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Ray Rowden
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2,430 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just took my first shots with a test build of Bill Hays' Altoids Hunter. I used 5mm Baltic Birch - not a recommended material by the designer - but I wanted it thin, and wasn't ready to commit to aluminum or micarta.

AltoidsHunter1.jpg

I wanted it thin so I could get the pressure as far away from the base joint of my thumb as possible. Arthritis has started to flare up there, and at ECST this year it shut me down for a day until the advil finally got things under control.

Good news is that today, the thumb is only mildly tender. The new normal. Bad news is, I'll have to have another flare-up before I know if this build is a shooter I can use when it really hurts. I'm optimistic. I can use my index finger to "guide" pressure away from my thumb somewhat.

More good news is that even in thin ply, this is a great little shooter! I banded it up with my usual SS black tapered ½-¼ inch cut 14 inches long for a butterfly draw. I was on target quickly and consistently. And the light bands help keep the pressure on the light side. The ply shows no flex.

AltoidsHunter2.JPG

Now, I said, "little shooter." But it does not feel small. Whether it turns out to help my shooting during an arthritis flare-up or not, I think this one is going into regular rotation. I plan to hit it with some rattle-can paint as soon as I can talk myself into taking the bands off. There is probably a micarta build in the near future for me, and maybe a 10mm ply build after that because I think that thickness would be more comfortable for normal shooting.

I used the template Bill posted several years ago. He has built several variation, including my favorite, the Micro Hammer, that you can see on his Pocket Predator website gallery.
 

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KawKan - hate to sound like a broken record - but then, those of us old enough to know what a record is and what a broken one sounds like, are going to have to learn to deal with arthritis - it is a function of aging.

Would a wrist-brace slingshot help take pressure off the base of your thumb?
 

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Missing Barns and Telling Yarns
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955 Posts
Great looking build! I've been rally interested in this template in the past, and it's nice to see it fleshed out. Thanks for sharing. Are you using anything to hold the two pieces together, or do they just slide into place?
 

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Looks good Ray! Let us know how works with your thumb. I find that a loose pinch grip or a loose hammer grip both with a snug lanyard help with my thumb issues. When I feel a little pain with pinch grip I switch to hammer grip for a while.
 

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Ray Rowden
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2,430 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks, Mikey!

The design intent is for the pieces to join with a pressure fit. It tried it out, and it worked fine, with no detectable movement. However, since I am purposefully using material that is lighter than Bill Hays suggested, I decided to glue the joint. The ability to take the pieces apart for flat storage is lower on my priority list than getting as much strength as I can from the thin material I chose.

Great looking build! I've been rally interested in this template in the past, and it's nice to see it fleshed out. Thanks for sharing. Are you using anything to hold the two pieces together, or do they just slide into place?
 

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Ray Rowden
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2,430 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Blue,

I have a couple of wrist-braced slingshots, and they do help somewhat. But they are bent rod shooters - not my favorites - and still a little wider than I'd like in the web of my hand.

But now that you mention it, I may look at options for adding a brace - or at least tightening the lanyard on this build to see how it goes.

KawKan - hate to sound like a broken record - but then, those of us old enough to know what a record is and what a broken one sounds like, are going to have to learn to deal with arthritis - it is a function of aging.

Would a wrist-brace slingshot help take pressure off the base of your thumb?
 

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Wow that is neat! Nicely done as well :)
 
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Ray Rowden
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thanks, Bill. Feel free to PM me, or check with Daranda for my email.

My idea was to cut it out in the thin ply - which I have in abundance - and try it out. I was thinking I would give a real test when I have another flare-up. But it is such a fun slingshot, I suspect I'll build a stouter one without waiting for a flare-up. If the thin back edge makes a difference, I could taper the thicker model on the thumb side.

Yeah, that's pretty thin... You know, I think I've got some thick ones around here somewhere... let me get back to you and I'll see about just sending you one of them or something
 

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Any chance wrapping the handle part with paracord would help? You might even consider padding the handle with leather or whatever before applying the paracord in whatever manner - Good thing is if you don't like it just unwrap it - Just a though from another old man - Keep up the good work!!
 

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Ya them are cool nice work I have the freshest mouth in Idaho Bought 4 althoids and have to get rid of all them damn mints just to try one of those !!! Nice work
 

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Ray Rowden
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2,430 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Hey, thanks for the bump, @Hoggy!

And I appreciate the thoughts from @NSFC, @Old Iowan, and @Ironarmknives.

I still shoot this little guy all the time, banded for BBs. It's plenty comfortable with light bands as long as I use the thumb and forefinger grip on the forks.

I cut out a twin in 10mm ply that's banded for heavier ammo. Sprayed them both with rattlecan tactical conversion magic.

AltoidsTin.jpg

Pinch.jpg

Thanks, for checking in, Bros!
 

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