Slinging.org Forum
https://slinging.org/forum/YaBB.pl
General >> General Slinging Discussion >> Sling bullets
https://slinging.org/forum/YaBB.pl?num=1076535051

Message started by english on Feb 11th, 2004 at 4:30pm

Title: Sling bullets
Post by english on Feb 11th, 2004 at 4:30pm
I was curious to check out the article about Roman sling bullets of lead.  I had always assumed tat the shape increased range and accuracy and all that.  But reading the article, I saw that the results were inconclusive.  And that got me thinking as to why they would make them that shape.  I then went out and was using my split pouch sling, of two pieces of long cord split in the middle, and occasionally, if the stone was a slightly awkward shape, it would just come out of the back of the sling rather than being released when I let go.  I had made some blu-tac glandes shapes, which I intended to sling.  I put one in my pouch and was interested to see that no matter how vigorously I swung the sling, no matter how badly positioned the blu tac bullet, it never came out.  I also saw that Balearic slingers, the mainstay of the Roman slinging force, used split pouch slings similar to mine.  Perhaps that is why the shape is the way it is.  Anyway, that is my view.  Anyone else got suggestions, because I was going to make some out of clay (I cannot afford lead or anything like that) and I wanted to be certain before I made them.

Title: Re: Sling bullets
Post by Chris on Feb 11th, 2004 at 5:44pm
People have speculated that the non-spherical shape was to help the projectile stay in the pouch, as you suggest.  Other people have noted that it is possible that the projectile would orient itself point-first due to air resistance.  The pointedness would increase the penetration capability tremendously.

I think both arguments have merit, and can be proved with testing.  I await your research articles in my inbox.   :P

Chris

Title: Re: Sling bullets
Post by english on Feb 12th, 2004 at 4:32am
I don't think that the projectiles do orient themselves; I know I was only using blu-tac, but it was the right shape, and it is heavier than it looks.  ALL my projectiles stayed the same in terms of orientation after being released; they stayed on their sides.

Title: Re: Sling bullets
Post by Chris on Feb 13th, 2004 at 12:34am
How could you view them in-flight?

Chris

Title: Re: Sling bullets
Post by english on Feb 13th, 2004 at 4:36am
Well, I slung them really, really high, in a nice arc; when it started to come down, and even before then, I could see them perfectly outlined.  I mean, they were travelling quite slowly, so it wasn't difficult.  I was in the middle of a large field, so I had plenty of room, and I wasn't shooting at a target, once I started to do some real tests.  And basically what I saw was a rugby ball shaped object, from the side, flying through the air.  

Title: Re: Sling bullets
Post by Chris on Feb 13th, 2004 at 4:28pm
When you saying flying sideways, you mean the longest side is presented in the direction of motion?  In order to get the projectile to fly correctly, (like the rotation of an american football or bullet), the shape has to be very specific (the release is also important, but that is much harder to control with a sling, so we have to figure out how to do without it).  Perhaps someone can make a droplette shaped projectile?  That would have the best chance of in-flight orientation.  

Chris

Title: Re: Sling bullets
Post by Ulrica on Feb 15th, 2004 at 3:41pm
Wouldn´t a droplette-shape turn the heaviest side first after some seconds, even if you let it go with the point first?? Or am I thinking totally wrong here?

If I remember it correct from school ( long, long time ago) when we dropped a thing, with a heavy end up, it turned on the way down, so the heavy end reched the floor first...

Or is it a question about balance...

Well, I´m too tired for these kind of questions right now

Ulrica



Title: Re: Sling bullets
Post by David_T on Feb 15th, 2004 at 6:15pm
I don't want to sound smart or anything but I know for an absolute fact that almost every elongated shape will in varying degrees, orient themselves do to the spiralling effect of the release. In the last few months I have slung literally thousands of odd shaped concrete and I know I can pick up any elongated piece, sling it,  and watch it wabble wabble wabble its way into tighter smoother football type spiral. It may not be absolutely "point first" it may be  sideways a bit but even then--if it has enought room before it hits, it will begin to curve/ fade /travel in the direction of the point that is forward and thus become even more point first.  I see it evey time I sling. Especially at 50 yrds plus

Title: Re: Sling bullets
Post by Dan_Bollinger on Feb 15th, 2004 at 8:05pm
And I remain defiant in my insistence that the reason they are flat is to make that gawdawful buzzing sound like a bee ready to sting and scare the beejesus outta the opposing troops.  That's my theory and I'm sticking (stuck) with it.   :-/

Title: Re: Sling bullets
Post by mgreenfield on Feb 15th, 2004 at 8:47pm
English, ....you see some diff of opinion re this.   I'm of the thot that early slingsters could indeed throw NFL quarterback spirals w the little lead footballs, and we (especially Dan_B  ;D) just havent figgered out how to do it (yet).  

