Australian Hardwood - Soft vs Hard Handle Material

Discussion in 'General Slingshot Discussions' started by highway, Oct 10, 2013.

  1. highway

    highway Aussie Tour Guide

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    SSC!

    I have a question about the Handle Materials.

    I live in Australia!~ Yes, we eat shrimp, but we call them Prawns. No I don't drink Fosters, is like drinking backwash... yuk! I'll take an Erdinger tho. :)

    I have been testing Soft/Flexible materials such as HDPE (high-density polyethylene plastic), it has some flex it is somewhat durable. Seems like it has a slightly higher impact velocity.

    I also have a shop purchased, steel framed and rigid design one. But the bands sucked big time. I fixed that, before giving it to my brother. Was fun, but not unique.

    Before I go all Lumberjack on the forest around here looking for the perfect fork, should I go a Stringy Hard Wood, or a more Softer Sappy Wood?

    Thanks
    highway
     
  2. Withak

    Withak aka Whitehawk!

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    From my limited experience here (hopefully some of the more experienced folks will weigh in), stick with the hardwoods. When I first came to this forum, I ran a few types of wood by the folks here and by unanimous decision, they said to stick with the hardwoods for overall strength. I don't know that that would mean you couldn't make one from a softer wood, but the risk of failure may be higher, and that could lead to an injury. As for the HDPE, I've seen some very nice slingshots made from cuts of HDPE sheets as well as some folks that have melted (if you can call it that) HDPE scraps and formed them into slingshots - some of them look really great. If you go to Google Images and search "HDPE slingshot", you'll see some examples.

    By the way, in the US, we call them shrimp and prawns - just depends on who you talk to, and no, we don't drink Fosters here either :), though I do enjoy the commercials: "Fosters, Australian for beer". My father's Aussie friends think it's a joke :)
     

  3. highway

    highway Aussie Tour Guide

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    Yer, I got the idea for my HDPE from making dinner, then I googled it, found a pic, and made a slingshot.

    Was crafted from a small piece of 25mm (1inch) off cut I begged out of a plastics company. ^^
    I used a CNC milling machine at work to machine and bevel the piece, worked good. It feels really cheap tho, and tho the flex makes the projectile go slightly faster (determined from the impression of the projectile on the back board measured with a depth gauge) I think the accuracy is slightly reduced.. I don't wanna get eaten by Zombies! Even as a child learning to shoot my father was all about, 1 shot 1 kill. I follow suit when hunting with a bow.

    Well hopefully I get some more feedback soon, I was going to go hunting for a fork tomorrow and I have the perfect spot. I am probably going to use an Aussie Hardwood, red in colour and very stringy along the grain so it should be quite strong. No CNC this time tho, just a belt sander. Bout time I made my first wooden one, after 18months of the Slingshot Channel, just never bothered cause I got a bow. I should have a backup piece tho. :)
     
  4. Slagskimmer Mike

    Slagskimmer Mike thinks TBG smells better than roses

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    I see mostly hardwood ss on here, fruitwood is popular too. Stringy, tough wood suitable for tool handles sounds ideal to me.

    The crotchwoods of these types of tree are woven together like fibres of wrought iron--great stuff.

    I also run CNC mills where I work. They are horizontal 4-axis A-55s by Makino.
    It would be cool to see a picture of the ss you made. I haven't heard of any experiments using a flexi- frame to add power, and now I wonder why. You might be onto something, who knows?
     
  5. highway

    highway Aussie Tour Guide

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    I run a Harford 3 axis with Faunc Controllers (not neally as good as a Mazak), but it has a 8m x 3m (26ft x 10ft) Travel. So it's Massive! Up to 30,000kg (about 60k pounds) load capacity. Still good to .01mm (.005 of an inch). Anything less that that forget it.

    I don't have any pic's of it, they were all lost with my phone over the edge of a boat.
    But it was sort of shaped like a dogbone at the base, with the flare at the top.
    I could probably re-CAD it if you really want to see it. I gave it to a work mate and never made another.
    I'm only a newbie, so I will do another one day. More interested in wood tho, I work with Steel and Plastics all day, dull lifeless materials, so I am keen to get some wood all up in there. Take me back to the Tech Classes in High School.
     
  6. Withak

    Withak aka Whitehawk!

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    Wow, a lot of folks with access to CNC machines here - I'm jealous. I'm with Mike, I'd love to see a photo, but seeing as you don't have it, a sketch would be nice too.
     
  7. dolomite

    dolomite Banned

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    In america shimp are anything below 18-20, anything larger is a prawn. We don't actually think y'all drink fosters, if it's pisswasser here, it's pisswasser everywhere. My buddy Jeno gets pissed when someone even mentions Fosters. Honestly, I haven't even seen it in a decade. Go with harder woods always, not always "hardwoods". Theres soft hardwoods(balsa) and hard softwoods(heart pine) so things get a bit convoluted, if you know the wood to be hard and not sappy then Robert is your fathers brother.
    cheers and happy fork hunting
    Dolo
     
  8. pelleteer

    pelleteer Middle Aged Delinquent

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    ^This. :cool: Hardwood and softwood technically refer to what type of seeds the plant in question produces. Angiosperms-plants that produce seeds with a covering (like an orange or a nut)-are considered hardwoods, while gymnosperms-plants that produce seeds without a covering (conifers, etc.)-are considered softwoods. Another good example is Douglas Fir vs. Poplar. Poplar is a hardwood, while Doug Fir is a softwood, yet Doug Fir is almost 100 points higher on the Janka Scale (wood hardness scale) than Poplar. Dolo, I love that sentence: "Go with harder woods always, not always "hardwoods"." That pretty well says it all. :cool:
     
  9. highway

    highway Aussie Tour Guide

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    Nearly have to be a dendrologist... Boggles the mind.

    You guys a great for all the help, so many hours researching o.0
     
  10. Dangerfield

    Dangerfield Australia

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    I would try and locate a Ironbark, nice looking timber and hard to boot.

    I hate Vannemei Prawns that are reared in effluence, they are flooding the market. Vomit!!