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William P




Location: Sydney, Australia
Joined: 11 Jul 2010

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PostPosted: Mon 29 Aug, 2011 6:19 am    Post subject: question about historical sling design.         Reply with quote

more spcifically, how much evidence do we have reagrding, what slings loked like in different periods and different cultures.

for examples the aztecs, greeks celts, egyptians, and byzantinesto name a few used slings but would a sling used by a byzantine skirmisher. be the same design and materials as one used by the ancient israelites or the celts of iron age europe

or is there simply not much evidence either way.
and lastly, what evidence is there of use of the sling as a battlefield weapon by the saxons and vikings,

im thinking of making a sling for use in reenactment projectile combat, my period and clture is the varangian guards. but we also include a native byzantine and native rus element, meanng some people have the kit of a byzantine infantryman as well

but i was wondering what slings of the byzantines looked like. mine uses a weaved rope cup instead of a piece of leather.
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Dan Howard




Location: Maitland, NSW, Australia
Joined: 08 Dec 2004

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PostPosted: Mon 29 Aug, 2011 6:27 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thom Richardson studied an Egyptian sling found at El Lahun in Fayum, dating to the eighth century B.C. It is currently in the Petrie Museum in University College London (no. UC.6921). The sling is not complete, only the cradle and one cord are intact. Both are made from braided flax. The cradle is 125 x 70 mm, and the remaining cord is 570 mm long.

Source: T. Richardson, "The ballistics of the sling," Royal Armouries Yearbook, Vol. 3, (Leeds: Royal Armouries, 1998) 44

He also made some reconstructions and tested them with various types of shot.

If anyone is interested I'll have a book coming out later this year with this sort of stuff in it. It concentrates on the Bronze Age but creeps into the Iron Age occasionally. The book is on Amazon for pre-order but I don't think that their current image will be the final cover.
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Bronze-Age-Military-E...6432714-21
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William P




Location: Sydney, Australia
Joined: 11 Jul 2010

Posts: 1,436

PostPosted: Mon 29 Aug, 2011 7:16 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

interesting. ill give it a look andjust to clarify this book on bronze age equiptment will include a decent amount on armour as well?

and it appears that the sling found in tutankhamuns tomb was of similar design to what you described.

but how many other examples of slings do we have. not just egyptian.
more specifically how many examples of partially or fully intact slings do we have from most of ancient and medieval history
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Sean Flynt
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PostPosted: Mon 29 Aug, 2011 7:38 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

For what it's worth...check the slinger at lower right

http://www.myArmoury.com/view.html?features/p...iers06.jpg

-Sean

"Everywhere I have searched for peace and nowhere found it, except in a corner with a book"- Thomas a Kempis (d. 1471)
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Scott Hrouda




Location: Minnesota, USA
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PostPosted: Mon 29 Aug, 2011 7:39 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

William P.,

A good starting point is Hurling a Shower of Great Stones: The History of Slings in Europe by Brian Engler. This secondary (tertiary) resource will get you pointed in the right direction. Brian neatly presents his research in 46 short pages and then provides 86 references for you to explore on your own!

This booklet is issue number 146 (CA0146) of The Compleat Anachronist series available here for only $4.50 USD.

Good Slinging!

...and that, my liege, is how we know the Earth to be banana shaped. - Sir Bedevere
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Eric Meulemans
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Location: Southern Wisconsin
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PostPosted: Mon 29 Aug, 2011 7:49 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Being basic as it is in design, the sling is remarkably consistent in construction and material across culture and time. There are of course variations in pouch shape and methods of fabrication, but there remain a limited number of options that were employed. A braided, split-pouch type sling would be hard to pin down to a particular time or place, and would be suitable for what you're looking for, as would the familiar leather pouch and cord arrangement.

For more information than you could want, head over to Slinging.org (if you haven't already).
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Scott Hrouda




Location: Minnesota, USA
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PostPosted: Mon 29 Aug, 2011 8:14 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The thing that surprised me the most was not the sling design, but the ammunition design. Slings are admittedly out of my realm, but the fact that aerodynamically shaped biconal bullets (think little American footballs) were molded of clay and then baked amazed me. These bullets were design to fly true like a well-thrown pass, concentrate the force of impact on a small point, and then shatter on impact sending shrapnel into the ranks. Of course the bullets cast in lead just hurt, a lot!
...and that, my liege, is how we know the Earth to be banana shaped. - Sir Bedevere
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William P




Location: Sydney, Australia
Joined: 11 Jul 2010

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PostPosted: Mon 29 Aug, 2011 8:41 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Scott Hrouda wrote:
The thing that surprised me the most was not the sling design, but the ammunition design. Slings are admittedly out of my realm, but the fact that aerodynamically shaped biconal bullets (think little American footballs) were molded of clay and then baked amazed me. These bullets were design to fly true like a well-thrown pass, concentrate the force of impact on a small point, and then shatter on impact sending shrapnel into the ranks. Of course the bullets cast in lead just hurt, a lot!


