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General >> Project Goliath - The History of The Sling >> Origin & Role of The Sling
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Message started by Subotai_Ba_Atur on Jun 18th, 2006 at 3:17pm

Title: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by Subotai_Ba_Atur on Jun 18th, 2006 at 3:17pm
A lot of people on this site seem to believe that the sling was developed mainly for hunting. I disagree.

There's a book called "Soul of The Sword" by John something or other (too lazy to look up name). He mentions the belief of many archeologists that the sling was mainly a weapon used by shepherds and other grazing nomads for use in herding and shooting predatious animals.

The sling's popularity seems to coincide with the shepherd-farmer split in the neolithic, occuring primarily in the Mid-East. The shepherds used slings, while the farmers, being far too busy to learn any skill that wasn't absolutely necessary, seemed to favor the club.

The author of the book mentions the fact that animal skulls are far too thick and sturdy to be cracked with a blunt melee weapon. Besides, you'd have to be nuts to get that close to a wild animal in the first place. To see these weapons appear so early in history as to predate major warfare suggests that the farmers were looking for some sort of personal protection against human raiders.

I find it hard to see the sling as a hunting weapon for two main reasons. First, it was extremely popular amongst Jews (hunting ain't kosher). Second, it's operation takes space and time, and is likely to spook game, whereas a bow or throwing spear is practically instantaneous, and can be shot/thrown from cover. True, a sling can be whipped in one go, but it's still slower than a bow, and I doubt it would produce enough energy to take down anything but small birds and rabbits.

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by TechStuf on Jun 18th, 2006 at 3:27pm
Welcome to the forum....as you search the articles section and various threads of this site,  I'm sure you will come to a greater understanding of this lowly implement, the sling.

Who here has not?


TS

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by Willeke on Jun 18th, 2006 at 3:30pm
We have had several discussions on the power of the sling compared to bow and arrow, the latest you can find by clicking on this link: http://www.slinging.org/forum2/yabb/YaBB.cgi?board=project;action=display;num=1145892061;start=0#0
Maybe that can change your ideas.

There are also a few threads on hunting with the sling, with reports from people using it.
Those are people nowadays who are likely to be less experienced than the early slingers whos survival depended on their hunting skils.

Willeke

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by Subotai_Ba_Atur on Jun 18th, 2006 at 3:47pm
I know how powerful slings are. What I said was that it takes a second to build up to the power needed to penetrate, say, deerhide, in which time you'd have to be pretty lucky not to spook the deer. All that's required to fire an arrow is the release of the bowstring.

If you've found some way around this, please tell.

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by TechStuf on Jun 18th, 2006 at 4:21pm

Quote:
If you've found some way around this, please tell.



There's a pun in there somewhere, I just know it!   ;)


Considering that we learn best by experience,  perhaps one could make a sling, and compare the time it takes to release a stone at high velocity, to the speed with which one draws, aims and releases an arrow.


Depending upon one's proficiency level, it can be an eye opener!


There is no denying the power, accuracy, and hunting efficacy of a bow and arrow, but then....perhaps it is too easy to do the same of the sling.  


Afterall, one of history's most famous Israelite's seemed to fare pretty well against a lion, a bear and a rather large, warlike human.



TS

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by Brainkrieg on Jun 18th, 2006 at 4:35pm
Hmmmmmmmmm. Oh! I know! David!

What missile is the hypothetical question referring to? Just a rock or something else, like a lead glans or dart?

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by Kold on Jun 18th, 2006 at 4:46pm
I know I am going to be disagreed with on this one, but, pretty much everything in the bible has NO archeological  evidence. It is a wonderful story book, it has moral lessons that should be read but have proved to be nothing more than mythology. I know the sling is powerful enough to hunt with because I have used one and continue to do so out of love and respect for the weapon.

Loki

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by TechStuf on Jun 18th, 2006 at 4:55pm

Pick up a copy of BAR (Biblical Archaeology Review) and expand your horizons.... I know it has mine.

