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Homemade Arrows

slightly easier this way. Page 2, updates. +Video

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#1 Fome

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Posted 20 July 2009 - 03:04 PM

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I realize there's another homemade arrow writeup but this way is a little simpler. There's no soldering, PVC sheaths precisely made with a bandsaw, or melting FBR into super hot clay. In fact, most of the materials, aside from the craft foam and insulator are already ready available to most nerfers.

Also, they fly incredibly well.

Materials:

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1/2" Frost King pipe insulator foam (if you can find the stuff without the slit, more power to you)
1/2" FBR
Electrical tape
Craft foam
Hot glue + gun
Measuring device
Sharp knife/razor blade

The insulation foam comes in 3 foot lengths.
36 inches / 6 = 6 inches
Cut your foam into 6 inch lengths with a sharp razor blade, be as precise as possible.

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Mark one side of your foam into thirds, eyeball it if you're confident enough.

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Now, using these marks, wrap electrical tape in a helical fashion up the length of the arrow. Leaving a small gap for the fins to go, put another length of electrical tape parallel to the first one. Wrap the ends with electrical tape to secure them. It also helps to put your arrow on the barrel at this point, this will give the foam time to form to the barrel. Cut off any stray bits of electrical tape if there are any.

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Now that you've made the slots for the fins, it's time for the cap and the fins themselves. Design the fins however you like, I simply cut a stencil from some scrap cardboard. I also used the inside ring of my electrical tape to make the cap. Consistency is important here. Start warming up your hot glue gun.

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Use these to cut your pieces. 3 fins, 1 cap. Duh.

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Hot glue the fins into the slots you made with electrical tape. Make sure they're standing up straight but also have a slight tilt, relative to the main body.

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(I made this arrow a little different, not having the fins flush with the body. No difference in performance)

Coat your cap with hot glue, stick a small bit of 1/2" FBR in the middle, and press it on the other end of the arrow.

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Done!

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Edited by Fome, 23 April 2010 - 05:51 PM.


#2 tack66

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Posted 20 July 2009 - 03:39 PM

Nice I have done this with stuff a plumber left behind for free.:)
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#3 Poseidon

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Posted 20 July 2009 - 03:55 PM

Nice. I've been avoiding making arrows due to the in-depth process most of the techniques entail, but I believe this qualifies as "simple". You say it flies well, but have you compared ranges with stock arrows?


By the way tack66... a simple mod will make a Nitefinder fire 3 times as strong/far as a Maverick. That is all.

Edited by Poseidon, 20 July 2009 - 03:57 PM.

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#4 Fome

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Posted 20 July 2009 - 04:21 PM

Nice. I've been avoiding making arrows due to the in-depth process most of the techniques entail, but I believe this qualifies as "simple". You say it flies well, but have you compared ranges with stock arrows?


I've only fired these on my BnA so I can't vouche for other barrel systems, but the homemade arrows fly significantly farther and straighter than the red BBB arrows.

#5 Galaxy613

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Posted 20 July 2009 - 05:22 PM

Nice. I've been avoiding making arrows due to the in-depth process most of the techniques entail, but I believe this qualifies as "simple". You say it flies well, but have you compared ranges with stock arrows?


I've only fired these on my BnA so I can't vouche for other barrel systems, but the homemade arrows fly significantly farther and straighter than the red BBB arrows.


I was never really taken by red BBB arrows, I always perfered the Big Salvo Green arrows.

Good job innovating! :)
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#6 rork

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Posted 20 July 2009 - 07:22 PM

I like this. I've always wanted to try some games involving big ammo types, and these would be a pretty good one.
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#7 Bedhed117

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Posted 20 July 2009 - 08:16 PM

This is sweet! After I saw that video of you shooting the arrows on the Fomebow vid I was going to PM you to ask if you could make a writeup anyway. These things look super simple and I have a ton of that pipe insulator left over from a roller coaster I built for school. Great writeup.
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#8 white moonlight

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Posted 20 July 2009 - 08:56 PM

Nice homeade arrow and also nice... writeup.
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#9 BustaNinja

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Posted 20 July 2009 - 10:14 PM

I like this. I've always wanted to try some games involving big ammo types, and these would be a pretty good one.

Well if someone wouldn't have been so careless as to contract food poisoning, he would have seen a game type that uses big ammo...

I'm just Rork, we still love you.

