The Slingshot as we it them today came about in the late 1800’s when vulcanized rubber was invented by Charles Goodyear.
They were not associated with the hunting slingshot we see today – more of an ad hoc, bit of ‘Y’ shaped wood affair really, and usually linked with vandals creating havoc within the cities and along city streets.
However, in the old days, they were more popular as a hunting weapon because they could and still can shoot just about anything that will fit in the pouch including arrows, due mainly to being a silent weapon that is deadly in the right hands.
Slingshots in years past were used to fire lead musket balls, stones, air gun pellets, ball bearings and so on. Multiple steel shot or lead pellets placed in the pouch will produce a “shotgun effect”, which is a very effective bird hunting method.
Slingshot & Slingbow Variations:
A diagram from 1922 showing how to make a slingshot capable of firing arrows
Fires steel shot or arrows, and is considered a serious hunting weapon
The slingshot bands usually have a 40 lb pull, which means the force when using arrows is enough to bring down bigger game.
The steel shot can be used for smaller game, waterfowl and land birds. A slingshot regardless of make or model is ideal for turkey, rabbit and squirrel hunting and can be used for self-defense as well.
The pictured slingshot has an arrow rest for accurate launching of the arrows/bolts (blue powder coating).
There are 50 lb slingshot bands that can be used with certain models and some call them bear killers, because there are reports of hunters bringing down bear and moose using a sling bow.
Typically, you would use an Archery Release, shown on the left, when using arrows with a slingshot. You can use the pinch method however to draw back the bands but this method is more difficult to draw and launch arrows.
The pouch would need to have a lanyard to hook the release on to draw back and then release.
There is any number of models and styles of Archery Releaser and you can even make your own out of PVC piping or similar plastic or metal material strong enough to hold up under the strain.
A slingshot / slingbow with an adjustable arrow rest is ideal for increased accuracy, these Kill Shot Arrow Rests hold the arrow in a precise position and maintains that position throughout the pull and release.
These type of precision rests need to be fixed to your hunting slingshot as a retrofit accessory if you decide to try hunting with arrows.
The slingshot/slingbow combination
For maximum choice between shot and arrows you will need a slingshot / slingbow combination like the Chief AJ QP-HFX Black.
The Chief AJ QP-HFX Black, shown here on the left – is a combination slingshot allows the arrow rest to ‘flip down’ when using shot.
For a hunting slingshot this is a perfect combination, and in a survival situation this type of setup will give you choice – maybe you are shooting across water and don’t want to use, and possibly waste arrows.
Make sure your slingshot is camouflaged to blend in.
If you don’t buy with a camo design imprinted throughout the body, like the Chief AJ with Moth Wing Camo, shown here, then it will be necessary to add you own by means of some camo tape – especially to reflective parts.
Be sure to dull any shiny parts that can reflect light day or night. Most can be carried in a large pocket or stuck through the waistband for carrying.
Make sure if using steel shot you have them so they do not knock together if stealth is required. Some hunters use marbles and they can be noisy if not packed correctly.
To be successful with a slingshot takes practice and time.
You must practice – a lot – before attempting to go out and hunt. Treat the wilderness ethically, this means, always go for a clean kill. The only way to ensure you are able to hit the target is to practice – a lot – until you find that your hands and body know what to do.
The slingshot has been used by various military units around the world to launch any number of projectiles at enemy forces and when ammunition is low – you can use virtually any object you can find that will fit in the pouch.
This is what makes the hunting slingshot such a versatile weapon to have with you in the wild
When in evasion mode you want to make sure you can hunt silently and efficiently without being detected, which again, makes a slingshot the ideal weapon.
It can be fired from the standing, sitting, squatting and prone positions, which make this weapon ideal for stalking and stealth in the wild. The weapon itself requires very little movement on the user’s part.
You could say the Hunting Slingshot is the ultimate survival weapon………..