Of course there are numerous, more recent and verifiable claims for the accuracy of the sling.  With enough practice and patience....you might be able to recount such example from your own experience!


;)


TS

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by Kold on Jun 18th, 2006 at 5:09pm
I have read that one. Try getting into pagan studies, it is fun and interesting, and I mean the books that are written by pagans, not "christians"  ;D but do avoid Silver Ravenwolf, Fionna Horne, and various other fluffy bunnies. I have been to your world, come see mine.

Loki

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by siguy on Jun 18th, 2006 at 5:20pm
back on topic...


as far as penetrating the hide of a deer quickly, perhaps the apache style and solobo's razor ammo would do the job.  if we can think of it now, who's to say they didn't think of it then?  even if it was as simple as jamming some pointy metal or wood bits into a lump of lead or clay, it would still be effective enough.  also, you could stun (hit him in the head)  the deer and run up and kill it with a club.  there are a number of possibilities, and a desperate man knows no bounds.

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by TechStuf on Jun 18th, 2006 at 5:52pm
Kold, when I was young, I explored such environs.....and prefer to leave such realm to the experts.

Siguy, you obviously have personal experience with the power and accuracy potential of the sling.

:)



TS

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by siguy on Jun 18th, 2006 at 6:14pm
actually, i have had little experience with either the power or the accuracy potential of hte sling, except when i hit a tree trunk dead center and the stone rikoched  (sp?  :P )  off of it and hit me dead center of the forehead.

other than that, i go by the testimony of many past and present generations, as well as my own logic.

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by Subotai_Ba_Atur on Jun 18th, 2006 at 7:17pm
I think you guys are misunderstanding me. I wasn't talking about fire rate. In the hands of a seasoned professional a sling is probably a good deal faster to load and fire than a bow, especially with weighted slipknot.

What I meant was that the act of loading and drawing a bow can be done smoothely and silently, whereas a sling windup is fast and violent. Unless you've done something else to screw up (like being upwind or not concealing yourself) the game will have no idea you're there untill you release the bowstring. a spinning sling, however, will be heard whizzing and seen quickly. I'd imagine you'd have to be a good deal closer than with a bow. Even so, I'd still rather a bow for that particular job.

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by Zwiebeltuete on Jun 18th, 2006 at 7:33pm
There have been ancient lead glandes and stones found where the edges have been sharpened, either to increase the damage or possibly to increase the range.

What the person(s) wanted to develop who invented the sling we will never know. (Probably like in 500 years nobody will know what the persons wanted to develop, who found Viagra.) But what I am very sure is that the sling was soon after used at least ALSO for hunting. You don't have to hunt mamoths to feed your family. A dead rabbit or evel larger animals will feed them too. The kinetic energy of a sling bullet of a well trained slinger with average talent is probably about the same as a small caliber rifle, which is - I believe - used for hunting. The Apache style is also very quick and with a hemp sling silent. So as the sling is a general purpose distance weapon it would be dumb to use it only for one purpose. So why not use it for hunting, warfare, against wolfs, ... ?

Now what I do want to say is, a discussion if the sling has been developed or used only for one purpose is moot. If you have only a sling every problem looks like a target. :)

Zwiebeltuete

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by Zwiebeltuete on Jun 18th, 2006 at 7:43pm
I have looked at my Apache video. At 25 fps the whole throw is 15 frames (0.6s) and of this the throwing arm can be seen from the front only 5 frames, i.e. 0.2s. I believe a trained person is faster then me. With a hemp sling the only sound is the rustling of your clothes. After that the time to impact is the same for sling and bow.

Zwiebeltuete

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by Subotai_Ba_Atur on Jun 18th, 2006 at 7:59pm
Hemp is silent, eh? Interesting. You'd still need to find the space to use it, and make sure the quarry doesn't see it, but I guess that's not too hard for a skilled and motivated hunter. Still, there has to be a reason why the bow superceded the sling in that role.

