Toy trebuchet

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Project by BeachedBones posted 02-03-2009 09:37 PM 4220 views 8 times favorited 10 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I built this after seeing a program on the engineering of various Trebuchets. Intrigued I build this toy with what i found to be the best features of different designs. The whole rig is left on wheels to make rough aiming easier, also so it could be towed to the battlefront as opposed to being built on site as was common. A neat little benefit also is that the wheels are NOT chocked, and allowed to roll back and forth as the weight of the counterweight falls. The physics is a little tricky, but basically the weight can move in a strait line down, as opposed to an arc, making it more efficient and removing some of the shock on the frame by firing the siege engine. A basket style counter weight makes adjustments to the weight, and therefore ballistic distance. Also an empty basket is easier to ship and can be filled with spare ammo, gravel, dirt or whatever is lying around. The sling and launch arm are long to amplify the speed that the projectile is launched. The projectile sits in a guide track that pivots on one end to allow fine tuning of the aim by slightly altering the arc along the sling ropes. One side of the sling rope is fixed to the launch arm, the other end attached a little lower on a hook that is angled to release at the top of the arc. This toy is about 2 feet long and can easily launch a marble 40+ feet using other marbles as counterweight. Made of a scrap of 2/4 and some plywood for the basket.

Time to wage war on a Lincoln Log village!! (not to be used near windows :P)

-- You know.... I think that old wood needs to be furniture.

10 comments so far

View DannyBoy's profile


521 posts in 4374 days

#1 posted 02-03-2009 10:00 PM

Nice scale model. When do you build the full size one?

-- He said wood...

View Pie's profile


187 posts in 3914 days

#2 posted 02-03-2009 10:11 PM

WOW! I was wanting to build one of those along with a catapult. Do you have plans for this trebuchet or did you just wing it? VERY NICE!!

-- Pie

View Dan Lyke's profile

Dan Lyke

1520 posts in 4634 days

#3 posted 02-04-2009 01:14 AM

Awesome! I’ve played with big ones, but I think the nephews need one in living room size.

Don’t know if their mom will ever speak to me again, though.

-- Dan Lyke, Petaluma California,

View BeachedBones's profile


201 posts in 3911 days

#4 posted 02-04-2009 02:32 AM

No plans, it’s pretty strait foreward, it went together fast. Just one of those little pine, glue and brad nails quick projects. Just drill both sides of the axel and pivit point holes at the same time to make sure they match and there is no binding. I find catapults more trouble than they’re worth cus it’s hard to find something with the right elasticity for a torsion catapult, and I don’t find string ones authentic. I would like to try and make a Balista model but I havn’t worked out in my head how to do it.

-- You know.... I think that old wood needs to be furniture.

View SteveKorz's profile


2139 posts in 4223 days

#5 posted 02-04-2009 09:29 AM

Very cool! I have a buddy that has always wanted to build one of these big enough to throw VW bugs… I keep waiting, someday I think he’s actually going to do it.

With another one of these, your kids may very well organize a riot when they have to eat vegetables.

-- As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. (Proverbs 27:17) †

View mrtrim's profile


1696 posts in 4389 days

#6 posted 02-04-2009 02:33 PM

awsome , im building one today ! i can launch bon-bons to the ole lady thatll keep her on her side of the room and away from my couch and my remote ! lol

View BeachedBones's profile


201 posts in 3911 days

#7 posted 02-04-2009 07:10 PM

Hahaha Bon-bons, I hadn’t though of that one… great idea there. I was thinking of maybe making a larger one to throw tennis balls for the dogs. No plans on a version to launch vehicles, or to toss the trash to the curb.

-- You know.... I think that old wood needs to be furniture.

View Dave's profile


74 posts in 4773 days

#8 posted 07-11-2009 05:28 AM

super nice looking for no plans i was about to ask you about them till i saw one of the comments were you said there are no plans.

p.s. nice job

-- ))penmaker((

View a1Jim's profile


117722 posts in 4086 days

#9 posted 07-11-2009 06:30 AM

cool I want a full size one

View retjohn's profile


4 posts in 3613 days

#10 posted 12-07-2009 02:53 PM

Very nice and without plans!!

For those who want plans, there are quite a few on line, just google ‘trebuchet plans’.

-- John Neel, Atlanta

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