Primitive Survival Weapons You Can Make

primitive survivors primitive weapons

Our early ancestors lived in a world without high-tech weapons, gadgets, and gizmos. They innovated their own weapons for survival and thriving with their ability to reason and solve problems. These weapons helped them catch food, protect their territory, and feel a sense of safety.

Let’s take a look at some of these simple but effective primitive weapons you can make for survival!

Throwing Star

The throwing start is a hunting weapon used by different cultures around the world. Modern ones are made of metal, but its primitive version is made of sticks sharpened at each end and joined to form a cross.

To create one, select two lengths of hardwood that have the same diameter and weight. Cut them the same length, around 60 cm (24 inches). Using a cross–halving joint, join the sticks in the center. Cut a long point on each end of the sticks. Balance the star by supporting two points on one crossbar and adjust by cutting down the heaviest end of the other crossbar until it balances horizontally. Support the balanced crossbar and trim the first one.Β 

You have the option to sharpen the ends of the sticks or use thick nails, bones, or flaked shells as points.Β 

Stone Knife

Stone weapons are extremely difficult to make but can be practical for survival in the woods or island if you have no modern material at hand. Knap a piece of flint stone to the shape shown.

Knap the cutting edges leaving them serrated for sawing, or sharpen them for cutting or scraping. It is possible to make a very efficient and sharp knife out of flint.


Slingshot is probably the easiest primitive weapon to make. Your ammo is literally everywhere lying on the ground, like stones, glass, and more. Anything that will fit into the pouch of the slingshot is a fair game.

This video shows you how you can create a slingshot.

Bow and Arrow

A bow can be made using a solid branch, sapling, or a PVC pipe. It’s easy to construct and makes one of the best homemade weapons you can use. For the bow, simply stand the branch on an end and find its middle.Β  Mark 3 inches on either side of the middle to mark the handhold position. Try to bend it then use your knife to whittle away the wood in the middle to form the belly. Notch each end with your knife at a 45-degree angle. Secure the cordage to the bow at each end.Β 

Take note that there should be a 5-inch gap between the string and the belly of the stave. Tiller the bow by hanging it horizontally from a tree branch from the handhold of the bow. Pull down on the string. If the bow curves evenly from both ends, then it’s well balanced. If one end curves less than the other, you will need to remove more wood from the belly at that end until the curve of both ends is even.

For the arrow, cut off any small branch and remove the bark. Cut it according to your preferred length and cut a nock in one end of the arrow, where the string of the bow will sit. Glue some pine needles to the end to help give some air resistance to the arrow. Sharpen the other end to a fine point.

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