How to Make a Bow & Arrow Using Recycled Material

It is not known who invented the bow and arrow in 40,000 B.C., but the technology spread throughout the world. According to Kidipede, Australia was the only place the bow and arrow was not utilised. A bow and arrow is essentially a lever, which is a simple machine that moves a load with a pivot. Your hand acts as the pivot, or fulcrum, and the arrows are shot with this lever. To make a bow and arrow using recycled material, find an old plastic hanger in your closet. Attach a rubber band and you are ready to shoot.

Cut a rubber brand with a pair of scissors so it becomes one long strand. This will become the bow string of your bow.

Tie one end of the rubber band at the bottom side of an old plastic hanger. Use the type of hanger without clips. Tie the other end of the rubber band at the opposite bottom side of the hanger.

Test the rubber band by pulling it slightly. It needs to be very taut. If it is not tight enough, untie to one side of the bow string and wrap it around a few times. Then, retie it in place.

Tear old newspaper into thin strands, approximately 2-by-1-inch long. Tape it to the bottom of an old pen that no longer has ink.

Hold the bow hanger in the centre with your left hand. Place the pen arrow in your right hand and strain it against the bow string by pulling it back. Let go to shoot the arrow.


A hanger that is very flexible works best for this craft. A wire hanger could work if it is flexible. If you are left-handed, you may need to hold the bow with your right hand.


Never shoot your bow and arrow at people or animals.

Things You'll Need

  • Rubber band
  • Scissors
  • Plastic hanger
  • Newspaper
  • Tape
  • Used pen
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About the Author

Charong Chow has been writing professionally since 1995. Her work has appeared in magazines such as "Zing" and "Ocean Drive." Chow graduated from the University of Miami with a Bachelor of Arts in philosophy. She also received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the California Institute of the Arts.