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What the best way to aim, shoot and fire a catapult?



How To Shoot And Fire
A Hunting Catapult Properly

man shooting catapult night vision

For some people, hunting with a catapult has been a lifelong process. But for quite a few people, actually knowing how to aim, shoot and fire properly, as well as accurately is not quite as easy as it seems.! 

* Introduction To Firing Techniques: 

If you own several different models, you will, no doubt, find yourself making little changes in order to suit your personal firing needs – these are small refinements and changes needed to compensate for your personal style of hunting, your physical strengths and weaknesses for your own ways of shooting.

You will, most definitely, find yourself experimenting with different types of ammo sizes and even shapes – as well as changing the power band strength to see what really works best for you.
Anyone who is serious about hunting finds that a bit of experimentation is the only and best way to be the most consistent and accurate for their needs.
You must experiment if you want to progress and get more accurate and proficient at this type of hunting and food procurement. Therefore, this short article is aimed more specifically at the beginner and intermediate user, rather than the experienced hunter.

* Basics First – TARGETS

All hunting has to be divided into the two main groups –

  • PRACTICE – this is generally referred to as “Plinking”
  • HUNTING – the practice of actually stalking down and killing game.

Before you even consider going out into the woods and hunting for real,
it is very important to become proficient at hitting a target first.
DO NOT go out with the intention of hunting unless you re confident and accurate at shooting.

Using targets for practice is essential: Below are a small choice of the type of thing you will need:

* Improve Accuracy 

To really improve in your accuracy you must practice.
There are quite a few target aids available to help you gain more accuracy.

This can be as simple and easy as a few old tin cans in the back yard, with stones as ammo.
Or you can invest in a knockdown target.
These targets come in various shapes and sizes and really are a good way to ‘get your eye in’ and perfect your technique.

 All these types of targets are designed to help with your target accuracy and well worth investing in.
If you use ball bearings for ammo, then I would suggest investing in a different style of target – one that collects the ball bearing at the back in a tray. 

This will save you some money in the long run, as well as being more convenient for collecting your ammo up.

Initial cost for a target like this is around £30, as opposed to £10 – £20 for the other styles.

*Mind you, steel ball bearings are also very cheap; 1/2p each, so not a massive expense…

* Safety

But before you do anything:  THINK ABOUT YOUR CATAPULT SAFETY FIRST:
It is very important to think of abut safety just like any other weapon – any weapon if used in an unsafe and irresponsible manner, will very easily injure, maim and even kill a human.

catapult aiming

They are most definitely not toys – especially when you consider that they are specifically designed to hurl a projectile at some very impressive speed with an inertia that will do some serious damage.

catapult pouch

You really do not want to find yourself on the receiving end of a steel ball bearing travelling a hundreds of feet per second.!

* Basic Catapult Rules

Always apply the same sensible rules as you do with any weapon:

  • Never use against another person, in the United Kingdom, it will be regarded as an offensive weapon and the law will treat it as such.
  • Never point at anyone
  • Do not let anyone use unsupervised – especially children.
  • Wear safety glasses.. a power band can snap and recoil – it will take your eye out.
  • Wear a glove and if possible wrist protection against ‘band slap’ – this will start to hurt after a while..!
camo man with catapult

They offer you a very low cost, low tech alternative way to go out into the woods and be able to learn how to stalk your prey, without carrying around a load of cumbersome equipment, weapons and ammo – essentially it is a ‘low tec’, and extremely lightweight, compact, very easy to use, hunting tool.

Add to that, they can be very accurate and and great fun to use. 

But please – always remember to be ethical about your hunting practices.
All hunters want a clean, fast kill – that’s why it is so necessary to actually practice and get yourself proficient with your weapon well before you actually go out into the wild looking for game to hunt.
The average quality will very easily take down many of the smaller animals like rabbits, pigeons, squirrels, pheasants – AT CLOSE RANGE

I think, essentially, that is where the actual skill comes in, you really do need to learn how to silently stalk your prey.

Learn and practice your stalking techniques and then ensure you can get nice and close to make a clean shot.

Fortunately for us, you will find that some animals and birds, especially rabbits and pheasants will tend to hold still long enough for you to take a good aim and some will even allow a second shot if needed..

camouflage with catapult


* importance of practice

But again, I cannot underestimate the need to practice.
It is essential you are more than able to reproduce the firing action and technique you use when plinking at a target – regular practice will ensure you build up ‘muscle memory’ and use exactly the same action when your heart’s pumping and you’re all crouched up on the ground trying to aim at your prey for real.

