Reviewers loved the ornate details on top. Lightweight, speedy, and well-constructed. Flies well. Functions great and also makes an attractive decoration.
Only for right-handed throwers. Some felt it was overpriced for how thin it was.
Classic V-Omega model. Bright orange for high visibility. Excellent wind resistance. Can be modified for competition. Instructions are embossed on underside of blades. Easy to bend back into shape. Floats in water.
Material is thinner than expected. For right-handed throwers only.
Flies very far. Made of durable, lightweight materials and does not break easily. Enjoyed by adults, children, and even dogs. Can also be used as a frisbee.
Difficult to master and does not return as well as older styles from the same brand.
A good choice for beginners; small enough for kids. Long, helicopter-style hover helps thrower learn to catch. Return of 25 to 35 yards. Bendable blades let you adjust for better throws.
Edges may be a little sharp, so use caution when throwing and do not toss it to others. For right-handed throwers only.
Made of strong materials that do not break easily. Bright red, making it easy to spot. Lightweight and easier to use than others. Although built for adults, some reviewers said their children could easily use it.
While it is easy to get a hang of, it still takes some time to learn how to throw correctly.
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If you’ve ever thrown a boomerang, you’ve participated in one of the longest-running sporting activities in human history. Depictions of boomerangs have been found in aboriginal artwork that dates back 40,000 years, and considering these tools are still being used today, it’s clear the design is as effective as it is iconic.
Boomerangs come in a variety of shapes and sizes, but in basic terms, they’re flat, rotating airfoils that return to the thrower after throwing. They’re designed to spin when tossed, creating unbalanced aerodynamic forces that curve their path into an ellipse. You may assume all boomerangs return, but non-returning versions called throwsticks or kylies have been used in hunting throughout recorded history and still are used to this day.
Traditional boomerangs are crafted from wood, but modern boomerangs can also be made from plastic composites, carbon fiber, and metal. Important factors to keep in mind are durability, range, and stability, but boomerangs should feel comfortable in your hand, too.
Boomerangs aren’t complex devices, and they can be made from a variety of materials. Plastic composite versions are likely the most common nowadays, as they’re easy to produce quickly and inexpensively. This material is flexible as well, which comes in handy if you want to tune your boomerang on the fly. They do have the potential to crack, however. ABS plastic, polypropylene, and lexan all fall into this category.
The first boomerangs were carved from wood and sometimes even bone. Heavier and sturdier than plastic, these iterations typically boast more momentum and range along with historical accuracy, but contemporary interpretations tend to cost more. Some are carved from a solid piece of wood, while others consist of aircraft-grade plywood, laminated in strips. Other boomerang materials include carbon fiber, metal, and styrofoam, but these are relatively rare.
Boomerangs typically come in one of two configurations: a bi-blade “V” design or a propeller-style tri-blade design. Bi-blade layouts replicate the designs of the original and typically feature flared arms for better throws. They can be harder to get the hang of than tri-blade alternatives, which feature longer, more uniform arms for easy catching. Choose the design that’s suited for your experience level. If you’re concerned about visibility, choose a boomerang painted with bright colors.
Boomerangs aren’t exactly cumbersome tools, but dedicated throwers often get cases to carry a variety of options. These cases can be hard or soft, with some including individual straps to keep the contents neat.
Novelty features aren’t prevalent in the competitive or hunting scenes, but boomerangs aren’t solely for serious activities. They can be loads of fun for kids and casual games as well, which is why clever additions like whistles are available to spice things up. They also make boomerangs safer as the noise gives you another way to track its path.
Outside of high-end, rare, and traditional pieces that catch huge sums at auctions, boomerangs generally cost between $8 and $35.
Inexpensive: At around $8, you find almost exclusively plastic boomerangs that are quite thin. These are decent for beginners looking to find their technique or for relaxed play, and they present little financial risk if they break or get lost.
Mid-range: Expect to find a mix of plastic and wood boomerangs at $15 with thicker bodies, more momentum, and greater range than entry-level options. This is just under the competitive-level price point, so you can find features like whistles and glow-in-the-dark coatings here.
Expensive: If you pay $25 and more, you’re rewarded with high-quality wooden boomerangs geared toward serious throwers and competition. Some of these feature ornate color schemes, while others boast minimalist, authentic finishes. These units are handmade and offer exceptional stability and “float.”
You need a large, open area to throw a boomerang safely. Seek out places with at least 150 feet of room on all sides, away from other people, houses, cars, vegetation, and bodies of water. Football fields, soccer fields, and open parks are perfect locations.
A proper boomerang throw starts with a proper grip. Hold the boomerang with the painted, curved side facing you and the flat side facing away.
The “pinch grip” entails pinching the boomerang between your thumb and index finger. Flick your wrist backward as you prepare to throw, then snap it forward as you release. This creates the necessary spin to generate lift.
The “cradle grip” is another common way to hold a boomerang. This is similar to the pinch grip, but you wrap your index finger around the bottom of the arm. With this method, you flick your index finger as you throw to create spin, almost as if you were pulling a trigger.
Q. What boomerangs are best suited for beginners?
A. If you’re new to boomerangs, there’s a certain variety you should look for to make the best of your learning experience. Tri-blade versions with long arms are easier to throw and catch than traditional alternatives, and they can be more stable in windy conditions. Additionally, seek out bright colors that are easy to see in the air or in the grass, and avoid boomerangs with sharp edges.
Q. How do you tune a boomerang?
A. If you notice your boomerang is sinking too quickly or losing too much speed, it may be warped and in need of tuning. This can happen after prolonged use or heavy crashes. If your boomerang is made of flexible materials, you can tune yours by bending the arms up or down, also known as adjusting the dihedral. You can also twist the arms to alter the angle of attack. Finally, you can increase your boomerang’s momentum with elastics or small pieces of metal fastened to the bottom of the arms. Remember that small alterations can produce significant changes in performance, so tune your boomerang a little at a time using trial and error.
Q. What can I do if my boomerang cracks or breaks?
A. A cracked or broken boomerang is aerodynamically compromised, so it won’t fly consistently or maintain speed. Depending on the damage, however, it can still be recoverable. Fiberglass tape and resin can offer a quick fix to certain synthetic materials, and for wood boomerangs, wood filler and varnish can do in a pinch. Balance is paramount to boomerang function, so significant imperfections may require complete replacement.
Q. How far can boomerangs be thrown?
A. The range of a boomerang depends on its size, the throwing technique used, the throwing power used, and the wind conditions. On the whole, heavier boomerangs have more momentum and can fly farther. Inexpensive toy versions may fly as little as 40 feet, but the current world record throw sits at a whopping 1,402 feet.