Ever been lost in the woods and tried to make a survival bow and arrow, but couldn't make an adequate stone or wooden arrowhead? Nope? Me either, but that doesn't mean you can't be prepared. And, what better way than to carry your steel arrowhead than on a necklace or key chain.
Step 1: Select Your Material
I used an old piece of welding steel laying around. It's not the best quality, but for emergency use, it gets the job done. It bends on the point instead of breaking, and is easy to sharpen using any old rock laying around.
Step 2: Shape Point
Take the end of your steel and shape it in the degree of the point you want on your arrowhead. It can be as long and skinny or short and broad as you like, but keep in mind the practical use and the size if you want it to be a necklace.
Step 3: Determine Length and Cut Off
Leave a bit of extra room beyond where the slop of the point leaves off, and saw/ grind/ melt off the piece that you're using for the arrowhead.
Step 4: Draw Outline
Draw the back part of the outline of the arrowhead on the piece of steel. You can also draw in the hole and the slots in the side if you want.
Step 5: Cut Out Back
Grind down the back of the arrowhead to add the decorative false point.
Step 6: Add Side Notches
Grind out the two little half-circles from the sides. This is used for attaching to an arrow shaft, the string wraps around these to hold it in.
Step 7: Drill Pendant Hole and Sharpen Point
Relatively close to the back "point," drill a hole that can accomodate a nice steel ring to attach it to a keychain or necklace. On the sides, grind a nice slanted edge so that the sides themselves are not sharp, but only the point is, like a throwing knife. If you wish to sharpen the sides too, expect being accidentally cut while wearing this.
Step 8: Attach to Keychain/ Necklace
Using a steel ring or a small piece of dog tag ball-chain, attach it to a keychain or necklace of your choice. My necklace is woven paracord with a ferrocerium firesteel clasp. The arrowhead doubles as a striker for the firesteel rod.
Step 9: Application: Making a Survival Arrow
Get a good sized stick, not too thick, and relatively straight. Make sure it is still alive, so it's easier to cut and does not snap. Use a swiss army knife which includes a saw and cut it off of the tree/ bush. It does not need to be perfectly straight, the fletching will make it fly straight. If you're really OCD, use your fire that you should have made by now if you're lost in the wild and hold the stick in it very lightly, then press it against a flat rock to bend it straighter.
Step 10: Shave the Stick and Add Notches
Saw off all the weird knots and bumps from the stick, and shave all the bark off. Shave it down to an average diameter of about 3/8 of an inch. It can be a bit wider, but too thin and it will snap easily. Use the saw to cut a notch in the front of the shaft, wide enough and deep enough to accomodate your arrowhead pendant. In the back, saw the nock in so the the very back of it is thinner and the inside of the knock is wider, so that it clips onto the bowstring and stays on.
Step 11: Fit Arrowhead to Notch
Slide the arrowhead into the notch you sawed into the front of the shaft. Carve down the front so that it is rounded and forms to the arrowhead shape.
Step 12: Attaching the Arrowhead
Saw two small notches about half an inch below the arrowhead in the shaft. Take a piece of paracord (Which you SHOULD be carrying with you, if you're really paranoid about this "Lost in the wilderness" thing like the rest of us) and cut off the ends (If thy're fused). Pull out one of the inner strands of the paracord (It should be very long). This shall be used to tie the arrowhead to the shaft. Wrap the cord around the two notches in the side of the arrowhead, down in an X around the shaft and the two notches in the shaft. With the left over cord, wrap it around the shaft continously and tie off the end. Cut off any excess cord and use it for flossing or something.
Step 13: Add Fletching
If you're truly a die-hard nature-reliant insane person, use leaves and tree sap to glue them on as fletching. If you're like me, and prefer taking the easy way out, use duct tape. Duct tape has several uses for camping, so I always bring a roll of the stuff. Cut three pieces of duct tape and lay them on the back of the shaft, in fornt of the nock. Press together the ends to form the three "feathers." Use the nifty scissors on your swiss army knife to cut them into a better, more aerodynamic shape.
Step 14: Voila, Arrow
At this point, you have a reasonably stable arrow. Keep in mind, it's a stick. It will eventually dry out and snap, at which point you will collapse in anguish and scream at the sky. But, you know, make a new one as long as you still have the arrowhead. Make a survival bow out of a nice, bendy branch and a paracord string. I carry my paracord in a necklace and bracelet with firesteel as the clasps, so I can unravel one of those for my supply. Some people choose key-chain monkey fists or knife lanyards. I'm not one to judge.
Step 15: Afterword: Shooting Ability
Done right, the arrow is capable of sticking into a tree due to the flat point, rather than a round arrowhead. For hunting, it is quite adequate. Instruction for survival bow here: https://www.instructables.com/id/Emergency-Survival-Bow/ The piece of the arrow that broke off in the front can be used as a throwing knife or dagger, or take off the head and make a new arrow.
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