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Subject: Re: [RE: BG - Plans for a trebuchet]

To: bryn-gwlad at
> > I'm from The Shire of L'Ile du Dragon Dormant (montreal

> > canada) and I'm looking for resonnably accurate plans in order to

> > build a genuine looking (but scaled down) "trebuchet".
No disturbance. You might try one of these links: (place called the 'Knight's Armoury'. This is for

SERIOUS artillery plans.)


From: "Esther Heller"


Subject: Re: PBS Nova Program on Trebuchet

Date: Wed, 2 Feb 2000 09:37:46 -0500

Organization: Eastman Kodak Company

Steven Currie wrote in message <3897b948.87221136 at news-server>...

>PBS Nova had a program on how modern engineers think they built period

>trebuchets. Excellent program. They have a web site with some info

>and a trebuchet game on it.




>Lord Etienne of Burgundy

>Minister of Arts and Sciences

>Barony of Calafia

>Kingdom of Caid
The US builders also have a website with _lots_ of pictures of the process:

Otelia d'Alsace MOAS Barony of Thescorre, AEthelmearc

From: me at (Sotired O'Spam)


Subject: Re: Looking for documentation on stone throwing Ballista's

Date: Tue, 06 Jun 2000 23:22:48 GMT
wbfountain at aol.comnospam (Wm. Bryan Fountain) wrote:

>At present I am attempting to gather information on stone throwing ballista's

>during our time period. If anyone could possibly send me any source

>information that they have - or even links - on this type of seige weapon I

>would appreciate it very much. - Reason for the request - Am in the process of

>building a tennis ball throwing ballista for SCA combat.


>Ld Brun Canutteson current resident of the Midlands - (Midrealm)


>MKA - Wm. Bryan Fountain

>Asst. Professor of Industrial Technology

>Sauk Valley Community College

>Dixon, IL
Probably the best treaties on ballitas is E.W. Marsden's two volume

set, "Greek and Roman Artillery" originally published by Oxford Univ

Press. Reprints again available through the Oxford Hardback reprint

programme from Sandpiper Books.

ISBN 0-19-814269-2 (vol 2) and 0-19-814268-4 (vol 1)
Includes theory, technical papers, plans and diagrams taken from

*primary* source material, primary sources (with translations on

facing pages) photos.
These are MUST HAVE books.
Warning . . . these books are tought to find . . . use book collecting


Subject: ANST - Siege Weapons plans online

Date: Fri, 28 Apr 2000 09:48:33 MST

From: "Lawrence D. Ruiz"


Greetings fellow Ansteorrans;

When you go to design your ballista, I encourage you to stop by
The web page has links to several designs on the web. One just added today

includes a modified bungee-lista that costs less than $100. The author

claims one weekend construction time as well with minimal woodworking


It trebuchets are your toy-of-choice, I have a HUGE list of various designs

for this.

I encourage all to enter their weapons of mass destruction in A&S (it is an

art and science in one!)

I remain in your service,

Ld. Lawrence the Rampant of Ram's Isle

DEM Siege Weapons

Subject: ANST - Quick and dirty Ballista

Date: Fri, 28 Apr 2000 09:57:39 MST

From: "adams, ozy"

Here is a link to a simple, relatively inexpensive, probably legal, ballista


If anyone is interested in constructing one of these and has any questions,

please feel free to contact me. This is not my design, but I have costructed two very similar weapons.
-Herr Erasmus

Disgruntled Sixteenth Century Laborers Union, Local 153

From: "Alexander Aaron"


Subject: Re: designs for trebuchet

Date: Sat, 18 Nov 2000 20:54:04 GMT

"mark lyons" wrote

> Does anyone have plans for the construction of Trebuchet's?


> mark lyons

Here are some places to start:

SCA Siege Engineers Handbook
Hope this helps,

Alex Aaron

Subject: ANST-Announce - Mini Siege Engines at Spring Faire

Date: Mon, 12 Feb 2001 20:37:34

From: "neil starkey"

To: ansteorra-announce at

Greetings Ansteorra,
I have had several ask me for the rules to the Mini-Siege Engine Competition

at Elfsea Spring Faire. For some reason I have been having problems with

messages getting out of my computer. To save time and frustrations, I will

now post the rules for this Competition.

