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Old 15th February 2023, 01:07 AM   #31
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Seems like more to it...and I dont actually know but I suspect it may not be grease on the arrows that makes the difference... Rethinking this perhaps its nothing to do with the speed of the arrow and only connected to the warhead... Thus I rewrite the question as ... Does greasing the warhead improve armour penetration?

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Old 15th February 2023, 07:56 AM   #32
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Does greasing the warhead improve armour penetration?
On soft wood shields, greasing the shaft, Tod suggests it does help by reducing friction beteeen the shaft and shield https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=56ijR7aPy3U
On steel armor, I doubt it gives any noticeable improvements. But until somebody tests it we won't know.
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Old 15th February 2023, 02:18 PM   #33
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Yes I read yesterday about this and was about to reply to Forum having watched every video available ...Tod did a couple of them and when he was about to fire and compare greased shafts onto armour the whole computer system crashed..Now its back up ... maybe we shall see the result... I knew about this vaguelly a decade ago and the rumour was it was Goosegrease ... although no one knew for sure... Against the wooden shield bonkin arrows go in twice the penetration of ungreased war heads... so it looks very promising. I recall Tod mentioning that they used beef fat ... although it was said just as a passing remark about arrows not part of a concentrated study... Now he is on to a proper study we should see a result...

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Old 15th February 2023, 02:34 PM   #34
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Specifically on the English Longbow regarding Bodkin and Needle Bodkin arrows.

Reference http://www.vikingsword.com/vb/showth...t=goose+grease the same question was raised ...at #25 thus here it is again

Does greasing the warhead improve armour penetration?

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Old 15th February 2023, 07:25 PM   #35
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Originally Posted by fernando View Post
The Long Bow in action in Shrewsbury (1403) and the skills of John Bradmore.


.
Yes interesting bit of kit... Please see https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6LYeyO3Oa8o for a video covering the mediaeval surgical removal of arrowheads.

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Old 17th February 2023, 05:18 PM   #36
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This is a fascinating and much overlooked subject Peter, well-done for establishing this thread.
I am slowly working my way through the various links posted... thank-you.
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Old 18th February 2023, 05:53 PM   #37
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This is a fascinating and much overlooked subject Peter, well-done for establishing this thread.
I am slowly working my way through the various links posted... thank-you.


Hello Kieth, Yes it is fascinating... and if you get a spare moment look at how Lars Anderson sees the Archery game. See https://www.google.com/search?q=arch...hrome&ie=UTF-8 Essentially he throws away the rule book and goes back to basic principles ... Regards Peter.
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Old 25th September 2023, 07:43 PM   #38
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Default Greasing Arrows for target penetration.

Hello all, It does seem that greasing the arrow shaft has some effect on arrow penetration. Tod goes on to experiment with arrows against various shields ... I should try to download one of his excellent video demonstrations on this subject.

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Old 29th September 2023, 04:43 AM   #39
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Were the bodkin points hardened ? As a amateur metal worker I would think that would be key to getting an initial "bite" on plate armor, so it would not skid off on an oblique impact.
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Old 29th September 2023, 09:20 AM   #40
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Were the bodkin points hardened ? As a amateur metalworker I would think that would be key to getting an initial "bite" on plate armor, so it would not skid off on an oblique impact.
Tod mentions in one of his videos that they may have case-hardened them, but found examples have corroded so much that the hardened layer is gone. Some royal orders mention 'Iron' points, probably mild steel, but some mention 'Steel'. Might have been hardened.

He tried mild steel, high carbon steel (heat treated) and case-hardened. Recently, he made a video where they tested various arrows on a full suit of typical period armour. Arrows didn't make it thru the cuirass or helmets with any point types. Armour features did try to deflect any skidders from skidding up into the face areas. Most arrows splintered, tho some splinters went thru eye slits designed to stop arrow points from entering - which would ruin a knight's day. Some arrows DID penetrate thinner arm/leg/mail sections (i.e. Mail bevoirs) or bent joint pieces from impact. He also has made a video on leather covered wooden shields & arrows where the leather was glued on with some sand mixed in that made them much less penetrable.


