Mini Cross Bow

by sthone, published

Mini Cross Bow by sthone Oct 21, 2014



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This is my take on the popular Popsicle stick mini crossbow seen on the web. I upgraded it to use an actual trigger though.

1/18/15 - Added a flat top version for easier printing.

If you have any questions or problems with the files or fitment of the parts just let me know and I will try to fix them.

Remember to tip your waiters designers if you like the service.... thanks for looking


The crossbow was printed upside down (handle pointing up) with minimal supports. (Sorry, one of these days I'll figure out how to upload them the right way.) The trigger is held in place with a 2/56" x 1/2" screw and it uses metal hair clips for the bow and Q-tips for the crossbow bolts (arrows). The center portion of the hair clip is removed by just bending it back and forth a few times to snap it off and then the clips are just slid into the cut outs. (you can glue them in if needed.) When attaching the string pre-load the bows a bit before tying the final knot. (but don't over do it) Enjoy and play safe.

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For some reason when I shoot it the string doesn’t even hit the thing I’m shooting it would be cool if some one could edit it and make a catch for the string to be guided to the thing im shooting

What did you use at the front of the crossbow to hold the string of whatever it is in place? Do you have to print it or can you get it at a store?

They are womens hair clips (Look at the pictures/ read the description) you can find them at any Walgreens, CVS, Walmart, etc....

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What size screw did you use and what program did you design this project on? I am printing it out now and am exited for result!

I used a 2-56" screw but others have found you can just stick a piece of filament in the hole and melt the ends flat.

It was designed in Solidworks.

I used a 2-56" screw but others have found you can just stick a piece of filament in the hole and melt the ends flat.

It was designed in Solidworks.

I used a 2-56" screw but others have found you can just stick a piece of filament in the hole and melt the ends flat.

It was designed in Solidworks.

Does anyone have any tips they want to share about how to speed up the process of turning Q-tips / cotton swabs into arrows? Or any tips on how to make the arrows fly straighter?

duct tape fins
elc tape fins
cotton wool streamers

Here's a Q-TIP. HAHA!
Anyways, I sharpened both sides of the Q-Tip's and let them fly. Hope this helps!

does it need supports?

Is PLA too brittle for this, or is it okay? Do you need to use ABS or a different material? 100% infill?

PLA is fine that is what I print mine out of, I've even printed a few in the wood type filaments. I think I printed mine at 80% but you could probably even go lower as there is not a lot of stress on anything... it's just a toy.

Thank you! This works amazing!

Hey what software can you use to get multiple objects in one print.

I use Simplify 3D, but I would think any of the slicers would be able to do multiple parts at one time.

very nice design!my boy love it

also why is there 2 files of the same model? you can just change that in the slicer

awesome thing! did you take the idea with hair clips from Grant Thompson? Keep up the good work!

it doesnt fit in the pistol

At least 39 people have made this without any problems.. so you're doing something wrong.

Hold the trigger with the part your finger pulls level, then angle the notch (part that grabs the sting) up at about a 45° angle and stick it in thru the bottom of the trigger hole. Once it goes in a bit just angle it back down a bit and the rest should pop right in.

Other than that I don't know what to tell you maybe go practice some Tetris for a bit then try again. :)

how do you get the trigger in

Slide it right in through the bottom.

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do u think its possible to scale it larger to make it more, awesome?

what little screw did you use?

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I saw your design on a blog and had to try to make one also. Brilliant idea to use the hair clips as spring arms. I've made a remixed version which fully captures the projectile so it stays in place until fired.

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When my pa took me to Munchen' in '84, I brought back a real one to Hollywood, CA, but such is life -

How long does it take to print

depends on print speed temperature support etc

around 1.5 hours for the one with the stock, the trigger takes <10 minutes

this took me maybe 45 minutes

Pretty cool, how do I get the file to do this design? I'm new to this... ?

Just click on the button above that says "Thing Files" and you can download them from there. The STL's are what the printers uses to print the pieces and the SLDPRT files are the actual design files (made in Solidworks) if you want to change the design.

This is a very brilliant idea had a lot of fun shooting my fellow classmates with it. :)

Made some bolts for this brilliant bit of kit :-)
The short bolts fly pretty true, the long ones - not so much :-)

Also for the second crossbow I've used yarn reinforced with a lttle clear glue.
And instead of a screw I've used a small piece of 1.75mm filament melted into the body of the crossbow to hold the trigger.

Also if you want to print without supports stand it on the flat end. with the trigger end straight up. You get a little minimal slump in the trigger area, But you don't need any support.

Added easy to install, ninjaflex crossbow cord. 08-11-2014

Bolts And printed Ninjaflex Cord for Mini crossbow

Do you have a Video or little people to shoot at yet? Also instead of a screw why not a 1.75mm of filament?

i used 1.75 filament and it works great, heat up a knife or flat piece of metal and use that to rivet the ends

Very cool, printing now!

this should be featured

Cool thing... how far can you shoot?

Probably about 20' or so, it's all going to depend on the hair clips used.