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Subject: Re: Seige Engines

Date: Tue, 1 Apr 1997 00:29:47 GMT
Nothmund wrote

> I'm looking for plans or places to research Ballista, Cataplut, and

> Stingers, for an upcomming project. I am looking at building a

> period-looking, yet SCA combat safe machine. Any direction toward

> research matter, or period examples will be greatly aprieciated.

> Nothmund Houndswain

A good place to start would be the Grey Company page at

They are a metal weapons group in Western Australia that have been there

done that.

Rashid al Faqih

From: Dave Earl


Subject: Re: Graphic of Trebuchet

Date: Fri, 27 Jun 1997 06:01:09 +1000
If you want pictures and information about Trebechets, then you shoul

ddefinately look at the Grey Companies tebuchet page at:
Dave Earl

Date: Thu, 06 Nov 1997 20:23:02 -0500

From: rmhowe

Organization: Windmaster's Hill, Atlantia, and the GDH

To: windmasters at, atlantia at
For those rabid deconstructionists:
The December 1997 issue of American Woodworker (#63) 1-800-666-3111

contains an article called Trebuchet! by Russell Miners, a member of

the Grey Company, an Australian Reenactor Group very much interested

in such things ( ).

The plans look good and it is attractively finished.

This is about table sized, but the designer claims it will throw a

stone about 70 feet. Perfect for those back of the feast hall

targets (or those front of the feast hall ones). Can you say kumquat?

A bonus here is that there are also plans for a bow saw in the same

issue. Just the thing to build all that medieval furniture you've

been meaning to build.
M. Magnus Malleus, Windmasters' Hill, Atlantia and the GDHorde

(permission to repost anywhere in the SCA OFF the Rialto granted)

From: dsmith03 at (Dan Smith)


Subject: Re: ballista designs

Date: 31 Mar 1998 15:33:47 GMT

Organization: Arizona Public Service
On Thu, 26 Mar 1998 00:47:42 -0500, Lloyd Sowards wasted bandwidth by:

>I am looking for designs for a ballista for use in SCA combat. Can anyone

>help a guy out?
You're in luck. An execellet set of plans is at



Dan Smith

Arizona Public Service

Z07833 at

Date: Sat, 09 May 1998 17:10:50

From: Ted Hewitt

To: sca-arts at


I thought y'all might find this interesting:
The Trebuchet used in Northern Exposure has been sold.

The city of Corvallis Or. and sponsors of the "da Vinci Days"

5th annual celebration have purchased this trebuchet to be

re-erected and made operational. The Flinger Thinger shall

Fling again. This year the fair will be held 18 July thru

20 July, 1997. The Northern Exposure Trebuchet web page is at:
Corvallis da Vinci Days:

Subject: ANST - Ballista designs

Date: Sat, 01 Aug 98 13:56:27 MST

From: "Keith Hood"

To: ansteorra at Ansteorra.ORG

Those who are looking for a relatively cheap and easy way to upgrade

your unit's firepower for the next war, here's a possible way. Those of

you who have built the real thing, please don't laugh:
I just got done posting an article to the web, about some ideas I used

in building a "ballista" that uses surgical tubing. Of course it's not

a real ballista since it doesn't use torsion, but it will throw a GT

bolt far enough to be useful and it sort of looks like a ballista from

20 yards. Most of the parts can be found at any lumber store and it's

relatively cheap.

Anyone interested can find the article at this URL:

I would welcome any useful ideas on how to improve the design. I am

slowly working on a ballista using genuine torsion, but in the meantime

I'm trying to knock out a number of these things.

Subject: RE: ANST - Bungee Ballista?

Date: Thu, 14 Jan 99 16:21:29 MST

From: "Keith Hood"

To: ansteorra at Ansteorra.ORG
For some ideas on building a bungee-powered 'ballista'--

On this web site there are also some pointers on making ammunition and

other considerations in fielding artillery.

Please note that actual bungee cords like you'd use to tie luggage to

the top of your car are NOT good for artillery. Their internal

structures are not uniform, so they don't flex reliably. If you're

going to do flexible-band type of artillery, latex surgical tubing is

far superior.
Also, the mount design shown on the web page above has been superceded.

Carlyle showed me a much better mount design that I will have up on the

web in a couple of days. Check the above URL around the end of this

week for a new, easier way to make a mount.

