Saturday, March 31, 2012

Giant Repeating Chest Mount Launcher

It is now a reality - cost me 12 hours in the shop today. A full size version of my pencil shooter!

This is the most dangerous and effective slingshot I have ever build. 

45 kg (100 lbs) of a draw weight means it propels the 115 Gramm (a half pound) aluminum bolt with a steel tip at scary speeds. This uses my effective arm range! I see no way of making it even more powerful. 

I named it "Massacre Master" because that is what you can do with it - ten such monster bolts fired in under 10 seconds, easily. 
Video on the morrow.

Thursday, March 29, 2012


It was time to make another slingshot.

It is a mix between the Howitzer (fork measurements) and the Moorhammer (handle).

This time, I used palm wood for the handle, but it is laminated sideways to the multiplex core. I think the beauty of the palm wood comes out better this way. The palm wood has two sides, the outer part is harder and darker than the inner part. I retained that difference, so the two plates aren't alike.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Crazy Launchers, Cold Steel Weapons, and Coconut "Zombie" Tests

This new video is actually more like a general update on things here at the Slingshot Channel.

See the pencil launcher with doubled up rubber and new, specifically made arrows, see the Cold Steel blowgun and a "rivalling" homemade rubber based "Hawaiian Speargun", watch how the Cold Steel "Voyager" does against a Zombie Head simulating coconut, plus a "meat shoe", and last not least look at the performance of the Cold Steel Shillelagh against coconuts in super slow motion.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Natural Moorhammer

OK, I found this dead branch in my garden. It fell from one of the old pine trees, must have been dead for years.

Turned it into a nice natural, with lots of charme!

First, I sawd out the rough form.

Then, I repaired a part that broke off, with the fork's own wood, and filled the cracks with epoxy, mixed with sawdust.

The file rests!

After sanding and oiling. Doesn't it look ancient?

The repaired part.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Chrony Results - Pencil Launcher

I just clocked the weapon with the doubled up rubber...

60 m/s = 197fps = 216 km/h = 135 mph with the 3,9 gramm = 62 gr pencil
7 Joule = 5.2 ft-lb

44 m/s = 144fps = 158 km/h = 99 mph with the 10 gramm = 160 gr "short arrow"
9,7 Joule = 7,15 ft-lb

Not bad, for this little toy!

Friday, March 16, 2012

Hawaiian style monster bolt launcher

In order to do some tests for the chest mounted lance thrower, I made a simple handheld launcher for the "arrows" in the fashion of a Hawaiian sling scuba speargun. 

Read about it on wikipedia

See a photo of the Hawaiian sling here

Just some TBG rubber (13cm x 5cm x 2,5cm, two bands per side), which gets stretched to about 65 cm. So it is prestreched in undrawn condition.

This is absolutely frightening! The stainless steel tip (made from a 12mm rod)  embedds itself deeply into a wooden plank, and flies straight as a ruler. If you shoot it 80 degrees up, it beautifully arches down and sticks in the ground. Nice!

Shot from the chest mounted one, the draw will be much, much harder. But I keep thinking - maybe I need to make a hand weapon based on this little prototype, too.

Once again I am amazed by the power of the rubber-wrap-around attachment. Slippery aluminum tube, direct pull - no give. None.


Thursday, March 15, 2012

Homemade surgical blade holder

Had a bit of leftover zebra wood.

I decided to make a knife from it, using the sharpest blade you can possibly find: Pro grade surgical stuff.

Certainly not sterile, but much nicer to the eye (and touch) than the OR products.

Blade seating is 100% tolerance free, exhange is easy (push out the bolt and that's it).

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Chest Mounted Lance Thrower?

Here is my first sketch for a two-hand-operated chest mounted lance thrower.

The design is based on the pencil launcher of course, but with the power of both arms, this will be one terrifying weapon.

I hope that I can launch the heavy aluminum tubes with steel spikes (45 cm total length, = 18") at 50 m/s (164 fps). That would be 143 Joules = 105 of energy, with tremendous penetration potential.

My goal is to make this the world's most powerful muscle-operated, one man portable repeating weapon!

Dream Arrow Launcher

My IWA visit, specifically the cool arrow launcher prototypes by FXairguns from Sweden, made me thinking.

A semi auto arrow launcher... broadhead ready... 150 to 600 fps arrow speed, adjustable...

Here is my sketch (I am neither an engineer nor an artist, so please excuse the amateurishness):

Treloar's great book - now in my collection

This book, long out of print, is still THE monograph about rubber.

It goes over my head in many ways, but my physicist brother will explain the "mystical" parts, hopefully.

I paid about 7 Euros for it, plus P+P. It came from the library of a college in London. The library reg card is still in it. It has been issued about 55 times in roughly 35 years, and must have been read countless times in the library itself.