These seem like a good idea. I want to find a material that would fit on an Arrowstorm barrel though, because arrow storms are intense.
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#10 SonReeceSonJensen

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Posted 21 July 2009 - 06:48 AM

Hella, another strong case for varied ammo games! Good work, things like this make a coupler barrel even more handy.
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#11 Judging Eagle

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Posted 21 July 2009 - 06:48 PM

I really like this.

I was thinking about making "arrows" for a mod, b/c stefans woudl be illegal and too dangerous for where I plan on using a new BBB that I'm working on.

Fome, I was wondering how you think having weights glued to the place where the foam disk-plate is, and duct-tape covered open cell foam on the end would work? Would it be a disaster, or could it be viable?

If I put a 2" long foam 'arrow head', I could probably put a lot more weight than a normal stefan would have.
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#12 Fome

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Posted 21 July 2009 - 08:18 PM

I really like this.

Fome, I was wondering how you think having weights glued to the place where the foam disk-plate is, and duct-tape covered open cell foam on the end would work? Would it be a disaster, or could it be viable?

If I put a 2" long foam 'arrow head', I could probably put a lot more weight than a normal stefan would have.


Thanks.
Now keep in mind I'm no ballistics/avionics/whatever expert.

A traditional stefan works differently from an arrow. The stefan relies on the the weight in the front to orient the dart, allowing it to move in a straight line. Imagine throwing a sock with a rock in it. The heavy rock leads and the light sock trails behind.

The arrow uses the cant of the fins to force the projectile to spin. This spin stabilizes the arrow in flight, allowing it to fly straight. It's the same reason quarterbacks add a spin to the football, or why real guns have a rifled barrel.

To actually answer your question: The first arrow I made was weighted with a penny underneath the yellow foam circle. This, compared with the later, unweighted versions, flew just as accurately but with much less velocity and range. The only weight I use on the tip of my arrows is the foam disk and the hot glue used to adhere the foam disk. They fly very straight.

If you choose not to use tilted fins, then yes, you will need to weight your projectiles somehow. Otherwise, no.

#13 white moonlight

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Posted 21 July 2009 - 08:27 PM

Have you experimented with a pointy tip?

I don't mean pointy like sharp, but like the shape of an ice cream cone, (ICE CREAM :angry: )

The only reason I ask this is because I think there may be an good increase in the arrows range consider the
pointy tip would makethe arrow a good amount more aerodinamic.

One way you might be able to do this is by molding and folding the craft foam into a cone like shape and fill it
with hot glue.

Edited by white moonlight, 21 July 2009 - 08:29 PM.

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Guess who he was talking about...

#14 Fome

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Posted 21 July 2009 - 10:35 PM

Have you experimented with a pointy tip?

The only reason I ask this is because I think there may be an good increase in the arrows range consider the
pointy tip would makethe arrow a good amount more aerodinamic.

One way you might be able to do this is by molding and folding the craft foam into a cone like shape and fill it
with hot glue.


I haven't yet.

That could be one way, although I fear it might be structurally unsound and a little heavy (all that hot glue).

I'll look around for something, maybe at the craft store or my hardware store tomorrow

#15 white moonlight

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Posted 21 July 2009 - 10:49 PM

Have you experimented with a pointy tip?

The only reason I ask this is because I think there may be an good increase in the arrows range consider the
pointy tip would makethe arrow a good amount more aerodinamic.

One way you might be able to do this is by molding and folding the craft foam into a cone like shape and fill it
with hot glue.


I haven't yet.

That could be one way, although I fear it might be structurally unsound and a little heavy (all that hot glue).

I'll look around for something, maybe at the craft store or my hardware store tomorrow


It doesn't neccesarily have to be filled with hot glue either.

1. Take the craft foam.
2. Rap bend it into a cone shape.
3. Secure into that shape with small amounts of light weight tape.
4. Fill tip with A LITTLE hot glue.
5. Coat the bottom of the ring of the cone with zap-a-gap.
6. Stick it on the end.
7. Then possibly if the bond is not strong enough put SMALL amounts of hot glue.

If you follow this, and it actually works out you should have lesss weight and more aerodynamicy then the other design.

Edited by white moonlight, 21 July 2009 - 10:49 PM.

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On his trec to Colonfest...
VengefulWaffle BOY, 12 KILLED IN MOUNTAIN PASS BY WILD RACCON, EXPERTS SAY HE ATTEMPTED TO HOLD IT OFF WITH NERF NITEFINDERS
POLICE SAY: ALCOHOL MAY HAVE BEEN INVOLVED
Guess who he was talking about...

