How to build a draw board.......

Discussion in 'Tech Talk' started by Rick James, Jan 25, 2010.

  1. Rick James

    Rick James Grizzled Veteran

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    I've seen a few requests for this over the last few months, so I figured I'd finally post a how-to.........

    So........to start lets build a parts list:

    • 2x Pressure treated 2x6's (cut to 6' Long)
    • Lots of 2.5" drywall screws
    • 1x metal 3/4" pipe flange (I think mine is 3/4?)
    • 1x cast iron threaded 3/4" - 6" long nipple
    • 1x cast iron 3/4" pipe cap
    • Enough lags/bolts to fill all the holes in the flange, and go through both 2x6's
    • 2x carabiner (make sure you get ones rated for well over 100lbs)
    • 1x Lehigh "Quick Link" (threaded o-ring thingy - Can get at Home Depot)
    • 1x Lehigh 1/4" x 5 1/4" Stainless Steel Eye to Eye Turnbuckle (Can get at Home Depot)
    • Hand Winch Assembly - I would HIGHLY recommend a winch with a strap instead of a cable, much easier to deal with IMHO. I got mine at Harbor Freight for around $15, and added the strap, but can't find it anymore on their site. Northern Tool has a nice looking one though that should do the trick for $14.99 http://www.northerntool.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/product_6970_200395594_200395594
    • Enough Lags to seriously lag the winch down - I would advise them long enough to go through the top 2x6 and WELL into the second
    • Optional - I'm using a Pelouze 7710 digital scale on mine. Will record weight through the entire draw cycle, not just peak weight, and it's VERY accurate. If you bolt down a yard stick onto your draw board, with this scale you can write down the poundage at each inch of the draw cycle, and then graph draw force curves. ;)
    A list of things you can do when you have yours built:

    • Measure exact draw length on a bow, setup new bows to your exact draw length instead of guessing
    • Time cams
    • Set tiller adjustments
    • Time drop away rests
    • Measure draw force curves
    • Measure draw weight at any point in the draw cycle
    • Lots more things I'm not thinking of right now..........
    So it's not rocket science to see how it's put together if you look at my pics below. I did not use pressure treated 2x6's on mine, and only used a single regular 2x6. I'd advise against this, and will likely upgrade mine soon, I'm not convinced that a single 2x6 is safe from splitting while a bow is at full draw. I'd suggest cutting 2x of them at the same length, and use some drywall screws to fasten them together, one on top of the other to make a double thick 2x6. You could also use a pressure treated 6x6 I guess too, but that would be pretty darn heavy. Whatever you use, make sure your flange and winch lags can go through the first board and almost through the bottom one, or if a single layer make sure they go in a decent amount to make things really sturdy. You don't want this coming apart on you at full draw.

    You will likely get 1/4" to 1/2" adjustment out of each click on the winch, use your turnbuckle for the fine adjustments. I will take a business card and sandwich it between a draw stop peg and the limb, and then back the turnbuckle out till the business card falls out, then go back with the turnbuckle till the scale weight increases, this is the back of your valley. On dual draw stops (cable or limb) you can adjust so that both business cards fall out at the same time for timing and that's usually a great spot to start your creep tuning from, this will change though based on your hand position and pressure, and also on your stabilizer setup.........make sure you creep tune. I also typically insert a spare nock into the nockset to keep from the string angle moving the nock points while at full draw.......just another tip.

    And the mandatory disclaimer.........:D

    I am in no way responsible for you injuring yourself or your equipment if you attempt to use/build one of these. Bad things can happen with a bow while at full draw, and common sense needs to be used. Keep your fingers clear of the cams/cables........you can easily lose a finger if you aren't careful. I also put an additional loop of material around the string and in the carabiner in case my tied in loop fails, to keep the bow from launching off the board. Please be careful......and if you aren't.......it's not my fault....:p

    Hope someone can use this to build what is IMO, one of the most important tools you can have in a home shop.

    And now the pics........

    The entire assembly getting ready to draw a bow:

    [​IMG]

    Closeups of the bow on the pipe nipple, and also the loop/carabiner/safety loop/scale/caribiner/turnbuckle assembly:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Close up of the winch:

    [​IMG]

    And the bow at full draw:

    [​IMG]
     
  2. Rick James

    Rick James Grizzled Veteran

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    And oh yeah........one more tip. Make sure you wrap the pipe nipple in athletic tape or something similar.....you can mar the finish on the grip if you don't. Don't ask me how I know this.......:D
     
  3. Fitz

    Fitz Legendary Woodsman

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    Awesome Matt! I just might have to build me one of these:)
     
  4. MGH_PA

    MGH_PA Moderator

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    Nice, Matt. Have you experience any issues with needing an adjustable eye hook between the winch and the pipe to adjust for cable angle?
     