Good experimental archaeology & worth watching.
(He's also done some on roman Pila, including one that had a pilum penetrate a helmet - an Olympic javelin thrower did the throwing - he reached 77 yards with one if I recall correctly.


One Note: 'Modern' sloped composite tank armour is touted as 'new', it isn't they used it in the hundred years war armour was shaped to deflect arrows, had layered armour (steel backed with mail, and padded gambesons).

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Old 29th September 2023, 11:43 PM   #41
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I think this proves the point of greasing the shafts https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=56ijR7aPy3U

The penetration was massive on this experiment...end of.

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Old 3rd October 2023, 01:15 AM   #42
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You are all invited to see the following set of superb Archery by Lars Anderson; a legend in this specialisation...

https://www.google.com/search?q=Long...&ie=UTF-8#ip=1


You will be confronted by rather a lot of Archery Videos on that page but look for those by LARS ANDERSON... Here is a good starter by Lars https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BEG-ly9tQGk



Regards, Peter Hudson.

Last edited by Peter Hudson; 3rd October 2023 at 01:31 AM.
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Old 3rd October 2023, 12:45 PM   #43
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Almost impossible to believe; thanks Peter, I am suitably impressed.
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Old 4th October 2023, 01:49 AM   #44
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Originally Posted by Peter Hudson View Post
You are all invited to see the following set of superb Archery by Lars Anderson; a legend in this specialisation...

https://www.google.com/search?q=Long...&ie=UTF-8#ip=1


You will be confronted by rather a lot of Archery Videos on that page but look for those by LARS ANDERSON... Here is a good starter by Lars https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BEG-ly9tQGk



Regards, Peter Hudson.

As a habitual contrarian I feel the need to add this:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rDbqz_07dW4
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Old 4th October 2023, 03:19 AM   #45
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I neither agree nor do I disagree with your reply... There are scores of videos on the subject of Archery; either specialised stuff or Archery in general. I enjoy static standard Archery but at the same time its interesting to see some of the trick shooters perform.... Actually what the Archer said in her video was pretty good and I quite enjoyed that as well...
I have just seen a great rendition of Arab Archery on another video presentation and that was also very interesting...
As a weapons system the bow and arrow is quite an amazing piece of kit as in fact, in its most basic form is a deadly weapon comprising two bits of wood and a piece of string...
I hope it fits in well since until gunpowder came along this was the way battles went ...especially in this country.

..however, the reason for posting the Lars Anderson detail was only to inspire people to show interest and even to respond... which I am glad you have done...Thank you for your input.

Regards, Peter Hudson.
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Old 4th October 2023, 03:25 AM   #46
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Default Arab Archery.

I have included this to broaden the base of understanding about Archery.

Please see https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tA5irRU6xSM

Regards, Peter Hudson.
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Old 4th October 2023, 03:57 AM   #47
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Were the bodkin points hardened ? As a amateur metal worker I would think that would be key to getting an initial "bite" on plate armor, so it would not skid off on an oblique impact.
Yes they may have done that although it seems that wooden arrows had the habit of snapping since they didnt exactly fly absolutely straight thus on impact were unstable and could break ... Interestingly had the arrows been made of metal they would probably have sailed straight through the armour...Anyway it does seem that greasing the shafts did enable much better penetration of shields and armour not to mention the damage to horses.

Armoured Knights at Agincourt thrown off their horses because they ...the horses ...had been hit by arrows...causing their riders to be ejected into the muddy battlefield would have been in a bad way and likely to have both been either badly injured and possibly trampled by those just behind them. This would have been bad enough had it only affected a few of the cavalry however, scores were dropped which must have caused mayhem and chaoss......The storm of arrows was enough to make the Knights turn their heads away so there was less chance of getting an arrow through their visors...

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Old 4th October 2023, 04:35 AM   #48
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Making a suface greasy or non-stick doesn't necessarily reduce it's friction drag (viscous drag). If it did we would coat airplanes with teflon and save a lot of money in kerosene. So any improvement that you would see will not be due to drag reduction.

