Wednesday, December 26, 2018

You might be a prepper if...

It is tough to beat commercial "throwing knives" for spear tips. Remove wrapping from handle. Cut or split down the center of your shaft. Drill a cross hole. Insert point. Drive rivet or bolt. Wrap with wire, fish line or other cordage. Look for Sabre Tooth Tigers to ventilate.
Avoid this style of blade for spear points. The backward pointing barbs can hang up on ribs and leave you vulnerable when the tiger's chums join the fray.  The Romans had this figured out 2200 years ago.
Throwing knives are sharp, have the right shape to facilitate pulling the spear out of the Tiger for repeat jabs, are made of hardened steel and often have a rivet hole.

They are also incredibly economical, often available for little more than one dollar a point.

What these "throwing knives" are not: They are not a viable defensive tool as throwing knives. For one thing they are much too light. For another, why would you give your opponent a weapon, i.e. throw your weapon to him?


  1. What diameter and length shaft would make the ideal spear? I have some 1-in dowel-type wood at about 7 ft long, but it's too heavy and long for a maneuverable spear. Any ideas?

    1. I don't know enough to really help you out but I will give it a shot.

      What type of wood do locals chose for hammer handles? A spear is a tool, just like a hammer. It is subject to the same stresses.

      In India, the Bengal Lancers used shafts of Bamboo.

      Pultruded, fiberglass reinforced tubing is the modern equivalent of bamboo.

      Size depends on your physical abilities and the intended target. A fast moving, aggressive target like a boar demands a stouter, shorter spear than gigging frogs.

      One design feature that is worth considering is a lanyard near the butt of the shaft that you can loop around the wrist of your rearmost hand. That way you are not totally dependent on hand strength. A sliding shaft can give you slivers.

  2. Also, what TYPE of wood... pine? oak? ...birch?

    1. You work with what you have available. See notes above.

      One way to improve the quality of your wood is to split it rather than saw it. Splitting the wood and then working with the resulting piece naturally follows the grain of the wood while sawn planks tend to drift across the grain.

      And don't rule out bamboo if it is available to you in a usable size.


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