How to Make a Crossbow Out of a Coathanger

Written by robert preston
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How to Make a Crossbow Out of a Coathanger
A simple wire hanger makes for a quick and easy crossbow. (Comstock/Comstock/Getty Images)

Wire coat hangers are a useful crafting tool, in addition to being a simple way to hang up clothes without them wrinkling. A basic craft project to complete using a wire clothes hanger is a miniature cross bow that fires dowels using the assistance of rubber bands to provide energy. Once completed, the crossbow can be used to play games where players attempt to shoot at a target and score the most points out of all players.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Wire hanger
  • 2 rubber bands
  • Wooden dowel

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  1. 1

    Place a rubber band over one end of the main body of the hanger, the section that would be placed in one shoulder of a T-shirt. Twist the band and pass the twisted section over the hanger as well. Repeat the twisting until the banded section of wire is tightly pinched.

  2. 2

    Secure the second side of the wire hanger using a second rubber band.

  3. 3

    Bend the hook of the hanger up at a 90-degree angle so it is perpendicular to the main body of the wire.

  4. 4

    Twist the hooked section of the hanger to form a tight spiral shape, leaving an opening in the centre slightly larger than your dowel.

  5. 5

    Pass the dowel through the centre of the spiral.

  6. 6

    Place the back end of the dowel against the flat bottom of the hanger and pull back while holding the bottom of the spiral with your other hand.

  7. 7

    Release the wire and dowel to fire. The bands pull the wire forward, propelling the dowel.

Tips and warnings

  • Do not shoot your crossbow at others, as even a dull dowel can cause injury when travelling at high speed.

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