Aerodynamic drag in the low subsonic speed range that arrows travel in, is due to 2 reasons: viscosity of the air and longitudinal pressure distribution over the arrow.
The viscous part is due to the air sticking to the exposed surface of the arrow. So to reduce viscous drag you need to reduce this wetted area in ratio to the arrow's mass. Or change the material to a higher density. Like kinetic armour piercing rounds APFSDS for tanks use depleted uranium or tungsten due to their high density. Of course you will need to use a stronger bow to maintain initial velocity. Coating with a lubricant will not work.
The pressure drag is due to high pressure in the front, and a low pressure wake developing in the rear. For an example of a optimized shape, look at a symmetric airfoil. Blunt in the front (required for wings but not for arrows) and long gently tapering back (always a necessity).

So, for a medieval archer to improve, I strongly recommend a research and development programme in the field of computational fluid dynamics and material science, towards the development of depleted uranium arrows of an optimized cross-section distribution. Oh, and to train more, so he can chuck the damn things with gusto. I don't know... maybe hit the gym.
Thanks for the reply; I do recall reading about a Turkish Footbow that fired arrows that had no flights but the shafts were tapered i.e. thicker in the middle and pointed at both ends like an aeroplane fusilage today... and achieving incredible distance far better than any other bows...

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Old 4th October 2023, 12:49 PM   #49
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Yes they may have done that although it seems that wooden arrows had the habit of snapping since they didnt exactly fly absolutely straight thus on impact were unstable and could break ... Interestingly had the arrows been made of metal they would probably have sailed straight through the armour...Anyway it does seem that greasing the shafts did enable much better penetration of shields and armour not to mention the damage to horses.

Armoured Knights at Agincourt thrown off their horses because they ...the horses ...had been hit by arrows...causing their riders to be ejected into the muddy battlefield would have been in a bad way and likely to have both been either badly injured and possibly trampled by those just behind them. This would have been bad enough had it only affected a few of the cavalry however, scores were dropped which must have caused mayhem and chaoss......The storm of arrows was enough to make the Knights turn their heads away so there was less chance of getting an arrow through their visors...

Regards, Peter Hudson.
Good point about chaos. Firepower v melee infantry or cavalry discussions usually don't cover the impact on the attackers of the disruption caused by people and horses falling or shying as they are hit. It'd become a significant obstacle, slowing progress very quickly.
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Old 5th October 2023, 08:09 PM   #50
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Default Matt Easton

See https://www.wikiwand.com/en/Schola_Gladiatoria

....for some detail on Matt Easton who not only gets very involved in Swords and Armour but other weapons ...Archery is one of his favourites.

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Old 5th October 2023, 08:30 PM   #51
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English archers are often thought of firing their bows at a high angle but that is not the case . Here they are in direct close quarter battle range using the flat trajectory of their long bows. Note their outfits...since they were also armed like normal soldiers ready to finish off an opponent. See their head dress... armoured helmets some with the visor up some down. It can be seen that with such powerful Longbows the archers have to almost climb into their bows.

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Old 5th October 2023, 10:29 PM   #52
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Please see https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b1dFzFwgrfE which is a superb discussion with Tod and Tobias at the Wallace Collection in London. Actually there are two videos the second is a brilliant talk on some of the best Armour at the Wallace....

The first video considers myths and facts focussed on Agincourt the battle. Towards the end of the Agincourt session mention is given to the use of beeswax being used on arrows. Later in a separate video this method of improving penetration is tested out by Tod on one of his workshops...

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Old 13th October 2023, 09:04 PM   #53
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Please see https://uk.video.search.yahoo.com/yh...37&action=view

A video of the artefacts . including English Longbows and arrows recovered from the Mary Rose ...
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Old 14th October 2023, 11:06 AM   #54
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Peter, I think the metallurgy of the period would not have allowed for making all-metal arrows light enough to be fired at the velocities required to penetrate their armour. Some experimental archaeology may be required.



Waxing the arrows could also have prevented them absorbing water in the rain & warping. They are occasionally varnished to make them more weather resistant.