The Engine should fit into an 18" cube (18" tall X 18" wide X 18" long).

These are mostly guidelines. If the Engine is a little bit larger, it will

probably be accept.

The arm, if building a trebuchet or catapult may extend beyond the 18" but

must still be porportionate to the rest of the Engine.

The projectile for trebuchet or catapults will be a golf ball.

The projectile for ballistas must be provided and porportionate to the


The Engine will be judged on distance and accuracy.

Please use period designs, as this is a Middle Ages Reenactment

If you have further questions, please feel free to respond and your

questions will be answered in the order they were recieved.

Thank You for all who have expressed interest.


From: "ruadh"


Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Sparkler inferno (OT, obviously).

Date: Thu, 12 Jul 2001 15:22:57 -0400

and do the office sized Trebs in period style ......

Food Content ?

the Cheese Chucker in the above link...

grapes work

*Please* no hard candies. Ouch


From: Marlin Stout [ldcharles at]

Sent: Monday, July 22, 2002 12:59 PM

To: bg-war; bryn-gwlad

Subject: [Bryn-gwlad] Re: [Seige-Commanders] An alternate way of doing

Check out this website for a few chuckles.


Date: Fri, 17 Dec 2004 19:39:16 -0500

From: Bill Fisher

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Onagers

To: Cooks within the SCA
On Fri, 17 Dec 2004 18:54:00 -0500, Phlip

>> Oh! Interesting. I believe here is a siege engine called an "onager".

>> I wonder if part of the reason might be that is a particularly onerous

>> machine to work with.


>> Stefan


> Actually, I suspect that it was called an onager because it kicks like a

> jackass ;-) Onage-the-seige weapon is, I believe, a variation of what we

> call catapults, powered by a spring make of wound and tensioned rope.




> Saint Phlip,

> CoD
Yeah, they achieve the release point on an onager with a crossbar that the catapult arm impacts, which transfers the release of torque the rope gives to

the arm to the frame.

I get jumpy when my frame has tension and takes impacts too. I believe the

greek word for donkey is onus and it mutated into onager for the


Date: Fri, 17 Dec 2004 19:37:51 -0500

From: "Phlip"

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Onagers

To "Cooks within the SCA"
Maybe I'd better add the rest of the citation:
Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary

One entry found for onager.

Main Entry: on·a·ger

Pronunciation: 'ä-ni-j&r

Function: nounEtymology: Middle English, wild ass, from Latin, from Greek onagros, from onos ass + agros field -- more at ACRE

1 : an Asian wild ass (Equus hemionus onager syn. E. onager) that usually

has a broad dorsal stripe and is related to the kiang

2 [Late Lain, from Latin] : a heavy catapult used in ancient and medieval


Date: Sat, 18 Dec 2004 15:33:44 -0800 (PST)

From: Huette von Ahrens

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Onagers

To: Cooks within the SCA
Here is something you will find more fun:


From: Nancy Shapiro

Date: February 7, 2006 8:37:43 PM CST

To: Sca-librarians at

Subject: Re: [Sca-librarians] Trebuchet help
Gurstelle also wrote _Backyard Ballistics. _Backyard Catapult: How to Build Your Own_ by Bill Wilson. My local library has _Catapult: Harry and I Build A Siege Weapon_ by Jim Paul, which was pretty entertaining.
Surprisingly enough, there doesn't seem to be a Compleat Anachronist pamphlet on it.

The Grey Company Trebuchet Page -

Buy a Build-It-Yourself kit:
Maybe one of these will help. Have fun!
> Hello All,


> I have a patron who is looking for books and information on building

> trebuchets. Most of the books I found on OCLC are in French and he

> does not speak French. Can anyone recommend a good source?


