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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I bought a board of red oak (1" x 8" x 2ft) today along with some files.

- How should I cut out the slingshot in relation to the grain for strength?
- What kind of cutting/sanding tools would you recommend?
- Should I oven/fire harden the slingshot after I've shaped it? If so, at what temperature, for how long, etc?
- What would you recommend for coating?
- If anyone has experience with red oak, how has it held up?
- Unrelated to board-cuts, what kind of wood should I be looking for as far as natural forks go?
- Also, any tips or suggestions in general would be seriously appreciated.

Here are the tools that I have laying around:



thanks, guys

have fun
 

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- How should I cut out the slingshot in relation to the grain for strength?
I can't see all the grain in your board but it looks like the middle section has straight grain. You want straight grain for your frame rather than the circles in the grain. Think of a baseball bat and weak spot on the open grain.

- What kind of cutting/sanding tools would you recommend?
Cheap way = coping saw, sand paper, rat tail file
Medium price - Jig saw, Dremel tool, drum sander on drill, sand paper rat tail file
High price = Band saw, spindle sander, router, Dremel tool

- Should I oven/fire harden the slingshot after I've shaped it? If so, at what temperature, for how long, etc?
The board is already dry. No need to oven dry it.

- What would you recommend for coating?
I'm currently using Spar Urethane but I like Danish Oil too.

- If anyone has experience with red oak, how has it held up?
I have a few frame made from red oak. It works great.

- Unrelated to board-cuts, what kind of wood should I be looking for as far as natural forks go?
I don't do naturals yet... but I hope to soon.

Cheers,
Northerner
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
- How should I cut out the slingshot in relation to the grain for strength?
I can't see all the grain in your board but it looks like the middle section has straight grain. You want straight grain for your frame rather than the circles in the grain. Think mof a baseball bat and weak spot on the open grain.

- What kind of cutting/sanding tools would you recommend?
Cheap way = coping saw, sand paper, rat tail file
Medium price - Jig saw, Dremel tool, drum sander on drill, sand paper rat tail file
High price = Band saw, spindle sander, router, Dremel tool

- Should I oven/fire harden the slingshot after I've shaped it? If so, at what temperature, for how long, etc?
The board is already dry. No need to oven dry it.

- What would you recommend for coating?
I'm currently using Spar Urethane but I like Danish Oil too.

- If anyone has experience with red oak, how has it held up?
I have a few frame made from red oak. It works great.

- Unrelated to board-cuts, what kind of wood should I be looking for as far as natural forks go?
I don't do naturals yet... but I hope to soon.

Cheers,
Northerner
Thanks. A lot.

Also, some of the guys in the chat have given me a good bit of tips!

I love it here.
 

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Well, I suppose there is no way around buying (or borrowing/finding/stealing/making) a saw. I'd recommend asking friends/relatives for a jigsaw, by which i mean the power tool - you'll cut through a 1 inch board way faster, take care though not to cut too far.
Sandpaper of various grains aren't going to be expensive. 1 rough and 1 fine should do it - I always need three times as much fine as rough, it wears out faster.
About the coating, again ask people who could have something left over if you do not want to buy, I suppose linseed oil is not hard to come by and easy to use - polyurethane/boat coat will make your slingshot much more durable, water resistant, and it will give it a shiny look - less likely that someone has it lying around though.
And concerning naturals, just take what you can find. The first two forks I found were crap, but it was a learning experience anyway. YOu can worry about finding the nicest and strongest forks later. Remember, if you can't break it with your hands, it is strong enough to be banded up.

Have fun!
 

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One thing i learned from making red oak board bows, watch your grain. the forks could be dangerous if the grain is straight, the bends and curves of the forks will be a weak point, i know, as i had a fork hit on a red oak SS and it blew the fork right off, and this was with rather light bands.

For safety in the future, if you cant get multiplex, get thin plywood and wood glue up whatever you want for a more attractive grain, much safer. IF that fork snaps with a thick band, its gonna mess you up and your eye has no chance if it hits, your blind.
 
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