10 Best Wood to Make a Bow 2022

If you are looking for the best wood to make a bow, then you are just in the right place. For the DIY enthusiasts that doesn’t fancy spending on acquiring finished products but love to put their skills to work, here are some of the wood that can be considered for making a bow.

The osage orange is the best wood to make a bow from our research as it possess the right combination of sapwood and heartwood which are the right resources you need for a wood that is considered for making quality bows. However, there are many others that worth consideration which we have listed below.

The woods which are been used for creating bows must be strong and durable. So, we will find out shortly some of the woods you can always reach out to if you are trying to make a bow of different types.

What are the best wood to make a bow?

1. Osage orange

best wood to make a bow

The Osage orange wood is a perfect wood to make a bow if you are looking for one that you can use. It has a golden to bright yellow color with straight grain and a fine to mixture texture.

The wood is extremely durable which makes it to be referred to as one of the most decay-resistant woods in North America. Also, it has no odor and it is very hard to work with.

Due to its hardness and density, it is known to be hard but you can still get your desired result with it. It is a wood that can be used for a wide range of applications.

Due to its relatively low modulus of elasticity, weight and modulus of rupture, it is considered one of the best woods for making a bow of all kinds.

2. Yew

yew wood for making a bow

Yew is a perfect example of a hard softwood. It is a heavy, hard, firm, tough and elastic wood. It has good stability and its ability to shrink makes it a great consideration for bows.

It is highly resistant to weather and is susceptible to insect or fungal infestation. It is also one of the woods been used for making now because of its strength which comes from the combination of sapwood and heartwood. The sapwood excels under tension as it forms the back of the bow and is being stretched.

This badlands pack can accommodate your bows

3. Ash

ash wood for making a bow

Ash is a strong wood that is durable and tough. It is generally light in color, it has a fairly straight grain but it is coarse. Due to its strength and durability, it is considered for lots of uses such as making furniture, frames, tools and bows.

Ash is a ring-porous hardwood. Most of the ash that is available from timber is American white ash, and it is quite different from European ash. While American ash can make bows, they are not to be considered as the best compared to those made from European Ash and the wood makes better arrow shafts than bows.

4. Black locust

Also called Robina and false Acacia is a strong wood that is known to be used for outdoor tools. It is highly durable and resistant to decay which makes it fit for wood fence, post and bows.

The wood is known to be very strong and tough and that makes it a consideration for bow making. It responds well to both lathe turning and steam bending.

5. Hickory

hickory wood for making a bow

It is one of the woods that you should consider for bow making because it is indestructible and very strong. The wood is exceptional very hard, shock resistance but flexible to use for tools like a bow which requires bending.

It has sapwood as the bark and the heartwood as the belly which is the perfect combination you should always look for in a wood that is considered for a bow. The truth with bow making is that any wood with the combination of sapwood and heartwood will make a very good bow.

6. Oak

oak wood for making a bow

The oak wood is ideal for making flat bows. It is exceptionally strong and durable. It has attractive light color, resistance to fungal infestation, rot resistance and it doesn’t smell.

It produces a good result with hand and machine use and it comes out fine when used for making bows. It has a smell that is common to most oaks and most people find it appealing. Some uses of the wood include boatbuilding, barrel, cabinetry, flooring and furniture.

7. Maple

For those who love attractive bows, you might want to consider one that is made from maple wood. It is good for making flat bows and if turns out to be very strong and durable to handle any condition.

It is the best for making recurve bow because it has the ideal flex snappiness that you need for a recurve bow.

8. Dogwood


Most people in Europe make use of dogwood for bow making than those in the U.S. Dogwood is such a good wood to be considered for making bows.

It is dense, tough, very strong and is high in compression. When you are getting a dogwood for bows ensure you are getting one that doesn’t have a knot to prevent cracks.

If you will be using the bow frequently, we will suggest you opt for other woods because frequent use of the dogwood might bring about a knot that will affect the bow over time.

9. Cedar

cedar wood for making a bow

Cedarwood is a softwood that is considered for making bows. It is tough and durable to handle the rigour of making a bow out of it. The eastern red cedar is in the family of juniper and it thus makes excellent bows.

10. Bamboo

Bamboo is common and easier to find. It is considered as one for making bows too because it is less expensive and elastic as a result of heat exposure and that makes it last longer.

It is good for making bows and it snaps very well which will help give the arrow more force to fly.

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Bow Making Instructions

Is Yew a good bow wood?

Yew is one of the widespread European timber that can be used for making self longbows. However to do that it requires some degree of heat treatment of the belly which is the heartwood.

Is Pine good for a bow?

Pine is also a wood you can consider for making a bow. However, it is not strong and tough so you have to make the pine bow thicker for adequate use.

Is cherry wood good for bows?

Cherry wood is too touchy for bow wood. However, it is one you can consider for making bows and it makes shooting swift and precise.

Is Dogwood good for bows?

Dogwood also makes a good bow but you have to ensure the wood you choose doesn’t have a knot.


Here are some of the best wood to make a bow you can consider if you are interested in making your bow yourself. This will surely save you a fortune for buying a finished bow and also, it will surely bring some sort of satisfaction and happiness to DIY lovers.

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Outdoorsman, hunter, writer, photographer, inventor and owner of Sage & Braker. Pics taken by yours truly unless otherwise noted.

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