I've got a batch of plaster-of-paris "eggs" cast & painted half red & half white.   When it warms up a bit (by June here), I intend to film some launches for sloo-mo playback to see exactly how these eggs leave the pocket at launch.   In the meantime, see the 24Dec2003 posting, "Correctly Slinging Footballs".     This group will probably figger this out in the next year or so.

It would be no surprise either if we tended to gravitate toward just 1 or 2 slinging styles.   This forum is a work in early stages of progress, and that makes it fun.  We're flat makin' sling history here!   mgreenfield

Title: Re: Sling bullets
Post by David_T on Feb 15th, 2004 at 10:08pm
Don't you just love the sound the flat ones make! Of course it means there is a lot of drag-- but if you're not going for distance, who cares.

Title: Re: Sling bullets
Post by Hondero on Feb 16th, 2004 at 1:18pm

wrote on Feb 15th, 2004 at 3:41pm:
Wouldn´t a droplette-shape turn the heaviest side first after some seconds, even if you let it go with the point first?? Or am I thinking totally wrong here?

If I remember it correct from school ( long, long time ago) when we dropped a thing, with a heavy end up, it turned on the way down, so the heavy end reched the floor first...

Or is it a question about balance...

Well, I´m too tired for these kind of questions right now

Ulrica



Very good observation, Ulrica, and that drop shape is the secret of point-first throwing, among others things, in my opinion. When I have the time I´ll try to expand my view of the subjet, that always is on debate and that is fundamental for that world distance record we are preparing (well... Yurek  :-/ )

Title: Re: Sling bullets
Post by Yurek on Feb 16th, 2004 at 6:45pm
During my first play with the lead projectiles I used 5 "droplets" and 5 "footbals". But I can't say which of them were really better. I only know that one of all them surely exeeded the intentional distance, the others... maybe yes or maybe no.  There was too little throws in order to generalize, but the "droplets" flied turbulently more often than the "footballs". There was no wind, so I heard their gentle hum and saw the twinkle. I suppose it was a result of their asymetrical shape. They veer durring rolling in the pouch, simillar like a cone on a plane. They had a ratio about 0.52 (~1:2). Most probably this is too big ratio for that velocity, and doesn't give a proper aerodynamic adventage in relation to "footballs"

Durring second and the best my try I used only the "footballs" and the most of them seemed to fly calmly and far.

Jurek

Title: Re: Sling bullets
Post by Hondero on Feb 17th, 2004 at 3:31am
Yes, that would be the problem with droplets, the  right placement and balance in the pouche for not to go out with erratic flight. I think the droplet shape must be slight too.

Title: Re: Sling bullets
Post by Dan_Bollinger on Feb 17th, 2004 at 8:48am
I'm not ready to give up on an airfoil shape yet. It is clear that they have the best inflight performance if only they can be released well with no tumbling. So, the secret lies in the sling, not the stone. Dan

fyi:  Water droplets don't look like the NACA airfoil shape I posted. They look like squashed spheres.

Title: Re: Sling bullets
Post by Chris on Feb 18th, 2004 at 1:50am
Squashed spheres with a tail on one end coming to a sharp point.  Airfoils are similar to droplets in shape (cross-sectionally), except the bottom side is flatter.  

Chris

Title: Re: Sling bullets
Post by Chris on Feb 20th, 2004 at 1:34am
"Both the Romans and the Greeks went so far as to cast leaden sling bullets known as glans and molubdis in order to increase the range of their weapons."

Quoted from "Hunting Weapons" by Howard L. Blackmore (Walker & Company, New York, 1971).  Thanks to Dan Bolllinger for forwarding me the article.

So..  A scholar thinks there is some merit to the range argument.  And it's not the first time I've read such an opinion.  There is 20 or so active members, why can't we figure this out and shed light on this historic mystery?  I think my summer will be busy with sling-related research.  This is a weapon completely overlooked, for the most part, my archaeologists and historians.  All of us is really capable of contributing to the pool of knowledge on this weapon.  

Chris


Title: Re: Sling bullets
Post by David_T on Feb 20th, 2004 at 8:52am
Both!! It seems that if you use something as a weapon you want to "reach out and touch someone" as far away as posible and do the most damage as you can. The pointed shape seems to address both.

Title: Re: Sling bullets
Post by Eudave on Aug 2nd, 2020 at 1:54pm
Just an observation . If one roles clay between ones hands it as straight motion .it comes out rugby ball shaped..
  posssibly the Romans saw that these made excellent missiles.and then continued in lead because they were not stupid, and realized its advantages it is only us with advanced technologies  that can pick and choose materials   for optimum performance.
    They did that of course but there choices were not great

Title: Re: Sling bullets
Post by jauke on Aug 3rd, 2020 at 2:15am
-

Title: Re: Sling bullets
Post by Curious Aardvark on Aug 3rd, 2020 at 6:15am
and they hit point first.
So all missiles energy is concentrated in that one point.
Also the slightly flatter glandes will do a lot more tearing damage if they hit flesh.

'poorly designed sling'.

Really ?
On what evidence ?
Given they'd have had a few thousand years to develop them - in what universe would they have ever been 'poorly designed' ?

