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If you've never seen a blowgun used in real life, it may seem like a comically outdated concept: a tube with a dart, powered by nothing but the air in your lungs. Besides, that's what the stereotypical cannibal tribesmen use in movies, right?
You might think we have surpassed this weapon with modern technology, but think again. Much like the humble slingshot, the “primitive” blowgun is still in use today, and it's most definitely a deadly and pinpoint-accurate weapon in the right hands.
Blowguns have been used by cultures around the world for thousands of years, due to their simplicity and effectiveness. Using tools no more advanced than a knife, machete, tin can, file, and some cordage, residents of the Amazon jungle can create these weapons. YouTube channel InnerBark Outdoors traveled to the Amazon to document the locals making a blowgun:
So, maybe you now have an appreciation for traditional blowguns, but you probably also recognize that this design isn't practical for most of us. After all, many of these materials won't be easy to find in the suburbs. Fortunately, there are many guides on how to make a modern blowgun using materials available from any hardware store.
For example, here's an Instructables article on making a blowgun out of PVC pipe, construction paper, beads, and nails. However, be aware that blowguns are illegal in California, Massachusetts, and Washington D.C., as well as in Canada. They're also certainly not a toy, so be cautious if you do decide to make one.
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