I have heard that there are sport hunters that practice taking game with primitive projectile weapons including long bows, slingshots, aumentum, atlatls, spears, and even throwing sticks. I'm curious to compare the performance of each style of weapon that is being achieved by modern hunters. Are there data on:

  1. Optimal projectile weight?
  2. Projectile momentum at the moment of release?
  3. "Effective range," and its corollaries: maximum range and accuracy?
  • 1
    I’m voting to close this question because the answer will depend on the person using each weapon - different body mass and musculature will affect how effective each weapon is for each body type, so the question is unanswerable in this form.
    – bob1
    Jan 16, 2021 at 8:23
  • Hmm. Maybe if we narrow the consideration to average or typical able-bodied adult hunters of the species homo sapiens? I know I've seen useful population characteristics. E.g., "What is the average height and weight of human adult males?" Data on throwing. Let's leave it open a bit: It appears there's a chance that a question of this form might admit itself to good/helpful answers.
    – feetwet
    Jan 16, 2021 at 17:49
  • remember, armies from history used these weapons - bows, slingshot (by circular motion rather than elastic) etc and some were specialized positions in the army. Comparison is difficult, someone who is proficient in one may not be proficient in others. There are certainly data out there on longbow draw strengths and likely momentum/fps, range etc, as there will be for other types. The use of each is specialized too - a spear is a short to medium range weapon for significant damage, whereas an arrow is longer range, but less likely to cause major damage from peripheral hits.
    – bob1
    Jan 17, 2021 at 21:22
  • You may also find that this might go better on the history stackexchange.
    – bob1
    Jan 17, 2021 at 21:23
  • 1
    This is one of the main topics of the slinging forum. slinging.org/forum/YaBB.pl
    – Willeke
    Jan 18, 2021 at 20:43


Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.