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    Post by Fred on Fri Feb 05, 2010 4:40 am

    Hi Folks
    Apart from bolts and possibly steel or lead balls, has anyone ever considered shooting anything else from a crossbow? I was wondering about the feasibility of shooting golf balls from a scratch built crossbow. Obviously they would have a poor trajectory and probably poor accuracy but they might be fun to shoot in rough ground where bolts would just get lost. Typically golf balls are 42mm diameter and weigh 45g and the normal golf swing launches them at about 200f/s.
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    Post by Ivo on Fri Feb 05, 2010 9:27 pm

    I think it's very much possible...there is this video I've seen a while ago on the subject of specialty of golf ball aerodinamics...a pretty cool trick actually. cyclops


    I've also seen this one guy on the net making crossbows that shoot ball type ammo...might send him a note, I'm sure he'd be thrilled to join the discussion. bounce

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    The image is a link to his website pirat

    Also a nice addition to the list of fun ammunition >>> AAA +/- Battery Very Happy

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    Post by Fred on Sat Feb 06, 2010 5:25 am

    Thanks for the info Ivo, I had no idea that such a device was available commercially. Its interesting to note that the blockhead crossbow uses parts cannibalised from one of those cheap plastic stocked imports. I was thinking of doing the same but the stock would have a deep v shaped track with a top cover giving just three points of contact with the ball.

    I doubt if batteries would have good ballistics, they would just tumble in flight. In addition, they would litter the countryside with nasty chemicals and metal fragments. Glass marbles would probably shoot well but scattering glass fragments all over the place wouldnt be nice.

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    Post by Ivo on Mon Feb 08, 2010 6:15 am

    More alternative ammo...Yep I've got some more for you...probably not as efficient as a golf ball, but this guy does some nice presentation I must say Very Happy



    Corkbo - Cork shooting crossbows Very Happy
    -by Eric Wallentine


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    As for marbles...I think there was a guy on youtube shooting a self-made marble crossbow, but I can't seem to find the video of it now. give up
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    Post by Fred on Mon Feb 08, 2010 7:55 am

    Found it!
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fW31D-uTZkg

    It sems to be quite effective in spite of its low draw weight. That would probably be able to shoot paintballs as well.
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    Post by Geezer on Fri Feb 12, 2010 2:13 pm

    Just a note here on stonebows. I used to make Italian and Spanish stonebows, until I discovered it's possible to make a stonebow shoot backward and hit you in the eye. Now I have one pupil that's slightly larger than the other. There's a reason all those medieval stonebows have large, slotted or peep-holed rear sights. They're there for your protection. I don't make stonebows anymore. Geezer
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    Post by Fred on Sun Feb 14, 2010 5:33 am

    Hi Geezer
    I have always been wary of crossbows shooting anything other than bolts for the reason that you have mentioned. My experimental designs always have a top cover so that the projectile can only go forward.

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    Post by Geezer on Sun Feb 14, 2010 9:34 am

    Yes, stonebows or bullet-bows that either use a slur-bow type plate over the track or shoot through a slotted tube, should be quite safe from having projectiles come back on the shooter. Bouncing off the target is of course an entirely different kettle of fish.
    Medieval and renaissance stonebows usually shot baked clay balls... essentially ceramic. When I was playing with stonebows, I usually shot cheap glass marbles. I have known people who got a mold for round pistol-balls and used them. They don't go as far, but they hit hard. Of course lead pollution can be a problem. Geezer.
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    Post by Ivo on Tue Feb 16, 2010 6:24 am

    Interesting thing...I've never even held a pellet bow before, but have had a great conversation on the Russian forum....lead,clay,glass balls are fun, but what about "shot"? We've hit that part and were thinking of a way of using the pouch method of retaining the shot, but for that same reason geezer mentioned I drew the line before even trying it in any way.

    There was a video on youtube a while ago where an inventor was showing off his so called "shot-bow"...the video is gone, but the idea is still available on a few patent sites in PDF form...so the crossbow shot exactly the way you guys described it using a complete covered barrel and for ammunition used a these capsules that could be filled with lead shot or small darts that looked like nails with caps cut off(not shown in the video, but seen in the PDF)...when the capsule would exit the barrel it's clam-shell design and it's air resistance would split it and free all it's contents to continue their way to the target...the crossbow also shot four fletch(molded plastic fletch) bolts.

    This is a bow version as i wasn't able to find the crossbow, but it looks good anyway. Very Happy

    http://www.freepatentsonline.com/6752136.pdf
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    Post by Geezer on Tue Feb 16, 2010 11:07 am

    Thanks for forwarding the info on the shot-bow. I took a look at the drawings. What the inventor has done is build a discarding-sabot for a bow. Artillery people use such things to shoot tungsten-carbide darts from high-speed tank-guns.
    I have seen stone-adaptors made to fit on crossbow strings. This usually consists of a little cup that rides the string... you put the projectile/projectiles into the cup, span the bow and away it goes. The inherent problem in such solutions lies in the weight of the cop. Weight of any sort of adaptor that rides the string robs the projectile of power and incidentally increases recoil.
    In my not-so-humble opinion, that makes barreled bullet-bows, the ones that shoot the projectile down a slotted tube, make the best option for shooting balls or shot. True, you get a certain amount of friction rolling the ball down the tube, but the top of the tube will ensure against string/hop misfires and the ball cannot come back on the shooter. As for shooting shot, one might look into shot-shell technology. Shotgun shells usually pack their shot into a tin plastic sabot that might just do the trick... they even come in various sizes... the old .410 gauge might work well for smaller stonebows.
    My 2 cents worth. Geezer.

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