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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've regularly noticed questions about how to come up with an inexpensive and easy to make or ready made catch box and band tying jigs. Here are a couple of my ideas that work well for me and are about as easy and cheap as it gets.

Catch Box: Equipment Needed = Two uprights as in fence post or other free standing poles. Even PVC in a bucket of sand or cement will work fine. If using PVC or metal pipe just use an elbow joint at the top of each piece and attach another pipe across the top to hang your sheet, towel or whatever from. A paracord can be stretched from the two pipes to tie your targets to. Hang the sheet or whatever so that it does not reach the ground so it will have some swing and reduce bounce backs. I use a large magnet to pick up my steel ammo off the ground below. I even went so far as to salvage some old used carpet from the carpet store to put on the ground to make finding ammo easier. Get creative and put your thinking cap on and you'll amaze yourself with the ideas you can come up with using stuff you already have around the place or find in the oddest of places.

Band Tying Jig: There are lots of ideas out there on how to make your own band tying jig and several places you can buy so called band tying jigs already made and ready to use.

However, my favorite after many hours of searching and thinking about the subject led me to look on eBay for something and I did find what I was looking for. A ready made, ready to use band tying jig at a very affordable price. I bought a Paracord Bracelet Braiding Jig and found that it is adjustable in length just by using a wing nut on a bolt and that it even has the hooks on it for attaching spring clamps. I did have to drill a hole in each of two spring clamps in order to attach them over the hooks on the jig. There are two types of bracelet braiding jigs one in wood and one in metal. I bought both but prefer the metal jig since it is much simpler and less bulky but both work well for a band tying jig. In my not so humble opinion, the bracelet tying jigs are much better than the ready made band tying jigs I've seen for sale. Give it a try and you'll be able to tie your own bands and braid your own lanyards on the same jig.
 

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I wasn't happy with any commercially made tying jig I could buy (I have tried many from China) so I had a pair made from 1/8" stainless water-jet cut plate that allows me to stretch and tie both sides at once. The two I own were made for me at no cost from a local metal shop our company does business with. The jig itself has zero moving parts but I use a pair of cheap hemostats with tubing on them to protect the bands. I like doing it this way because it allows me to locate the tie points as close to exactly the same distance from the pouch holes as possible. I have redesigned this jig and soon several new ones will be made at one time from the new CAD file. The later design is a bit shorter, a bit narrower and just a bit less space between the ends. They will not have the "squared off" look as the two prototypes I have now. I'll post pictures when I have them made. Band slippage using hemostats is absolutely zero.

Picture should be self explanatory.

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For catch boxes I use plastic barrels I get free and take a minimal amount of time to turn into a catch barrel that will last a very long time. They can easily be made from any size barrel you like depending on your needs for portability.

Left is 55 gallon, center is 15 gallon and right is 30 gallon sizes.

All have a single black pillow case hung only from the top to catch the balls. I have shot thousands of 3/8" steel into them and have yet to damage a pillow case in any way. It will stop any ball gently as long as they are only attached at the top rod and the rest free hanging.

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This is my super quick and dirty tying jig with adjustable stretch between a drawer and my chair... doesn't have a squared off look but still works for me! The quickest and dirtiest method that I have seen is to use our thighs to stretch out two clamps attached above the knees.
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It appears to get the job done with a minimal investment so I'd call it a winner. Portability for a banding jig to me is only second to performance. One thing I do demand is the ability to see and tie both sides at one setup. Virtually all the made in China models I have seen are designed to tie only one side at a time. I have bought several Chinese designs as I collect almost all items slingshot related but I actually use none of them. It's too hard for me to tie both sides exactly the same if I must set it up twice to tie both sides. Mine may look bulky in use but it fits quite nicely in my tying tools box with a pair of hemostats resting at each side. I've seen several that clamp or screw to benches but I must have a portable stand alone solution I can use on any counter or table and store it when I'm done with a tying session. I don't have a place to mount one permanently so portability is a must. Yours fits all the same criteria I would demand.

I did want mine to work well and not be anything remotely close to a copy of any existing model that I have seen. Most all I have seen use pony clamps where mine uses hemostats and a stainless steel frame. I first clamp both sides of the bands to the pouch with the hemostats and then spread the hemostats over the stainless frame. I can tell at a glance before tying if I have the same amount of tail on each side and the pouch is centered in the frame.

I don't go to the trouble of actually measuring it to get exactly the same distance on each side but the human eye can easily pick up a variance of 1/16" or so. If it is not centered to my liking I know I have something wrong and re-clamp the side that is off. It is very rare that it doesn't center in the frame on the first attempt but it has happened.

I use the one in my previous post but after several months use I decided it should have some changes so a new batch is about to be made. These will be substantially smaller in every direction and instead of the ridiculous 1" X 1" cutout I have now to rest the bands in it will be a 1" deep X 1/2" wide slot with the bottom at a half circle radius and finely polished in the bottom radius area. I am not having any band damage issues with the one I am using now but polishing the area will make sure there is never any band damage. The overall height will be reduced by a full 1-1/8" and the overall width reduced by 3/4". The height is going from 4-1/8" down to three 3" so when the bands are in the slots the hemostat handles will rest on the counter.

The point where the taper starts will start 1" from the base and taper to a give total width at the top of only 1-3/4". Made from 1/8" stainless plate it should still be heavy enough to set rock steady but the looks will be greatly improved. The CAD file for the new model is now complete and going to the metal shop today for production. Depending on how cheap they can be made, you may see them for sale on Amazon in the future. I expect sales would be very limited as I believe most people that tie their own band sets have already bought or made a tying jig they are happy with. Even though I expect limited sales, a patent on the frame on the basis of it being a single part has been applied for. I expect no issues getting the patent approved but of course if any Chinese company likes the design they could make them and sell them at a fraction of my cost.
 
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I bought two bales of alfalfa hay yesterday for my horse and noticed the feed store had blue plastic barrels for sale already cut out to be used as hay feeders. They are cut out exactly as shown here for slingshot catch traps. They were not marked with the prices so next time I go in for feed I will get up the nerve to ask how much. Just need to drill the holes for the rod to hang the back drop and target hangers.

I wasn't happy with any commercially made tying jig I could buy (I have tried many from China) so I had a pair made from 1/8" stainless water-jet cut plate that allows me to stretch and tie both sides at once. The two I own were made for me at no cost from a local metal shop our company does business with. The jig itself has zero moving parts but I use a pair of cheap hemostats with tubing on them to protect the bands. I like doing it this way because it allows me to locate the tie points as close to exactly the same distance from the pouch holes as possible. I have redesigned this jig and soon several new ones will be made at one time from the new CAD file. The later design is a bit shorter, a bit narrower and just a bit less space between the ends. They will not have the "squared off" look as the two prototypes I have now. I'll post pictures when I have them made. Band slippage using hemostats is absolutely zero.

Picture should be self explanatory.

attachicon.gif
BJ1.jpg


For catch boxes I use plastic barrels I get free and take a minimal amount of time to turn into a catch barrel that will last a very long time. They can easily be made from any size barrel you like depending on your needs for portability.

Left is 55 gallon, center is 15 gallon and right is 30 gallon sizes.

All have a single black pillow case hung only from the top to catch the balls. I have shot thousands of 3/8" steel into them and have yet to damage a pillow case in any way. It will stop any ball gently as long as they are only attached at the top rod and the rest free hanging.

attachicon.gif
CB Sizes.jpg
 
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