I love old books like this, especially when they deal with slingshot related stuff :)

What piqued my interest was Treloar's chapter regarding the swelling effect of rubber soaked in certain liquids - they obviously change their nature when "swolen". Will it improve power, stretch, speed? I have to find out.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Cold Steel Meeting at IWA!

The IWA is probably Europe's most important annual weapons show. No hobbyists are allowed, except with a personal invitation by one of the exhibitors.

Cold Steel was kind enough to invite me to the show! Meet Lynn Thompson, founder and president of Cold Steel, see him receiving his Jörg Sprave Hammerhead slingshot in cast aluminum. Lynn then gives a personal demonstration of his fighting skills with two huge Bowie knifes.

All of the Zombie killing Cold Steel products are checked out at the booth. I left their booth with a huge amount of presents in exchange for my slingshots. Generous guys for sure!

Then, I walked the showfloor, looking for other cool stuff. Large knifes, awesome crossbows and even a brand new arrow shooting air rifle from Sweden are presented in this slightly off topic video - to me, the true highlight. Built in pump, three strokes for 300 fps! They even have a model that is detachable, breech loaded and fires up to 600 fps - the fastest arrow shooter in the world?

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Upsizing the pencil launcher

I plan to make it bigger. Much. Much. Bigger.

Here is the new "ammo":

Aluminum shaft, stainless steel tip. 115 gramms.

Friday, March 9, 2012

More work on the pump guns

Spent an hour in the shop tonite, enhanced both pump guns.

Added a front handle to the BB shooting model - much better now!

You can also see the new steel rod, made from 6mm threaded material.

This weapon is now ready for stronger bands.

Also, I did a camo paint job on the pencil shooter. Looks better nowm don't you think?

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Back to ball bearings

OK, time to enhance the pump action 20mm cal slingshot crossbow.

I exchanged the part that "pushes" the BB forward, from paracord to steel.

The paracord sometimes slid between barrel and ball, and of course it never lasted long due to the unavoidable chafing.

Also, the bands came into contact with the slide, causing early band breakage.

Now, the bands will never touch anything during "flight". Two wooden blocks  catch the metal rod, which is padded by Thera Tube Silver.

This seem to last looong, I did many shots tonite.

If this works, I may be close to publish blueprints.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Badassing a badass pencil launcher

I just had to do it. Against all odds.

I doubled up the rubber.

Now we are talking!

The stronger bandset pushes the weapon into the realm of deadly weapons. The pencils now go through a rubber door mat, which withstands the 20 mm steel ball hits from my strongest slingshots!

As a matter of coincidence, some better quality pencils arrived (Faber-Castell HB, 1,18 Euros for twelve pieces including tax). Much more solid. Just in time.

But in order to push the envelope even farther I took a damaged carbon fibre arrow shaft, sawed it into five pieces and glued tip holders in. Then I screwed the field tips in. The arrows now weigh 9,6 gramms (154 gr).

The impact is absolutely astounding. They go into a massive wooden plank and I need tools to get them out again. They even pierced through a PET water bottle and still stuck in the plank. Distance 8 meters, the flight is absolutely stable.

I reinforced the string catchers (glued in a steel nail in fact), so the weapon withstands the much harder impact of the 300% pretensed bands (3,5 cm x 2,5 cm x 11 cm relaxed length).

Tobias shooting the Moorhammer at 20 m (22 yards)

My friend Tobias, who still owns the world record for the most powerful handheld slingshot shot, obviously loves his new aluminum Moorhammer. Well, that is not really a surprise, as the design is really the result of a cooperation between the two of us.

He puts the new frame to a serious test: Shooting at three beer bottles from 20 meters distance - but there's a catch: A thick wooden plank protects the bottles, he has to shoot THROUGH the board first!

Hats off to Tobias for his great shooting skills. 

Monday, March 5, 2012

Pump Action Pencil Launcher

A pencil can be very dangerous - when The Slingshot Channel builds a weapon around it!

The "Nerd Revenge 2000" is a homemade pump action slingshot crossbow that can fire 10 razor sharp pencil in under five seconds. The "arrows" travel at an impressive 100 miles per hour, fast enough to go through a apple!

The compact weapon (24" = 60cm) can also fire a "devilled" version if a pencil, with an achery field tip glued in. Then the once so harmless pencil is turned into a deadly projectile!

The design was inspired by the Chinese Repeating Crossbow, but the awkward repeating action has been replaced by the far better "pump gun" method. The rubber bands are pre-tensed to 300% and stretched to 500% when you shoot. This means you get good power at a relatively compact size. My experiments with super slomos and the thermal test series laid the ground for this new concept.

This is probably the most fun slingshot I ever shot!