Your comment comparing it to a gun is also interesting. I've heard that skilled slingers shooting lead shot could match and often surpass the power of early firearms, and with MUCH better accuracy. Has anyone started a discussion on the sling in relation to the gun yet?

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by Zwiebeltuete on Jun 18th, 2006 at 8:27pm
I started with a braided hemp sling and wondered what I did wrong because people here wrote about the whirring sound of their slings and my sling didn't. Then I made my PP rope sling and heared the whirring sound. I think it is the surface of the hemp sling with man small fibres on the surface sticking in every direction.

There is a time/money tradeoff. A sling takes much time to learn and costs nothing. A bow takes little time to learn and costs a lot. (Cost of a bow can be substitued partly with experience of building, but proper wood, horn, etc. can also be expensive.) I think the reason why the bow has gained ground is that the "cost" for "much time to learn" has increased while the financial cost of the bow has decreased.

The balearic shepards were poor (increases disadvantage for bow) and had a lot of time while looking after their sheeps (decreases disadvantage for sling). The medieval king who wanted an army had money (decreases disadvantage for bow) and wanted a big army soon (increases the disadvantage for sling). So the first selected the sling and the second the bow.

What would be interesting is why the pharaos had slings and what for.

I can't remember a "Sling vs Gun" thread. So feel free to start such a thread. (I have heard some days ago on TV that the rifles at the time of Napoleon where so week that sometimes even your clothing was enough to stop the bullet.)

Zwiebeltuete

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by siguy on Jun 18th, 2006 at 9:01pm
there have been some threads comparing the speed and power of a sling bullet next to a modern firearm.  a search of the last ten or so pages in the general forum should bring one of the more recent ones up.

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by Subotai_Ba_Atur on Jun 18th, 2006 at 9:55pm
Good point. Slingers in war have often been auxiliaries or mercenaries, an elite skirmishing force. They were tough to find and usually small in number. Xenophon's 10,000 (When are they gonna make a movie about those guys? They did it for the bloody Trojans and the "fabulous" Alexander! ) only had around 200 slingers if I recall correctly, all from Rhodes. For those who suck at math, that's 2%, or 1/50 (I'm such a genius).

Cheapest missile troops as far as logistics were concerned. Another interesting point is that the sling is fired one handed. In the Rise of Rome expansion to Age of Empires one, the slinger unit carries a small wooden shield to protect against arrows. Anyone know if that's historically accurate?

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by Slinger_Man_Dan on Jun 19th, 2006 at 1:12am
    Slingers!                                                                                
         Hmmmm.......an interesting thread we have here, as I have long speculated on some of these matters, myself. Now I am certainly not any sort of "expert." In fact, I always say, " 'Expert' is spelled: E-G-G.....S-P-U-R-T!" So now that you've been warned, let's see.......in no particular order.......                                                                          
                                                                                                       
         First off, some years ago I took a bunch of Defense Tactics classes that were quite fascinating. Impact weapons were a major part of the "curriculum." Most people BADLY UNDERESTIMATE the effectiveness of blunt trauma ( impact .) Now it may be that it would be difficult to bring down a deer with a sling ( as the head is a small target and the body is resilient ) but this is not true for any number of smaller and slower animals, some of which tend to "freeze" when alarmed, making it easier for a skilled slinger. Thus the sling is the neolithic equivalent of the modern .22 rimfire, well suited for small game hunting, or the modern shotgun loaded with birdshot, as birds are VERY plentiful ( they tend to come in flocks! ) and very good eating.                                                                                          
         Zwiebelteute, I think you are on the right track in considering economic factors and a cost/benefit analysis. The sling is easy to make and rocks are everywhere, thus even if it has limitations you are still better off with it than without it, because it has cost you so little to obtain a sling and stones. Note that historically arrows were expensive to make, whereas rocks can be had for free.                                    
         As far as warfare is concerned, let me again suggest that slingers may have been used in hurling massed volleys rather like the flintlock muskets of the 1700's. Of course arrows were used this way too ( English longbow ) but I suspect that a major factor was the widespread use of metal body armour, first chainmail, then plate, in medieval Europe, which would render the sling ineffective. If you go back to the early classical era, we know that at least some of the Greeks ( Xenophon and the 10,000 ) had bronze armor, but the Persians apparently did not, except maybe for a few "bigshots."    
         Some years ago I read a fascinating book called "War Before Civilization" where the author discusses many archaeological sites that show signs of attack and defence. Unfortunately, human beings are fragile and easy to damage, and easy to.......uh......."render permanently inoperative." Thus any weapon that can be used to hunt game can also be used against humans. But "that's the way the cookie crumbles."                                                                          
                                                                                               