Title: Re: Sling bullets
Post by jauke on Aug 3rd, 2020 at 7:53am
-




Title: Re: Sling bullets
Post by Mersa on Aug 3rd, 2020 at 9:39am
I see the glande as a ultimate projectile for the sling. I think the flatness of sling glandes from history speaks more to manufacturing processes than design . The perfect glande is a biconical symmetry. Why is it better than a spherical shape , because it has a better potential to penetrate.

Title: Re: Sling bullets
Post by jauke on Aug 3rd, 2020 at 10:20am
-

Title: Re: Sling bullets
Post by jauke on Aug 3rd, 2020 at 10:26am
-

Title: Re: Sling bullets
Post by Albion Slinger on Aug 3rd, 2020 at 11:15am

AncientCraftwork wrote on Aug 3rd, 2020 at 7:53am:
I don't think the argument for more tearing damage to flesh is a good argument for what makes a good sling projectile. There are other shapes that will do even more damage to flesh.

I am not saying the glande is not a good projectile, but I don't believe it is the best projectile to be slung.

Because in order for a glande (or any ovoid) to have good rifled release accuracy, the pouch orientation must be controlled in a consistent way that is nearly impossible with a sling. That's why they make the slings fatter and stiffer, which reduces the efficiency of the sling as a lever, but also why they need a delayed release (otherwise it can't fly point first in the first place). And even then the yaw angles of the glandes are almost never equal.

None of this means glandes can't be slung or aren't effective as a volley weapon, which is what they used it for. Its very effective as a volley projectile, also because it can whistle. I mean, they slung arrows/darts too. Like darts, the glande or ovoid is a specific sling projectile that requires a specific sling. It just happens to be the case that this specific sling is usually the easiest type of sling to make, since it has a flat pouch or a split pouch, and therefore it is also the most popular sling type. There are plenty of elongated stones in nature that are retained well in these poorly designed slings. Sadly this type of sling has become the dominant type and is one of the reasons for the slings legendary high skill level and therefore an overshadowing of the sling by other primitive technologies, such as the atlatl and the bow, and even the staff sling. But in cultures that utilized round balls as projectiles (and therefore designed their sling around this projectile), the sling stayed popular as the bow and atlatl for very good reasons.

The optimal and most natural proectile for the sling is the sphere, or in ancient times, the most round stone you can find or clay balls. And most likely their glande slings would not have been able to hold perfect round balls or stones, otherwise they wouldn't have flattened out their glandes either. If a sling requires any flattening of a projectile to retain it properly, it is a rather poorly designed sling.

I've thrown quite elongated glandes with a light, floppy 28" sling, and I can attest that with a bit of practice, one can consistently get a practically perfect release. The reason historical glandes are short and also slightly squashed in one dimension is so that the projectile has a high rate of spin on release, and at extreme ranges still has enough spin  to remain stable. There is no doubt in my mind that they would have experimented with all sorts of shapes, and settled on what was best for their purposes (and that goes for sling design as well).

Title: Re: Sling bullets
Post by jauke on Aug 3rd, 2020 at 11:22am
Done modifying  :)

Title: Re: Sling bullets
Post by Albion Slinger on Aug 3rd, 2020 at 11:25am

AncientCraftwork wrote on Aug 3rd, 2020 at 10:20am:
I have about 50 near perfect lead biconicals and have thrown them to know.

I'm interested see how they look.

Title: Re: Sling bullets
Post by jauke on Aug 3rd, 2020 at 2:16pm
Here
IMG_0158.JPG (87 KB | 18 )

Title: Re: Sling bullets
Post by Jaegoor on Aug 3rd, 2020 at 2:35pm
;) Abdruck eines Steins, eines glandes quer, und eines glandes spitz.
Es macht Unterschiede deutlich. Einen Stein kann ich nur auf eine Art wirken lassen. Ein glandes kann ich auf drei verschiedene Arten wirken lassen.
Zwei davon sehen sie im Bild. Quer als manstop. Spitz macht ein Loch.
Es gibt noch eine Wirkung. Ich kann es so schießen, daß es unkontrolliert rotiert.  Trifft es irgendwo auf, wirkt es wie ein schredder.. Es prallt unkontrolliert ab und erzeugt schlimme querschläger.
Eine Kugel kann von einem guten slinger quasi um die Ecke geschossen.
Vier Personen stehen hintereinander. Zum Beispiel in einer gestaffelten schlachtreihe. Man trifft nur die hintere Reihe. Das geht mit einem glandes nicht.
Beider Arten Munition sind also wirkungsvoll. Mit einer Balearic sling können Sie beides verwenden. Luis beherrscht diese Kunst, juanjo Caballero, jaume darder, ich und viele andere auch.

DSC_0510.JPG (9530 KB | 44 )

Slinging.org Forum » Powered by YaBB 2.5.2!
YaBB Forum Software © 2000-2024. All Rights Reserved.