175 cm. COMPETITION DART by STONEAGE CREATIONS
USING COMMERCIAL EASTON ® ALUMINUM ARROW COMPONENTS
This information was originally posted at http://home.earthlink.net/~atlatl1/alumdart.htm.
The page is no longer there, so I'm putting it up here.
A. MATERIALS :
- ** # 2514 Aluminum Shaft (full length approx. 35* inches) - Two per Dart
- ** # 2314 Aluminum Shaft x 8 inches long - one per Dart
- # 2514 UNI Bushing - one per Dart
- # 2514 RPS Aluminum Point Insert (press-fit type) - one per Dart
- # 100 gr. Field Point - one per Dart
- Feathers : Length = 4d inches - Three per Dart
- Devcon® (or equal) 5 Minute epoxy adhesive
- Alcohol: for cleaning all surfaces prior to applying adhesive.
- Commercial Fletching Adhesive: available at any archery store.
- Fletching Fixture: for applying and aligning feathers.
- Commercial Feather Trimmer: hot-wire type is best.
- Steel Rotary Countersink Tool: available at any hardware store.
- 5/16 Diameter wood Doweling, approximately six inches long.
- Thread Adhesive: any liquid type super glue will suffice.
B. INSTRUCTIONS :
Cut item 1 to 34* inches of full diameter length (most commercial arrow shafts have a reduced diameter on one end for the nock). Use an abrasive type saw to cut the shaft. This will eliminate any tearing of the aluminum. Cut the shaft with care. It must be a “true” cut with minimal shaft runout for a professional fit with item 3 or 4. Lightly chamfer both ends of the shaft with item 12. Use your fingers to hold and rotate the steel chamfer tool. Do not use a drill for this step. Super-clean the inside of item 1 (full length) to remove any metal chips.
Lightly chuck item 2 into an electric drill and touch the rotating end of the shaft to a piece of fine emery cloth or sandpaper to achieve a rounded chamfer. Repeat this step for the other end. This is very important for a proper glue bond, and it will lessen any shaft stress when the Dart is flexing during flight.
Install item 3 to one end of item 1. Use the end that you have cut. Spread a light coating of epoxy (item 7) to the inside of item 1 and the outside of item 3. Insure that item 3 is fully seated into the shaft. You may have to tap item 3 with a block of hardwood to achieve this. Wipe off excess adhesive and let it cure by immediately placing the shaft in a vertical position with the bushing down. This shaft will now be referred to as item 1A.
Install item 4 to one end of the remaining shaft (item 1). Use the end that you have cut. Spread a light coating of epoxy to the inside of item 1 and the outside of item 4. Insure that item 4 is fully seated into the shaft. Wipe off excess adhesive and let it cure by immediately placing the shaft in a vertical position with the insert down. This shaft will now be referred to as item 2A.
Install the three pre-cut feathers onto item 1A with the fletching fixture (item 10). Adjust the feather on the fixture to maintain a distance of six inches from the end of the UNI Bushing to the leading end of the feather. A light spiral alignment to the shaft is ideal. Allow the adhesive to cure. On both ends of each feather, place a small spot of the same adhesive to provide a “glue ramp” from the shaft to the base of the feather. You will find this important when you accidently throw a dart through the brush. Trim the three feathers with item 11 to a design of your choice and clean up the burn line with sandpaper.
Install the aluminum shaft (item 2) into item 1A. Carefully clean item 2 with alcohol and place a pencil mark at the center of its length. Mix enough epoxy (about one level teaspoon) to guarantee a successful bond. Too much is better than too little. Coat the outside of item 2 with epoxy to the pencil mark. Coat the inside of item 1A with epoxy (using item 13) to a depth of about 4 inches. Insert item 2 into item 1A to a depth of the pencil mark. Use a slow rotating motion when doing this and hold in a near vertical
manner. Wipe off all residual epoxy. Immediately place item 1A in a vertical position for the epoxy to cure. Item 2 must be in the down position. A strip of masking tape is ideal for hanging the shaft from the top of your door or other convenient platform. Check item 2 to insure that it has not slipped from its proper position inside of item 1A. Allow two hours to fully cure the epoxy.
You are now ready for the final bonding operation. Clean the remaining portion of item 2 with alcohol. Mix enough epoxy (as in the last operation) to guarantee a successful bond. Coat the outside of item 2 with epoxy. Coat the inside of item 1B with epoxy (using item 13) to a depth of about 4 inches. Insert item 2 into item 1B. Use a slow rotating motion when doing this and hold in a near vertical manner. Wipe off all residual epoxy. Immediately place the Dart in a vertical position with the feathers in the down position. Insure the shafts, item 1A and 1B, are firmly seated. Allow two hours to fully cure the epoxy.
Screw the field point (item 5) into the insert (item 4). Use the thread adhesive (item 14) for this operation. The point will loosen during use without the adhesive. If it becomes necessary to remove the point after the gluing process, use heat on the point and not the insert or shaft.
Carefully chamfer the UNI Bushing (item 3) with the countersink tool (item 12). You will need to use a slow speed electric drill for this operation. Chamfer only the sharp inner edge off the bushing to allow a proper fit with the spur on the Atlatl.
Congratulations - You now have a finished dart with an overall length of 69 inches (175 cm). This Dart construction technique will give you a dart that has an excellent track record. These darts have been field tested by many Atlatlists in many Competition events; some with first place wins.
If you should have the misfortune to bend one of these Darts; remember that it can be straightened by hand or in a bench vice. Be very careful if you try this. A Dart which has been broken can be repaired with an additional # 2314 insert and epoxy adhesive. It will be several inches shorter but still useable.
The above instructions allow the factory cut shaft ends to be joined together which is the optimum condition for the one-piece look. If you use camouflage shafts, be sure to pre-match the colors before joining them together with epoxy.
Your Dart is a lethal weapon. Please use it with caution. Insure you have an unobstructed course before you throw your Dart. Always carry Darts in a vertical position when you are near other people. Always look behind you before pulling Darts out of a target.
* The stated length is ideal, but a one inch shorter shaft will also work. This will give you a 67 inch dart.
** A theoretical clearance of .003 inch between shafts is a factory criterion. An actual clearance of .001 to .003 inch is recommended for an ideal fit.
C. WEIGHT FORWARD MODIFICATION:
For the #2514 weight-forward design, follow the above instructions for a standard SAC aluminum dart which, by the way, has a balance point of 45%.
Prior to installing the point insert (item 4), place an 8 inch long # 2314 shaft into the front end of the dart and epoxy it in, pushing it in the final 1/2 inch or so with item 4. Be sure to chamfer one end of the 8 inch long shaft to allow an even spread of epoxy. When you have pushed item 4 into the mainshaft all the way, immediately place the dart into the vertical position point end down) to cure.
If you have done everything correctly, the insert (item 4) and the 8 inch long shaft should be touching each other (inside the mainshaft) and securely bonded with epoxy.
This arrangement should give you a balance point somewhere between 40% and 41%.
The weight forward design should improve your accuracy by an additional 15 percent over the standard SAC design. Nearly everyone who has competed with this modification has improved their competition scores.
Dart Construction |