window breaker

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Project by GusRod posted 02-21-2008 12:45 AM 2666 views 5 times favorited 23 comments Add to Favorites Watch
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Took about 90 minutes to cut and assemble this trebuchet for one of my grandsons’ history classes. Antiqued it with a propane torch. Not much to look at, but it threw a golf ball 97 feet! School principal made them stop “testing it” when they hit within inches of a school window. LOL. Made entirely of yellow pine, except for the metal pivot pin for the arm, the cloth sling, the trigger mechanism and a half inch plywood base. Also had about fifteen pounds of lead as ballast.

Even inexpensive projects can be fun. My grandson and his classmates loved it!

PS: date on pic is incorrect. Camera was not set. Made the trebuchet about 3 months ago.

-- Nothing says "I love you" like a new saw blade.

23 comments so far

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 3950 days

#1 posted 02-21-2008 12:49 AM

Artillery from the old days. Pretty cool.

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View walnutter's profile


8 posts in 3724 days

#2 posted 02-21-2008 12:51 AM

A classic I wish I had as a kid….now your grandson can attach a few water balloons to it and have even more fun. Well done.

View mrtrim's profile


1696 posts in 3842 days

#3 posted 02-21-2008 01:35 AM

i wish i had one now ! i got some neighbors on my nerves ! lol great project , looks like a lot of fun !

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27250 posts in 3784 days

#4 posted 02-21-2008 02:27 AM

This is a nice project especially so since you were working with your grandson.

Nice post.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View Dan Lyke's profile

Dan Lyke

1519 posts in 4087 days

#5 posted 02-21-2008 02:40 AM

I assume that by this point the grandson has heard the tradition of returning the diplomats via trebuchet following unsuccessful negotiations, and has re-enacted the historical events?

-- Dan Lyke, Petaluma California,

View RobH's profile


465 posts in 4011 days

#6 posted 02-21-2008 02:50 AM

97 feet! Wow! It always amazed me how simple things like that can make something go so far. Always makes me wonder how far they could chunk a good sized rock in the old days. Great job with the build. I am sure it will be cherished. All little boys like a lethal weapon.

Keep up the great work!

-- -- Rob Hix, King George, VA

View GusRod's profile


29 posts in 3710 days

#7 posted 02-21-2008 02:54 AM

No, I don’t think my grandson has heard of the tradition of returning diplomats via trebuchet … otherwise he would probably want to send his younger brother! LOL.

-- Nothing says "I love you" like a new saw blade.

View Blake's profile


3443 posts in 3836 days

#8 posted 02-21-2008 04:38 AM

Way cool. Neat project and neat story.

-- Happy woodworking!

View WhiskeyWaters's profile


213 posts in 3767 days

#9 posted 02-21-2008 04:57 AM

Can we get a blog with the plans? I know a few grownup kids and real kids that could use one….

-- make it safe & keep the rubber side down.

View leonmcd's profile


204 posts in 3933 days

#10 posted 02-21-2008 05:07 AM

One of my sons made one last summer. It was about 4’ tall and would throw water balloons (safer than golf balls) about 120 feet. I was amazed at the accuracy. You could cluster shots in 6’ circle at 40 yards. As he was building this I was wondering how do you get it to turn loose of the rope at exactly the right time. Turns out that the trigger is a strategically placed bent nail. The guy that invented this ( back in the day) was pretty sharp.

BTW – Yours looks much better than my son’s. His was just unfinished 2×4’s , concrete blocks in a bucket for ballast and a dish towel for a sling.

-- Leon -- Houston, TX - " I create all my own designs and it looks like it "

View GusRod's profile


29 posts in 3710 days

#11 posted 02-21-2008 06:52 AM

Hey, the idea of blogging it and even including plans sounds intriguing but it will have to wait a few days. I’m in the middle of getting some medical tests done and it’s taking most of my time. Barely have time to answer emails and respond to comments, etc. Besides that, the ‘old lady’ has been on my case about remodeling her kitchen. My disability (bilateral peripheral neuropathy, among others) makes it impossible to do more than four or five hours of work a day and even typing is a real chore for me. Believe it or not, I could once type about 140 words per minute. It’s taken me close to ten to type this much now! But thanks for the support. I’ll do a blog as soon as I can.

-- Nothing says "I love you" like a new saw blade.

View Karson's profile


35111 posts in 4362 days

#12 posted 02-21-2008 07:05 AM

Take care Gus and keep us informed.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware soon moving to Virginia †

View tomd's profile


2148 posts in 3732 days

#13 posted 02-21-2008 07:58 AM

Just what I love, toys for tots.

-- Tom D

View rikkor's profile


11295 posts in 3836 days

#14 posted 02-21-2008 11:58 AM

Neat. Did you have plans?

View Tomcat1066's profile


942 posts in 3758 days

#15 posted 02-21-2008 12:16 PM

Trebuchets are awesome. I actually can’t wait until I’ve got a chance to help my son build one for one of his classes :D

-- "Give me your poor tools, your tired steel, your huddled masses of rust." Yep, I ripped off the Statue of Liberty. That's how I roll!

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