what i love is that greeks and romans especially greeks wrote messages into lead sling bullets, my personal favorite being DEXAS (catch!) but other classics include 'take that' or ' megacles hit you' can just imagine a skirmisher hollering DEXAS to the army on the ther side of the field before sending th bullet on ts way. hand it being caught.. by his opponents face.

it reminds me of that cene in the recent joan of arc movie where the french commander writes HELLO into the side of a trebuchet ball/

lets also not forget that the sling bullet was occasonally the equivelent of heated cannon shot used in the age of gunpowder, in the form of julias ceaser using heated clay balls slung over walls to set thatched roofs on fire.

the sling i have made is based off thisinstructional video


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=APExNLO1oHY&am...ature=fvwp

i intend on later trying the leather pouch idea. because my woven pouch does the trick sort of, but its very small, about 1.5 inched by just under 3 incheds a quick trial though send a small pebble carreening a decent distence.and i intend on using this in projectile combat so for safety projectiles have to be decently light in any case. max 100 grams, and of a non rigid material
im considering using various nuts or even corks.

im curious, people have tested alot of things against armour.. but has anyone tried cast sling bulets made of lead. i wouldnt relish wearing only maile. it would , if it didnt go all th way through would do some serious blunt trauma
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Colt Reeves





Joined: 09 Mar 2009

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PostPosted: Mon 29 Aug, 2011 11:12 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Supposedly the Romans had special tongs for removing the lead bullets from the body, which tells you something about how nasty these things were.

So if someone's chucking some at me, I'd like to be behind a tower shield or pavise of some kind, preferably loading a crossbow in response.

"Tears are for the craven, prayers are for the clown.
Halters for the silly neck that cannot keep a crown.
As my loss is grievous, so my hope is small.
For Iron, Cold Iron, must be master of men all..."
-Cold Iron, Rudyard Kipling
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Matthew Amt




Location: Laurel, MD, USA
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PostPosted: Mon 29 Aug, 2011 12:48 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Sling bullets could apparently penetrate exposed flesh at 100 yards, and while not quite invisible in flight they are much harder to see than an arrow. Volume 6, 1995 of Journal of Roman Military Equipment Studies has a wonderful article called "Pouring Lead in the Pouring Rain":

http://www.armatura.connectfree.co.uk/jrmes/vol06.htm

Sorry, that's just a table of contents, not the whole text. The article details the various types of lead shot found around the fort at Velsen (?), and concludes that as several waves of attackers approached and ammo ran short, more and more shortcuts were made for cranking out sling bullets in a hurry. At the end, the men were sticking their fingers in the sand to make holes and pouring the molten lead in, so those bullets look like fingertips, complete with nails! I've made a few myself. The authors of the article tested all the different types and found that they all worked pretty well!

Matthew
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Dan Howard




Location: Maitland, NSW, Australia
Joined: 08 Dec 2004

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PostPosted: Mon 29 Aug, 2011 3:16 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

William P wrote:
interesting. ill give it a look andjust to clarify this book on bronze age equiptment will include a decent amount on armour as well?

There is a whole chapter on armour. Other chapters: bronze age wafare, weapons, chariots, shields, and some appendices.
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William P




Location: Sydney, Australia
Joined: 11 Jul 2010

Posts: 1,436

PostPosted: Mon 29 Aug, 2011 11:53 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Colt Reeves wrote:
Supposedly the Romans had special tongs for removing the lead bullets from the body, which tells you something about how nasty these things were.

So if someone's chucking some at me, I'd like to be behind a tower shield or pavise of some kind, preferably loading a crossbow in response.


id be curious to see how well helmets hold up to slings that said i imagine no matter what, a visored bascinet is NOT going to be compromised by a sling.

and i think the koreans occasionally hurled small bombs using slings.
that was what id do if i was a viet cong or african rebel, instead of slinging rocks, sling hand grenades.

im curious if anyone has heard about the deployment of naptha pots, or firepots by methods other than by hand.


a firepot is a clay pot containing naptha, oils, quicklinme stuff like that, they work essentially like molotov cocktails
and while it is fictional, one japanese animated movie windaria, shows the fighters on one side (who are fighting against men with tanks and machine guns) use slings to cast molotovs
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Philip Melhop




Location: Wokingham, Berkshire, UK
Joined: 24 May 2008

Posts: 131

PostPosted: Tue 30 Aug, 2011 6:35 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thought there was a good image of a pole sling being used to throw a firepot/grenade in the Maciejowski Bible, but I'm unable to find it. Drat!!!

Ah ha Big Grin Big Grin Google images of The Battle of Sandwich, excellent image there
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William P




Location: Sydney, Australia
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PostPosted: Tue 30 Aug, 2011 8:21 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

i see it, thats a good image, also slinging.org shows i think the example your thinking of http://slinging.org/index.php?mact=Album,m5,d...mp;page=53 t shows 4 images but the firstthree are very clearly a retelling of the battle of david and golioth.
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Philip Melhop




Location: Wokingham, Berkshire, UK
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PostPosted: Tue 30 Aug, 2011 10:23 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

images 2 and 14 have pole/staff slings .
Phil
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