How to make bowstring from sinew
Bowstrings can be made out of a variety of materials, however one durable and readily available material is sinew. Sinew is the dried tendons of an animal and is extremely tough with very little stretch. These qualities make sinew a useful candidate for making a bowstring, as you want as little stretch as possible and durability for repeated shots. Once you have procured and dried your sinew, follow the steps below to build a long lasting, durable bowstring.
Cut the piece of sinew to a length twice that of your final bowstring length. Determine the length of your finished bowstring by subtracting four inches from the total length of the bow. Double this number and that is how much sinew you will need.
Soak the sinew in cool water for a few hours to get it pliable enough to work with. Fold the sinew over in the middle and twist the end 5-6 times. Slide one of the ends of the strands through the small loop you made in the middle of the sinew to form a large loop in the bowstring.
Place the stick inside the large loop you just made and then hang the loop from a nail that you pounded into a tree. Tie the ends of the two strands of sinew to the paint bucket and then twist the string tightly until the entire string is twisted, but not bunched. Allow the string to dry like this for 2-3 days.
Rub beeswax on the string after the 2-3 day drying period and remove the paint bucket and stick from the ends. Your new string is now ready to mount on the bow of your choice.
Note: Another option if you are unable to get ahold of long sinew from large game is to collect sinew from small game. Scrape off all meat from the tendons and allow to dry. Pound the dried tendons between two rocks and pull apart the fibers. Soak the fibers in water or moisten by chewing them, either or. Now weave them together like you are braiding someone's hair. When you have enough, wrap one end over a stick and tie the loose ends over it's self. Continue to braid until the desired length is achieved then coat the cordage in hide glue. Attach another stick to the other end and allow to dry.
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