How to Make a Stronger Crossbow

This instructable explains the 'basics' of making yourself a home-made crossbow. Feel free to experiment and comment!

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Step 1: Materials

For this crossbow, you need some rubber bands, a clothespin, a ton of pospicle sitcks, some skewers or straight, small peices of wood and a peice of wood about 45 cm X 10 cm X 2 cm. It doesnt really matter exactly. As tools you need a saw and some wood glue.

Step 2: Cut the Wood

To cut your wood you need your wood and a saw. First you measure about half way up and an inch in and cut to those. I have an extra cut due to a failed aiming system.

Step 3: Make the Bow and String

All you need to do to make your string is to have your string (about 6 feet or so) and cut it into thirds. Then with that you make a braid by doing the over-in technique (have all three pieces together at once and take an outside peice and cross it over the middle piece to make it he middle piece and repeat with the other side). Then make a loop with a larks head knot and attach it to the side of the bow.

Then onto the Bow. You need your popsicle sticks, wood glue and tape. Take your first popsicle stick and glue them together overlapping. Then let everything dry. Then you need to just start adding on popsicle sticks with tape at the weekest points and where it may bend more to stiffen it.

Step 4: Make Your Cocking and Aiming Devices

For this step all you need are the straight wood skewers or peices of something. You get out your wood glue again and just glue the skewers on the very edge of the top. If you use pointy skewers you have to make sure the point is facing away from the side with the cut in it so the string will slide easily accross the breaks.
For the aiming device you have the clothespin and rubber bands. Put the clothespin on the back of the piece if wood. Then simply put all your rubber bands around the head or jaws to increase pressure on the jaws.

Step 5: The Arrow and Firing!

All you need for the arrow is a straight dowel or garden stake. Then point it with something if you wish and attach the "feathers" which i made out of paper.
Then if you really want to get a long rubber band and put the rubber bands to ends around the bow that's on the wood already. Then have the two center points on the rubber band on the back so it holds the bow in place a little. I never use that because it's just easier to hold with my fingers.
When you are ready to fire,string your bow with the peice of string, then place the bow on the front so it is in the corner of the cut you made. Then pull the string back so it is held by the clothespin. Then place your arrow in front of the clothespin and point and shoot.



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    28 Discussions


    4 years ago on Step 5

    since the arrow isnt secured wont in fall off?


    8 years ago on Introduction

    this would be considered a toy, correct? i will demonstrate to you the great power of madd. i will create a instructable for something much more how should i say ? Effective. none the less , this is generally amusing to a child , good day sir.


    8 years ago on Introduction

    hye....if you use a guitar string.....its srong than any wire or rubber


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    try using one or two or maybe even 3 camping bed legs for a bow. i tried with one as i only have one, and it was quite powerful but not powerful enough but the bed leg does not loose its shape or springliness. i could not get the bed leg to stop twisting in the stock. but two or 3 strapped together may give a flatter surface to fasten to the stock, but it may be very difficult to load.


    9 years ago on Introduction

    Sorry, but i think i will stick to my design, it will easily kill things, but hard to relode.


    10 years ago on Introduction

    you should use bamboo cane instead of loli sticks for the bow

    kudos on the bolt. simple idea, ive been using dowels and garden stakes as arrows for a long time but i never came up w/ using paper fletching before. good idea

    david s 91Jaycub

    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    to steady the aim try to make a stock from something in my experience a 2 by 4 cut into the general shape of a stock then smoothed out works pretty well.


    12 years ago on Introduction

    Very nice idea, i tried making one with a coat hanger as a bow and rubber bands for a string. What kind of string did you use for yours?

    4 replies

    Reply 11 years ago on Introduction

    Coat Hanger and rubber bands wont work. Elastic bands belong to slingshots, not bows. Also, the Coat hanger metal tends to stay bent.