Thursday, September 29, 2011

It's dogwood - but NOT a slingshot!

Tried my hands on a simple wooden knife - came out OK.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Demon Hunter banded up

Made a nice bandset for the Demon Hunter tonite, from three layers of TB Black per side.

Looks great, feels great, and probably shoots great - no time to test, in spite of the warm weather the sun goes down early already. No more shooting after 7 PM.

Monday, September 26, 2011

The "Demon Hunter" Design line

I have agreed to do a trade with Robert, the owner of Rockstonedleather.

He will make me a custom watch (I can't find good commercial ones as my wrist is too thick, almost 10" diameter).

Now Robert loves gothic "hard rock" designs, obviously. So I came up with a Phoenix variation, slightly "Van Helsing'ed".

I just wanted to make a quick and dirty test frame, used some plywood and some leftover olive wood parts as scales. Inked it black, then added some bronze "coffin" nails I had lying around.

It came out really good! I am blown away about how comfortable the frame is.

Have ordered 2000 year old moor oak for the one I am going to make for Robert... it will be even nicer than this one.

Lots of shooting, slingshots and cats

A new video is online!

This time, the pulley based draw length extension employed by the Bullpup Sling-X-Bow has been brought over to a conventional slingshot. 32 cm (13") of additional acceleration make this camo painted huge frame a true performer.

Both weapons are shot through the chrony, and the crossbow won by only a few percent.

The original design is from Mr. Robert Blair, it is called the "ComBow". The Slingshot Channel converted Mr. Blair's invention for the much faster flatbands, and also for the far more powerful "butterfly" shooting style. The result is a stronger slingshot, but it is also pretty bulky.

The video shows to more frames carved from dogwood, and a hand protection "glove". The slingshots are all used against a 75% empty 5 liter beer barrel. The beer was no longer drinkable, but good enough for the slomo cam to take some nice shots.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Afraid of hitting your hand?

"You will hit your hand" is one of the most common statements I get as comments on my videos. It actually happened a few times. A band snapped at the wrong moment, at release, and the ball went slightly off, for example.  

Just for fun, I designed a cuff that protects your hand. This model is for hammer grip style shooting, but of course it can be adapted for the finger support style as well.

The leather is 6mm cowhide, bought a ton of it on ebay. It is very tough, no slingshot ball can penetrate it. Can't make a full glove from it, it is not flexible enough.

I can and will optimze this further. Velcro comes to mind, or rubber. 

Saturday, September 24, 2011

A Tribute to Robert Blair

OK, I wanted to make a handheld version of the sling-x-bow with rollers.

Of course flatbands, and also of course with pulleys. This design requires more attention to make the bands stay safely on the rollers, as the draw will be much more irregular than that of the crossbow, with the strirrup and the two handed draw.

So I shaped the rollers liek hour glasses, and added guides for the bands. Works pretty good. The thick round pieces of dowel in front of the rollers help to make the bands stay on the pulleys after the shot.

The result very much looks like a flatband version of Robert Blair's ComBow! So I officially bow my head to the master.

Performance is, as expected, about 15% better than using conventional frames. It is a lot more bulky, though.

Painted it "camo" style just like the crossbow, so I can compare both weapons. Video tomorrow!

Latex Inner Tubes - Results

OK, the thicker type arrived, too.

I tested it, and it does work much better than the black Butyl stuff - but not anywhere near as good as TB Gold (or Black or Blue).

It is very stretchy, more so than TB, but it ain't as fast. This butterfly bandset accelerates the 15 mm steel ball to about 50 m/s, same as the office rubber.

Is it expensive? Not really, Costs 10 Euro, and is enough for six or seven bandsets.

Natural Dogwood Howitzer: Done.

Finished it yesterday, came out very good. It is amazing how strong that dogwood is. Even the hooks ("triggers") are solid, solid, solid.

BTW, this was the fork I made it from:

Also, I bought two more breakfast boards made from olive wood. Should be enough for at least four shooters. I love the grain, the smell and the texture of that wood. 

Friday, September 23, 2011

What's your guess...

I am working on another "natural" version from one of my designs. I finished the raw cutting job this morning, lots of work ahead still - but you can see the slingshot emerging.

So what do you think:

a) What is this slingshot made from? Hint: It once was a natural fork, and NOT catwood...
b) What is the name of the design? Hint: NOT the palm cannon.


Germany: New Dankung Importer

I just found out that there is a new Dankung importer in Germany. I'll switch to German now, as this is of interest only for my German followers.

Also, es gibt einen neuen Schleudershop in D! Sieht nicht übel aus. Das Beste ist: Es gibt auch Thera Gold Bandsets zu kaufen - nicht mal teuer.

Hier geht's zur Webseite von SooSoo

Ich habe noch keinen Kontakt aufgenommen, aber ein gutes Gefühl bei der Sache. Eine kurze google-Suche fördert zu Tage, dass der Inhaber (oder seine Ehefrau) eine schnuckelige kleine Hundepension im Norden betreiben.

