Target boss repairs tip

From time to time your target bosses will be in need of repairs. We know this as we go through the process of inspecting and repairing our targets at the club. Sometimes this is a complete rebuild, other times the boss straps or banding simply needs tightening up. In the next few articles I will be providing some thoughts and advice on how I go about repairing targets.

Bit of a disclaimer here. I am no expert but I have used these techniques and found them to work, but please take care and use common sense.

For our layered foam target bosses we use these buckles for banding as it allows us to tighten the tension of the straps. It’s worth noting the straps can slacken up overtime as the foam gets shot out. The good thing is it’s easy to tighten them back up.

The only issue that can occur is if there isn’t enough banding to connect to the banding ratchet. To overcome this problem we came up with a quick solution of creating an extension strap. I can’t lay claim to coming up with this idea or technique entirely on my own and would like to thank Tony Parsons  for his help and advice.

Buckle and extension strap

This is a length of about 12-14 inches with a buckle on the end. With a little luck there should be enough banding on the boss end to loop through the other side of the buckle.

You might want to use a pair of pliers to pull the end through as shown below.

You can then use the extended length of strapping in the bander to tighten the boss straps.

Be careful with using this technique as if there is insufficient banding on the buckle it can slip off.

Another added advantage of this method and the buckles is if you are careful you can tighten the bosses in situ on the course by just taking the banding ratchet and extension length.

Don’t over compress the bosses as we’ve found light poundage junior bows struggle to penetrate and arrows can bounce back.

Any  comments or thoughts let me know.

Thanks for reading.
Bit dark, but purple shaft with bat wing fletching

Equipment review – Batwing feather fletchings

Rob Shooting

Rob Shooting

Okay, so for the past several months I have been trying out a new flethching profile on my arrow set up. In the past I have always stuck with the shield profile, with Sharon preferring a parabolic profile on her arrows. I feel that a lot of the time it is personal preference, but I’ve found a 4 or 5 inch shield to work well on my flatbows and a 3 inch has always been my preferred choice on my recurves.

These new fletching are a completely different profile called Batwing and being produced by Gateway ( ). So would they prove to be a Joker in the deck or a hidden ace? Sorry had to include some kind of Batman related joke. You can partly blame Sharon for the joke as she’s nicknamed this batch of arrows the Jokers due to the colour scheme resemblimg the colours of the Jokers suit from Batman. Then again it might be nothing to do with colours and more to do with how I shoot them.

So why those colours?  Well I went with bright yellow fletchings and green nocks in the hope I would be able to see them in the target against the purple cresting.

Batwing fletching

Batwing fletching

The purple was partly because of it being club colours and a follow on from testing out the paints Lee had provided me for the Goblin Snot paint review a few months back. If you haven’t seen the review I was quite impressed by the paints.

Back to this review, the fletschings come in three sizes, 2 inch, 3 ½ inch and 4 ½ inch. Though I have all three sizes I’ve only tried out the latter two sizes on my flatbow. Of these two, I found that for my flatbow setup the 4 ½ inch have proved best. I know a couple of compound archers have tried the smaller size on their arrows with some success too.

For reference I normally shoot a 5 inch shield fletching. Whilst the 3 ½ worked ok, I found that they weren’t as forgiving when I had a poor release.

I’ve found the 4 1/2 inch offer stability in flight which is comparable to the larger five inch fletchings.

As I know some of you will be wondering about arrows speed and having put the arrows through a chrono the arrows are coming in at 176-180 Feet Per Second. That may not sound very fast but remember I’m not shooting carbon arrows, but wood ones. For those interested the arrows weigh between 455 and 465 grains, with a 80 grain pile up front and measuring 29 ½ inches being made from port orford cedar.

I wanted to wait before writing up this review so I could test them in a variety of conditions, which I think I have now managed. For those of you who shoot field, you know what it can be like shooting in a wood with variable cross winds between trees. One thing I have noticed with shooting these over the last few months  is they don’t appear to be as adversely affected by wind as my previous choice of five inch shield.

Wet weather, yes it is something that we as field archers have to encounter and despite having one of the warmest and driest summers on record in the UK we did get some rainy days. Wet weather has a huge effect on feather fletchings, often resulting in the feathers profile flattening down and offering very little stability. I was curious to see how these would cope in wet weather and whether the shape would make a difference. I have to report they don’t appear to have the same problem as normal shield that collapse and flatten.

I was a bit worried that their shape might result in them not coping with the occasional foray into the undergrowth which can happen when I miss the target, but so far so good. They don’t seem to have a problem with returning

I bought mine from Merlin Archery in Loughborough

So overall I think they work pretty well and look quite cool too.

Thanks for reading.