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Custom Arrow Shaft Target Stabilizers | Building Rat Bow Ep. 1

Updated: Mar 19, 2022

I've recently had a rare bit of spare time. Cold weather and snow have prevented my usual outdoor activities from being as enjoyable. So, instead, this time has been spent with wasteful and uninspiring time killers such as social media scrolling and reruns of "Naked and Afraid". I decided to fill this time with something more meaningful. I needed to do something creative and off the wall, yet with a sense of purpose. I needed a project, preferably one related to archery and bowhunting, as even competitive or recreational archery relates back to improved bowhunting ability and ultimately feeds my wife and I for most of the year.

I have always been interested in builds, arts, crafts, invention, etc. As a young lad I stayed busy with K'nex, Legos and modifying my toy Battle Bot to draw blood. I've built motorcycles, carts, furniture and other small things to feed the creative habit, but I've never involved archery. That's where the thought hit me. I love archery and the personal nature of it... but the accessories and colors are only so diverse. I'd love to custom build everything on the bow, but I'm a poor fabricator and only own junk for parts. There's only one answer... time to build a Rat Bow.

The concept is simple, find old parts, pieces and materials in my shop and "build" a bow. No high dollar or over marketed "custom" accessories. Allow it to look home built and rough, while achieving a utilitarian and accurate finished product.

This will be done over several weeks, but step one is here.


Many archers hoard old arrow shafts, me being no exception. As I was wandering through my archery room the thought hit me that a target stabilizer is simply carbon rods with weights placed at the ends to cause a balanced load in the center, resulting in a steadier bow. Why spend hundreds of dollars on something so simple when parts and pieces to do so are so readily available. Unused arrow shafts make the perfect rod, and adjustable weight points handle the need for the end weights. If more weight is needed any old bit of material can be attached to do so. So, the shafts and weights are all that is necessary... but how will I attach them to the bow? After scrounging through the shop, I came across an old piece of ladder stand. The square tubing, when compressed into a diamond, fits snugly over four Gold Tip Xcutter shafts. This would be a perfect end cap and allow a point to mount my threaded rod for attachment. After test fitting the diamond shaped pieces, I cut plates to snugly fit into the end of the now diamond tubing. Holes were drilled into these plates and bolts were welded in place making a full piece that would hold and support my stabilizer rods and then thread into my quick disconnect system.

The video below shows the full build of these "custom built" stabilizers. They are a raw yet efficient way to create the desired balance and the perfect start to my RatBow Build. Stay tuned as I'll post all updates here and on YouTube as I continue.

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