Recently I was commissioned by the Mary Rose Museum to make a set of reproduction arrows for their displays, and to show museum visitors what the original arrows loaded onto the ship in 1545 may have looked and felt like.
Each arrow is a faithful reproduction of one I have examined and measured, and each is a different profile, to show museum visitors that not all the arrows were the same.
The three arrows were made as follows:
▪︎ Populus tremula shaft, hand planed and tapered ▪︎ No finish on the shaft as per the originals, just planed, scraped and then burnished ▪︎ Swan fletchings bound with pure undyed silk into a colour matched glue consisting of wax, animal fat and copper verdigris ▪︎ Binding distance, number of turns and starting/tie-off procedures echo the originals ▪︎ Tapered, peeled cow horn insert glued with hide glue into a slot at the nock ▪︎ Two-part iron and steel forge-welded barbed M2/M3 military head ▪︎ Head fitted with fish glue as per the originals
Arrow 1 is 12.5mm tapering to 7.6mm in three distinct stages, not straight from head to nock. Arrow 2 is 11.5mm and parallel until a final taper to 7.4mm. Arrow 3 is 11.6mm, tapers up to 12.4mm then back down to 7.7mm.