dyed natural turkey feather fletching

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rancid crabtree
4X4 Bull
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dyed natural turkey feather fletching

Post by rancid crabtree » Fri Jul 10, 2015 1:12 pm

I enjoy making my own arrows. Ive been making them for about 35 years. While I enjoy compounds and recurves,, I also make my own longbows and my own broadheads to hunt with. Likewise I make my own cedar arrows. I took a few pictures of the last batch I am working on. This not the ONLY way to make arrows. Its just one way. There is more than one way to skin a cat and while I love cats, I can’t eat a whole one by myself but I digress.

We save the wings from the birds we kill so we can make them fly again.

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I like to use the primary feathers but I also use the secondary feathers if they seem fitting for the purpose.

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I trim away both ends that are less than useful.

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Turkeys are dirty, smelly, oily birds so the feathers need a bath in warm soapy water

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Even though this turkey died once, Its gonna get dyed again. This time red but sometimes green or yellow, etc. I use RIT dye, really hot water and a little vinegar.

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After a rinse and air drying.

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Lots of folks use a razor knife to split their feathers and I have done it that way for years but I find a 14 tooth very thin bandsaw blade offers more control and is a bit easier/safer.

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I fabricated a holder that allows me to grind/sand the base and sides of the feathers. Nothing fancy but it works.

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Then a trip on the drill press against a sanding drum with a wood spacer slightly larger in Diameter than the drum to allow for consistent spacing.

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I don’t chop my feather although that is a perfectly fine method to employ. I tend to burn my feathers either in advance of fletching using a simple clamp I made from office supplies and a red hot wire.

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Or I burn them after fletching (also using a hot wire)

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I like to dip and crest my cedars in colors that match the feathers.

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I have a few fletching jigs that date back pretty far but for a bit more helical I use this newer Bohning jig.

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Here is another batch.

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Couple that with a homemade broadhead and it makes for one very satisfying way to pass the time and a way to increase the level of satisfaction and accomplishment when you take game with a homemade bow and homemade arrows.
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Wisconsin Traditional Archers

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TradRag
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Re: dyed natural turkey feather fletching

Post by TradRag » Mon Jul 13, 2015 9:06 am

Nice! Tank you for sharing! :77:
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Full Quiver
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Re: dyed natural turkey feather fletching

Post by Full Quiver » Mon Jul 13, 2015 5:37 pm

:applaud:
Thanks!!!
Donnie Wilson
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FullDraw
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Re: dyed natural turkey feather fletching

Post by FullDraw » Wed Jul 15, 2015 12:58 pm

I enjoyed that, thanks.

Gary
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The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, ... Proverbs 1:7a

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