Archery | Making Bowstrings – Serving Materials
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Archery | Making Bowstrings – Serving Materials

August 10, 2019


Although you may have chosen your string material you’re not done yet. To complete the string, you need serving and certain material has it’s own nuances to understand. The primary purpose of serving is to
provide a layer of protection to the string. Without it, the string is exposed
to wear and tear, and will quickly fray, then eventually break. The string is
particularly vulnerable to abrasions from surface contact. The edges of the limb tip will wear down the string, and the string will contact the groove, just
below the limb tip, when shot. Thus, these areas of the end loops need to be covered with serving. Serving is also placed on the center of the string to provide a place for the arrow to be nocked. Nocks cannot sit on the bare string and
it’ll quickly cause tears. The center serving is extended so that it covers the forearm area, protecting the string against arm slaps. Putting the serving on is the time consuming part of the string of making process. Care needs to be taken to
ensure that the serving is tightly wrapped, and is smooth and consistent, with no
loose ends. Serving requires a spool of serving thread
and a serving jig. The jig is unscrewed and the spool is loaded into the jig. The serving is threaded through this tiny hole. The base of the jig has this groove,
which sits over the string, allowing you to spin the jig around the string to apply
the serving. Although serving may be made from similar materials to what strings are made from, the construction of the string is quite different. These serving thread is designed so that it has a good grip on the string so it doesn’t slip off. Other properties include: durability and smoothness, which is quite important for the center serving in terms of having a smooth release. This is where things start to get quite confusing. Some archers will prefer to use different serving materials for the center serving and for the end loops. For example, the moderately priced BCY
Halo is actually quite smooth, so this makes it quite popular as a choice for center servings. Likewise for the end loops, something like BCY 62X is so popular because of its durability and abrasion resistance. Something else to consider is thickness. Serving threads come several diameters. For the end loops, a thicker diameter is usually preferred, mostly because of the extra durability. For the center serving, thinner strands are preferred, partly because of the weight, but
mostly because it depends on the size of your nocks. The nocks need a snug fit on the string, but shouldn’t be so tight you can’t get it off if. If it’s too thin, the string simply slips off. If it’s too thick, the nock kind of sticks to the string, this makes it quite hard to get a good clean release. If you have smaller nocks, err on the side of using thinner serving. Now if the serving is just too thin, you
can always thicken it by adding something like dental floss for extra padding, or
you may even choose to add a second layer of material to make it thicker. Whereas, if you have a serving too thick, then you can’t really make it thinner. Also, bear in mind of the thickness of the string is also determined by the material you use and the number of strands you use. This might sound complicated and, honestly, this is probably more for the advanced archers, or for the advanced string makers. Many people do mix and match their materials based on their needs and preferences, and through trial and error. Now if you’re new to this, there’s nothing wrong just getting one spool of serving threat and using it for everything Some materials are designed to be
suitable for both roles. Angel Majesty is generally seen as one of the best materials for center servings and end loops, but it’s also a bit costlier than other materials. For the budget conscious, you might go something like BCY 62 XS. I know this one is important to many people; yes, you can choose from a variety of
colors. Most high performance serving materials, like Angel Majesty only come in black and maybe white. The mid-range materials like 62 XS
or BCY Halo do come in a selection of colors. To sum of this video up,
it’s okay to use one string material for most of your purposes. Pick one that you
can afford to chew through and practice with. You probably won’t notice too much
of a difference. As you become more experienced, start experimenting with different materials to see if you prefer feel of one over another. If you’ve been making your own strings, I’d be interested in hearing what works for you. Please post them in the comments below. This is NUSensei. Thanks for watching, and I’ll see you next
time.

Only registered users can comment.

  1. On my compound strings I use bcy 452x with halo serving. I use .019 for my center serving and .021 for my serving around the cams, for serving on the cables I use .024 and for where the string comes in contact with the string stop I use .017. This combination is one of the best in my opinion and is a very fast string, it generally produces speeds 6-8fps faster than factory strings. I recommend this to my customers wanting to spend a bit extra. For a good budget string I use bcy dynaflight 97 with Brownell diamondback serving in .021 for both cams and center serving. I use similar materials for recurve strings however I have only made and handful of strings for recurves (wish I could get to make more they're so much easier!).
    All the best with your string making. Keep up the great videos!

  2. I use 8190 and Halo for recurve. Halo is a bit harder to apply than traditional serving materials and it doesn't burn/melt as nicely, but it's worth the effort.

    There was small clip in this video where you vere wrapping serving material on string. I do it little diffretly. I try not to let the string turn when I'm wrapping it. I hold the string still with the piece of serving material at the starting point of the serving.

  3. Hello,

    I use majesty serving mostly for center serving, but last string I made I used it also for the end loops and is working just fine. I use also for end loops the bcy 62, mainly because of price.

    My majesty serving is 0.018", but a larger diameter for the end loops is recomended as it will distribute the impact on more area.

    I want to comment also on the tension i use to serve. It just enough to keep the serving jig in a horizontal position instead of letting it glide, or too tight. I've round this.to be just perfect to make a good serving that wont come loose, as well as mantaining a nice round shape.

    Best regards
    Jlzenizo.WordPress.com

  4. Is the centre serving material flat or round? Unless I'm mistaken, my centre serving looks flat… Is that how some servings are made or is it a product of the wrapping process?

    P.s. Nice degree in the background. Monash?

  5. You've mentioned you're a high school teacher, but not your subject. Is it by any chance, chemistry? hehe

  6. It might come as a surprise but BCY actually recommends the thinnest Halo .014 for end loops on a 8125G string. From personal experience (on Astroflight strings) smaller diameter end loop serving gives somewhat a smoother draw and better shot feeling.

  7. There's a video which shows a way to Centre Serve a Bowstring with the serving material's ""tail"" / ""tag end"" running up the inside of the actual serving as you go along. . . . It's a way to thicken it up, for when your arrow nocks are too loose on existing serving diameter. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gjVYgR8dlUY (Serving a Bowstring, Hunting resource Video)

  8. There's another video which graphically shows on PVC pipe & Paracord how to correctly serve in . E.N.L.A.R.G.E.D. detail.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0hwQiKAWl2k [How To Start & Finish a Bowstring Serving ( backserving knot technique ) ]

  9. A Youtube video which explains in a good way the direction to wind the centre serving on to bowstring is
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=50TF2sM-1UQ . . ^^How to Apply serving on a Bow String and understand which direction serving should be applied^^ . . [long title, isn't it!]

  10. Thank you for making so many excellent videos. Some of them have been a great help, and others have simply been fun to watch.
    I was also wondering whether you have a preference between BCY Halo and Angel Majesty.

  11. One suggested reason for multiple coloured servings is have different colours for the top and bottom loops Blue(Sky): Top, and Green(Grass): bottom. While you will have your end loops different sizes in order to string the bow. The extra visual aid can be useful.

  12. For the string im using 8125g… the end servings bcy #3D and angel majesty for center serving and it works very well. 🏹

  13. Hi friend how are ?
    Can you help me ?
    I need one Archery arc with all its accessories and How much is it ? Where is it sold? Thank you my friend

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