Picture of Atlatl and Spears
An Atlatl is a weapon used to launch a dart (aka spear) with more accuracy, faster speed, and greater distance than with just your hand and arm. It has no fancy shmancy moving parts like a sling-shot or bow and arrow yet it still is a powerful weapon that is capable of a lot of damage (I've already put three holes in my house. Oops!). While I am not a historian, nor am I a hobby dude that spends his life making these, I was successfully able to make a version that looks okay and works very good. There is a lot of room for customization so please feel free to post your final product as it would be cool to see what other people did with this. Have a great time making it (by the way, I am not responsible for any injuries that occur throughout this process.)

Step 1: Stuff you need

Picture of Stuff you need
before atlatl after.jpg
This really requires not much besides a  good eye for finding perfectly shaped branches for the actual atlatl (perfect being about a foot and a half in length, relatively straight, nice handle on one side and a hook on another). Also don't feel constricted by these guidelines, I have seen atlatl's made from paint stirry thingys.

-A tree (or a branch shaped like the one in the picture)
-A saw
-A knife
-A drill
-Some dowels (These are your darts) (as long as possible, and not too thin but not too thick. remember you want this thing to FLY)
- Some duct-tape (wouldn't be an instructable without it!)
-Paracord (another thing needed for every instructable)
-Nails(if you want your arrow to have a spike)
-And whatever else that floats your boat
Image is from http://www.kshs.org/teachers/trunks/graphics/atlatl.jpg&imgrefurl=http://www.d.umn.edu/cla/faculty/troufs/anth160
They are called fletchingd
Very good for first instructable i love to atlatl and am going to post a how to make and use instuctables
Ringer16331 year ago
how do you use it?
triumphman2 years ago
Nice, I just posted a similar "Atlatl" project. Thanks for sharing yours. Simpler than mine, I like it!
canable2 years ago
Mine was made , by me , with just what you say.
The darts are more trouble than the atlatl.
lbrewer422 years ago
Good work - some videos on youtube of various people using these.
Kiteman3 years ago
It would be really cool to see a video of this being used.

(Oh, and the "feathery things" are called "flights".)
The feathers are called "Fletchings".
"Vanes" if they're plastic.
That's for arrows.
Atlatl darts, too. Look at these links:

I searched for "atlatl dart flights -fly" and some other keywords, but I couldn't find them called "flights" anywhere.
jollyrunner (author)  Kiteman3 years ago
I am working on the video right now! Thanks for the feedback
mbreukel3 years ago
its called fletchings.

if your bored you can also go out and find some natural feathers(dont throw your spear to them lol) and split them, get some glue and glue them on.
rimar20003 years ago
Good work! Some ancient weapons are fascinating.
ilpug3 years ago
Well done. I have seen designs of atlatls where the spear end holder was a cup shape instead of a stick, but this works too. The feathery things are called "Fletchings"