Next upcoming shoot to see our bows is in Rock Creek, B.C. May 21-23, 2016
Longbow Amisk write-up on “Handmade Longbows “
Custom Longbows & Recurve Bows
Welcome! I’m Abe Penner, the designer and bowyer for Cari-bow. I’ve been making handmade and custom archery bows near Winnipeg, Canada for over 25 years. I am happy to say that over a thousand archers have used these bows in conditions ranging from intense African heat to the subfreezing cold of the Rocky Mountains. Through the years, several archers have used Cari-bow to claim national and world longbow competition titles. My intention is to make each bow as tough and accurate as it is beautiful.
THE BEST TRADITIONAL BOW?
Let’s face it- those of us who love archery, and especially bow hunters, would be out there with a stick and string if our favorite traditional bow suddenly disappeared into the tundra. Still, there is a great satisfaction that comes from releasing an arrow that flies true, from a silent bow that lies still in the hand after the shot. Many hunters will agree that a great bow can be the difference between a trophy and a near miss. Please enjoy the site, and don’t hesitate to call if you have any questions. I hope you become a Cari-bow owner and it gives you a lifetime of enjoyment!
THE BENEFITS OF A HANDMADE CARI-BOW
Why should one consider a handmade archery bow over a production bow or a back yard/garage bow? I have nothing against either operation. I developed my own skills as a part time bowyer. When you choose me as yourbowyer you are getting experience from someone who has been making handmade recurve bows and longbows for over 25 years. That comes to over 12 different models with some coming in varying lengths. These are all my own designs. They have their own cores and tapers that have been developed for each model. In some cases 6-8 different forms along with just as many attempts at tapers.
“I’ve designed over a dozen recurve and longbow models over the past 25 years. Each model has a unique combination of wood cores, tapers, fiberglass, and riser design. I often evaluate my designs by building 6-8 variations and then test them side by side.”
What I’m looking for is a smooth drawing, high performance, highly efficient bow with shock free shooting characteristics. In reality, it is far more complicated than a short essay could do justice to. They all need to come together to make for an exceptional shooting and performing bow. I have and keep spending time refining those traits. This is to give the archer the best product that I can design.
HANDMADE CUSTOM TRADITIONAL BOWS
When someone refers to “custom traditional bows” they usually mean bows that have unique personal touches and/or are built by a builder with a great reputation. “Custom” can mean different things to different people. It could be that if you choose from a few pieces of wood and you got your weight and your name on the bow, it is all the custom you want. This is fine if that’s all you want or need.
Tillering is a topic which is often asked about. I will make changes in tiller on a custom bow for different shooting styles. The biggest difference from my perspective is that I shoot every bow with the style requested and find an arrow that will shoot perfectly with that style. I have always done this and it gives me the confidence that in the hands of the customer they should be able to find an arrow that will tune.
“When you receive your custom built Cari-bow recurve or longbow, you know that it has actually been tuned while being built to your specific size, strength, and shooting style. Before any bow leaves my shop, it has been tuned to an appropriate arrow for perfect flight.”
When we say “custom longbow” or “custom recurve bow” it gives the impression that there is something unique about it. Here is where cosmetics come in. Making a one-of-a-kind bow, given the qualities in the above paragraphs, could and would probably take several months, keeping in mind “one of a kind”. This would require an open check book. Not really practical. So how do we make a unique bow (custom) and still have it repeatable and cost effective? We can make changes in woods and or make inlays. We can choose woods that look good together or are hard to find. There may be figure that make a species look unique. These combinations take time, and I keep in mind “will that work in a bow without losing its integrity”? Style? It takes time to develop ones own style. You could take on someone else’s style. We are all influenced by what we see. One can just copy what we see or we can be influenced and make our own spin on it to make our own style. I have always made my own forms and do not copy or make patterns from other peoples’ bows. This to me is like using someone else’s signature, not finding my own identity. I think if you go through the resume of pictures, you’ll agree that I have some degree of uniqueness and/or style. Whether you like what you see is entirely up to you. With the nature of “custom made bows” there comes a wait time. This is where some people lose interest and choose one of the handmade archery bows I have in stock. For this reason, and from my own ideas on what woods look good together, I have decided I will keep making recurve bows and longbows for inventory. So if I have stimulated your senses enough to take notice and you feel like you would appreciate, fondle and enjoy shooting what some say is a piece of “working art” then please be indulgent. This gives me the opportunity to be creative and gives archers the option of an online archery purchase, and the satisfaction of owning one.
Some of my earliest success came with handmade longbows, and they still remain very popular. Years ago I used one of the first reflex-deflex limb designs, and continue to field test variations today that will produce the power to throw a heavy arrow and remain shock free. In hunting situations a silent bow is a great asset, so I take that into account also with each Cari-bow longbow design.
If there is a “secret sauce” to making a great handmade recurve bow, it would have to revolve around the limb structure. I’ve been field testing recurve hunting bows for years, and even won myself a few gold medals in national competitions. Some of my latest recurve bows incorporate static tips… Read more…
Features & Options
At the heart of every Cari-bow is performance, durability, and beauty. In the limbs I use a blend of compound tapering, which gives excellent performance and low hand shock. These bows can throw arrows at very respectable speeds- sometimes surpassing the performance of carbon limb bows. In addition, they are whisper silent and almost totally still in the hand after the shot. Read More…