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Connor Ruebusch




Location: Cincinnati
Joined: 10 Nov 2009

Posts: 97

PostPosted: Tue 23 Mar, 2010 7:57 pm    Post subject: Slings!         Reply with quote

Well, all day I've been on a bit of a sling kick. For some reason I never really thought about slings much, but damn are they awesome weapons! Versatile, portable, and almost infinitely reloadable if you're near smallish stones. I looked up some online directions today and made myself a braided apache sling in a matter of hours. Did some test throwing outside in the back yard (an emphatic sorry to the owner of that shattered window) and had some fun slinging little rounded river rocks around.

So, anybody have any interesting examples of slingers in historical combat? Past the ancient era, did anyone but shepherd's use them for combat? It seems like they would have been used since, much like with the bow, any well-practiced English sheep-herder could kill an approaching Viking with a single shot.

And on the same note, does anybody else own a sling or two? I would love to get good with mine and take it hunting sometime--my girlfriend wants to take her slingshot and help me kill a delicious rabbit. Any other enthusiasts?

Connor
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Jean Thibodeau




Location: Montreal,Quebec,Canada
Joined: 15 Mar 2004
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PostPosted: Tue 23 Mar, 2010 8:06 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

You might try a search on this site as there have been a couple of Topic threads discussing slings in the past, although they didn't get as much attention as I would have liked.

You mention doing a search on the Internet: Did you find this site
http://www.slinging.org/

I haven't registered there as a member, but I do have it bookmarked, and there seems to be good content in articles and in their Forums.

You can easily give up your freedom. You have to fight hard to get it back!
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Benjamin H. Abbott




Location: New Mexico
Joined: 28 Feb 2004

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Posts: 1,189

PostPosted: Tue 23 Mar, 2010 8:08 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

This article references most of the sources on sling I've been able to find. They apparently saw some use in Europe after antiquity.
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Connor Ruebusch




Location: Cincinnati
Joined: 10 Nov 2009

Posts: 97

PostPosted: Tue 23 Mar, 2010 8:39 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Wow, Benjamin, that article was spectacular. Really very informative. I'd have to agree with the author--slings are incredibly underappreciated, especially considering that they are such versatile weapons for both combat and hunting.

Jean, I have checked out that site. I actually used part of their guide on how to construct the braided Apache sling that I made today. Perhaps I'll post a picture of it later? I didn't see any other topics on myArmoury in which enthusiasts showed off their own slings or told of their uses, so I hope this still should be a relevant post. I'll try to get that picture up--anybody else have any homemade killers?

Connor
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Gabriele A. Pini




Location: Olgiate Comasco, Como
Joined: 02 Sep 2008

Posts: 239

PostPosted: Tue 23 Mar, 2010 11:47 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I had done two slings in the past from slinging.org, and sometimes I used them to shoot in the woods, but I don't have a great coordination so they are too dangerous to use in public...

Much more utilized by us is the staff sling: I can sling a sotne of half a kilo to 100m withouth any effort!
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Timo Nieminen




Location: Brisbane, Australia
Joined: 08 May 2009
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PostPosted: Wed 24 Mar, 2010 1:41 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I second the observation about staff slings (perhaps 300-400g, 160m). Easy enough to make too, although more work than a regular sling. Haven't done much slinging since I've been living urban, but have slung stones into our local river on occasion - it's about 200m wide, and I can't even get close to getting across, so it makes for a safe range when free of watercraft.

I think a sling is a better weapon than a primitive bow at medium to long range. Better range, and better speed of shot at long range, so harder to dodge, and hits hard (an arrow slows down quickly in comparison). A sling swung once in the vertical plane puts a stone past 90m, and would get a little more range with metal shot, while about 90m is about the usual maximum range of a primitive bow (this is about what I used to get, and is often quoted as the maximum range of Papuan bows). Long-range slings will exceed this. At short range, where the trajectory is flat, the bow is better. At 15m or less, I think the bow is much better, while at over 30m, I think the sling is better. The sling is easier to make, possibly easier to make than individual parts of the bow (+ arrow).

