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Updated 2012
S
LING SHOT HUNTING
By John A. Vance, Environmental Eng. Tech., & Outdoor Writer - Member - Outdoor Writers of Canada, et al. This is copyrighted material - for permission to use anything here, please ask!

Sling shot hunting has been around for a long time. In very olden times, even young David slew a giant with a sling (shot). I must quickly add that the sling that David used was even more primitive than the one pictured here. He used a simple sling or thong, and a pouch on the end. The slingshots we're dealing with are a 'next generation' sling shot which is more correctly called a 'catapult' - and this allows for FAR BETTER aiming and accuracy than the 'sling' type apparatus that young David used. With God almighty on his side, it's likely that even had David just thrown the rock, it would have taken down the giant! 

Properly constructed sling shots are truly awesome - and deadly weapons!

Alas, many of the sling shots on the market today are regarded by many as junk, and personally, I tried a couple of the supposed 'super' models, and found them sadly lacking in performance and durability. 

SLINGSHOT BACKGROUND/HISTORY - & INTERESTING FACTS!

I learned how to make slingshots as a boy, form an older fellow from England. It seems that in England/Europe, for centuries, that only the rich/political favorites could afford, or even gain governmental permission to hunt. Yet there was lots of game around, especially pheasants and rabbits. The 'common' folk, often in order to eat/survive were able to use a deadly, yet quite and affordable method of harvesting some of this game for their sustenance - sling shots! 

These sling shots, to avoid detection from their Nobel/political employers or gamekeepers of vast estates, had to be powerful, yet relatively small, accurate, and cheap to make, using also affordable and easily found material and ammo! 

Over the years I've made only slight refinements to the slingshots that I made as a young lad. I've done a lot of 'shooting' and have come up with various strengths of slingshots to suit various people's needs and physical strengths. 

Too, I've messed with slingshot ammo, and have developed the easiest and cheapest types of ammo needed for various hunting/plinking situations that everyone can afford. If you have gun shows in your area, you can often find a cheap source of ammo. The 54 cal black powder round ball is good for a powerful slingshot, whereas a glass alley can be used for plinking in your basement, shooting into a large cardboad box filled with lots of crumpled up newspapers!

If you have a less powerful slingshot, like those sold in most stores, then go to a gun shop. Purchase what is called 'buckshot, and single '0' buckshot is slightly smaller than double 0 buckshot, with triple '0' buckshot as the largest. These lead balls carry a lot of kinetic energy when they are used and can easily take down a ruffed grouse or cottontail rabbit if you can get a good head-shot!

CONSIDERATIONS! 

Here are a few requirements that one should consider before obtaining a sling shot: 

SAFETY FIRST - sling shots - especially my 'custom' slingshots - are deadly weapons, and can easily KILL/WOUND/MAIM A PERSON - do not even attempt to shoot them at another person - ever!
As well, they'll break windows, hurt animals etc. So don't use them to 'scare off' nuisance animals from your garden/garbage pails etc. DO NOT USE THEM FOR PERSONAL PROTECTION - YOU COULD KILL SOMEONE WITH A SLING SHOT! 

Most areas don't require a sling shot to be registered, or even consider them as a weapon, requiring a person to have any special handling permit such as other weapons do. But if using a slingshot for hunting, you'll likely still require a hunting license for your area - best check with your local hunting authorities if you are going to harvest animals/birds with them. 

IF A SLING SHOT IS USED AS A WEAPON AGAINST ANOTHER PERSON - IN MANY JURISDICTIONS - IT WILL THEN BE REGARDED AS A WEAPON, AND OFTEN A CONCEALED WEAPON - SIMILARLY TO KNIFE LAW(S). A knife may/may not be considered as a weapon - until it is used as a weapon - best check your local laws on this, however, if it (a sling shot) isn't used as a weapon (against another person), it won't likely be classed as a weapon. 

SLING SHOTS OFFER EXCELLENT, SILENT AND COST EFFECTIVE SHOOTING/PLINKING/HUNTING APPLICATION.

YOU CAN HAVE VERY AFFORDABLE SHOOTING: A SLING SHOT IN YOUR BASEMENT, BACKYARD, GARAGE ETC. - OFFERS CHEAP FAMILY ENTERTAINMENT, AND HUNTING OPPORTUNITIES IN CLOSE PROXIMITY OF NEIGHBORS WITHOUT A HIGH PROFILE OR DISTURBANCE. 

