making “Hunting the hard way”. Thus began a career of over 50 years of constructing the finest custom bows.
Bob has made many types of bows in a painstaking, scientific process, yet does all the shaping of a bow with a horse rasp and all the carving with hand tools. Many dry runs are required when making a bow, just to ensure that all is perfect before the glue is applied. The angles of the riser (arm of the bow) must be cut with incredible precision on a gradient toward the tip. Once the bow is complete, it is fired in an oven at 650-700 degrees Celsius.  On average it will take 80 hours of work to complete one handmade bow.
The two most important things in the design of a bow are speed and stability. To make a fast bow – you decrease the quantity of fibreglass on the bow and for a smooth bow the opposite applies. The wood for the bows is primarily imported from specialists in the United States. Rare woods in a bow would cost around an extra $1000.
As far as selecting your arrows, you can change the head depending on what you are hunting.  The difference between the arrow and the bullet is the arrow kills with penetration and the bullet kills with shock.
Bob’s passion is in bow making is clear and his work is both beautiful and world class quality.