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  • Jaygo commented on flattail's instructable How to Make an Atlatl
    How to Make an Atlatl

    Nice little article. I can add a few things to improve it for you. Btw, I am a fellow Texan!One little thing you might keep in mind, just a minor FYI for you; You allowed you used "string" in lieu of "twine." For this purpose (there being many different uses of the words) string and twine are the same thing, long, thin cord made up of multiple fibres twisted together. "Twine" is simply an older word for the stuff not used so much these days.You atlatl is fine. But, your dart could use some more work for any practical use. As is, it won't be so accurate, it really needs to be straighter. Being a bit longer and thinner wouldn't hurt it either. Watch some videos of Matt Graham (among others) using his. The dart needs to be somewhat flexible, it 'wants' to …

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    Nice little article. I can add a few things to improve it for you. Btw, I am a fellow Texan!One little thing you might keep in mind, just a minor FYI for you; You allowed you used "string" in lieu of "twine." For this purpose (there being many different uses of the words) string and twine are the same thing, long, thin cord made up of multiple fibres twisted together. "Twine" is simply an older word for the stuff not used so much these days.You atlatl is fine. But, your dart could use some more work for any practical use. As is, it won't be so accurate, it really needs to be straighter. Being a bit longer and thinner wouldn't hurt it either. Watch some videos of Matt Graham (among others) using his. The dart needs to be somewhat flexible, it 'wants' to flex when launched, much like you see in "archer's paradox." Also, trying to avoid a soft center isn't necessary if you make one this way because there won't be one. Find you a (near as) straight piece of wood about an inch or so (say 2z"-3" max) around and about 4-5 feet long. Try and split it as straight as you can down the center. Then, depending on the original diameter or your piece, split the two halves once or twice again each. Then whittle them down to the desired thickness leaving a little extra for finishing and sanding. The "soft center" is no issue now. There will be some bends. These can be easily straightened. You will want some tool to grip the shaft, pliers, channel locks, a split stick doubled over or, if you want to get fancy, make a simple tool often used by Native Americans. Make/get a flat piece of wood big enough to make a hole that will let your shafts pass easily through. You will want it sized and shaped to hold easily in your hand. Length will want to be about 6"-10." Heat up the bend you want straightened about hot enough to be uncomfortable to touch but not so much to scorch or dry out the wood. Put your tool in the center of the bend and twist it a little past straight, then remove it from the heat source and hold it til the wood cools. You twist past straight as you will get a little spring back when you release tension on it. Just keep that up till it's as straight as you want. Then sand to finish as you will. This will leave your dart straight and strong. You don't want to cut away bends because that will break the run of your wood fibres weakening it.You can whittle and heat a point as you described or put in/on a better point if so inclined. Another option from feathers to fletch your dart is to spit the top of the shaft and and slide a green flat leaf (or two or more if you don't have anything very long) in the split making a two fletch end which will work just fine and is a lot easier than trying to accurately space 3. Of course you can use paper or any other such like material to fletch. Glue the fletches in and tie off the shaft at the front and back of your fletching. You want to tie the from to discourage the split you made from running down the dart's length. Back in the bad old days, rural Vietnamese made small (and very effective!) crossbows. The used a split length of bamboo for the shafts of their quarrels or bolts with a bamboo leaf folded in half which made a very nice triangle. Didn't even mean to make this so long. Much of this can be done in less time than it takes to "tell."Anyway, I hope this helps somebody along the way.

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  • Jaygo commented on danthemakerman's instructable Saw Blade Knife

    I cheated. Made it out of wood. Glued the two haves together and sanded it real smooth and polyurethaned it before painting it black. Then I screwed and glued the brass button in one side. Made the hanger out of leather. The knnife favored quite a few "theater knives" made for and picked up by G.I.'s in WWII. Many such were fitted to military 'surplus' knife sheaths or bayonet scabbards. I was after simulating a bayonet scabbard and frog.

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  • Jaygo made the instructable Free Archery Target
    Free Archery Target

    I have made this with other variations too. For scrap cardboard, look for furniture or appliance stores. they often have stacks of large pieces of cardboard often heavy duty double or even triple layer. They will frequently allow you to haul off all you want for nothing. (Do ask permission first though, please.)Another option that does cost $ but relatively little is available at building supply stores. They sell multiple types of foam in 4x8' sheets often under $10 a sheet. Some of it is pretty tough. Cut in halves they make a 4'x4' square backstop for your target if such is needful. (see photo. Please excuse my shabby condition. That was a quick shoot at the end of a day working in the barn shop. Note also the cardboard target.) Cut into smaller pieces, they can be stuffed into a ca…

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    I have made this with other variations too. For scrap cardboard, look for furniture or appliance stores. they often have stacks of large pieces of cardboard often heavy duty double or even triple layer. They will frequently allow you to haul off all you want for nothing. (Do ask permission first though, please.)Another option that does cost $ but relatively little is available at building supply stores. They sell multiple types of foam in 4x8' sheets often under $10 a sheet. Some of it is pretty tough. Cut in halves they make a 4'x4' square backstop for your target if such is needful. (see photo. Please excuse my shabby condition. That was a quick shoot at the end of a day working in the barn shop. Note also the cardboard target.) Cut into smaller pieces, they can be stuffed into a cardboard box or taped together with duct or packing tape.Yet another option is this. We have live stock and chickens and by feed in 50# bags. Some are paper and some are of some woven plastic-like material that is pretty tough. These run roughly about 1-1/2' x 3' and can be stuffed with all manner of material- cardboard, foam or even other sacks wadded up.(such are very difficult to get broad-head points out of however.Finally, I have taken and squared out the shot out center of a big foam target and packed it with squares of cut foam sheet and also filled such holes with spray expanding foam though perhaps that last is not necessarily very cost effective. It is however, cheaper than a new, square foam target.Now, I don't know how these variations do in terms of sudden or gradual deceleration but my 3 sons and I have shot many arrows, wood, aluminum and carbon but mostly wood- cedar, pine, cane or bamboo, oak and unspecified "hardwood" and have never had an arrow into any of them break, shooting weights between 25-55# recurve, long bows and self bows.Just some ideas of my own for whatever worth they may be to others.

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