Make projectiles. Clobber Trimarans.

Subject: ANST - Fletching - speeding up

Date: Fri, 12 Feb 99 12:20:04 MST

From: "Keith Hood"

To: ansteorra at Ansteorra.ORG, bryn-gwlad at Ansteorra.ORG
One of the guys on the Ansteorra mailing list said something a while

back that shames me to admit I didn't think of it first. I think it was

Ozy - whoever it was, I owe him a bottle of wine or something.
A jig to speed up fletching GT ballista bolts. There's a way to make

such a jig real simple. See crude drawing below.


| |

| (Wood) |--------| |

| | | |

|-------------|-------| |-------|-------------|

| (Spacer) | (Hole) | (Spacer) |

|-------------|-------| |-------|-------------|

| | | |

| (Wood) |--------| |

| |

Take two pieces of 2x4, each about 4 or 5 inches long, and tape them

together. Drill a 1" hole in the center of the crack between the

boards. Separate the wood blocks and stick on one of them a piece of

cardboard or leather or something, the same thickness as the material

for the fletches, as a spacer. To use the jig, put the fletches on the

bottom piece of wood next to the spacers, lay the golf tube in the hole,

and tape the 2x4's together. You can use this to hold the fletches on

if you glue them. If you only use tape, you can put the fletches in so

their upper ends stick out of the jig. That will hold them still

against the tube while you apply tape between them and the tube. For

using with glue, it would be a real good idea to round off the edges of

the hole for clearance, or coat them with plastic or wax, so the glue

doesn't stick the jig to everything else.
For doing 3 fletches, glue another thin block of wood to the top of this

rig. Then saw a vertical slot in the upper 2x4, coming up from the

cener hole, to admit the 3rd fletch.
It occured to me while doing the figure above that this same type of jig

could be used to ease fletching crossbow quarrels - if straight fletches

are OK. You'd just have to make it smaller and make sure the size of

the hole and the spacers are the right size for the materials used.

With a little scrap lumber people could make a whole bunch of these

things so they can fletch things dozens at a time.


Date: Mon, 27 Dec 1999 22:11:32 -0500

From: Carol Thomas

To: sca-arts at

Subject: trebuchets
There is an excellent articles on trebuchets in the new Smithsonian. Two

were made in Scotland for NOVA, which will air on Feb. 1st.

They made two different designs, both authentic, using hand tools,

including a lathe that runs off a 5 ft. wooden wheel.


Small Churl Books catalog:

Last updated: Nov. 21st

Date: Mon, 27 Dec 1999 22:08:06 -0800

From: Tim Bray

To: sca-arts at

Subject: Re: trebuchets
>There is an excellent articles on trebuchets in the new Smithsonian. Two

>were made in Scotland for NOVA, which will air on Feb. 1st.


>They made two different designs, both authentic, using hand tools,

>including a lathe that runs off a 5 ft. wooden wheel.
The Timber Framer's Guild of North America, together with some of the

British timber framers, built these monsters. They have published a couple

of interesting accounts of their construction and performance. If anyone

is interested, I can see if they are available at the TFGNA Web site.

I hope I catch the NOVA airing - after reading the diary accounts of some

of the participants, I am curious to see how the TV people portray it!

Apparently, they had the bright idea of setting up two teams of builders,

each with their own design, and having them compete to see who could build

better/faster. This strategy backfired because timber framers tend to work

together toward common goals, and the only way anything got built at all

was by the communal efforts of the whole group. Conditions were not

improved by the weather - it rained nearly every day - but the spectacular

location helped (Urquhart Castle above Loch Ness).

Date: Wed, 29 Dec 1999 11:20:58 -0800

From: Leonard & Patty Baldt

To: sca-arts at

Subject: Re: trebuchets
Tim Bray wrote:

> The Timber Framer's Guild of North America, together with some of the

> British timber framers, built these monsters. They have published a couple

> of interesting accounts of their construction and performance. If anyone

> is interested, I can see if they are available at the TFGNA Web site.
> Colin
For those interested, check these sites: Under Siege: The Trebuchet Workshop Timber Framers Guild of North America
Patty Baldt

Date: Mon, 24 Jan 2000 10:27:47 MST

From: Keith Hood

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