  5. Ben/PA

    Ben/PA Grizzled Veteran

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    Sweet Matt. I know I sure appreciate it. I saved the info......now. When did you get that bow?:)
     
  6. MGH_PA

    MGH_PA Moderator

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    I noticed that, as well. Looks sharp.:)
     
  7. Rick James

    Rick James Grizzled Veteran

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    The bow will pivot on the pipe nipple for angle, so no.......no need for this that I can see and i've had probably 10 bows on this draw board.

    Thanks on the bow guys, but it's not mine. I borrowed it from a buddy (Jaws) because of a last minute decision to shoot in Harrisburg, I sold the extra Constitution I had last year and needed a bow to throw together quickly for 3D. This was just sitting around, and after tinkering with it.........I REALLY like it. Not sure if I'm going to give it back yet........lol. ;) I will likely have to order a 2010 Sentinel if Dan decides to make me give it back. :D
     
  8. MGH_PA

    MGH_PA Moderator

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    You JUST convinced me to buy a Constitution, and now this:p How do you like it compared to the Connie?
     
  9. Rick James

    Rick James Grizzled Veteran

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    Well it's about 5ish fps faster and may be a bit better of a 3D platform, however I'm doubtful that I'd use it for an indoor bow.

    To be honest, I've only shot it for one session since tuning it. I don't really have enough time in with it to really give it a fair shake and evaluation. I did shoot extremely well with it, but that is common with any "new" bow for me.........I'll know more once the new bow syndrome has worn off a bit. At this point I have good confidence in the setup though, that's for sure.
     
  10. Ben/PA

    Ben/PA Grizzled Veteran

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    I see. Due to the dark spot in the pic, I couldn't tell if it was '10 or not. I was hoping for '10 even though I would be extremely jealous. I will see this 09 in action on the 6th. I'll be the guy scoping your arrows in the 12 ring.
     
  11. MGH_PA

    MGH_PA Moderator

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    Noticed it's converted to a shoot through as well? Is that TAP's?
     
  12. wdriver

    wdriver Newb

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    Where exactly would you place the yardstick for measuring?
     
  13. muzzyman88

    muzzyman88 Die Hard Bowhunter

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    Nice work Matt. I just built one almost identical to your over the winter. Mine is not quite as pretty because I used my old trailer winch I took off my boat trailer. It's a bit rusty and didn't work well enough for the boat anymore, but it works great for this purpose.

    One thing I would like to point out and I don't have any personal experience to validate this, but I've heard of it happening. It looks like you're using screws to mount the pipe flange to the board. I've heard of guys doing this and having them eventually pull loose. I used bolts in mine and drilled completely through the board and bolted it fast.

    The draw board is something that I've found indispensable since building it. I just bought a new bow and setting draw length and cam sync is much easier with this tool. If you work on your own bows and especially if you shoot binary, hybrid or dual cam bows, a draw board is a must to tune them properly.

    Nice write up Matt.
     
  14. Lifesadrag

    Lifesadrag Weekend Warrior

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    Thanks for posting this. I just finished building a linear press ( just waiting for paint ). I'm in the process of starting one of these. Just a couple questions:
    Is that a ratchet style winch? I heard a worm drive would work a bit smoother, and what's the approx. price of the scale? Is it pretty durable for the forces applied to it?
     
  15. muzzyman88

    muzzyman88 Die Hard Bowhunter

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    I think I can answer this. Matt, sorry if I step on your toes bud. Most use a ratchet style winch. Just make sure which ever you use has a "reverse" on it so you can flip the switch and back it down (it will click and hold when you stop unwinding). This lets you draw and let the bow down in a controlled manner. The worm gear style winches are nice, but they are quite a bit slower to crank the bow back with. I've heard of some guys using a drill attachment of some sort to speed it up. The nice thing about this worm gear winch is that it eliminates the turnbuckle sleeve you need to make the tiny adjustment to get the cams to hit the stops at the exact time. With the ratchet style, you need the sleeve in there because of the coarse adjustment the ratchet has.

    As for the scale. the Pelouze seems to be the most popular. I have a cheaper digital scale that works just fine. They're plenty durable to hold up. In fact, they probably go through less stress in the draw board than if they are hanging by a hook and used to check bow weight.
     
  16. Lifesadrag

    Lifesadrag Weekend Warrior

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    Thanks.....I appreciate the info.
     

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