A slingshot is a very easy-to-use, easy-to-make hand-powered projectile weapon. It has been used in the past for hunting small game and even in war by guerilla forces during a battle - even some guerilla forces use slingshots for combat when there are no other forms of weaponry available. You can make a simple one in order to hunt small game and - if you are good enough with one - use it for some degree of self-defense if you have nothing else on you but want to keep your distance from your attacker.
In terms of materials, all you need is:
- A Y-shaped tree branch with at least a 30-degree fork
- 1/4″ latex surgical tubing (which you can get at Home Depot, Lowes, and pretty much any hardware store)
- Leather strips
- Dental floss
When it comes to tools, you need a saw and a knife. Once you find a Y-shaped tree branch, you can wait for the branch to dry naturally or dry the branch by holding it near an open flame until you hear the branch stop hissing (which should mean all the water is out of the branch). Then, use the knife to carve two notches where the surgical tubing bands will go.
Then, cut the tubing to form two equal-length bands.
Use the dental floss to, as tight as you can, tie the tubing to each of the notches you placed on the Y-branch.
Take a strip of leather, cut it into a long hexagonal shape, and put two holes - one on each end of the strip. Then, slide the free end of each tube through the holes of the leather pouch. After that, you should have a decently-sized and useful homemade fork slingshot that can shoot somewhat far and accurately!
Note: If you use it to hunt small creatures like squirrels, you might need to check with local hunting laws to see if hunting with slingshots is permissible since some places require a license to do that.