By primitive bow, I mean a straight self-bow, often with a flat string, shooting unfletched and un-nocked arrows.
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Jean Thibodeau




Location: Montreal,Quebec,Canada
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PostPosted: Wed 24 Mar, 2010 9:44 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Although not historical usage as far as I know a sling also doesn't take much space to carry around whatever what other weapons one has and I would see it as very useful as a backup weapon that every warrior in the field could carry if at least minimally competent in it's use.

Specialized in the use of the sling troops can get a lot more out of a sling in accuracy or range than the marginally trained but if I was equipping a period army I would give every soldier a sling at the very least as survival equipment.

You can easily give up your freedom. You have to fight hard to get it back!
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Scott Hrouda




Location: Minnesota, USA
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PostPosted: Wed 24 Mar, 2010 10:24 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I’ve just finished reading a reference work regarding slings that I found very informative. “Hurling a Shower of Great Stones: The History of Slings in Europe” by Brian Engler provides a good starting point for sling research. Brian discusses slings, staff slings, round and biconal missiles, use, archeology, history, etc.

At 51 pages it should be considered an introductory work, but I was enthralled for two evenings of reading. Brian’s 86 references encompass the last 5 pages and should provide more than enough for you to chew on.

“Hurling a Shower of Great Stones” is the most recent quarterly issue of “The Compleat Anachronist” SCA publications available here.

...and that, my liege, is how we know the Earth to be banana shaped. - Sir Bedevere
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M. Eversberg II




Location: California, Maryland, USA
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PostPosted: Sat 27 Mar, 2010 9:50 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

This man here does a few things on slings that are interesting:

http://www.youtube.com/user/lindybeige

M.

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Jean Thibodeau




Location: Montreal,Quebec,Canada
Joined: 15 Mar 2004
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Spotlight topics: 5
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PostPosted: Sun 28 Mar, 2010 4:51 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

M. Eversberg II wrote:
This man here does a few things on slings that are interesting:

http://www.youtube.com/user/lindybeige

M.


Interesting stuff about slings but the guy's videos are funny as well as varied about arms and armour and various other things, I just spent 5 hours looking at almost all his clips ..... like potato chips " you can't eat just one ". Wink Razz Laughing Out Loud Cool

Wonder if this guy knows about " myArmoury " as he would certainly be fun to debate ! I don't agree with everything he says but he does make good arguments for his ideas and he does seem very knowledgeable and extremely entertaining.

You can easily give up your freedom. You have to fight hard to get it back!
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Tim Hall




Location: Stafford/Fairfax, VA
Joined: 17 Aug 2009

Posts: 28

PostPosted: Sun 28 Mar, 2010 9:58 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I recently made a sling with a piece of leather and some string...It's not much but hopefully one day I'll be huntign rabbits too:) haha
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Timothy Potter




Location: Southern California
Joined: 09 Apr 2009

Posts: 4

PostPosted: Tue 30 Mar, 2010 4:00 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I've made a number of slings, and I enjoy practicing with them, although since I don't practice all that often I'm better at making them than using them. As far as the history of slings in warfare, slinging.org probably has the largest collection of material. Most of it is somewhere in the Project Goliath part of the forum.

-Timothy Potter
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Ben Potter
Industry Professional



Location: Altadena, CA
Joined: 29 Sep 2008

Posts: 342

PostPosted: Wed 31 Mar, 2010 9:36 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

If you are interested in sling you really should check out Timothy's site:
T J Potter, sling maker

He has a lot of information on slings and their construction, and is one of the few professional sling makers working today that take custom orders.

Ben Potter Bladesmith

It's not that I would trade my lot
For any other man's,
Nor that I will be ashamed
Of my work torn hands-

For I have chosen the path I tread
Knowing it would be steep,
And I will take the joys thereof
And the consequences reap.
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