Introduction: DIY Wooden Catapult

About: In Love with design, engineering and science. Please check out my Instagram page @zacsdesigns_ Feel free to request a project and ill see what I can do. I also sell a range of products so inbox me on my accou…

What inspired me?

Well, in mood of the Makerspace 2017 contest, I have decided to up my game with the wood working projects I complete. I have always wanted to make a table top catapult for some times now and recently found inspiration from Pinterest (as always). I decided to get the tools out and start working. As always, I decided to complete a basic sketch of the project so I knew what I needed. However, for this project I used scraps of wood I had lying around.

What do you need?

-A pile of wood most is 20mm thick.

(20mm by 50mm by 100mm)x2

(20mm by 75mm by 250mm)

(20mm dowel 55mm)

( 8mm dowel 60mm)

(50mm by 50mm by 20mm)

(30mm by 40mm by 20mm)

-Two 25mm screws

-Frame fixing thing

-Two 50mm screws

-4mm drill bit

-8mm drill bit

-20mm forstner bit

-counter sink tool

-Drill Driver

-50mm hole saw


-Sand paper (I used an orbital sander)

-Hot Glue Gun and glue sticks

Step 1: Step 1 : Making the Ring

Before anything, as mentioned before, I planned out the project and made sure I had all of the rough materials. I used a bunch of old wood I had from either old furniture of off cuts. Once I was sure I could complete the project, I began to make the swinging arm. To do this I used the 50mm by 50mm piece and by drawing two straight lines from each corner to make an 'x', I found the centre. I needed this to cut a perfect circle using the hole saw. Once the drill was fully charged, I used the hole saw to cut a 50mm hole into the work. Once I got about half way, I flipped the work over and started to cut one on the opposite side, this meant that I would get no blow out from the hole saw. I cut all the way through the work and using a nut and bold method so that I could place it in my drill, I sanded the surface to eliminate any burs left on the piece. I then used a 20mm forstner bit to get a 20mm hole in the piece and used my dremel to make the hole slightly wider.

Step 2: Step 2 : Making the Base

After that, I wanted to make the base. I wanted to do it in this sequence as It helped me think about proportion and the positioning of the tower and arm. So, I had a long piece 20mm by 75mm by 2m from an old seat I had, and I wanted to just use up the piece of wood. I decided on 250mm as a suitable length and using the jig saw I cut it to length. This was quite a clean cut, but I decided to use the sander to get rid of any cut marks. I also went over the entire piece so that it was smooth and looked a lot cleaner. I rounded over all of the edges and corners to ensure it looked more like a toy.

Step 3: Step 3 : Making the Tower

I then wanted to make the two parts for the tower. I wanted to make them large enough to hold the arm but small enough that it wouldn’t look odd. I settled with a height of 100mm and then used a pencil and a ruler to make this onto the pieces of wood. Using the jig saw, I then cut the two pieces, making sure they were both the same size. I then ran over the with the sander to clear off any muck or marks.

Step 4: Step 4 : Finishing the Tower

I now had to cut the two pieces of dowel. I used 20mm dowel as I wanted it to be quite strong. I placed both parts of the tower onto the base and roughly measured the distance. I then added 10mm onto the distance as I wanted to make a hole on both pieces for the dowel to sit into. I then used my coping saw to cut it to length and used some sandpaper to get rid of the birs. I used a 20mm bit to drill two holed in the centre of both pieces 40mm above the base. I only drilled 5mm into the pieces and then I used a 4mm drill bit to drill all the way through. I then used a counter sink to make sure the screws sat flush.

I then needed 8mm dowel. I couldn’t find any so I decided to sand a pencil and use that. I placed it into my drill and used a 100grit sand paper to get rid of the hexagonal shape. I also wanted to get rid of the surface paint as I wanted an all wood finish. I cut this 10mm bigger than the other. I then drilled a hole on both tower pieces 15mm from the top. I made both holes 8mm in diameter and 10mm deep. This is so the tower is more secure.

I then used two 25m screws to secure this all together. I also used 50mm screws to hold the tower to the base. I also used a counter sunk hole to make sure the screws sat flush.

Step 5: Step 5 : the Finishing Touches

Once that was done, it was time to make the rest of the arm. I did this using the same 8mm dowel. I drilled a 8mm hole in the side of the ring and inserted the dowel. Once I decided on a length, I took the dowel out and used my coping saw to cut it to length. I then used a 30mm by 20mm length of wood to create the part the object sits in. I used the jig saw to cut this to 40mm and used the orbital sander to smooth the corners off. Using a dremel tool, I then made a shallow dip in the piece for objects to sit into without falling out. Using an 8mm drill bit, I then drilled a 10mm hole into the side of the piece so that it could attack to the 8mm dowel. I then used hot glue to attack this in place.


Thank you so much for reading this Instructable, even if you clicked onto the by accident thank you. Every view counts. I love these mini projects as it gives you people, my viewers a quick and simple project to try at home, please feel free to comment, follow and favourite for more amazing Summer DIY projects like this one.

Makerspace Contest 2017

Participated in the
Makerspace Contest 2017