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The Goose Feather 
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Joined: Fri Apr 06, 2012 10:02 pm
Posts: 4
Post The Goose Feather
This information may not be new but I feel that it is extremely interesting to us. I would like your feedback on the following.

Some of us here in New Zealand have recently been fortunate enough to source Canadian Goose feathers for fletching our arrows. Previously we had to use Turkey feathers. Experience/experiments have shown that when designed to the same specifications as the Turkey feathers, the Goose arrows travel about 20 yards further and when using heavy 'warbows' of 100 pound draw weight plus, distances of 220 yards plus are now the norm. A small number of Kiwis are shooting these bows. I am not one of them.

We find that Goose is thinner and a little softer and has a prominent grease line which seems to stiffen the feather in just the right place. But being a bit more fragile than Turkey they seem to wear out faster.

It seems to me that this information is of value and I would like your comments if you have any.

Sun May 12, 2013 6:41 am
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Joined: Tue Oct 11, 2005 10:01 am
Posts: 210
Post Re: The Goose Feather
Murray - this is very interesting and I do hope you get some replies. As you know, Ascham sung the praises of the goose, and the one we believe he was talking about was the Grey Lag. He goes into detail on the different types of geese and it makes fascinating reading - I take it you have Toxophilus ?

It seems that water birds produced feathers which were favoured in the past, as swan was also used - although peahen was another source. Today it is believed that the closest we have to what was used then is the Pilgrim goose as they breed true = Grey goose, white gander. Hence the Grey Goose Wing as a poetic name for the arrow.


Sun May 12, 2013 12:58 pm

Joined: Fri Apr 06, 2012 10:02 pm
Posts: 4
Post Re: The Goose Feather
Yes I have Toxophilus and have just had another look. What he says makes even more sense now. Timeless wisdom is great. Thanks for the advice and the information. Yes, I do hope that there may be some commments from others on this. I am particularly interested if other archers have noticed the different flight characteristics of various fletchings. The archers of old certainly knew their stuff.

Mon May 13, 2013 8:14 am
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