Council Hill Atlatl
This is an atlatl that was found at the Council Hill site in eastern Nevada back in the 1920's. The original excavations were never published, however, so any information about its origin is lost. It is very similar to ones used by the Basketmaker II culture, however, so it is safe to assume it's from the same era (100 BC - 400 AD). The most unusual feature of this atlatl is the channel that runs nearly the entire length of the atlatl. Keep in mind that this is my interpretation of the original.
Wood, 20 3/4" x 3/4" x 3/8"
(2) Leather, 1/2" x 4 1/2"
- Carve out the finger grips and wrapping spots. The middle one is for your fingers, so it should be the deepest, but try to leave at least 1/2" of wood between them. The depressions on the sides of the finger grips are to hold the sinew in place when wrapping the leather straps.
- Carve out the peg and groove. Go down about 1/8" deep. Be sure to undercut the peg so it will grip the dart. The easiest way to do this is to scratch in the outline of the peg, and then score a line running down the shaft for the groove. Keep cutting this groove down, then cut in from the sides to remove the wood.
- Drw a line down the exact center of the shaft, from the end of the groove to the handle end. Take your knife and just cut in a little from each side to make the channel.
- Round off all edges and sand.
- If you're going to stain or color the wood, do it now before you attach the finger straps.
- Take one piece of leather and lay it over the top depression (towards the peg end) so that about 1/2" is sticking out past the depression. Glue it in place. Do the same for the other side, and then wrap it in place with the sinew.
- Holding it in your hand as if you were going to throw, find out where the bottom of the leather straps should be located. Glue and wrap them in place over the bottom depression.
Scan from Great Basin Atlatl Studies
My Council Hill Atlatl
(Made from a piece of lath, colored with Cordovan color shoe wax)
My 2nd Council Hill Atlatl
(Made from a piece of lath, colored with brown shoe wax)
Atlatl Designs |