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Natural Fork Questions.

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Getting back into catapult shooting and have collected a few natural forks in oak,hawthorn,hazel,and this morning cut a couple of walnut forks.

 

Couple of questions, is it ok to strip the bark off fresh forks to dry them faster or are they more likely to crack without the bark? What tool do you use to carve out the band Notches?

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Getting back into catapult shooting and have collected a few natural forks in oak,hawthorn,hazel,and this morning cut a couple of walnut forks.

 

Couple of questions, is it ok to strip the bark off fresh forks to dry them faster or are they more likely to crack without the bark? What tool do you use to carve out the band Notches?

i use a dremel for the band notches and i leave the bark on but thats because im in no hurry to dry the forks out...it depends how quickly you need them i guess. Some lads dry their forks in the microwave
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Getting back into catapult shooting and have collected a few natural forks in oak,hawthorn,hazel,and this morning cut a couple of walnut forks.

 

Couple of questions, is it ok to strip the bark off fresh forks to dry them faster or are they more likely to crack without the bark? What tool do you use to carve out the band Notches?

i use a dremel for the band notches and i leave the bark on but thats because im in no hurry to dry the forks out...it depends how quickly you need them i guess. Some lads dry their forks in the microwave
Thanks I have a dremel, do you use the sanding drum for the Notches? I'm not in a big hurry to dry forks as I have one oak catapult almost finished and I cut another from a fallen tree that was perfectly seasoned so ive got enough to keep me busy for a while. Edited by pie-eater

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Getting back into catapult shooting and have collected a few natural forks in oak,hawthorn,hazel,and this morning cut a couple of walnut forks.

 

Couple of questions, is it ok to strip the bark off fresh forks to dry them faster or are they more likely to crack without the bark? What tool do you use to carve out the band Notches?

i use a dremel for the band notches and i leave the bark on but thats because im in no hurry to dry the forks out...it depends how quickly you need them i guess. Some lads dry their forks in the microwave
Thanks I have a dremel, do you use the sanding drum for the Notches? I'm not in a big hurry to dry forks as I have one oak catapult almost finished and I cut another from a fallen tree that was perfectly seasoned so ive got enough to keep me busy for a while.
Yes mate i use the sanding drums...if you're in no rush I'd just put the forks to one side somewhere and forget about them for a while
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x2 for the sanding drum, small one, another tip is to cut your forks in January/ February as the wood is at its driest and does,nt split, once the sap rises in March the splitting starts

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Cheers that makes sense, I'm going to cut a few hazel sticks as well, i think I'll wait until January for them.

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Cheers that makes sense, I'm going to cut a few hazel sticks as well, i think I'll wait until January for them.

if it's for walking sticks mate the same rules apply I mostly use hazel for my forks as well, I have a few old woodsman books and all the hazel was cut round January for sticks,hurdles and forks for pinning thatch roofing down amongst it's other uses, early March is when the sap rises and the wood is no use, if your cutting hazel for sticks it normally takes another couple of years to straighten and season it, but if you can't wait people do sell bundles of seasoned sticks on eBay if you can bring yourself to pay a £5 for a stick another thing I find with hazel is its a bit of a pale boring wood without the lovely grain of olive or yew, I'm just in the middle of doing a catty and i have put coffee on it to darken it looks alright I think here,s a pic

post-102539-0-30861000-1506087703_thumb.jpg

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And here it is banded and finished, I,ve not removed the bark but sanded it smooth have rubbed coffee into the wood to hi light the grain and darken the White wood, rubbed a few coats of bees wax into the wood and stuck some bands on

post-102539-0-97756600-1506174164_thumb.jpg

post-102539-0-29870400-1506174177_thumb.jpg

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And here it is banded and finished, I,ve not removed the bark but sanded it smooth have rubbed coffee into the wood to hi light the grain and darken the White wood, rubbed a few coats of bees wax into the wood and stuck some bands on

Cheers mate yeah thought I'd make a few sticks, dont want to buy off eBay as im really enjoying wandering the woods looking for forks and sticks. Catapult looks good, the one I just made I gave a few wipes over with raw linseed oil but it didn't give it the effect I was hoping for so I finished with a polyurethane spray, looks good but I'm not keen on the plastic feel. Now I just need to practice my shooting.

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And here it is banded and finished, I,ve not removed the bark but sanded it smooth have rubbed coffee into the wood to hi light the grain and darken the White wood, rubbed a few coats of bees wax into the wood and stuck some bands on

Cheers mate yeah thought I'd make a few sticks, dont want to buy off eBay as im really enjoying wandering the woods looking for forks and sticks. Catapult looks good, the one I just made I gave a few wipes over with raw linseed oil but it didn't give it the effect I was hoping for so I finished with a polyurethane spray, looks good but I'm not keen on the plastic feel. Now I just need to practice my shooting.
. Found the fork a little bit big so just trimmed it down an inch or so and finished with a coat of clear lacquer once I was happy, also one fork was a few mill longer than tother so got them level, this makes a big difference to accuracy as the bands need to lay perfectly in line and ideally you should,nt be able to see the bottom band when you fire as it sits dead inline with the top one, ( I shoot on the side) also I put a 4mm hole through the fork in the groove so I can use looped tubes as well on my natty,s you can just see it through the wrap, cheers

post-102539-0-48163700-1506848572_thumb.jpg

Edited by Greyman

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And here it is banded and finished, I,ve not removed the bark but sanded it smooth have rubbed coffee into the wood to hi light the grain and darken the White wood, rubbed a few coats of bees wax into the wood and stuck some bands on

Cheers mate yeah thought I'd make a few sticks, dont want to buy off eBay as im really enjoying wandering the woods looking for forks and sticks. Catapult looks good, the one I just made I gave a few wipes over with raw linseed oil but it didn't give it the effect I was hoping for so I finished with a polyurethane spray, looks good but I'm not keen on the plastic feel. Now I just need to practice my shooting.
. Found the fork a little bit big so just trimmed it down an inch or so and finished with a coat of clear lacquer once I was happy, also one fork was a few mill longer than tother so got them level, this makes a big difference to accuracy as the bands need to lay perfectly in line and ideally you should,nt be able to see the bottom band when you fire as it sits dead inline with the top one, ( I shoot on the side) also I put a 4mm hole through the fork in the groove so I can use looped tubes as well on my natty,s you can just see it through the wrap, cheers

Are looped tubes the dankung tubes? Do they compete with theraband gold?

