Jia Zhiwei's Manchu bow
Jia Zhiwei's Manchu bows are geometrically faithful reproductions of the old bows used in Qing dynasty China, with long and aggressively forward bent ears that store more energy for a given draw weight than any other traditional bow design. Introduced into China by the Manchu people, this bow style was designed to take out large game, soldiers, or their horses, with a single heavy arrow from moderate ranges.
Like most modern replicas, Jia Zhiwei's Manchu bow uses fiberglass in the working limbs, shielded from the hazardous rays of the sun by a thin layer of leather. The finish is excellent. The main challenge of a long eared bow design is to make the ears light enough so the bow is still efficient, and to reduce hand-shock somewhat. Jia Zhiwei solved this by making ears of light but very strong laminated bamboo. The handle is not only shaped like an original Manchu bow, it is also protected on either side by a patch of genuine ray-skin, a feature found on some of the better antique bows as well.
Strung length: 156.5 cm / 61.5 inch
Ear length tip to knee: 29 cm / 11.4 inch
Effective ear (string-nock to mid-bridge): 22 cm / 8.7"
Maximum draw length: 91 cm / 36 inch
Available draw weights: 30#, 35#, 40#, 45#, 50#, and 55# 1
Minimum arrow mass: 12 grains-per-pound (gpp) of draw weight 2
1Measured at 36" from the far side of handle.
2Though we recommend 13-15 gpp for a more pleasant shooting experience. This matches the arrow mass ratios used with old Qing bows and arrows.
Graph kindly made and provided by Jia Zhiwei bow owner Ralph Leitloff. See his first experiences under PERFORMANCE.
Thanks to Jim Thorne of www.buildyourownbow.com for providing these handy force-draw curve graphs for the archery community.