Friday, September 7, 2012
Slingshots in ancient times?
As some of you may know I specialize in slingshots, and rubber based weapons. Now vulcanized rubber wasn't invented before the mid 1800's.
What did the Dennis the Menace kind of boys used before Mr. Goodyear's useful invention?
Well, we know about the "David Sling", and the related throwing sticks. But these weapons require lots of practice. No problem for sheppards, but what did the offspring of an urban Roman/medieval family use when he was up for shenanigans?
Torsion based weapons, using twisted rope, were clearly well known back then.
So it is likely that toy sized versions were made, too.
I want to find out if a handheld slingshot, based on twisted rope rather than rubber bands, is feasible. Of course it needs to fire rocks and lead/steel balls, and of course it has to be somewhat accurate.
I bought some 4mm hemp rope and tested the concept - it works! I chose an inswinger design for power and a larger swing angle. The hemp rops is very unelastic, and the swing has to be limited to about 90 degrees. If I go above, the draw gets too strong at the end of the motion. Keep in mind no trigger and no stock. Just a very wide fork with the rope casings at the end.
Posted by The Slingshot Channel at 11:44 AM