SLING SHOTS CAN BE USED TO ERADICATE PROBLEM ANIMALS FROM GARDENS ETC., WITHOUT STIRRING UP A FUSS WITH THE NEIGHBORS. 

ONE PROBLEM WITH SLING SHOTS IS THAT VERY OFTEN THE AMMO WILL REBOUND/RICOCHET/DEFLECT, SO ALWAYS BE SURE OF YOUR BACKSTOP! 

SIMPLE SLING SHOT PLINKING: 

Use an old cardboard box, full of crumpled papers such as computer paper, newspaper etc., and take a couple of push pins staples etc and fasten up a target on the box - and shoot away. At the end of the session, you can take out the papers and shake them lightly, recovering your ammo - for your next volley. 

Be sure to try various distances, and various sizes of ammo, and varying weights - practice as much as you can before actually going out hunting. 

I usually like a bulls eye of about two inches square, with the target placed about 10 feet away to start, and then extend my distance out to twenty five yards. 

Small glass alleys (like you played marbles with, as a kid!) work well for this plinking, and is a cheap source of ammo that is obtainable by all. I don't recommend using alleys for hunting purposes.

SIMPLE SLING SHOT HUNTING: 

Firstly, be ethical, and practice at home with your sling shot before venturing out in to the field to hunt for rabbits, grouse, pheasants, pigeons, squirrels etc.  We want good clean killing shots. As well, be ethical, and take only shots at close range, learn how to hunt various animals, so that you get very close to them before taking your shot. 

Nearly any 'small game' can be shot and killed effectively at close range with a sling shot, but rabbits & pheasants are likely the easiest because they often 'hold tight' and will allow a sling shot hunter to get within several feet allowing for an excellent shot. In some areas, especially in northern areas, ruffed grouse, and the 'fools hen' as some call it - the franklin grouse- will also hold for sling shot-ists.  Often these birds will hold tight for a second and even a third shot if need be.  Your adrenaline will be surging - and you will experience 'buck fever' so - beforehand - practice, practice, practice!

Get as close as you can to your quarry, and by using the same sling shot draw technique that you use for target shooting, but with the heavier hunting ammo, draw back, taking aim at the head of your target/quarry, and let fly! Grouse like this can easily be taken with a slingshot! It's that simple. 

Pigeons, especially in barns can also be great sport, in that one usually has excellent shooting opportunity, and you won't put holes in the roof, either. Most farm folk don't like pigeons in their barn: pigeons are carriers of much disease! 

I've taken many rabbits, pheasants and squirrels and game birds using this simple technique, quietly, effectively - and ethically/humanely. 

If you want cheap sling shots - go to one of the chain stores and buy one - there are lots of them available there – iF YOU WISH TO LEARN HOW TO MAKE THEM, THEN TAKE ADVANATGE OF MY OFFER BELOW AND COME HERE ON YOUR HOLIDAYS AND i'LL TEACH YOU HOW TO MAKE THEM!

SLINGSHOTS ARE NOT TOYS! 

2012 Update! New for 2012 are my audio Cds on a variety of topics including both open water fishing and ice fishing. Topics such as ( Open water) Walleye Fishing Inland Lakes: Walleye Fishing Rivers;

Walleye Fishing Precambrian Lakes: and a host of others....(Ice Fishing) Ice Fishing For Everyone ( set of 2 Cds):

Ice Fishing for Bluegill, Crappie & Perch: Ice Fishing for Walleye: Ice Fishing For Seniors...and a host of others...

Also new for 2012 – while on your holidays this summer, come to my neck-of-the-woods here on the North Shore of Georgian Bay for a variety of outdoor and environmental related workshops – including ice fishing seminar/workshops! We have a clean & tidy campground here with access onto the Serpent River which flows into Georgian Bay ( approx a half mike away). So you can bring your own boat if you wish. They have RV hookup as well as tenting and cabins. There is also a small mom/pop Motel ( with Kitchenette Facilities of you wish) here for those not into camping.

Bring along your entire family – or fishin' buds and learn while on your holidays. My prices are reasonable, and I'll tailor/customize a workshop to your schedule on most fishing and ice fishing or many outdoor or environmental subjects. Email me for pricing of my various workshops and details as well as any other questions you may have.

We also have superb ATV trails here, and a wonderful night sky-scape – campfire smoke – a true northern experience...John A. Vance


Author: John A. Vance
Copyright © 1998 John A. Vance. . . 

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