[Ansteorra-archery] Archers Opinion? input please :)

David Ruff davidsbox01 at yahoo.com
Wed Nov 16 10:46:47 PST 2005

  I both love you and hate you now!!!!!
  I reamped my price lists for my site, now i have to revamp again heheheh
  i did not know it was for small manufactures and know to charge the tax due to starting a legal corperation business. In that i can produce all parts in bulk. Would hate to get hit with .39 cents a shaft times 500 afew times. I had assumed since i am so low key compared to the big boys that there was a limit before i was under the gun. 
  So wanna be my lawyer? heheh
  Thanks for that write up - learn something.
  I to have found spruce to be very good - however the cost of it in board form is so costly i do not use it. I used to have boards of it from when i worked at the fight school, but since it was chopped up and made into things. 
  I stick with birch and dougfir shafting due to the ease and cost. Altho i like making cedar shafts - we do not got bugs within 100 yards of this place. Nor ants hehehe. Tracy doesn't like it, but i LOVE the smell of it when i work it. 

Eadric Anstapa <eadric at scabrewer.com> wrote:
  David Ruff wrote:        
  I am wondering if archers out there have an opinion about using other woods then cedar for arrows. I make shafts in the 3 woods above and its been my experiance after shooting all three woods that all of them fly the same. Cedar seems to lose on the toughness part as dougfir and ash seem to take abuse better. 
  With the laws putting a tax on cedar shafts (wonder whos brillant idea that was) it seems to me that cedar - while nice - is unnessasary for a match set of target or hunting arrows. 
  Whats your thoughts?
  Input please - good, bad or indifferent

I have used Port Orford Cedar (really an aromatic Cypress and not a cedar at all), Chundo (Chundo is a marketing term as is simply a Native American word for lodgepole pine), Ash, Douglas Fir, and Sitka Spruce.  Here are my thoughts.

We know the benefits of PO Cedar, it is lightweight, straightens easily, and  smells nice.  The downside is that is breaks easily.  Miss the target and hit the frame/stand and it will likely snap wright behind the point.

Chundo is also lightweight and is tougher than cedar so ya dont break as many shafts.  However, my experience is that is doesn't stay straight as long, seems to be more sensitive to humidity, and is harder to straighten that Cedar but still not too hard.

Douglas Fir is heavier than the above but not too heavy and also stronger  .  It also seems to want to stay straight better than chundoo but seems to me to be even harder to straighten and get straight to begin with.

Ash is heavy and strong.  If ya need a heavy shaft to balance a heavy point then its a good choice and is a good choice for hunting arrows so ya get the penetration ya need.  Of course because of it's density is is harder to straighten.

Sitka Spruce I have grown to like the best.   Sitka spruce was used to build wooden airplanes because it has about the best weight to strength ratio of any wood.  It is very light and very strong.  It is also very uniform in weight.  It straightens easily and stays straight.  I love it.

Now as far as tax is concerned....

It doesn't just apply to Cedar, it applies to ANY arrow shaft of any material and also to lots of other archery equipment such as points broadheads, quivers, etc.  

The Federal Excise Tax (FET) has been around for decades.  The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service describe Federal Excise Tax's role in the following excerpt*:

"The Federal Aid in Wildlife Restoration Act, popularly know as the Pittman-Robertson Act, was approved by Congress on September 2, 1937, and begin functioning July 1, 1938. The purpose of this Act was to provide funding for the selection, restoration, rehabilitation and improvement of wildlife habitat, wildlife management research, and the distribution of information produced by the projects. The Act was amended October 23, 1970, to include funding for hunter training programs and the development, operation and maintenance of public target ranges. Funds are derived from an 11 percent Federal excise tax on sporting arms, ammunition, and archery equipment, and a 10 percent tax on handguns. These funds are collected from the manufacturers by the Department of the Treasury and are apportioned each year to the States and Territorial areas (except Puerto Rico) by the Department of the Interior on the basis of formulas set forth in the Act." 
 It is used to fund wildlife conservation , hunter education, etc.  It is one of the few taxes that you pay where the money is earmarked to go to specific programs.  The FET also applies to guns, ammo, some fishing supplies, etc.  There is somewhere around a 11% FET on almost all archery equipment that is to be paid by the manufacturer.  In the past this FET was only paid by domestic producers and imported good weren't taxed.  That changed and now imported archery equipment gets taxed as well.

If you make and sell bows or crossbows as a manufacturer then you are supposed to collect the FET and submit it to the government.  If you are not doing that then you are in violation of the tax laws.

In the past shafts were not taxed.  It was deemed that shafts alone were not a piece of archery equipment.  The needed nocks, and points, and fletches before there were an arrow  (broadheads are taxed separately).  So often it was not until the completed arrow was assembled that a tax was payed.  This was why when you bought arrows from some places they would come complete except without points and the points just came loose.  These people where trying to get around the law by saying that they were selling you components rather than completed arrows.

If you make a sell completed arrows or bolts you should be collecting the FET and submit it to the government.  If you are not doing that then you are in violation of the tax laws.

Legislation last year changed some things.  First it got rid of the Tax on youth bows (the classified that as bows under 30#).  It also corrected things and started taxing imports as well so that the burden was not placed entirely on domestic arrow producers.  And, it changed the tax so that now there is a 39 cent tax on every arrow shaft.

If you make and sell arrow shafts then you gotta pay that 39 cent FET and submit it to the government.  If you are not doing that then you are in violation of the tax laws.

So, if you go buy simple doweling from the local lumber yard, or raw lumber regardless of what wood it is from, and make arrows from it, you just manufactured arrow shafts.  Keep them for yourself and there is no tax to be paid.  But if you sell them you are supposed to collect the FET.

Arrow shaft manufacturers complain about the new changes to FET because it puts all of the burden on them and substantially increased the cost of their products with a $4.68 FET applied to every dozen of raw shafts.  

Archery stores, distributors and anyone else who assembled the components into completed arrows may or may not like the change.  They were supposed to be collecting the tax all along.  However, many of them were not.  Now the cost of their raw shafts have gone up and it is eating into their profits so if you are a big distributor then you probably dont like the changes either.  But if you are a small shop that doesn't manufacture any raw components then you no longer have to bother with the FET since it has been paid before it gets to you.  In the past when you assembled and sold a completed arrow you were liable for collecting the tax.

Look at it this way.  If a completed dozen arrows cost $45 from a fletcher.  The old 12% excise tax that should have been collected would have amounted to $5.40  or  45 cents per arrow.     Now there is a 39 cent FET on the raw shaft from the manufacturer  and the fletcher doesn't have to collect the FET.

Oh yeah,  did you notice earlier  that I said quivers were taxed.  Yep, thats right  if you make and sell a quiver you should be collecting the FET and submit it to the government.  If you are not doing that then you are in violation of the tax laws.
For the average Joe the price of arrows went up  because imported archery goods are now being taxed and there are fewer loopholes to get around paying the FET.  Personally I dont care because these funds are earmarked specifically for good programs and a portion of them come right back to my state every year in ways that I can see.


HL Eadric Anstapa
eadric at scabrewer.com   

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