Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Resourcing steel balls for hunting ammunition

In this short blog post I wanted to share something I had shared in the past on a gigantic forum.

Resourcing free steel ballbearing ammo.

As anyone who primarily uses steel ballls for slingshot ammo will quickly tell you that ammo can be costly. As a resortera hunter I learned from father and others early on that we must always be aware of a potential ammo source.

I have already shared some reliable ammo resources for hunting in a recent blog post. But for those that like perfect spheres and do not wish to cast lead balls there are free alternatives to buying steel balls which I know from experience buying steel balls can become very costly.

If you work within a plant or near an industrial place that uses heavy machinery you are already close to having a free resource for steel ball ammo.

Personally I work in a plant that has a lot of heavy machinery and they always have regular maintenance with sometimes whole parts being replaced.

Many times the ballbearing systems in some of this machinery are replaced and present a wonderful opportunity for the slingshot/hunter/shooter.

You will find ball bearings in all sizes, try to look for something within the 1/2 to 16 mm variety for hunting steel.

As an example recently the plant I work in has been undergoing some minor construction and maintenance.
I came accross an opportunity, while doing some work within the plant.

I came accross these ballbearings that were part of an elevator belt system. Since they were going to be binned I helped myself to this wonderful opportunity.

They were easy to remove and  in the end they are approximately 13 mm steel balls and heavier than standard as they are used in industrial machinery.
 


As you can see from the following picture of the harvested product, I put a standard half inch steel ball next to these to show they are slightly larger half inch steel are approximately 12.7 mm these are a bit larger and these industrial 13mm steel balls feel nearer the weight of a .457 lead ball and in a bean can test had very good blunt force.  I make note of this only because the standard half inch steel ball has proven effective (with proper shot placement) to take small game from pigeons to a rabbit. I feel that these heavier 13 mm steel balls will make a great hunting ammunition for me and they were free! As time allows with my busy schedule I will take these salvaged industrial steel balls with me on my next hunt for rabbits or jackrabbits  wish me luck :)
 


 
Lastly I will say that you don't have to work in an industrial place to scrounge some quality industrial steel ballbearings. You can make friends with a mechanic who works in such a place and if he likes slingshots make him one to help encourage his help. You can always go to junkyards and find these steel ballbearings but as it costs money to go to a junkyard this is about getting free ammo. Again you can get acquainted with such a person and source some free quality steel ball bearings.

I hope this is useful in some way.

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