         Also let me welcome Subotai Ba Atur to the forum. Subotai, a handful of posts under your belt and you are already causing a ruckus.
Yup, I can see you're gonna fit right in around here! :o  .......Dan ;D

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by Zwiebeltuete on Jun 19th, 2006 at 3:45am
At least most depictions of ancient slingers show them without shields. The slinger on the Trajan column is sometimes interpreted as holding a shield, independed if he has or not I think that the column is not necessarily historical correct.

I believe, that the pure slingers didn't have shields. Holding a shield certainly reduces fire rate and the only protection it provides is from arrows. If they did come in contact with main infantry they were dead with or without shield. A shield would reduce probably their life expectancy there as it would slow them down running.

Fighter where the sling was an add-on weapon probably had shields as they did fight with infantry.

Zwiebeltuete

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by siguy on Jun 19th, 2006 at 10:47am
if i were a slinger i might carry a small light sheild just to stop arrows.  to tell you the truth, i would probably also carry a short sword and several daggers incase i came up against infantry.

in my perfect world the light infantry man of the old days would have an atlatl with a few darts and/or a few throwing javelins and a sling with a pouch full of ammo and a light sheild (possibly wicker or something ) and would bob in and out of the forest taking down the opposing side's men without being seen.

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by slingbadger on Jun 19th, 2006 at 11:17am
 I think its interesting that the archeological evidence shows that defensive walls showed up at the same time that slings were known to be used in battle.
As for hunting, They, weren't, at least in the Middle ages.
 The hunting manuals of the time state implicitly that slings were not used by "serious" (Noble) hunters. They preferred to have the quarry flushed out and netted by others, then they could come in for the kill with bow, sword or spear.
 As for the common folk, since little of their activities were recorded, ( look who was recording the deeds, the Nobles) they may have.
 There are manuscripts showing birds being slung at by people standing in a crop field, however, it is not known if they were hunting them, or just trying to scare them off.    

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by Weirdoinventor on Jun 19th, 2006 at 12:06pm
Well, I don't know what they used slings for first, but they're also very nice instruments to keep your animals together. Just land a few rocks in front of them when they go where you don't want them.

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by Zwiebeltuete on Jun 19th, 2006 at 12:16pm
siguy,

if you would have been able to afford a sword and serveral daggers you most probably would not have been a dedicated slinger, but an auxiliar armed and armored who by accident also carried a sling. That job would have had more prestige and probably also higher salary.

If you carry a small shield you get hit only by 2 instead of 4 arrows? I don't know how helpfull that is. I'd rather try to get out of the archers range or try to evade their arrows. Sources praise the invisibility of lead glandes, so I assume arrows can be seen and thereby more easily evaded.

A historical sample of a long range weapon with shield is a crossbowman with his pavese, a large shield which he can set onto the ground. But in a dynamic fight this is probably to heavy.

Zwiebeltuete

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by Zwiebeltuete on Jun 19th, 2006 at 12:26pm
I know now two depictions of a slinger having the projetiles in his cape. (Trajan's column and a tombstone) I would like to try sometimes if that works.