Whether your left or right handed, makes no difference when it comes to how to shooting and firing properly – what does make a difference is finding a firing position, stance and technique that suits you personally. 

firing a catapult

As a general rule 90% of hunters will pull the pouch straight back to around the chin area, below the ‘aiming’ eye, with a straight arm holding the catapult body.

Remember that the power bands need to be adjusted to give you just the right amount of ‘stretch’ to ensure you are not struggling to pull back, especially over the last few inches.

You must be able to comfortably pull back to achieve maximum power without having to struggle – if you find you cannot hold the pouch ‘fully cocked’ without wobbling then you must extend the band length to suit you body size, strength and style.

It is far better to give away a bit of power than constantly struggle with the band force and subsequently miss your target.
As you get more confident and muscle memory kicks in, you will find it becomes easier to maintain a constant aim with less effort.

You’ll find the key to successfully aiming, firing and hitting a target is very much an instinctive action, that gets better the more you practice and develop that muscle memory that is so important for hitting a target repeatably. 

Know You Trajectory:

By keeping you aiming arm steady and in the same place fro every shot, pulling the bands back to the the same length and same position will increase your success rate to the point where it become second nature.

catapult trajectories

Becoming an accurate shot is actually quite easy, and you will surprise yourself at how quick the progress is once you get into it.

Get to know exactly how it performs and work to those conditions.

Practice different distances and become familiar with the amount of trajectory needed for the different shots you may need to make.

You will need to know this, especially when stalking bird in trees.

* Best Catapult Ammunition

I find this is an area where some people prefer to use large ammo and others smaller – there’s no definitive answer to ammo size or type.
As Preppers, it makes sense to practice with all types and sizes, but especially with FREE AMMO.. the type you find on the ground, namely stones.

For consistent results, you will need consistent ammo, and that normally means steel ball bearings.

Fortunately, steel ball bearing are relatively cheap to buy and always consistent in their size and weight.
Which makes them also consistent in their flight path, speed and trajectory.

Ball Bearing Specifications:

  • * How To Be Consistent

    Try to use the same power bands whenever possible, and, of course, always carry a spare set – again, a cheap item to buy, light weight to carry around and compact – so no reason to scrimp on extra bands.
    They will snap, I can guarantee that, and there’s nothing worse than getting all set up, having good ammo and a target sitting right in front of you, only to have a band snap and no replacement.
    This is a typical quality hunting catapult – with a spare set of power bands the whole set-up costs around £30, so not an expensive item considering the usefulness to us preppers. 

    *  Selection


    Kotila UK Powerful New Steel Handle Sling Shot Outdoor Game Hunting (Camouflage)

  • High velocity slingshot.
  • Use rocks, marbles, paintballs, etc to shoot.
  • Cool camouflage painted ergonomic ABS grip.
  • Top aluminium alloy frame, top natural rubber latex and top leather wrapper.
  • Portable size, easily fit into your pocket.

    Powerful Set, with Ball Bearing / Flat Rubber Bands / Storage Bag / Magnetic Ring

    • Folding sET – made of steel, 
    • Ball bag: makes loading the slingshot professional for hunting very easy and great fun.
    • Magnetic Ring of the Twins Slingshot:
    •  100 pcs. Steel round balls 8 mm stainless steel 

    * Final Thoughts

    uk prepper logo

    Have fun:

    My final words are, go out and have fun – knowing how to aim, shoot and fire a hunting catapult properly takes a bit of time and a bit of practice, so get yourself one and some ammo, and go out and enjoy yourself.   

    Steve Hart  –  UK Preppers Guide

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    Martial Arts Systems For Devastating Self-Defense



    Self-defense is always a hot topic in the survivalist and prepper community and with good reason – you don’t have to be in an “end of the world” type scenario for self-defense techniques to pay off. 

    It can happen to anyone: walking alone or even with your family and you take the wrong turn. Or maybe it’s the right turn, just at the wrong time. In any event, the point is that even the most gentle, well-meaning people have found themselves on the wrong end of a raging psychopath, a deranged crack addict or someone just looking for trouble. 

