First go to Home Depot and buy some 72" Bamboo Plant Stakes. They come in a 6 pack. Buy as many as you like expecting to get 3-4 usable shafts per bag.
You will also want to pickup some 16D Duplex Nails.
Now go through the bags and pickout the straightest pieces with a OD (outside diameter) of between 7-10mm. It helps to have an open end wrench handy to help gauge the OD. We are going to be making these into 32" shafts so the OD only needs to be between 7-10mm for a 32" section.
You should now have a pile of hand picked 72" Bamboo Plant Stakes with an OD of between 7-10MM over a 32" section.
Now we need to cut the Bamboo Plant Stakes down so they are more manageable for the straightening process. Bamboo likes to split when being cut so be careful here and use a sharp/fine tooth saw.
When cutting the Bamboo you need to find the best section of your 72" stake. Bamboo has a natural taper. The thick end of you bamboo is going to have the point. The thin end will have the nock. Take this into account when cutting the Bamboo. You will want your cut at the nock end to be about 1.5" past a node. We will be using the node to help setup the Self-Nock later on. Go ahead and cut the shafts down to only about 36-40" at this point. You want to leave them a little long to help with straightening.
In the pic below you can see where you want to have the cut for the nock end in relation to the Bamboo node.
For straightening the shafts I like to use a heat gun. Just about any heat source will work.
Some people like to straighten the nodes first. Some like to do the mid section first. It does not seem to matter either way so choose which one you like. I start with the nodes.
I take my heat gun and place it under the node while spinning the shaft. Once the section I am heating gets hot enough the Bamboo will bend very easy. Just bend it as straight as possible and move on to the next node.
After you do the nodes move on the section between the nodes.
[ October 10, 2011, 01:40 PM: Message edited by: Rob DiStefano ]
Next we need to cut our straightened shafts to length (32") and sand down the nodes. Some people leave the nodes as is. I prefer to sand them down. The choice is yours. You will also want to sand the entire length of the shaft with 80gr sandpaper.
Before and after of the sanded nodes.
When cutting the nock end only take off a little bit. You want to leave a node about 3/4" above the nock end (skinny end) for setting up the Self-Nock. After cutting the nock end measure 32" and trim the excess off the front. Do not worry about node placement on the point end (fat end) it does not matter.
You should now have nice pile of straightened, sanded, cut to length (32") shafts with an OD of between 7-10mm.
[ October 10, 2011, 01:41 PM: Message edited by: Rob DiStefano ]
Now we will attempt to spine our arrows. Once again some people do not bother to spine their Bamboo Arrows. I will be. For optimal arrow flight you will want your arrow spine to match the weight of your bow.
I do not have a spine meter so this is how we will be doing it.
Take two of your 16D Duplex nails and nail them level to a flat surface 26" apart.
Next go into your quiver and grab an arrow that shoots well out of your bow. Place the arrow on the two nails and hang any 2lb. weight from the middle. Make a mark in the middle where the arrow flexes to it furthest point.
Now go through your Bamboo Shafts and do the same thing. Place the shafts that are +/- 1mm from your mark in a separate pile. While doing this spin the shaft with the weight on it and find the stiffest side. This is the side you want facing the bow. Make a small mark on the nock end so you know where to place your Self-Nock.
You should now have pile of spined, straightened, sanded, cut to length (32") shafts with an OD of between 7-10mm and a mark for your nock.
[ October 10, 2011, 01:42 PM: Message edited by: Rob DiStefano ]
Time to turn the 16D Duplex nails into points. Take a nail and chuck it up in your drill.
Now head over to your sander and spin the head with the hand drill while you slowly taper the tip to a fine point (both the drill and the sander are moving in this picture even though it does not look like it).
Finished head should look like this and is now ready to be installed in our shafts.
[ October 10, 2011, 01:46 PM: Message edited by: Rob DiStefano ]
Now we will install our 16D Duplex Nail Points into our shafts. If you want to cut your shafts shorter then 32" now is the time to do so. I am leaving these full length.
First drill out the center of the shaft with a 5/32" drill bit (or a little smaller size OD drill bit then the nail). The shaft will want to split so go slow.
Next heat up the nail red hot and push the nail in the shaft. Make sure the nail is red hot or it will not want to fit all the way. Go slow and dont push to hard. Once the nail fits all the way in let it cool for 10-15 minutes.
Once its cool to the touch pull out the nail and squeeze in some Gorilla Glue. I like Gorilla Glue because it fills the gaps. Any glue will do. Then I wet my nail (Gorilla Glue likes one side wet) and insert it in the shaft.
Come back in a few hours and the Gorilla Glue should be dry. It will fill any gap it between the head and the shaft with foamy glue.
Give the tip a good sanding to clean up the extra glue and to slightly taper the area around the marrige between shaft and point.
[ October 10, 2011, 01:48 PM: Message edited by: Rob DiStefano ]