Archery case (Ascham) of ebonized red oak w/ brass hardware

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Project by WillAdams posted 12-10-2012 02:44 AM 18911 views 1 time favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Needed a case to fit my Bear Custom Kodiak T/D and other gear, so my first project since high school shop three decades ago:

- 34 ½” x 11 ½” x ~3 ½”
- red oak boards and 1/8” plywood floating in grooves/dadoes
- uses solid brass hardware throughout (save for the hidden (old-style Stanley) bullet catches and their strike plates, and Chinese rare earth magnets)—- handle: England, stay chain: Italy, hinges and ball catches: U.S.A., catches: Taiwan, corner protectors: unknown, probably China (the bow and everything else is made in the U.S., save for the arrows from Korea)
- rare earth magnets in the arrow holder to keep the arrows in place
- I’ve since installed brass corner protectors
- dovetailed corners for the case, dowel joints for the arrow holder
- all hand tools, save for an electric drill to drill the holes for the arrows—- I’m considering getting a mini circular saw w/ track to cut it apart though

Had to pre-finish the arrowholder and inside of the case (incl. groove / dadoes) since the arrow holder is hinged on 3/8” dowels (lubricated w/ bee’s wax)

Not liking Stanley hardware since they got bought out by National Hardware—- anyone have a stash of N.O.S. Made in the U.S.A. 3/8” bullet catches they’d part with?

Next one will use rare earth magnets w/ a countersunk hole, so arrows can be slightly longer (but I’ll need to put some sort of washer or grommet in the countersink to keep points from chipping the magnet—- or I may install the magnets in thin slots or cover them w/ veneer so the won’t show)

I’d like to source (or make) formed (not flat) solid brass strike plates—- suggestions?

I’d also like to find a key lock which would fit in the less than ½” stock.

The next version won’t have the dividers (instead, I’ll make a wooden box and brass clips to hold it in place on the right) and I’ll probably shorten the arrow holder so it falls at the half-way mark. I’ll also probably inset the catches. It also won’t be ebonized—- suggestions for dark finishes for red oak?.

Considered insetting the corner protectors and countersinking screws to attach them, but that’s a lotof screws.

Still not happy w/ the foam insert I cut (and I’ve since replaced the black cloth w/ green felt)—- considering making one of papier mache and covering that w/ flocking—- other alternatives?

Any other suggestions for changes or improvements?

7 comments so far

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

30679 posts in 3835 days

#1 posted 12-10-2012 08:41 AM

Welcome to LJ’s

Really nice build, really well though out.

-- Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View WillAdams's profile


92 posts in 3492 days

#2 posted 12-10-2012 11:44 AM


Reading back through it realized I’d failed to mention:

- finish is vinegar-steel wool ebonizing solution w/ Kiwi black shoe polish to tint the open grain /pores, sprayed w/ Deft high gloss lacquer from a can—- while the appearance is good, it’s really fragile—- will definitely try something less complex next—- probably fuming.

I’d really like to find solutions for the hardware and foam and the best way to cut it apart w/ small portable tools.

View HillbillyShooter's profile


5811 posts in 3789 days

#3 posted 12-10-2012 02:33 PM

Nice project for a great sport! Like the fact that it’s for a recurve. Only drawback I see is that case is way too nice to throw in the back of a pickup for any hunting trip. Good luck and welcome to LumberJocks.

-- John C. -- "Firearms are second only to the Constitution in importance; they are the peoples' liberty's teeth." George Washington

View WillAdams's profile


92 posts in 3492 days

#4 posted 12-10-2012 04:04 PM

Thanks! Did remember one other thing—- the handle is a bit small—- I found a slightly different style at Lee Valley which I’m hoping will be a bit more comfortable, and I’ve since found a source which has them in graduated ½” sizes (but they’re pricey).

I did pick up an Oneida (lever-limb) compound bow though, and need to make a case for it as well if for no other reason than so it will take up less space (I don’t shoot it and the ugly plastic case is cluttering up my basement).

View Kevin's profile


77 posts in 4562 days

#5 posted 12-11-2012 04:16 AM

Built one for my son a year ago, and will be doing again after Christmas. You did a great job on this.

Could you post a few more photos that zoom in on inside of the case?


View WillAdams's profile


92 posts in 3492 days

#6 posted 12-12-2012 12:43 AM

Nothing much to the interior—- it’s ``just’’ a box, save for the dividers (which were not a good idea) and the arrow holder—- but here ‘tis:

Click for details

You can see the rare earth magnets in the first (left) view, the notches I had to put in the divider on the right to make room for the fletching.

View Knothead62's profile


2600 posts in 4458 days

#7 posted 12-12-2012 11:49 AM

Nice! That would make a good basis for a gun case, too. Thanks for sharing.

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