Zwiebeltuete

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by Dale on Jun 19th, 2006 at 3:07pm
Subotai_Ba_Atur,

Welcome!  A new voice enters the fray!

I am a bit late entering this discussion ... I am replying to what you wrote in Reply # 12 in this topic.

Most people who do not know the sling, picture a slinger swinging his sling around and around to build up speed before releasing.  This image is completely false.  The stone is accelerated almost entirely in the last 180 degrees (or less) of the swing.  See, for instance, Sv's video of the Greek overhand style, and David Taylor's article where he has several videos of Greek styles (so called because they all start with a posture like one depicted on an old Greek coin).

There are slinging styles that employ a "wind-up" swing, but that is for the purpose of getting the stone into position for the final snap; see, for example, Jurek's video of his side-arm style, and compare with Sv's video of nearly the same style.  Jurek prefers two wind-up swings, Sv prefers one.  Both put all the energy into the stone in the last 180 degrees of the swing.
(NOTE: Jurek's video is in the DivX variant of the AVI format; you may not be able to see it from your web browser.   Try saving it and viewing it with Windows Media Player.)

If you have not already, you should read Larry Forsyth's article, wherein he described the methods for making and using a sling that he learned from a 75-year-old Mescalero who had hunted with a sling all his life.  The fact that he did live that long, suggests that he had some success.

Also do have a look at Zwiebeltüte's video, which is presently the best presentation we have of the Apache style; as he states in a prior post in this topic, the cast is completed in slightly over a half-second.  I believe that the Mescalero gentleman was probably faster (though I admit releasing a bowstring is faster yet) and more powerful, but we have no film of him or anyone like him.

Concerning slings versus firearms, I did kinetic energy calculations for a 4-ounce (113 gram) rock, and compared that with what I read from a ballistics table for a .45-caliber round fired from a Colt semiautomatic sidearm, and the sling compares favorably: both are in the range of 500 joules, or 370 foot-pounds.  Of course, it takes some practice to get the necessary speed out of a sling.

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by TechStuf on Jun 19th, 2006 at 4:04pm
Well, if we are comparing slings to modern compound bows which can be held at full draw for a few moments....then perhaps we can discount the draw time as part of the process, decreasing the time measurement.  Yet 'snap shooting', or drawing back to touch anchor point and instantly releasing....is prevalent in traditional archery.  Analogous to slinging, aiming is part of the drawing process......a single full arc with the sling can compare quite favorably here.  As does projectile velocity.


The thing is, to maintain the accuracy necessary for hunting, one must cast at an appreciably slower velocity than he or she is ultimately capable.


Unless one is using darts, hunting anything larger than a coyote, with possible exception of a charging lion or bear, where a fairly close shot to the forehead is available....will certainly prove much less efficient than the bow for the harvesting of game.


The sling, in it's traditonal form, is a valid and useful tool for hunting.   However I wouldn't hunt anything larger than a Coyote, unless desperate for food, and bow making material were unavailable to me.


Employing a miniature version of the staff sling, I use a method similar to the Apache.....which provides me with highest level of accuracy for the purpose of hunting.  The speed and accuracy potential could enable one to reliably harvest large game.  


As the practice required to achieve such level of proficiency is quite high compared to other hunting implements, I would never recommend it....even though it can be made to look easy to the casual observer.



TS

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by Subotai_Ba_Atur on Jun 20th, 2006 at 12:16am
I think I'm being misunderstood here. I'm not that new to slinging, though I haven't done it much. I registered with this site more than a year ago, just haven't got around to posting untill last Sunday.

When comparing the sling to other weapons, like bows and guns, I'd like to leave rocks out. Since both of the latter weapons use manufactured ammunition, it's only fair that we allow the same of the sling. Firing a rock picked up from a creek is like shooting a dirty, rusty Kalashnikov. It WILL shoot and kill within about 100 yards, but I'd bring something better.