> Maura MacLeod

From: mhermance4

Date: February 7, 2006 6:47:47 PM CST

To: mauramc4880 at, sca-librarians at

Subject: RE: [Sca-librarians] Trebuchet help

I did a FastAndSneaky and went to Books in Print online here at work. I got nothing by putting "trebuchet" in as either a title or subject keyword, but when I put in "catapult" as a subject, I got this: Art of the Catapult: how to buile Greek ballistae, oman onagers, English trebuchets and more ancient artillery by William Gurstelle Chicago Review Press, July 2004. $16.95 trade paperback ISBN 1-55652-526-5 (in case he needs it for interlibrary loan, or he decides to buy it). There were a couple of other titles on the list that didn't mention trebuchets, but were about seige engines of one variety or another.
I'd guess that there must be an SCA publication or website that would be interesting as well. Is his heart set on a trebuchet? Those Roman onagers are kinda neat. *g*

From: Stefan li Rous

Date: February 8, 2006 12:13:14 AM CST

To: Sca-librarians at

Subject: Re: [Sca-librarians] Trebuchet help
On Feb 7, 2006, at 8:37 PM, Nancy Shapiro wrote:

> Gurstelle also wrote _Backyard Ballistics. _Backyard Catapult: How

> to Build Your Own_ by Bill Wilson. My local library has _Catapult:

> Harry and I Build A Siege Weapon_ by Jim Paul, which was pretty

> entertaining.
I bought this last one, and I was rather less than impressed. If you

are wanting to simply build something which will hurl something using

modern tools and stuff you could get from a junk yard, then this

might be okay. Even then, most of it was story with little in the way

of real details. It is certainly not something I would use to build a

medieval style treb or catapult.

Your best historic source is going to be Sir Ralph Payne-Gallwey's

"The Crossbow, Mediaeval and Modern Military and Sporting. Its

Construction, History & Management with a Treatise on The Ballista

and Catapult of the Ancients and an Appendix on the Catapult, Balista

& the Turkish Bow" The Holland Press, London ISBN: 0-946323-14-3."
First published in 1903. My copy says "Tenth Impression 1995
Don't you just love those long, Victorian book titles... I think I

got all that right, but don't count on the capitalization. It is in

several fonts, some is in all capital letters, some not. I have no

idea how it would get entered into various book search engines.

Also, there was an edition published by Dover more recently. However

it is my understanding that the appendix on siege engines was not

printed in that edition. The Dover edition is much cheaper and is in


Payne-Gallwey did get some of the inside mechanisms of the crossbows

wrong since he didn't have access to x-rays of the crossbows. You can

find corrected drawings in later books, but Payne-Gallwey's volume is

still considered the best.

I did buy multiple copies of the book when I found this edition as a

remainder. Even so, it was still in the $60 range if I remember

rightly. I didn't know the Dover edition was coming. But if someone

wants to buy one of my extras, contact me...

I'm not sure if these will help, but there are also these files in

the COMBAT section of the Florilegium:

siege-engines-msg (93K) 6/16/05 Catapults, trebuchets. Period and


trebuchet-art (18K) 4/25/95 Wall Street article on a modern




THLord Stefan li Rous Barony of Bryn Gwlad Kingdom of Ansteorra

Mark S. Harris Austin, Texas

From: Carowyn Silveroak

Date: February 7, 2006 11:31:18 PM CST

To: Sca-librarians at

Subject: Re: [Sca-librarians] Trebuchet help

I emailed the East Kingdom Siege Guild, and this was the reply:

Search trebuchet on ebay tho books will come up.

Item Number 8761717635 – 6035164206 - 5663721545
Also check out site



From: Lynne Puckett

Date: February 8, 2006 11:31:07 AM CST

To: mhermance4 at

Cc: sca-librarians at, mauramc4880 at

Subject: Re: [Sca-librarians] Trebuchet help

the Grey Company Trebuchet Page - most of what anybody would want to

know about building one, from an SCA-associated re-enactment group.
Aletheia Tarimaat


L. E. Puckett

Reference & Electronic Systems Librarian

Parmly Billings Library

510 North Broadway, Billings, MT 59101

Ph: 406-657-8258

From: Derryk Carr

Date: October 25, 2006 4:06:01 PM CDT

To: ansteorra at

Subject: Re: [Ansteorra] request for siege weapon assistance

I do not live in Texas, but there is a website (at that has many blue prints for

siege engines. Most of them are of Roman design but they might help. I hope

this aides your daughter's pursuits. Remember, if you build it to SCA rules,

you could get authorized and fire it (using tennis balls) at people in many

of our wars. More information regarding SCA siege can be found here:
HL Aldric de Kerr

Previous DEM Kingdom Siege Marshal

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