Unless you’re playing Minecraft in Creative Mode, using your weapons will reduce their durability. And while there are alternatives to using a Sword such as Pickaxe, Axe, or Hoe, there are none for making a Bow and enjoying its protection. So, at least one should be in your inventory at all times. But you’ll find a collection of nearly-depleted bows for emergencies will soon pile up. If only there was a way to use the durability of Bows that have fallen into disrepair somehow… Well, there’s is. In fact, that’s a key part of learning how to repair a bow in Minecraft. Let’s begin.
1. Repair a Bow in Minecraft via Anvil (Recommended)
We taught you how to use an Anvil as part of our Minecraft Enchanting guide, which is essential here. Let’s get into it.
1. Fix a Bow via Mending
To learn the required steps, refer to method 1, submethod 2 in the aforementioned guide. We also went into a deep dive into what Mending does in Minecraft. Reading both should give you all the answers.
2. Fixing a Bow by combining two items
Now for the most commonly used technique. For this, refer to method 1, submethod 3 in the guide we mentioned at the start. The instructions are identical: place two damaged Bows in Slot 1 and Slot 2, and you’ll get a repaired Bow in Slot 3 at a cost of some XP (experience). You can also:
- Place two Enchanted Bows to get a fixed Enchanted Bow.
- Place one Bow and one Enchanted Bow to get a repaired Enchanted Bow.
Things to keep in mind
Here’s what you need to know about repairing Bows:
- Place the Bow you want to keep into Slot 1, and the “sacrificial” Bow in Slot 2.
- Upon repair, the resulting Bow will get the combined durability of the two Bows used, plus a 5% durability bonus.
- The more times you fix your Bow up, the pricier the repair gets. Players suggest renaming your Bow using an Anvil to reset the count.
- Bows whose joint enchanting level is 39 or higher cannot be repaired and you’ll get a “Too expensive!” message. The enchanting level is an internal calculation of enchantments and their types that can change from patch to patch.
- There are no “discounts” for over-repair. The process will consume the same amount of XP regardless of the durability needed.
2. Repairing a Bow in Minecraft via Crafting Table or Grindstone (Inferior)
Using a Crafting Table or Grindstone to fix a Bow is inferior to Anvils. Even if you place two Enchanted Bows or one Enchanted Bow and one Bow, the resulting item will be a non-enchantment Bow. Still, both are viable alternatives if crafting Anvil is too expensive, the XP cost of repair is too great, or the enchantment level is too high. With that said, here’s how to get a repaired Bow in this fashion:
- Crafting Table. We taught you to make and use a Crafting Table in Minecraft. Open the Crafting Menu and place two Bows in any of the 9 empty boxes in the 3×3 crafting grid. A repaired Bow will appear in the single box on the right-hand side.
- Grindstone. We demonstrated how making Grindstone works too, and the procedure is identical to using an Anvil, except that Slot 1 is above Slot 2 instead of being next to it.