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Boomerangs

by George F. Rice

Materials Required:

  • Scissors
  • Printer
  • Poster Board
  • Glue

Assembly:

Follow these instructions to make two different small working boomerangs and now, a larger throwing boomerang, too!



Small Boomerangs

  1. Download this Portable Document Format (PDF) file to your "My Documents" folder: boomerangs.pdf. Depending on which browser you use, you may need to shift-click on the link, or right-click and select "Save Target...".
  2. Load boomerangs.pdf into Adobe's PDF Reader software. If you don't have Adobe's PDF Reader, you can download and install it for free from here.
  3. Print the template on heavy paper (not regular paper). If you don't have heavy paper, try one of these options:
    • Print and cut out two copies of the boomerangs on regular paper, then paste them together.
    • Cut out one boomerang, then paste it to a sheet of poster board and cut it out.
  4. For the arrow-shaped boomerang, gently bend one tip upward about 15 degrees where indicated by the dashed line. This bend, called the airfoil, is necessary for the boomerang to fly.

They are ready! Place one of the boomerangs on the back of your hand, with one tip off the side of your hand. Give that side a quick snap with the middle finger and thumb of your other hand, and watch your boomerang fly away - and return!

(Teachers, if you'd like to create ten small boomerangs per page, print the following file onto heavy cardstock: boomerangx10.pdf.)

Throwing Boomerang

  1. Download this Portable Document Format (PDF) file to your "My Documents" folder: throwing_boomerang.pdf. Depending on which browser you use, you may need to shift-click on the link, or right-click and select "Save Target...".
  2. Load throwing_boomerang.pdf into Adobe's PDF Reader software. If you don't have Adobe's PDF Reader, you can download and install it for free from here.
  3. Print the template on heavy paper (not regular paper), cut out and stack all 3 boomerang images, then tape them together on both of the straight leading edges and both straight trailing edges. If you don't have heavy paper, you can cut out one boomerang, paste it to a sheet of heavy poster board, and cut it out.
  4. Gently bend one tip of the boomerang upward about 15 degrees as indicated by the dashed line. This bend, called the airfoil, is necessary for the boomerang to fly.

To throw the boomerang, wedge the unbent tip of the boomerang between the first and second knuckle of the first and second finger of your right hand. Throw the boomerang forward sharply, giving a quick snap of your wrist to start it spinning smartly in a counter-clockwise direction (looking from above). This may take some practice, but will provide longer and better flights than the small boomerangs.

If you have any problems, please feel free to click "feedback" below and contact me.

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