Turkish flight arrows were indeed an aerodynamic shape & minimal flights. Some has grooves in the rear portion in lieu of flights to assist stabilization. Their composite recurved bows were more efficient at allowing long draws with shorter bows, but were more prone to weather damage and warping from mishandling as they are unwaxed/varnished to save weight. And they took a lot longer to make properly. They would have bone knocks and points for lightness. They were generally shorter than normal target or war arrows, and generally used with an overdraw device.
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Old 15th October 2023, 04:59 PM   #55
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Just for interest, Metal arrows:


See this re:Lars & 'anyone can shoot thru armour'


Metatron mythbusting
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Old 15th October 2023, 08:20 PM   #56
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All this talk about penetrating armour has made me realise I have absolutely no idea what percentage of the enemy had plate armour, and also, as has already been mentioned, mounts skewered with arrows dropping themselves and their riders into the melee would have left plenty of opportunity to shoot into un-armoured areas of the body, as I'm assuming virtually no-one had full body armour in the grand scheme of things.
I do realise we have an interesting, academic discussion here on the forum, but some of these videos are rather over-dramatised, are they not?
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Old 16th October 2023, 02:45 AM   #57
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All this talk about penetrating armour has made me realise I have absolutely no idea what percentage of the enemy had plate armour, and also, as has already been mentioned, mounts skewered with arrows dropping themselves and their riders into the melee would have left plenty of opportunity to shoot into un-armoured areas of the body, as I'm assuming virtually no-one had full body armour in the grand scheme of things.
I do realise we have an interesting, academic discussion here on the forum, but some of these videos are rather over-dramatised, are they not?
Agreed Keith ... Essentially much damage to the attacking French Cavalry would have been caused by horses dropping under their riders...Once they were thrown off I imagine the Knights were in something of a crush with horses behind them crashing into the melee and knee deep in bloodied mud...plus weighted down in full suits of armour.. The archers were also in the business of taking prisoners for bounty money and were armed like soldiers ...
Amazingly the French seem to have been goaded into the attack and failed to deal with the flanking English archery lines. ...The lines of archers on the English flanks thus had a very successful day. The French also had archers however, they didn't use them...
The video is only an aid to instruction/knowledge and some may be a bit much ...or over the top. I use them a lot but hope readers can fit the good parts into my equation. Regards, Peter Hudson.
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Old 16th October 2023, 03:04 AM   #58
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Peter, I think the metallurgy of the period would not have allowed for making all-metal arrows light enough to be fired at the velocities required to penetrate their armour. Some experimental archaeology may be required.



Waxing the arrows could also have prevented them absorbing water in the rain & warping. They are occasionally varnished to make them more weather resistant.



Turkish flight arrows were indeed an aerodynamic shape & minimal flights. Some has grooves in the rear portion in lieu of flights to assist stabilization. Their composite recurved bows were more efficient at allowing long draws with shorter bows, but were more prone to weather damage and warping from mishandling as they are unwaxed/varnished to save weight. And they took a lot longer to make properly. They would have bone knocks and points for lightness. They were generally shorter than normal target or war arrows, and generally used with an overdraw device.
Thanks for the excellent drawing of the bolt/arrow and it is interesting that they also had grooves in their arrows.. The Comanche arrow also has grooves...three in fact, so it is something they knew about centuries ago...I noted from my own archery practice how an arrow snakes toward a target and how it develops spin similar to a bullet. I noticed how the arrow bends itself around the bow then wobbles its way onto the target... with further twist being done by the flights. In a three finger draw it also causes the string to twist and in slow motion it shows how the arrow performs on its way to the target. Peter Hudson.
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Old 20th October 2023, 09:36 AM   #59
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Reference
A http://www.vikingsword.com/vb/showth...nt+arms+armour


Incredibly this weapon which comprises of two bits of wood and a length of string was like a machine gun when unleashed en masse on an enemy formation on land or aboard ships and was faster to reload and more devastating untill well after the advent of gunpowder.

I have designed this thread with a short starter as I have some interesting material to add as it rolls out to allow maximum input from members.

Regards,
Peter Hudson.
What do you mean by your statement that the english longbow 'comprises TWO bits of wood' ?
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Old 20th October 2023, 11:27 AM   #60
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What do you mean by your statement that the english longbow 'comprises TWO bits of wood' ?
Answer:
A bow AND an arrow
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