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Tex-shooter
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One of the problems that I see in trying to shoot and promote too heavy of band set (say over 35 pounds) is it will cause new comers to get discouraged and quit shooting. Also one of the dangerous things that happened in the early 60's when tubes were hitting the market, was every body started talking about power in terms of pull weight. That and the ease of making heavy pull tube type slingshots and band sets caused the tubes to be accepted as more powerful, which just was not the case at that time (we did not have Chrony's). The early tube type slingshots did not produce enough energy to even kill small game with common sizes of shot and was very slow with larger sizes.
I think that was the main reason that slingshot hunting lost much popularity. Most of the men that continued to hunt, made there own with flat bands, like Blue Skeen, Ruffus Hussy and Ivan Glen. They understood that the right kind of flats had more power. I remember when the wrist rocket hit the market I was like everybody else and had to have one. I had been using a victor 20 with there standard bands for a trapping kill weapon. Well I was down at the lake one day and decided to see how much farther the Wrist Rocket would shoot than the Victor with my 3/8 lead shot. To my surprise the Victor shot a lot farther than the Wrist Rocket and pulled a lot easier.
That was in the early 60's and I still like flats better than tubes and all things being the same they still shoot faster with less recoil (for you people with arthritis like me).
Sincerely, Tex
 
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Thank you for bringing up this subject and this is exactly why I posted the info on tapered bands. A lot of people are still missing the point and they are just making things harder for themselves.
 

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I shoot high-powered bands for giggles, but low powered bands for accuracy.
 

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I'm fairly new to the whole slingshot thing but in all honesty, the whole more power and faster thing has had me scratching my head. Unless you're hunting and trying to get a clean kill what's the point?
You're putting more strain on yourself, your equipment, and your pocket book and for what? to kill paper targets and soda cans.
It's probably just me, I also drive a utilitarian car, live in a small house, shop for bargains and target shoot with a single shot .22, I just have never been one for bells and whistles.
 

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I like to get good power and you can get that with tubes or flats,the reason I go for tubes is because I dont need to do repairs in the feild I take a couple of spare sets with me if a tube breaks I can put another set on in seconds and away you go again.The same if I am practising at home the tubes can be repaired when I feel like it.
 

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I said I prefer lighter bands, but I do believe that there can be an optimal velocity for a given application. High speed means less drop, but more aerodynamic effects. I remember when playing paintball and Airsoft, that above a certain speed, balls would wildly spin off and do funky stuff. Less dense ammo like wood and plastic means less energy at a given velocity and more drag and asymmetric drag acts further from the centre of gravity, so aerodynamic effects are greater. Therefore I'd avoid that and if I'm stuck with the material, I'd need a cleaner aerodynamic profile (smooth round or dimpled). Denser materials make for better ballistic coefficients and less aerodynamic effects, but more weight means more inertia and heavier bands which means more tremor and less accuracy. For example, Jörg's bone crushers that fly straight even though they are anything but aerodynamically clean because they are heavy, the drawback being that you need a strong guy pulling strong bands.

My priorities:
  1. Accuracy. "Power without control is nothing". Aiming precision, low tremor, aerodynamic stability meaning small spreads and a high proportion on target.
  2. Power. Sufficient to ring the gong, perforate the target, or stun the game, not perforate the game, slam the gong and sound off the backstop.
  3. Less wear and tear. On the bandset, fork, target environment and me.
My way of 'sucking eggs':

The range and target determine the energy and BC characteristic required, thus band/tube and the ammo. The ammunition mass determines the approximate band draw force and draw length; I like to shoot within 5-10% of the bandset dry firing speed and within 10% of the maximum draw length.

I find it hard to judge range, so a higher velocity produces more consistent results. Sometimes this means longer, thinner, tapered bands; mostly it means smaller (but still dense) ammo for target shooting.

If I plan to hunt, I'd want sufficient energy at moderate range and still low drop, so I need a heavier shot, stronger bandset and a more stable fork to handle the extra force. I can't see myself hunting anything more robust than a Jungle chicken, so a medium flatband is optimal. Shooting Hunter Bands is just so extreme that I get all giddy and giggle to myself like a little boy at the immense power of the thing. However, my shots on target are lower and ricochets are dangerous, which is why I spend so much time making steel frames with low forks and big ergonomically shaped handles. None of them will likely come with me to the jungle; it'll be a small pocket shooter with a selection of medium bands.
 
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