#16 GoldHawk

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Posted 22 July 2009 - 11:04 AM

The nose may be more aerodynamic but only if you can make a proper cone and get the point of it centered. A flat tip is better for the aforementioned durability reason and consider this, if you don't get the tip of that cone near exactly centered that arrow is going to have a permanent drift in one direction. From my experience, it's fairly hard to make consistent cones of any matieral.
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#17 atomatron

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Posted 22 July 2009 - 11:37 AM

Jeez, What is with you guys and cones?

If you are hell bent on having aerodynamic arrows just cut a Nerf ball in half and use that for the front, it would be more consistent than your silly cones, probably less injury-causing and more durable.
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#18 Judging Eagle

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Posted 31 July 2009 - 12:00 AM

If you choose not to use tilted fins, then yes, you will need to weight your projectiles somehow. Otherwise, no.


Ah, I see.

I'll have to put a open cell foam tip (has to be 2" thick at the tip) on these for what I'll be using them for, but that won't add too much weight.

An other option would be to use no fins, and a weight right near the tip, behind the 2" thrusting tip. Basically making giant, hollow, stefans.
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#19 DartzDude

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Posted 05 August 2009 - 09:47 PM

Might have to make some of these. I really like this nice job!! :ph34r:
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#20 Fome

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Posted 21 April 2010 - 01:35 AM

A small preview:

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Using better materials and more efficient construction methods, these arrows are easier and more consistent to mass produce, are less expensive, and (most importantly) perform better.

Also, I've fixed the issue of the arrows "losing control" as various people have put it in use with particularly high-powered blasters. I'm currently using them with my titan and they fly straight with 5 pumps or 20.

Writeup and video coming soon.

Edited by Fome, 21 April 2010 - 01:45 AM.


#21 Zorns Lemma

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Posted 21 April 2010 - 06:26 AM

Nice use of a template there. Have you experimented with different fin lengths?

I've so far preferred the use of giant stefans to arrows but at these sizes maybe arrows will fly better. Finding the right balance of weight and barrel length in giant stefans gets fairly annoying, as larger sizes of foam fit worse and worse into the various larger sizes of PVC.
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#22 Draconis

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Posted 21 April 2010 - 02:31 PM

What a coincidence! Mine are bigger, though.

Posted Image
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[15:51] <+Noodle> titties
[15:51] <+Rhadamanthys> titties
[15:51] <+jakejagan> titties
[15:51] <+Lucian> boobs
[15:51] <+Gears> titties
[15:51] <@Draconis> Titties.
[15:52] <+Noodle> why is this so hard?

#23 SerpentofSet

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Posted 21 April 2010 - 02:53 PM

What a coincidence! Mine are bigger, though.

Posted Image

My first reaction:

Is that-
oh dear god it is


Then:
Oh wait, those are probably plastic golf balls
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#24 TantumBull

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Posted 21 April 2010 - 07:01 PM

Oh wait, those are probably plastic golf balls

Foam.
Stiff foam, very similar to Nerf and other "ballistic" balls.
You can get bags of them at Target.
There's no need to quote the picture to ask, though.

I've never found stiff ones before. The only non-center-weighted ones I've found have been pretty squishy, about the density of mile high foam.
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#25 Draconis

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Posted 22 April 2010 - 01:41 PM

Oh wait, those are probably plastic golf balls

Foam.
Stiff foam, very similar to Nerf and other "ballistic" balls.
You can get bags of them at Target.
There's no need to quote the picture to ask, though.

I've never found stiff ones before. The only non-center-weighted ones I've found have been pretty squishy, about the density of mile high foam.


It really depends on the shipment. I have a few of the squishy ones, and those were all that I could find for a little while, but now they seem to be back to the firm foam. Go through all the packages on the hook and just see. There may be some of each in the larger packages. Of course, for this application, squishy may actually be more fun!

Edited by Draconis, 22 April 2010 - 01:42 PM.

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[15:51] <+Noodle> titties
[15:51] <+Rhadamanthys> titties
[15:51] <+jakejagan> titties
[15:51] <+Lucian> boobs
[15:51] <+Gears> titties
[15:51] <@Draconis> Titties.
[15:52] <+Noodle> why is this so hard?


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