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Longbow versus breastplate - which will win?


Sedalia Dave

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You had confidence in your armor? Then why weren't you wearing it?

 

Obvious answer:

I had confidence that my armor would defeat the arrow. I did not have confidence that the archer would not shoot me in the face.

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19 minutes ago, Alpo said:

You had confidence in your armor? Then why weren't you wearing it?

 

Obvious answer:

I had confidence that my armor would defeat the arrow. I did not have confidence that the archer would not shoot me in the face.

 

 

Or that you don't have confidence that the shaft won't be deflected up into your jaw.

 

A lot depends on the shape of the armour, the angle at which the arrow strikes and the type of arrowhead.   

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In the videos, specific examples of steel defeated specific arrows.  No random samples of steel, for example. I have not watched all of the videos.

 

in the Hundred Years’ War, English archers defeated French armor.  Can’t say all French armor, can’t even say that all, or any, of the armor was French, only that the archers really softened up the French attackers.

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About 12 years ago, I was doing some electrical work for a (then) well known crossbow company (now owned by Barnett Outdoors) in Tarpon Springs, Florida when the Tarpon Springs Police Dept., brought some of their vests for testing with crossbows.

 

I was shocked that all of the vests without plates fail miserably. The non-plated vests were penetrated completely and some had the bolt go completely through vests into the hay bales behind the Styrofoam dummy that the vest were on. The vest with plates stopped the bolts but I don't know if the plates were damaged.

 

Granted, the most powerful crossbows were used but I was very surprised at the results. The TSPD was not happy with the results from what I could determine.

 

Learned one thing, don't wear a "bulletproof" vest to a crossbow fight.;)

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Gunpowder and arquebusses were the end of armored fighters til then plate steel was the king.

 

Or so I was under the impression.

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The proper Arrow head is very important for use on armor, a strong narrow "Bodkin" type is the right one to use...

This is a three blade head...

 

Jabez Cowboy

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On 2/22/2024 at 3:13 AM, Marshal Mo Hare, SASS #45984 said:

 

in the Hundred Years’ War, English archers defeated French armor.  Can’t say all French armor, can’t even say that all, or any, of the armor was French, only that the archers really softened up the French attackers.

 

Thousands of arrows plunging onto them as they tried to cross a soggy field, and piling up against the sharpened stakes of the English defenses.  Some arrows are bound to find the weak spots.  Or kill me horses.

 

On 2/22/2024 at 3:21 AM, Cypress Sun said:

was shocked that all of the vests without plates fail miserably. The non-plated vests were penetrated completely and some had the bolt go completely through vests into the hay bales behind the Styrofoam dummy that the vest were on. The vest with plates stopped the bolts but I don't know if the plates were damaged

 

It shouldn't be a surprise, after all, the Kevlar has to be cut and sewn in order to make the vests.

 

Tests with recurves are similar.   Broadheads are designed to cut their way in.  Also, they don't expand.  That needle point and the sharp edges just keep penetrating and cutting. 

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On 2/22/2024 at 6:21 AM, Cypress Sun said:

…I was shocked that all of the vests without plates fail miserably…


Knives can defeat soft armor too.

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The arrow doesn't really have to penetrate very deeply to screw up a knight's day. 

 

Just a 1/2 inch or so of an arrowhead punching into the armor, with ragged edges of the armor plate turned in from the penetration could be likely to get debilitating fairly quickly, even with the padding they wore underneath.

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