Over the last twenty years, new composite materials have appeared enabling boomerang lovers to design new types of items that are stronger and more effective. Ultra-stiff and very thin materials, like carbon fiber, excel in long distance events (the world record is over 200 yards) and the Aussie Round.
These materials do not require enormous physical strength and are suitable for everyone. Following is a list the most commonly used composite materials in boomerang production:
- Bakelite (phenolic resin)
Bakelite, or, to be more precise, Paxolin, is made of up of layers of dark-colored paper bonded with phenolic resin, creating an electrical insulator which is very stiff. It is available in various thicknesses and it is used for making Aussie Round boomerangs, Trick Catch boomerangs, and MTA boomerangs. Though it can break, the material is not very expensive and can produce excellent boomerangs.
Made of sheets of various thicknesses, this very dense material is perfect for the Aussie Round and long distance events. It is made of fabrics or fibers mixed with epoxy resin, which are then hardened. Because of harmful dust particles, working with this type of material requires specific equipment. The ideal thickness is about 2 mm.
- Carbon fiber
Carbon fiber has revolutionized the world of boomerangs over the past few years. What was previously only available to those in the industry is now popular and available to everyone. Even stiffer than fiberglass, this material is almost unbreakable and very beautiful from a design angle. Like fiberglass, carbon fiber is made of sheets of various thicknesses. Watch out, though! Be aware that you will need a jigsaw with a tungsten carbide blade to cut this type of material as it is incredibly stiff! Prior to working with all of these composite materials, you will need the appropriate work attire as well as a high-performance filter respirator to protect you from breathing in harmful dust particles while cutting and sanding with an electrical file.
ABS: A harder, brighter plastic with a perfect finish. ABS plastic increases boomerang speed. The COACH, an ABS boomerang, is an excellent model. An ABS boomerang is steadier and will not warp. However, polypropylene feels softer than ABS plastic. Polycarbonate: This plastic is less commonly used though it has interesting mechanical properties since it is almost impossible to break. It is indeed the most resistant plastic of all. However, because this plastic is heavier and denser, it is more difficult to throw a polycarbonate boomerang.