View Full Version : Refinishing a "yellowed" bow

02-29-2012, 11:32 AM
Found an older Ventura locally that although is lacking scratches or other signs of abuse has yellowed significantly. It has a nice grain pattern which attracts me but it's limbs are a not too attractive yellow. (The finish on the riser is spiderwebbed too.) Can I Minwax Furniture Refinisher off the old finish then just apply a simple oil finish (e.g. the Birchwood & Casey gunstock tru oil in another thread) or are bows a completely different animal when it comes to refinishing?

02-29-2012, 12:09 PM
hey califx200...I refinished a 1973 Damon Howatt Ventura last summer. I had the same issues as you are speaking of concerning the "yellowing" white Gordon glass. Once sanded and ready for refinishing, your Gordon glass should be a nice white finish. I too used the Birchwood & Casey trugun stock oil, but this caused the white glass to yellow. I found a lot of help on StickBow.com, including the man responsible for building my bow back in 1973, Larry Hatfield himself. Since this was my first bow refinishing, a lot of what I learned was by trial and error. I ended up using the trugun stock oil on my wood(riser and tips) and a MiniWax Spar spray urethane on the limbs. This method seemed to produce the most desirable results. Here's a link to the thread I started when I was refinishing my Ventura, maybe it'll be of some help.


...and here's a picture of my '73 DH Ventura...I use it for form practice...it's 66" and 25# at 28"...a REAL SMOOTH shooter!
...like I said, I've done one bow refinish, so by no means am I even an intermediate "restorer", but if I can toss any info your way, drop me a PM and enjoy your refinishing...you'll really appreciate your bow!

02-29-2012, 12:29 PM
...here's another thread I started on stickbow...where the guy who built the bow I have back in 1973, Larry Hatfield, he's head of Martin Archery's traditional bows now and holds a few world records for distance, gave me a few pointers on refinishing my bow...there's also photos of before and after.

02-29-2012, 12:59 PM
wut4dude - don't be modest. that looks like a great job. info exactly what i was looking for thanks.

edit - you've definitely got patience! lots O sanding. i'm going to pass on the bow. again, sweet job on yours.