Wir brauchen solche shops, weil eben nicht jeder in der Lage ist, sich selbst zu versorgen - oder einfach keine Lust/Zeit hat.

Ich wünsche dem Team von SooSoo viel Erfolg!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

New natural came out great

Made this little natural after work, just needed the physical activity. It has been a while since I made my last frame, too.

Cornus sanguinea of course (European dogwood). This time, one of the limbs had obviously been dying, which added beautiful patterns to the frame.

The shape is most comfortable and pleasing. There is really no reason why a slingshot has to be any larger than that one. The palm swell works great for both hammer grip and finger support style.

Banded it up with a half butterfly double TB gold band, seems to be the right dimension for this great shooter.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Inner tubing: A comeback?

I recently tested inner tubing from bikes, not a very good slingshot band material. Unstretchy and slow.

But now I learned that until WW2, inner tubings were made from natural latex, until the shortages lead to using a material called butyl rubber as a substitute. That substitude was then kept to this day.

Except that some high end guys are using latex again, simply because they believe that it is lighter and has less rolling resitance.

Read about the inner tubing history here

So I bought the best stuff I could find (a whole 28" tubing set weighs less than 60 gramms =  960 gr) and it arrived today!

I immediately checked it out and it is VERY PROMISING. It stretches more far than TB Gold (about 65%) and feels more linear until the very end of the stretch. I banded a Panther up with 15cm effective draw, untapered. 5 kg draw! And fast. Probably the fastest tubular rubber I ever tested.

As soon as I have some time, I will make a tapered butterfly set and test the heck out of it.

Monday, September 19, 2011

How to make + shoot the bullpup crossbow

The winner is...

John S.

Congrats! PM me on the forum for the details.

Now, the 150-posts-contest will start, means that the weekly drawings are suspended until the ten winners are found.


Sunday, September 18, 2011

More fun with the slingshot cannon

I left the cannon at Tobias's farm, as I don't really have enough place for it at home.

The boys sorted out the small issues we ran into at the first shooting, and gave the little French car its final bombardment! Looks like they had a ton of fun.

Great video editing, too!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Inner tubing and office rubber vs. TB Gold

On many requests, I made a comparison between different rubber types.

The task: A bandset that everybody can draw. I settled for 5 kg draw (12 lbs) and 85 cm draw length (33").

Made a bandset from inner tubing, office rubber and TB Gold.

The outcome is interesting!

See the data over at the forum

Watch the video over at youtube

A manly bandset for a manly crossbow

Six layers of TB Gold, 2,8cm (fork) x 1,8cm (pouch). Draw is about 80 lbs.

This is for tomorrow's video about the bullpup.

Bullpup Crossbow: Done

I have finished the weapon.

The Camo paint came out nice, looks way cooler I think (plus it is protected against rain now).

Video soon!

Friday, September 16, 2011

"Swing" Mounted Scope Added

Added a scope. Of course one of the trusted German Army Surplus G36 scopes, 5 bucks a pop.

I glued it to a wooden ring, which in turn was glued to a 6mm bolt.

The swing arm is running very tightly on an axis made from 6mm aluminum tubing, no play in the mechanism. A rubber band holds it into place.

The scope is attached to the swing arm with the bolt, which allows me to adjust the aim left-right and up-down.

The swing arm makes it possible to draw back the bands without any problems, as the scope is out of the way.

It is very accurate!

Seems like the finishing job is ahead of me.


Thursday, September 15, 2011

Bullpup Sling-X-Bow: Front enhanced

Have added two bent metal rods to the front part, so the bands do not slip off, but stay on the rollers. This allows a much faster reloading.

Plus, it adds safety. In the unlikely event a roller breaks off, the rods (that are bolted onto the stirrup assembly) will prevent them from flying towards the shooter's face.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Leonardo's Giant Crossbow - 1:100 toy model

The set arrived today, I couldn't wait to put it together.

See the photos over at the forum

Came out nice!

The Slingshot Channel now has a forum!

That is right, finally I have my own forum.

Check it out here!

Can you post commercial stuff? Sure, but no spam please.

Can you post hunting stuff or dangerous constructions? Sure. Why not?

Is it drama free? I hope not! How boring...

Is it provocation free? Not in this life.  Boooring.

Can Jörg do whatever he wants? Yes, he can. Go on my nerves and I will say "thanks and bye bye, off you go".

Is it clique free? Right now it is (just me and Thomas, my web designer), but I promise that will change. Cliques are actually the salt in the stale soup of society.

How is it different, then? Well - it is mostly for my fans, not necessarily a place for the entire community to meet. Everybody is welcome, as long as there is no foul language.

It isn't finished, and also I have to fill in my videos (a big part of the forum). But you are welcome to use it!

I will also do some raffles soon, in order to boost membership.


Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Leonardo's Giant Crossbow Challenge - First Sketch

The "Da Vinci" project is slowly maturing.

The book about Leonardo's giant crossbow arrived,

See the book on Amazon

and also I found the original documentary from ITN Factual Television (2002), which was telecast in Germany by The Discovery Channel a few years back.