    Shockwave Mini

    When that happens, you might not be able to get to your everyday carry weapon. Even if you can eventually get to a concealed firearm or other weapon, you might have to fight your way to get it – what are you going to do if your attacker pins your strong arm (or even both of them) against your body in a bear hug?

    This is why it’s so important to know something in the way of hand-to-hand self-defense combat. Your life and your family’s might just depend on it. 

    What Works And What’s Bullshido?

    You can go to a self-defense course on just about every street corner these days. The issue is that all of these are not created equally. 

    Take for example, kung fu. It’s a fascinating art and a beautiful one with a long, rich history and exotic traditions. However, in a real-life street fight it’s probably going to have you counting the street lamps from your back and your teeth after you manage to get up.

    Shockwave Mini

    Brazilian ju-jitsu and mixed martial arts gyms are incredibly popular these days, but as much as their proponents like to boast about how “combat tested” they are, this is simply not the case. Federal agencies have increasingly ceased relying upon them to train their undercover agents, because they’re just not up to snuff for a real-life street fight, mostly because they’re far too complicated for people to remember when push comes to shove – literally. 

    So what can you count on in a real-life street fight?

    The Deadly Art Of Kicking Butt

    Man attacking with bare hands

    If you’re already taking a martial art it’s not absolutely necessary that you switch from whatever you’re doing to something else more “battle tested.” In fact, what you know is certainly better than nothing, especially if you’re an experienced hand at the art. 

    However, you might want to consider dropping into a seminar or three for the purpose of learning some very direct, effective and brutal tactics that you can deploy in a real-life street fight. 

    There are three martial arts that are very good places to begin your hunt for these battle hardened tactics. We’re certainly not endorsing every martial arts school that teaches these, but, as a rule, these are the kinds of places that are going to be more oriented toward what works on the street than what works in the ring.

    • American Kenpo: This is what Elvis took and it’s a really interesting art that flies under the radar. American kenpo has always been about devastating strikes, crippling joint locks and fight ending chokes. “Kenpo 5.0,” an offshoot of American kenpo integrates the techniques from modern grappling arts that work on the streets, while ditching the rest. 
    • Jeet Kune Do: Bruce Lee fashioned his own martial art on the principle that students should do what works for them and not waste their time learning anything else. It’s specifically designed for street combat with a hard stance against sport competition, which practitioners see as watering down the art. JKD studios vary widely from one place to another. 
    • Krav Maga: This was developed by the Israeli Defense Forces to train recruits in brutally effective fighting tactics as quickly as possible. It’s primarily based on striking techniques, but it also involves a heavy dose of learning how to take deadly weapons away from people. To get a black belt you have to fly to Israel and disarm a soldier of his bayoneted combat rifle. Fun!

    Shockwave Mini

    Before you sign up, make sure to at least watch a class, though it’s very common for martial arts schools to allow people to take a single class for free. If you don’t feel that you’re welcome or the instruction simply isn’t your style, keep looking. Like we said at the very beginning, there are tons and tons of martial arts schools around for you to choose from. 

    Remember that what works in the ring isn’t necessarily (and probably won’t) work in the street. So if you’re committed to learning self-defense, make sure that you pick something that’s designed for combat. If you’re already learning something that’s designed for sport, consider augmenting your studies. Because you never know when violence is going to come knocking on your doorstep. 

    *This article has third party affiliate offers*

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    Surviving the Unthinkable: 5 Lifesaving Items for When SHTF



    survival and exploration in the wild. Man vs wild.

    In the world of survival and preparedness, planning for the worst is a must. When SHTF, having these critical items will prepare you to survive and defend yourself when societal norms collapse. It will be you against the world in the wilderness. Check out this quick video from Calculated Survival that gives you 5 items to help you survive when shit gets real.

    Calculated Survival – 5 Items to Survive

    Think power grid failures, catastrophic natural disasters, or even finding yourself stranded in the wilderness with nothing but the clothes on your back. At these moments, having the right tools can mean the difference between life and death. Here are five such items that every serious survivalist must-have.

    A Good Solid Knife

    Bushcraft Knife and campfire in the evening

    The heart of any survival kit, a reliable knife is multifaceted. Beyond its obvious use for cutting, a knife can be crucial for hunting, food preparation, and even defense. The blade should be sharp, sturdy, and capable of maintaining its edge through the rigors of survival situations. Your life might very well depend on its strength and reliability.

