Crossbow Plans




About: I am a human, luckily

These are some old DIY crossbow plans from the 1945 edition of "The Boy Mechanic". Some of it is outdated, but I'm sure there is a way to fix that. :) The metal on the front of the smaller crossbow could be replaced with something else, such as a thick strip of plastic. Anyway, I just thought this might help some of you people wanting to build a crossbow!

I made a few PDF files of this, and you can find them at (link removed). None of them are perfect, and the best one is turned sideways.


UPDATE 7/26/13 - Two years and 13,000 views later, I've finally realized that these plans are somewhat popular. I've updated the Instructable slightly and moved the location of the PDF files from the previous wiki to the Instructable itself. However, since I see no reason to take it down, the wiki will remain live for anyone who wishes to download or view the files that way. Also, thanks to El Supremo for providing an alternate download from 4shared (link removed). This PDF is also available as a download from the Instructable. Many thanks for this high quality download!


UPDATE 11/22/17 - It's been a good while since I've looked at this page... Links have been removed, as they no longer work. I have also looked back at the original book I scanned this from, and realized (thanks to a commenter) that I managed to skip two pages of the original article in my scans. I have therefore removed the incomplete PDF documents, leaving only the complete PDF originally provided by user El Supremo.

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11 Discussions


4 years ago

It doesn't say what to use for the bow, maybe a leaf spring from a car? Or if wood, what kind?

4 replies

Reply 4 years ago

I just realized that if you open the PDF marked as the original file from 4shared, it has details about the bows.

Lee Wilkersonbwool1

Reply 3 years ago

Yes, because you left out 2 pages on the other three PDFs.

bwool1Lee Wilkerson

Reply 1 year ago

A valid point. I've fixed the article to reflect this.


Reply 4 years ago

I know the recommendation for the steel bow was a leaf spring, but I don't remember exactly what the wood bow was. I'm tempted to say lemonwood...


4 years ago on Introduction

I bought one a few years ago at an antique shop without knowing it was made buy some one in 1945 in a shed ( most likely ) and I wanted to restore it but did not know who to take it to but some how I stumbled upon your post and saw nine looked exactly like the steel bow. So thanks you for posting this because now I know exactly how to fix it.

1 reply
El Supremo

6 years ago on Introduction

I have a pdf file of this article, originally presented in June 1944 issue from Popular Mechanics and available in Google Books. the link is I hope it is useful for you

1 reply
bwool1El Supremo

Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

Thanks so much! I've linked to your download and your page in the Instructable, and I've uploaded your PDF as well.