 

I'm working on a hawthorn fork atm, it's got some interesting markings on it so should turn out nice.

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And here it is banded and finished, I,ve not removed the bark but sanded it smooth have rubbed coffee into the wood to hi light the grain and darken the White wood, rubbed a few coats of bees wax into the wood and stuck some bands on

Cheers mate yeah thought I'd make a few sticks, dont want to buy off eBay as im really enjoying wandering the woods looking for forks and sticks. Catapult looks good, the one I just made I gave a few wipes over with raw linseed oil but it didn't give it the effect I was hoping for so I finished with a polyurethane spray, looks good but I'm not keen on the plastic feel. Now I just need to practice my shooting.
. Found the fork a little bit big so just trimmed it down an inch or so and finished with a coat of clear lacquer once I was happy, also one fork was a few mill longer than tother so got them level, this makes a big difference to accuracy as the bands need to lay perfectly in line and ideally you should,nt be able to see the bottom band when you fire as it sits dead inline with the top one, ( I shoot on the side) also I put a 4mm hole through the fork in the groove so I can use looped tubes as well on my natty,s you can just see it through the wrap, cheers
Are looped tubes the dankung tubes? Do they compete with theraband gold?

I'm working on a hawthorn fork atm, it's got some interesting markings on it so should turn out nice.

I buy Chinese latex tube from eBay in 1.7mm x4.5 mm the small number is the size of the hole in the middle the big one is the outside its the same as 1745 from dan cun but much cheaper I find it simular to tbg and you can adjust the ammo size and power by making bigger or smaller loops here are three ways I band up my natty,s the left one has splits in the fork for ttf middle one is looped tube with full length loop fires 12mm leads and hits hard last is an ott with the groove round the top I normally just do a groove and a 4mm hole through the fork in the groove as I have a few ttf forks in metal

post-102539-0-54639200-1507116728_thumb.jpg

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And here it is banded and finished, I,ve not removed the bark but sanded it smooth have rubbed coffee into the wood to hi light the grain and darken the White wood, rubbed a few coats of bees wax into the wood and stuck some bands on

Cheers mate yeah thought I'd make a few sticks, dont want to buy off eBay as im really enjoying wandering the woods looking for forks and sticks. Catapult looks good, the one I just made I gave a few wipes over with raw linseed oil but it didn't give it the effect I was hoping for so I finished with a polyurethane spray, looks good but I'm not keen on the plastic feel. Now I just need to practice my shooting.
. Found the fork a little bit big so just trimmed it down an inch or so and finished with a coat of clear lacquer once I was happy, also one fork was a few mill longer than tother so got them level, this makes a big difference to accuracy as the bands need to lay perfectly in line and ideally you should,nt be able to see the bottom band when you fire as it sits dead inline with the top one, ( I shoot on the side) also I put a 4mm hole through the fork in the groove so I can use looped tubes as well on my natty,s you can just see it through the wrap, cheers
Are looped tubes the dankung tubes? Do they compete with theraband gold?

I'm working on a hawthorn fork atm, it's got some interesting markings on it so should turn out nice.

I buy Chinese latex tube from eBay in 1.7mm x4.5 mm the small number is the size of the hole in the middle the big one is the outside its the same as 1745 from dan cun but much cheaper I find it simular to tbg and you can adjust the ammo size and power by making bigger or smaller loops here are three ways I band up my natty,s the left one has splits in the fork for ttf middle one is looped tube with full length loop fires 12mm leads and hits hard last is an ott with the groove round the top I normally just do a groove and a 4mm hole through the fork in the groove as I have a few ttf forks in metal

The tubes sound good, i was under the impression that they weren't very powerful. Finished my hawthorn catty the other day came out nice. Had a crack at hunting and had a very near miss on a squirrel and a wood pigeon, more practice needed I think. I have a nice walnut fork to work on next.

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Got a walnut fork and another hazel near done, the gap between the forks is close to the same size so I'm hoping theyl shoot the same as the hawthorn. Back on the subject of sticks I have a blackthorn just outside my garden which should give me 2 possibly 3 sticks without hurting the tree to much, 1 of them has a kind of ready made handle on it. Only trouble with it is I hear it needs seasoning for 2 years minimum.

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Got a walnut fork and another hazel near done, the gap between the forks is close to the same size so I'm hoping theyl shoot the same as the hawthorn. Back on the subject of sticks I have a blackthorn just outside my garden which should give me 2 possibly 3 sticks without hurting the tree to much, 1 of them has a kind of ready made handle on it. Only trouble with it is I hear it needs seasoning for 2 years minimum.

that's why people are selling bundles of seasoned hazel sticks on eBay mate,people just buy them and start making from the off, if you cut half a dozen every January after two or three years you will have sticks ready every year,but if you want to start straight away you might have to buy your first bundle then cut some in January as well to get you started for next year, I think that while you are seasoning them you also straighten out any unwanted curves or bends good luck

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