    Ferro Rod

    The ability to start a fire is fundamental. From boiling water and cooking food to keeping warm and signaling for help, fire is paramount. In a world where lighters can fail and matches can get wet, the Ferro Rod emerges as a dependable fire-starting tool. With its long lifespan and ability to produce sparks even in wet conditions, it’s a lifeline you can trust.

    Shockwave Mini

    Paracord, Particularly Survivor Cord

    When you’re thinking of survival, paracord should be at the forefront of your mind. This versatile rope is a staple for a multitude of tasks. But not just any paracord will do. Survivor cord takes it up a notch by incorporating fishing line for catching food, tinder for fire-starting, and wire suitable for setting up animal traps. With this, you can craft shelters, snares, or even makeshift fishing gear.

    Shelter Tools, like Tarps and Heat Reflectors

    Exposure is a silent and deadly threat in survival situations. A tarp provides a quick and efficient shelter against rain, wind, and even the sun’s scorching heat. Pair this with a heat reflector, and you’ve got a system to keep you warm, amplifying the heat from your fire and directing it towards you, a true boon in cold environments.


    Water Filtration System

    Clean water is the elixir of life. While you might endure weeks without food, mere days without water can prove fatal. In many scenarios, available water sources are teeming with harmful pathogens.

    Ready Filter
    Modern Need’s Ready Filter

    Having a reliable water filtration system ensures that you can safely hydrate, safeguarding against deadly waterborne diseases. Check out Modern Need’s Ready Filter to always have a reliable water source here!

    In conclusion, the stark reality of survival situations necessitates robust preparation. While the above items are invaluable, remember that the real survival tool is your mind. With the right knowledge, these tools, and the will to survive, you can weather even the gravest of situations. So gear up, stay informed, and always be ready for when SHTF.

    *This article contains 3rd party affiliate offers to keep the site free with new content*

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    The Art of Concealment: Best Places to Hide a Knife on Your Body 



    Hunting knife in a plastic sheath

    The Hidden Edge in Tough Times

    All throughout history, concealed knives have swayed the tide of battles, saved lives, and borne witness to raw, unyielding human spirit. As survivalists, we recognize the tactical advantage and peace of mind a discreetly hidden blade can provide. Here’s a deep dive into choosing the best places to conceal a knife on your body.

    Why Hide a Knife?

    Tactical Advantage: In sticky situations, surprise is your ally. A concealed blade can provide that edge, literally and figuratively. Discreet Utility Beyond defense, a hidden knife is an invaluable tool for mundane tasks, ensuring you’re always equipped without drawing unnecessary attention.

    Choosing the Right Knife for Concealment

    Before we dive into the “where,” we must address the “what.” Not all knives are suitable for hidden carry. Opt for:

    Compact Size: A blade that’s too long can be cumbersome and conspicuous.

    Secure Sheath: You want it to stay hidden and avoid accidents.

    Quick Release: In a crisis, you need to draw it swiftly.

    Best Places to Conceal a Knife on Your Body

    Ankle Holster: Tucked away in an ankle strap, it’s both discrete and easily accessible. Especially useful if you’re seated or downed.

    Behind the Back: In a horizontal sheath, a knife can be comfortably nestled at the small of your back. However, ensure it doesn’t poke you when you sit.

    Underarm Holster: Much like a shoulder holster for a firearm, there are harnesses that hold a knife snugly under your arm. Ideal for quick, intuitive access.

    Pocket Clip: While not entirely hidden, a good folding knife with a low-profile clip can be inconspicuous in your pocket.

    Inside the Waistband: This provides quick access while being hidden by your shirt. Make sure the grip is positioned for a smooth draw.

    Boot Top: Slipping a knife inside your boot, especially with a dedicated sheath, can be both concealed and quickly accessible.

    The Balance of Comfort and Access

    Finding the right spot is a blend of comfort and functionality. You want to:

    Ensure Mobility: Your concealed knife shouldn’t impede your movement.

    Practice Draws: Regularly practice drawing the knife to ensure smooth, swift access when needed.

    Always be mindful of local laws regarding concealed weapons. While a hidden knife is a survivalist’s tool, it’s essential to stay on the right side of the law. For the experienced survivalist, a concealed knife is more than just a tool or weapon; it’s a silent protector. As with all things survival, preparation and practice are key. Equip yourself, train regularly, and always be ready for whatever the wilderness—or life—throws your way.

    How do you conceal your knife and why?

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