I know about the main techniques of slinging, but even with the one-swing whip, the violent action of acceleration is still much longer than with a bow. I have no doubt that if a skilled slinger did manage to hit a deer in the vitals with a lead bullet from a good sling it woud prove lethal. However, even a bow can spook a deer before the arrow finds it's mark.

Oh, I just remembered: the slingers in Rome: Total War had shields too. Not that computer games necessarily have anything to do with accuracy. When considering combat slingers, one must remember that equipment goes by what's best for the army overall rather than the individual. Aside from elite units or auxilliaries, whose members would want to maximize their offensive potential (i.e. fire rate), front line volley slingers would want to reduce casualties wth whatever means possible. A small shield isn't perfect, but it WOULD have an effect on statistics. In formation, especially when faced with volley fire, it's almost impossible to avoid incomming missiles no matter how far away you see them coming.

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by TechStuf on Jun 20th, 2006 at 12:35am

Quote:
I know about the main techniques of slinging, but even with the one-swing whip, the violent action of acceleration is still much longer than with a bow.



I understand what you are saying.....


I have been an archer of both traditional and compound bows for nearly 20 years....and I don't know about anyone else, but I can get a rock or other ammo weighing 3 to 4 times as much as an arrow from a static position to aimed and out of my sling in the time it takes to draw, aim, and shoot that same arrow from a traditional bow.  The sling glans will have considerably more kinetic energy upon arrival to target as well.

Much longer?  Apples and Oranges.  What matters is...it can be done as fast or even faster.....and I'm sure mine is not a unique case.


TS

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by Subotai_Ba_Atur on Jun 20th, 2006 at 1:16am
A bow can be drawn silently without spooking game. The violent action comes with the release. If you can fire a sling as fast as i can RELEASE an arrow, I'm very impressed.

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by TechStuf on Jun 20th, 2006 at 5:00am


Quote:
If you can fire a sling as fast as i can RELEASE an arrow, I'm very impressed.



What kind of bow equipment do you use.....I'm thinking I'm kinda close on this one!


;D


TS

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by Tint on Jun 20th, 2006 at 6:26am
I am so looking forward to seeing you shot and reload with your slings, Techstuf! ::)

I remember you mentioned that the retention rings can speed up the reloading process........I'm sure there are other clever ideas at work too!


Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by Zwiebeltuete on Jun 20th, 2006 at 6:54am
Btw. do we know if the archers had shields?

Zwiebeltuete

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by Stuarto1 on Jun 20th, 2006 at 10:39am
We all came out of our mother's whatsit and with our umbilical tube we learnt how to sling.  
;)

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by Stuarto1 on Jun 20th, 2006 at 10:46am
The sling is cool and the sling is great but can from 150 metres it crack a plate?  The sling is a fine thing.    

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by Taiki on Jun 20th, 2006 at 11:06am

wrote on Jun 20th, 2006 at 6:54am:
Btw. do we know if the archers had shields?

Zwiebeltuete

crossbowman maybe archers i dunno  :-/ seems a bit hard to pull a bow with a shield in one hand :-/

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by siguy on Jun 20th, 2006 at 11:20am
if it can crack skulls i bet it can crack a plate

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by winkleried on Jun 20th, 2006 at 11:27am
Ok on hunting the deer.
Our ancestors , unlike today, knew that there were not likely to see Large herbivores on a regular basis. what a hunter gatheree is more likely to see are birds, and small to large rodents,  aned depending on the region reptiles.
all of which the sling can handle with little problems. especially with a minimum windup " Apache Style" release.
For the larger herbivores they used spears and darts/javelins

Desperation is one thing but getting the job done with minimum effort is another hit the deer with a few atlatl darts and track the bloodtrail down.

