In the wild you have to make due with what you can find around you.
On this trip I found items that allowed me to make a DIY slingshot.
Before this weekend’s camping trip, I was in my local outdoors store looking for a decent slingshot, but none were available.
I know… I’ll try to make a DIY slingshot, a real bushcraft slingshot.
Finding the Supplies
First things first. I needed to find a forked branch.
I found a branch that seemed to be the right shape and used the saw on my Swiss Army Knife to saw it off.
I now have my slingshot frame.
I’m sure I could have found a much better branch, but this would work just fine..
The next step was to strip the bark, then smooth or remove any bumps and rough spots.
Where in the world could I find something rubbery or springy for my bushcraft slingshot’s propulsion system?
I decided to hike back up to the road, and walk along it to see if I could find some litter or discarded auto parts, that might fit the bill.
After hiking along the road for a little over an hour, I came across a bicycle inner tube. Not exactly what I was looking for, but it “should” work.
I put the inner tube in my outer pack pocket and headed back towards camp.
I kept my eyes open on the way back to camp for any thing, that I could use to fasten the inner tube to the frame.
As I was walking past a fence row, I spied a spool of some type of metal wire.
It wasn’t mine, but I did stop and snip off about 12 inches of it with my Wingman multi-tool, and stashed that in my pack also.
Back at camp, I started looking at the slingshot frame, the inner tube and the wire, to if I could make this all come together.
I cut the inner tube to about 12 inches and wrapped each end around a twig.
Next, I pinched the wrapped end, with some wire, preventing the tube from unwrapping from the twigs, on the ends.
There we go. I have a smooth frame for my slingshot. As a provided a bonus, this left me with some free wood shavings, for the evening’s camp fire.
Then I held the slingshot frame and used the saw, from my Swiss Army Knife, to slot the arms of the slingshot, so I could slide the inner tube into them.
The twigs, wrapped in the end of the inner tube, prevented the inner tube from sliding back through the slots in the arms.
After wrapping the top of the arms of my slingshot with wire, to keep the inner tube from sliding up, out of the slots in the arms, I was holding what appeared to be a DIY slingshot.
I sure hope this thing will work!
This slingshot isn’t pretty, nor is it perfect, but it does function, quite well. After firing a few rocks from it, I quickly realized that I needed to trim the width of the inner tube to make it easier to draw back, but that was simple.
Below is a short video to show my bushcraft slingshot in action. My 7 year old daughter loves to help with the blog, so she asked me if she could shoot a video. How could I say “no”?
Keep in mind that I had been camping all weekend. After I got home, I had to do some planting in the garden. I apologize for looking disheveled and gross. I wasn’t planning on making a video, else I’d have dressed up pretty, for you guys.
This is just one of many methods I could have used to fashion a bushcraft DIY slingshot, or any other improvised tool, weapon or implement.
I hope this gets you thinking about being flexible and using what you find and utilize in your surroundings.
Most of this was typed on a Chromebook, from within my tent.