Very insightful. Turns out that da Vinci never built the thing, he only sketched it out for the Duke of Milan, Ludovico Sforza, sometime between 1482 and 1492. Interesting: He promised that it will shoot a 100 lbs (44kg) stone ball (roughly 12" or 31 cm diameter) 28 yards (25 meters) far, and a 10lbs (4,4kg) ball 280 yards (250 meters) far.

The ITN team had three months and probably more than 10 craftsmen to build the crossbow. I think they spent at least 100,000 Euros. A fail, in the end. The 20 lbs ball they used did not even fly 20 yards. Then the prod broke, so they gave up. Pathetic attempt, really.

Just for the fun of it, I ordered a 1:100 scale plastic model of the Giant Crossbow, can't wait.

Here it is on amazon

Anyway, I want to make a slingshot cannon that exceeds the ancient promise, and I want to do it in three WEEKS, not months. With hopefully just two assitants. For under 3,000 Euros.

This will be pretty much a variation of my previous slingshot cannon, with a few changes. I sketched it for the Tapefilm guys, who need to find a TV channel as a buyer (sorry for the German text).

- Length will be 7 meters total, 6 meters stretch.
- Four wheels
- 500 kg to 1000 kg draw weight (1,100 to 2,200 lbs)
- Adjustable shooting angle
- Ratchet like cocking mechanism (not enough room for a four arms "cross" winch)

If all goes well, this can be done before the winter kicks in (early November 2011).

My brother, who is a physicist, figured out that I will be able to shoot the 100lbs ball about 34 meters with 500kg draw. I absolutely can't wait to feel the earth shaking when that ball hits the ground!


Rubber - a good power source for crossbows?

I recently found the "Arbalist Guild" forum, a meeting place for crossbow builders.

They started a new subforum for slingshot crossbows. I decided to contribute to that forum.

It seemed appropriate to share my experiences regarding rubber in general. Pros and cons! I think it came out pretty good. See for yourself.

Read the post at the Arbalist forum

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Assault slingshot - it works!

Got it to work, but not in time for the whole how-to. Shot a "teaser" today, will be up on youtube later. The How-To will follow next Sunday.

In the teaser, I used "light" triple TB gold bands (the heaviest I can pull on a conventional slingshot), but in the attached photos I doubled the bands... six layers of TB Gold per side.

I estimate the power with these bands to be around 80 Joules. The second pic shows it in comparison with the "old" sling-x-bow design, far weaker, but at more than twice as long. The better is the natural enemy of the good.

This will need

a) More finishing work (sanding)
b) a cool paint job
c) scopes.

Should all be done til next week!

One of my finest weapons.

The winner is...


Congrats. A well deserved price.

Let me know your choice (Panther or Cougar) per youtube PM.

BTW, I will have to add a theoretical value to the slingshots now, received two parcels with prices back from the US because customs did not let them pass. Will re-send, with a pro-forma value of 20 dollars. Don't worry, the slingshots are free, this is just so customs are satisfied.


Saturday, September 10, 2011

OK, Assault Sling-X-Bow instead of Angry Birds

The Piggies didn't arrive... and the cold is bad.

Will try to make the how-to about the assault slingshot crossbow this weekend, but the work is going slow due to the nasty cold.

I will shape the weapon much after the Steyr AUG 77, one of my favorite designs. Just over 60 cm total length (24"), very very compact but powerful, due to the rollers and the bullpup design. Every inch of the weapon will be used for the acceleration of the ball.

I think there will be a time before and after the release of this how-to... finally, a short, powerful and accurate sling-x-bow that everybody can make at home, with very few common tools and a bit of plywood.

Stay tuned!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Angry Birds for real?

"Angry Birds" is a fun game for several smartphones and pads that I enjoy very much. You shoot giant birds from an equally giant fixed mounted slingshot and destroy structures this way, "killing" cute animals like pigs and gremlins.

This seems too much fun to not exploit it in a video. So I have ordered a good amount of piggy banks (made from ceramics) on ebay today, and will build a shooting scenario just like the ones in the game.

Then I plan on dressing heavy lead or steel balls like birds and shoot away.

This should be fun! Hope the porcelain pigs will arrive in time for this weekend's video.

Oh, BTW, I just arrived back from a long and important business trip and now I have a nasty cold (not uncommon after a show, all the loud talking and tons of germs). But I nevertheless drew this week's winner...



Thursday, September 1, 2011

New slingshot from common dogwood

After the slingshot cannon, I really only had like one evening time to make one more frame before I have to go on a weeklong business trip to Berlin.

I took one of my common dogwood naturals that I harvested a few weeks ago, sawed it into a rough shape and microwaved the remaining moisture out of it. Then I took the knife and rasp to it.

After the polishing, I saw some small cracks, very normal for a hardwood like that. No big deal, simply filled them with epoxy.

Banded it up with a triple TB Gold butterfly bandset, ready to achieve energy levels over 90 Joules.