Marc Adkins


wrote on Jun 18th, 2006 at 5:20pm:
back on topic...


as far as penetrating the hide of a deer quickly, perhaps the apache style and solobo's razor ammo would do the job.  if we can think of it now, who's to say they didn't think of it then?  even if it was as simple as jamming some pointy metal or wood bits into a lump of lead or clay, it would still be effective enough.  also, you could stun (hit him in the head)  the deer and run up and kill it with a club.  there are a number of possibilities, and a desperate man knows no bounds.


Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by winkleried on Jun 20th, 2006 at 11:32am
Again depends on the game you are hunting. Rodent skulls are not that thick. It would take much to penetrate/crack one.

My experience is that a sling can be released as fast and as silently as a bow. Which is why when i get my accuracy down on the overhand throw I plan on using the sling to hunt small game with

Subotai there are many slinging styles, not all of them involve a constant whirling before realease. Not all of them are used in a horizontal plane either. a short quick vertical overhand release will do just fine for hunting

Marc Adkins


wrote on Jun 18th, 2006 at 7:17pm:
I think you guys are misunderstanding me. I wasn't talking about fire rate. In the hands of a seasoned professional a sling is probably a good deal faster to load and fire than a bow, especially with weighted slipknot.

What I meant was that the act of loading and drawing a bow can be done smoothely and silently, whereas a sling windup is fast and violent. Unless you've done something else to screw up (like being upwind or not concealing yourself) the game will have no idea you're there untill you release the bowstring. a spinning sling, however, will be heard whizzing and seen quickly. I'd imagine you'd have to be a good deal closer than with a bow. Even so, I'd still rather a bow for that particular job.


Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by winkleried on Jun 20th, 2006 at 12:59pm

Well Leather is silent as well at least the leather bootlaces i use for my small ( Pouch Size) sling are.
In some places the bow never surpasssed the sling.
Marc Adkins



wrote on Jun 18th, 2006 at 7:59pm:
Hemp is silent, eh? Interesting. You'd still need to find the space to use it, and make sure the quarry doesn't see it, but I guess that's not too hard for a skilled and motivated hunter. Still, there has to be a reason why the bow superceded the sling in that role.

Your comment comparing it to a gun is also interesting. I've heard that skilled slingers shooting lead shot could match and often surpass the power of early firearms, and with MUCH better accuracy. Has anyone started a discussion on the sling in relation to the gun yet?


Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by Subotai_Ba_Atur on Jun 20th, 2006 at 8:48pm
Slingers tend to occur in shepherding societies for the most part. Their occurence in hunter-gatherer groups usually means that those people haven't reached the iron age.

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by lobohunter on Jun 21st, 2006 at 3:48am
The sling is not a bow. So it has different weakness different strengths. One of those +'s is the fact one can fire from more complete concealment, Thus concealing some of the give away movement. I am posting a very crude drawing to illustrate

the line is the top of the wall the colored half cirle is the movement of the sling
setting up a solid game blind could make the sling a more efective hunting tool. It is no differnt than using a tree stand for a bow. Just a differnt tool for a differnt weapon. For that matter no reason a sling couldnt hurl from behind a standing wall sheild in combat
The overhand is wonderful for tossing out of ditches over fences/walls.

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by Subotai_Ba_Atur on Jun 21st, 2006 at 7:15pm
Makes sense. If you could get any decent accuracy with a horizontal technique you ought to be able to fire from a crouch, too.

Title: Re: Origin & Role of The Sling
Post by nightweave on Jul 4th, 2006 at 8:46am
Sorry this has been a long time in coming and reading,  but you get that.

Shields with a sling or bow is very easy to do especailly if your using a strap shield. The strap shield is strapped to your forearm no hands required.

That said there is more than one type of shield, I use a punch grip with shoulder strap so I can carry it on my back when not in use same kind of thing.  Pre-gun weapons are slow enough to see most of the time, so if you can see the archer or slinger you should have enough time to put the shield in front of you. Either way if I was back in those times I'd be carrying sword, shield, sling and at least two back up blades.

If I can I'll get some pictures of the archery guys with there strap shields for you.

nightweave

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