Our dream... a trebuchet

Our dream: making a trebuchet

May 28, 2018 | Life, Video

Karren-project 2005

A project by the cultural centre of Sint-Andries, Antwerp

An initiative to create more art in the neighbourhood

We decided to build a trebuchet

September 2005

The three engineers

And so we are ready to begin

I (Alan), Maarten & Hannes gather together and grab the stuff from home which we need for our cool project. Rope, wood, rubber band and not to forget one apple.
With a little help from my sisters our construction will go smooth and perfectly.

A mid-size and mobile trebuchet in the making.

What is a Trebuchet?

Pronunciation

  • (UK) /ˈtɹɛbəʃɛt//ˈtɹɛb.jə.ʃeɪ//ˈtɹɛb.ju.ʃeɪ/
  • (US) trěb’yo͞o-shet/ˈtɹɛb.juˌʃɛt//ˈtɹɛb.jəˌʃeɪ/

Noun

trebuchet (plural trebuchets)

  1. A medieval siege engine consisting of a large pivoting arm heavily weighted on one end. Considered to be the technological successor to the catapult.
    Medieval trebuchets were capable of launching 90 kg projectiles over distances of more than 300 metres, making them more powerful than most pre-modern types of catapult.

The project and why the trebuchet

The project itself

Every participant received a wooden beam and a set of bike wheels to create whatever they had in mind. Together with artist Dirk Lenaerts we started to built our dream trebuchet. We were teenagers and eager about playing computer games like Age of Empires II as we were bored of studying and crazy about war stuff alike.

We played with our miniature catapult and trebuchet while firing plasticine balls towards the opponent’s fortress. It was a hell of a good time, I will never forget the image of those bloody sacrifices from wood and plasticine spread all over the floor in my room. It was a big mess every time, but we loved it.

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The creative process

The creative process

We used just wood, lots of nails, rubber band, steel wire, a cogwheel and paint to finish the whole trebuchet itself.

But as it was the intention to put something into the “spoon” of our trebuchet we had to build another cart for the balloons Yeah, you read that right, we used balloons as ammunition. And it was perfect weather to shoot water balloons to Antwerp’s citizens, hahaha. We just had a blast. We really enjoyed ourselves that day and we even shot balloons to our mayor.

The engineering

The engineering

We used just wood, lots of nails, rubber band, steel wire, a cogwheel and paint to finish the whole trebuchet itself.

But as it was the intention to put something into the “spoon” of our trebuchet we had to build another cart for the balloons Yeah, you read that right, we used balloons as ammunition. To be more precise water balloons because a balloon wouldn’t fly far.

We used the cogwheel for the winching mechanism, we could easily pull the lever downwards, which had to be winched by rope and held under tension with help of the cogwheel mechanism.

The action

It’s time for some action… and fun

It was a perfect day to shoot water balloons to the citizens of Antwerp, hahaha. We just had a blast. We really enjoyed ourselves that day and we even shot balloons to our mayor. Luckily it was warm that day and everybody didn’t mind the little water we threw at them.

Here’s a video to show you the result.

» Written by Alan who goes under the name of twin-rhino | Published on March 28, 2018

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